Kwikee step failure

Suza

Member
Actually this is directly between my dealer and Kwikee - LTV isn't involved at all. This was covered under the two year warranty on the steps.

That said this is apparently not an isolated event by any means given the number of folks who have chimed in since I started this thread. The pictures of the failed step linkage that I posted here were also sent to Kwikee and they understood the nature of the failure right away. Kwikee's reaction tells me they have seen their product fail this way before and probably more than once.
From the sound of things, I'd guess Kwikee does nothing about re-engineering their step to prevent future occurrences of this failure. I may be wrong. People with these failures need to report them to LTV. If enough dissatisfied customers do this, perhaps LTV will look at other step options.
 

Suza

Member
While lubricating my step today I discovered this same issue with my 2016 Unity TB. My step works great and I only looked closely at this part today because of reading this thread. I have attached the photo and I am glad I found this prior to the steps failing. I will be calling the dealer tomorrow for a warranty repair. It looks like because the bracket is bent the entire step unit will need to be replaced. It sounds we share the same dealer, that Kwikee is aware of this issue and that there should be no issues getting the step replaced under the warranty. Thanks for making me look there!
Thanks, you all, for the useful photos. We have an appointment, also with Johnson RV, for another warranty issue next week. I am going to have them inspect our steps to see if they are on the road to failure, as well. They should know what to look for, thanks to your experiences :smilewink:
 

Tannys

2016 Unity TB
Thanks, you all, for the useful photos. We have an appointment, also with Johnson RV, for another warranty issue next week. I am going to have them inspect our steps to see if they are on the road to failure, as well. They should know what to look for, thanks to your experiences :smilewink:
They are aware of this issue as they just replaced my failing step with damaged clevis pin and bent bracket yesterday. They did a nice job taking care of this and several other warranty issues.
 

calbiker

Well-known member
Don't know the size of the cotter pin, but here's a photo.

Seeing how there are many failures, I think there's a design flaw. It's not the cotter pin at fault. If Kwikee "fix" reoccurs, then your best bet is to install a bolt with nylon locking nut IF YOU HAVE ENOUGH ROOM TO REMOVE THE BOLT WHEN STEPS ARE STORED.



What size cotter pin did you use for replacement?
 

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Yob2kanobe

2017 Unity U24MB LL+
That pin is made to shear if the steps are bound. Replacing it with a bolt or steel pin will cause you major $ down the road.
 

SSTraveler

2014 LTV Unity Murphy Bed
After I replaced my coter pin with a slightly larger one I checked it a week or so later and the clevis pin was pulling the coter pin back thru the shackle bracket. It seems over time the movement of the step has forced the shackle bracket to spread forcing some needed play between the moment arm and the shackle bracket. So now the clevis pin is actually to short and that's why my current step travel is pulling the coter pin through the shackle bracket hole. I just decided to go back with a stainless steel bolt, nut and stop nut so I could tighten stop nut against the nut and leave some space which is required now for proper operation my steps. Working very well, hopefully step problem solved.
 
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redwing

New member
The one thing that Is for certain , There are a lot of moving parts and require lubrication as often as possible . Just remember every time that door opens that step moves, and the fact that it hangs out there in the element . So i,m not surprised about the failure rate .
Redwing
 

hoosierrun

Active member
Just had my Kwikee step fail on my 2016 LTV Serenity. It failed in a dangerous way too. As I was stepping down from inside the RV, the step just folded back under when I put one foot on the step. I went flying out and was able to catch myself without injury. Inspection indicates that the pin that passes through the clevis is fine with the cotter pin in-place. I can freely move the step in and out and observe the cam arm attached to the motor turning very easily with no resistance. I'm guessing that the gear box teeth broke loose, but I'll have to take it apart before I can say for sure. I hear a chattering sound for a couple of seconds when I open and close the door. We have had no problems up to this point and I lube the step frequently with Boshield dry lubricant. Anyone else hear of this happening?
 

alichty

2014 LTV Unity TB
Just had my Kwikee step fail on my 2016 LTV Serenity. It failed in a dangerous way too. As I was stepping down from inside the RV, the step just folded back under when I put one foot on the step. I went flying out and was able to catch myself without injury. Inspection indicates that the pin that passes through the clevis is fine with the cotter pin in-place. I can freely move the step in and out and observe the cam arm attached to the motor turning very easily with no resistance. I'm guessing that the gear box teeth broke loose, but I'll have to take it apart before I can say for sure. I hear a chattering sound for a couple of seconds when I open and close the door. We have had no problems up to this point and I lube the step frequently with Boshield dry lubricant. Anyone else hear of this happening?

