Heartland Touts New PDI Initiatives

'Lil Guy'

Well-known member
My wife and I are currently looking at a new 2020 Cyclone 4007; comparing it to a Grand Design. So far we are not impressed with the quality of construction in the Cyclone - cabinets hung crooked/ don't close because the opposing cabinet door is set too close. MCD shades in the Living Room don't retract - one side is flush with the window dressing, the other is out of it and catches. Pleated shade in the hallway broken (could have been done at the dealer but we were told it arrived that way. On the Grand Design we don't find these type of things albeit I'm sure that there are things there to that we just didn't see on an initial walk through -- and that is what is scary, we found these on an initial walk through, not during any type of PDI.

That said, the Cyclone has the features we are looking for (residential fridge (we don't boon dock that much), roomy bedroom (the slide in a slide makes for a massive Master Bedroom), and seating in the living room.) The anticipation of warranty problems, not to mention the potential quantity of little things that I might be able to handle, is very concerning to me. Thanks for listening / reading this.

These are the issues that irk everyone the most. You don't hear a lot of complaints about waster leaking at the seals on a new rig unless the hole was cut out to big to seal. Instead of spraying hours worth of water, pull on a shelf or 2 and see how many fall off where some newbie is nailing it together a 1000 mph. If they want to check for water leaks, pull the basement doors and hook up to city water and check the pex fittings inside. The elaborate
rain bay is probably where they wash the rigs before shipment.
Regardless of what they do for pre shipment, it's still up to the buyer to due a thorough PDI before taking delivery and closing on the deal. That's when you have control over the dealer. Pull it off the lot and your at their mercy. JMO
 

RickL

Well-known member
Regardless of what they do for pre shipment, it's still up to the buyer to due a thorough PDI before taking delivery and closing on the deal. That's when you have control over the dealer. Pull it off the lot and your at their mercy. JMO

While I don’t disagree that doing a PDI is important, I am of the opinion that it isn’t close to actually getting into the rig and using it. The original PDI catches the visible and obvious items, but the usage of the unit shows up the true craftsmanship (or lack of) of the unit. I had just a few items found when we picked ours up, but until we drug it down the road, set up and took down a few times that is really when the issues stated to show.

My point being, for those new or potential owners don’t get all tied up on a PDI. Yes, it’ll show some things but using it will really point out the items that need attention. That’s where buying from a quality dealer comes in, not a discount dealer that only pushes the product with zero support after the sale.
 

ksucats

Well-known member
I appreciate all the comments. Looked at another 4007 yesterday and it must have been a mid-week build -- didn't find the quality of construction issues we saw on the earlier one :). I like the cyclone, now just have to figure out how to retire, AND pay for it all. :cool:
 

BigHorns

Member
Regardless of what they do for pre shipment, it's still up to the buyer to due a thorough PDI before taking delivery and closing on the deal. That's when you have control over the dealer. Pull it off the lot and your at their mercy. JMO

100% agree across the board.

My wife and I have now spent a miserable first-sixty-days in a new 2019 Bighorn. We were completely sold on a level of quality construction from Heartland and were anxious beyond words to get into this one and hit the full-time road. The issues that have caused us so much grief are a large collection of little quality control things that induced incredibly difficult troubleshooting for someone new to the unit. Some are not resolved yet. These have ALL been the kinds of things that even a rudimentary quality control function would have prevented. Worst of all is the lack of help from Heartland and the dealer. Neither have provided any kind of follow-through.

Somewhere else in this thread I read a comment on the importance of buying from a reputable, post-sale focused dealer as opposed to the volume cattle chute dealers. We did. Or so we thought. We bought the dealer as much or more than the particular unit. It was a mistake. I will never again allow an opinion of a dealer influence my buying decision in this way.

We love the model, but, at minimum, hate the VIN. Still trying to salvage the idea that it's this unit specifically. But I'm doubting it. Extremely disappointed after 60 days.

Yes- it's still up to the buyer to do a thorough PDI BEFORE consummating a deal and taking delivery. Every party in the deal has their own priorities and best interests. You are the only one that will be focused on yours.

Buyer beware.
 

wdk450

Well-known member
Knowing what I know now, I would make reviewing each prospective dealer's service department on RVServiceReviews.com or other sources a major part of my pre-purchase decision. That being said, I would also keep in mind that the average RV dealer's business model puts RV SALES profits at the top of priorities, with RV service usually being a manufacturer required capability, mainly for after purchase walk thru's. I would find a recommended INDEPENDENT RV SERVICE BUSINESS (No RV Sales) to do my warranty and beyond warranty work. Heartland allows you to use a non-dealer RV repairer with just a phone call to them prior to the service being performed. The independent RV servicer businessman WANTS your service business, and depends on it for his liveleyhood. Most dealers could care less, consider warranty service a loss on their bottom line, and are in no hurry to complete the work.

I have heard of some RV dealers that have working agreements with nearby campgrounds that allow you to live in your RV for a while which gives you a chance to find the problems and get the nearby RV dealer to fix them. PDI guide resources online, or even professional RV inspectors can be very worthwhile in the PDI experience. There are special RVIA certifications in RV acceptance inspections.
 

