I would not advise buying a Freedom Elite from Camping World.
My story will highlight the customer service from Camping World and Thor Manufacturing’s unwillingness to stand behind their product.
In January of 2017, we purchased a new Freedom Elite 26HE motorcoach from Camping World in Saukville, Wisconsin. We are extremely dissatisfied with the customer service from Camping World.
We first looked at the Freedom Elite coach at a Milwaukee RV show in February of 2017. The layout of the 26HE was perfect for us and decided to purchase one. There were several deficiencies with the show model on display from the Madison, Wisconsin Camping World. However, the salespeople assured us that we could get a new, identical unit from in Saukville.
Red Flag Number One
After the show, we headed to Saukville. At Saukville Camping World we proceeded with the paperwork. We quickly realized that the RV we were buying was the same display model. In other words, they had added a Saukville Camping World sticker over the Madison sticker.
Red Flag Number Two
We pointed out all the deficiencies we noticed at the RV show. Camping World assured us that all the issues would be fixed. One of the issues was a seal on the overhead cap. We were apprehensive, but we went ahead with the purchase.
After the Purchase
Our concerns were confirmed right after we purchased the motor home.
From February to July 2017 the RV was in and out of service at Camping World Saukville with warranty issues.
First, an electrical relay almost started the RV on fire. Next, we found a screw that had been driven through the fiberglass portion of the roof during the manufacturing process. It was near the roof access ladder.
They fixed the screw issue but the repair looked much worse than the problem. Apparently, a technician at Camping World drew pencil marks around the screw, shaped like spider cracks. I assume they did that to exaggerate the damage so that the manufacturer, Thor, would foot the bill.
After that, we saw that the employee who attempted to fix the seal on the overhead cap had dripped sealant and caulking all over the front hood. I spent a couple of hours cleaning it up.
Only One Season
Thankfully we used the RV during the 2018 season without incident. However, during the 2019 season, we noticed that the right wall was delaminating inside the cap. There was a water leak. Also, we noticed water leaking from the cab roof over the passenger seat.
We took the RV to a local repair shop. Initially, they couldn’t find a leak. Next, I removed the cushions from the overhead bed and discovered that the wood was rotting. Mold had started to form there. They suggested we take the RV back to the dealer (Camping World) and we did.
More Repairs Than RV Trips
Next, we dropped the RV off on Dec 2nd, 2019 at Camping World in Saukville, Wisconsin. Since we dropped off the RV I called Camping World at least seven times and stopped in once in person requesting updates. The service department promised to call me back with updates on numerous occasions and never did. Next, I called again and left a message for the service manager to call me Friday, February 28th, 2020. After that, I called Camping World Corporate and send a letter regarding our concerns before I finally got a callback.
On March 11th I finally received a call from the service department stating they found the leak. It was under the right-side screw track on the overhead cap. They said the seal had failed and caused damage estimated at $7,700. After that I initiated a claim with the extended Camping World Warranty we purchased. The claim was denied because it did not cover leaks or leak damage.
Next, I called Thor and asked that they help cover the cost of repairs. The motor home was obviously not properly sealed at the factory. In addition, the location of the leak was not visible. That damage couldn’t have been seen with the naked eye.
Thor responded that the motor home was out of warranty. The manufacture warranty only covered seals for 3 months. Ergo, the three-month warranty is not a warranty at all. Apparently Thor expects their products are inherently defective.
On April 28th, 2020 I received a call from Camping World. They found damage to the fiberglass wall next to a window. Service techs removed the fiberglass to fix the water damage. The estimate was approximately $900. I asked how the new damage happened because I did not see this damage prior to dropping off the vehicle. Of course, they could not explain how the damage had occurred.
In conclusion, today is June 4th, 2020. As of this posting and we are still waiting on our RV. Half a year! We have used our motorhome only eight times since we purchased it. Ergo, we’ve only put around 15,000 miles on it. We cover our unit during winter storage for its protection.
This is our second Thor RV from Camping World. We are far from satisfied with Camping World or Thor motor homes.
Camping World/Gander RV Warnings
This blog began because of our horrible experiences in Monticello, Minnesota and Bartow, Florida. Most importantly, DO NOT buy the extended warranty they try to shove down your throat at closing! Do the math. Research your own warranty agreement.
First, we welcome contributors at CampingWorldSucks.net, click here. Next, we recommend unhappy Camping World customers join the Facebook group, Camping World: The Awful Experience to tell your story. Posting in more places increases the chances that they will lose a prospective screw-ee.
Here is the contact information for Camping World corporate headquarters. Let us know how that works out for you.
This blog is informational only. No advertising. Not-for-profit.
CW’s Fav Manufacturer
Similarly, Keystone RV sucks; check out KeystoneRVsucks.net. Camping World (Gander Mountain) is Keystone RV’s largest retailer. Like Camping World, the Keystone RV company has a reputation for shotty workmanship and horrible customer service. Read our Keystone story at keystonervsucks.net.
In addition to contacting Camping World, you can complain via e-mail about Keystone units to their customer service by clicking here. Again, let us know how that works out for you. We’d love to hear some positive experiences. Unfortunately, they are few and far between.
Thor is Keystone’s parent company. Thor customer support form and phone number might help, (877) 855-2867.
For Keystone RV experiences click to submit.