No automobile is immune to mechanical, electrical, and aesthetic concerns, not even a renowned brand with more than 50 years of handcrafting luxury motorhomes. Here are some Newmar issues you might want to be familiar with, so you’ll know what to do when they arise.
1. Less-than-impressive headlights
Some Newmar RV owners complain of headlight bulbs lasting only a year or two, while others find the brightness underwhelming.
Headlight failures can be a significant safety issue. Unfortunately, it’s almost always beyond a subpar headlight bulb. Wires can fray; fuses can blow out; lighting modules can malfunction; alternators can fail; and relays can go bust.
The Fix: Replace the worn-out plastic covering on the headlight and check for a noticeable improvement in brightness. Cleaning the headlight also helps. Otherwise, you can swap the OEM parts for brighter units.
Check the relay, lighting module, and fuse and replace them if damaged. Switch out damaged wires and tighten loose connections. If you suspect an alternator issue, a mechanic is perfect.
2. Poor-quality carpeting on the cockpit
Although we don’t question Newmar RV quality, some manufacturing practices are head-scratching. For instance, covering the cockpit floor with low-quality carpet sounds “unusual” for a “luxury” RV brand.
Newmar says putting expensive, premium-quality rugs on the cockpit is “impractical” because it soils easily. Still, some RV owners find the reasoning unacceptable.
The Fix: Removing and replacing the factory-installed carpet solves this problem. However, Newmar also has a point in the carpet soiling easily. Hence, we recommend adding moisture- and dirt-proof barriers over the high-end replacement carpet.
3. “Sticky” slide-out issues
Full wall slide issues aren’t exclusive to Newmar RVs. Other motorhomes can have these problems, too.
The electric motor could malfunction, preventing it from extending and retracting the slide-out as efficiently as possible. Mechanical parts could deteriorate over time; power supply issues could arise; and slide-out track obstructions could accumulate.
The Fix: Solving Newmar RV slide problems starts with inspecting the tracks for dirt, debris, and other obstructions, removing any you see. Ensure the key is in the “ignition mode” when extending the slide-out.
Almost all RVs with slide-outs have a manual retraction mechanism. You can crank the device and bring the RV to a mechanic, so they can check the electric motor.
4. Low-quality tires
Contributing to driving stability issues is Newmar’s surprisingly poor-quality tires. You would expect a luxury motorhome brand to mate the wheels with premium-quality rubber. Apparently not.
Newmar RV owners say the tires deteriorate quickly, losing its grip and increasing the risk of road mishaps. Tire overheating and poor fuel economy can also complicate things.
The Fix: You can swap out the OEM tires with better-quality rubber, preferably with the correct tire ratings to match your driving needs. For example, driving on snowy and uneven terrain requires deeper grooves for optimum grip.
5. Faulty equipment
Quality issues exist, even with well-established global brands. Electrical appliances, mechanical equipment, and other modern machines are not impervious to wear and tear.
Although rare in Newmar RVs, wires can fray or loosen from their connections. Moisture can undermine a gadget’s function, robbing RV families of enjoyment and convenience.
The Fix: Inspect all Newmar equipment for their ideal positions and recommended settings. Check the wires, connectors, and other electrical and mechanical components for signs of wear and damage.
Tightening loose bolts and replacing frayed or damaged wires help. Newmar’s customer support can assist if you suspect the equipment is faulty. And if your device is under warranty, you don’t have to spend another dime.
6. Stability issues
Recreational vehicles are taller, narrow, and sit high above the ground, making them less stable on the road, especially at high speeds.
Although suspension and chassis problems can cause driving instability, the cause might be simpler than you think. Heavy furnishings on one side undermines the RV’s weight distribution, making it more challenging to control.
The Fix: Try repositioning RV furnishings (i.e., sofa beds, lounges, tables, refrigerators, and other heavy but “movable” items) to redistribute the weight on the motorhome.
Moreover, inflating the RV tires with the correct air pressure can improve driving stability. You can bring your RV to a shop for proper wheel alignment considering the vehicle’s weight distribution.
7. Squeaks and other unusual sounds
A squeaky sound almost always indicates friction between two moving parts. Lack of or insufficient lubrication and surface contaminants can compound the problem.
Drive belts, bearings, and alternators can wear out. So do brake rotors and pads. The RV’s suspension system might “dry” up or become dirty. Inadequate hydraulic fluid can also lead to nasty squeaks on the steering wheel.
The Fix: Troubleshooting a squeaky sound can be daunting because the RV has many moving parts. Fortunately, lubricating mechanical components and removing grime, dust, and dirt from contact surfaces help.
A periodic RV maintenance and tune-up should help avoid these problems.
8. Engine issues
Although rare, engine problems can make Newmar RVing experiences less pleasant. Faulty spark plugs can undermine the RV’s starting abilities, while insufficient lubrication and cooling system leaks can risk engine overheating.
The Fix: Removing and inspecting spark plugs is easy with the right tools. You can assess the spark plug’s condition and replace it with a better-quality unit.
Lubricating mechanical components under the hood is also essential, including drive belts. Doing so improves these parts’ lifespan and minimizes failure risk.
We recommend a mechanic to inspect and diagnose potential Newmar RV engine problems. These professionals are more competent in addressing serious concerns, unless you have an automotive or mechanical engineering degree.
Many motorhome brands also show identical Newmar RV problems, making these issues nearly universal across recreational vehicles. Some are easy to fix, requiring no more than a persistent DIY attitude. Other concerns might need a more professionally technical, albeit costly, approach.
Preventive maintenance and routine checks can help avoid these camper issues, allowing you and your family to go on extended road trips and boondocking adventures with a luxury Newmar RV.
Explore common RV issues and solutions in other RV brands:
“Hi, I’m Francis’ husband—Calvin. Our story began with our shared passion for traveling. I have had a career journey for over 11 years at Ford Motor Company, where I took on the role of BMS SW Process Engineer.
Together with my wife, I have dedicated countless hours to exploring every nook and corner of the world. Ten years living in an RV may seem long, but time seems to fly by when I’m doing what I love with the person I love.
Like my wife, I hope to help you see the beauty of traveling off the beaten path by sharing insights into this lifestyle. In addition to my corporate roles, I also launched our website – Outdoorbits, in 2015 and continue to contribute my knowledge and skills to the present day. And I’ll be completely honest with you—no hiding the truth or sugarcoating the possible challenges.
So, if you want to run away from the busy lifestyle to embrace nature, I’m your guy.”