BigHorns

Member
I would find a recommended INDEPENDENT RV SERVICE BUSINESS (No RV Sales) to do my warranty and beyond warranty work.

This is pretty much where I've landed. It's entirely an issue of using a resource that has my reason for being there as their primary focus, and the success or failure of their work as the basis of the success or failure of their business.

even professional RV inspectors can be very worthwhile in the PDI experience

Yes, they can. Always something foremost in my mind when looking at a used unit. Never even considered it with respect to a new one. Wouldn't buy one again without hiring one first. Of course, they can be a crap shoot, too, in terms of quality of work. But they should be operating with the right focus.
 

TXgearhead

Well-known member
I've repeatedly heard that the factory doesn't pay the dealer nearly enough to cover their costs of warranty work. Assuming that is true then the root of the problem points back to the manufacturer. So all fingers point to the manufacturer....poor or no quality control, apparent poor or no vetting of vendors, poor vetting of dealers, and usually unresponsive to customers needs post purchase. Some day this will change by legislation and manufacturers will be squealing like stuck hogs. Hopefully.
 

danemayer

Moderator
Staff member
I've repeatedly heard that the factory doesn't pay the dealer nearly enough to cover their costs of warranty work. Assuming that is true then the root of the problem points back to the manufacturer. So all fingers point to the manufacturer....poor or no quality control, apparent poor or no vetting of vendors, poor vetting of dealers, and usually unresponsive to customers needs post purchase. Some day this will change by legislation and manufacturers will be squealing like stuck hogs. Hopefully.

For a minute I thought you might be talking about replacement windows for your home. :rolleyes:
 

Angler

Member
Heartland Touts New PDI Initiatives

SEPTEMBER 17, 2019


by: RV PRO Staff
Heartland RV announced plans to introduce new programs and initiatives at its state-of-the-art PDI facility situated on its Elkhart, Ind., campus.

“We’ve taken a very proactive approach to PDI, minimizing the impact on dealers by shipping units that have been thoroughly tested after coming off the production line,” said Ryan Juday, president of Heartland. “We’re running 100 percent of our production line through this facility, which is virtually unprecedented. Our entire team is committed to taking the audit process to the next level.”

Heartland recently implemented several additional processes along with ramping up its seal tech and rain bay efforts. The required system checks include inspections on critical areas for potential failure, including roof inspections, HVAC systems, holding tanks, plumbing and electrical systems.

“Our PDI begins with a seal tech to ensure we do not have leaks and ends with a final clean and inspection to deliver the best possible product to our customers,” said Heartland VP of service and quality Jim Fenner. “The team we have in place in our audit facility has an unequaled drive to catch every concern before it leaves our facility. They are an amazingly talented group that cares about the quality of our products.”

“We run trailers through four independent rain bays to check for leaks throughout the entire interior,” said Juday. “It takes time to cycle trailers through, so the bays are full all day long. It’s one of the most thorough safeguard operations in the industry.”

As an additional precaution, Heartland also performs road tests, “applying a first-hand inspection for durability and function, the goal is to better our production systems while improving products for each consumer,” Juday said.

Heartland has also formed product specialty service teams to “work with our production team to prevent warranty claims,” according to Fenner.

“Each service liaison is tracking overall performance,” he said. “They are running reports based on warranty claims and working with production team to resolve and prevent any return service trips for the consumer. It brings the process full circle by enlisting the entire company to ensure higher quality and overall attention to detail.”


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Well, I just bought a new 2019 3160EL. I live in Southern Cal, the dealership said they will do a complete test and inspection of my trailer before it was sent on it's 1900 mile journey. The trailer showed up Wednesday and the keys showed up Friday (today). Not really happy about that, but oh well. First thing we notice as soon as we walked in, the trailer has dirt and sand all over the floor. Now going thru all of the cabinet and drawers, all have saw dust in all of them. I was promised the trailer would be cleaned on the inside, that didn't happen either. After looking at everything, there is a light just above the entry step, hanging by it's wires. The company must not own a hole saw, they drilled several holes to run the wires. Very bad installation. But hey, I can clean that up and re-attached it. Biggest problem we found so far, dents in two of the four doors on the fridge.
When it cools down, I run power to the trailer to see what else their PDI didn't see or find... Not real impressed by the workmanship and lack of over sight my trailer was sent on it's way. Just another little nugget, I bought this trailer over a month ago, they had plenty of time to go thru the trailer. :mad:
 

wdk450

Well-known member
The best PDI Dealer program I have ever heard of was a couple of dealers (I don't remember the specifics) that owned (or had a working relationship) with an RV park nearby to their dealership. New owners were given a week or 2 in the RV park, and could call the dealer's mobile service with problems the found while living in the rig, which would be fixed promptly.
 

cmalberto

Member
Motorhome Specialties out of Dallas did that - well they gave a couple of nights anyways...when we bought our MH years ago, that gave us a chance to do the shakedown before leaving the property - all issues resolved before leaving. I wish all dealers would do something like that. This would prevent the return in 2-3 weeks and the eventual long wait to get fixed.
 

Kathi-27

Well-known member
t&s in navasota tx is that way. when we bought our 2019 landmark stayed there for 4 days where great people to work with. tim meadows was the best.
 
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