Have not heard of this variant of step failure. Any chance you are still within your 2 year warranty on the steps?
 

CB1945

Member
I have owned an rv with Kwikee steps for almost 20 years, not meant to offend anyone but you can't over lube the steps, there are about 10 to 12 places to lube & Kwikee recommends every 30 days. I use what they recommend http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000BGOI92...vptwo=&hvqmt=e&hvdev=c&ref=pd_sl_7p2b9yu5js_e
Absolutely. I agree 100%.
The biggest cause of failure with these steps is lack of lubrication. I have used a spray Lube called Boshield T9 in recent years and try to give ALL the pivot points a squirt at least every 6-8 weeks, Minimum. They live in a pretty ugly environment and require regular attention.
There's actually a sticker on the steps of my new CB that says to Lube them monthly.

https://www.amazon.com/Trailer-Camp...8&qid=1543468964&sr=8-2&keywords=boshield+t-9
 

cc_windsurfer

Active member
The problem here isn't the clevis pin, the sheared clevis is only a symptom. The problem is that the bracket/linkage is not stiff enough, thus it flexes and eventually shears off the clevis.

would also like to note that some of the pictures have the clevis incorrectly installed so that they will fail even faster.
 

TStiles

2018 Unity CB
There are a lot of complaints / grousing over the Kwikee steps, their reliability, their construction quality, and the need for extraordinary maintenance. Is there an alternative automatic retracting step that addresses these issues?
 

alichty

2014 LTV Unity TB
If the failure you experience is like mine where the stepper motor no longer stops with resistance like its supposed to do then a larger/stronger bolt or clevis pin will simply increase the damage the stepper motor can inflict. I think there are at least 3 different types of failures being mixed together in this thread and there is no common solution that covers all types of Kwikee step failures for the step model Leisure Travel is using. The failure in mine (I started this thread BTW) was in the stepper motor sensors. This is totally unrelated to a bad clevis pin or step lubrication. Lubricating the steps is something all of us should certainly be doing (I use Boeshield T-9 myself) but not doing it won't cause the failure my steps experienced. The clevis pin is not a massive bolt but if the steps are working correctly it didn't need to be.

For the record the replacement steps Kwikee sent have been working fine for the past three years with the supplied clevis pin.
 

hoosierrun

Active member
The failure in my Kwikee step system is the drive motor plate. The center hole is supposed to be square and it slips over the square shaft. For my failure, the square hole was found rounded out and the drive plate was slipping around the shaft. That drive plate is a rather thin piece of metal so the square hole insides can get rounded out pretty easily. Since that drive plate is not sold as a replaceable piece, I am required to purchase a complete motor assembly. Let me try to post a picture to show this.
 

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ablock

Member
Anyone have advice on a situation where the motor does not move or make any sound at all when the door is opened (with the interior switch on)? The orange light is on.

Some possible fixes I have found online are:

1. Controller failure
2. Magnetic switch failure
3. Motor is bound due to overtravel. Remove motor from gearbox, lube and reattach.

All suggestions appreciated. Thanks!
 

hoosierrun

Active member
Anyone have advice on a situation where the motor does not move or make any sound at all when the door is opened (with the interior switch on)? The orange light is on.

Some possible fixes I have found online are:

1. Controller failure
2. Magnetic switch failure
3. Motor is bound due to overtravel. Remove motor from gearbox, lube and reattach.

All suggestions appreciated. Thanks!
Could there be a fuse blown?
 

Mike DZ

2016 View 24V (2015 3500)
I would be tempted to think that if the orange light (round, about 2" in diameter, underneath the RV) is on - the controller, and mag switch is working correctly and the motor is malfunctioning in some fashion.
 

SSTraveler

2014 LTV Unity Murphy Bed
You can use a magnet to activate the steps other than having to open and close the door by putting it over the door frame switch cover plate. You really need to crawl under and see if the motor is bound in someway or if it has power. If your voltmeter doesn't have sheath piercing probes you can use straight pins into the wires to touch the probes against to check voltages. Here are Kwikee documents that I have collected that might help you troubleshoot.
 

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hoosierrun

Active member
Broke off ground wire or corroded lug is a possibility too. One of the ground wires is under the step in the corner and is subject to road debris and road water/salt.
 

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