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Author Topic: Maybe I CAN recommend the Shurflo vents!!  (Read 2262 times)
gumpy
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« on: June 27, 2006, 07:29:25 AM »

Based on response with the company, I'm modifying the thread some to further reflect this issue. The latest is towards the bottom.


Well, I can't recommend the vents from Shurflo (used to be Polar-Aire, but now going by the name Comfort-Aire).  I put two of their top of the line units (Polar-Aire III with temp and rain sensor) in. I've never really been happy with the way they did the controls, but that was more of a quirk than anything. The temp sensor worked well. The rain sensor was a bit iffy and usually resulted in having to turn it off auto mode because it kept hunting.

So, last night, I went out to the bus and I heard one of the vent motors running. It's been getting hot outside, and I've left them on Auto with the temp sensor up high and the fans on low, so if the temp gets over about 110*F inside, they will open and draw some of the hot air out. One vent was open and the fan was running. The other was not open. The motor to open it was running, but the cover was not opening. The motor didn't stop, it just kept running, and the vent didn't open.

I tore it apart, and found the drive shaft on the opener lever arm had twisted off. Evidently the cover had stuck to the rubber gasket, and the torque of the little motor busted the shaft in two! Hard to believe the metal shaft could be that cheap, but it surely was.

So, I tried to call the number on the installation/parts sheet (DTS Mfg in Portland, OR), only to find it was disconnected. After some searching, I find out that the Polar-Aire is now owned by Shurflo.

I called them this morning seeking parts for it, and was informed that, yes, they had bought that line a few years ago, but discontinued manufacturing it about a year ago (about the time I installed mine!). To top it off, they don't sell parts to the general public; I have to go through a dealer or distributor to get parts!

When I bought the units, I debated whether to go with the Fan-tastic or the Polar-Aire. I chose these because they were slightly less expensive. I should have gone with the Fan-tastic!

If I hadn't riveted the thing to the roof, I'd be pulling it out now and throwing it in the trash and replacing it with a Fan-tastic! If I can't get parts, I may be doing that anyway as I definitely won't be buying another Shurflo product. So much for product support and customer service.

craig
« Last Edit: June 27, 2006, 12:16:14 PM by gumpy » Logged

Craig Shepard
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http://bus.gumpydog.com - "Some Assembly Required"
TomC
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« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2006, 07:37:58 AM »

I recommed the Fantastic fans-we have two and haven't had any problems.  Course mine are the simple crank them open and closed type with a thermostat (but don't use the thermostat).  The nice thing about rivets is they can be drilled out.  Next time just use stainless screws.  Good Luck, TomC
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« Reply #2 on: June 27, 2006, 07:47:58 AM »

I have the MaxAire fan on mine and love it.  It has the built in rain fly protection.  I can leave the vent open even during cat and dog type rain storms.
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gumpy
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« Reply #3 on: June 27, 2006, 09:55:51 AM »

Well, I sent the above messge to Shurflo's customer service just to see if I could rattle them a bit.

Within a couple hours, I got a reply from someone asking me to call her so we could "... work together on a solution ...".  Unfortunately, she didn't answer the phone when I called.

So, we'll see.

In all fairness to them, I'll update this thread with whatever comes of it.

craig
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Craig Shepard
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http://bus.gumpydog.com - "Some Assembly Required"
gumpy
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« Reply #4 on: June 27, 2006, 12:05:53 PM »

Well, she called me back.

She was very nice and wanted to do what she could to restore my trust in Shurflo, and so is UPSing a repair kit directly to me. It should be here in a week or so, which will be just fine if it's the right part and fits.

She confirmed that they "usually" try to steer their customers through their dealers and distributors, but they will make an exception on occasion. The guy I talked to this morning wasn't interested in making an exception.

Normally, if I had purchased these through a local dealer, I'd have no problem going back for repair parts, but these were purchased through a small dealer who doesn't do much of this kind of business, is not local, and basically loses money on any warranty work or service parts. Often, local dealers are not interested in ordering parts if you didn't buy the unit from them originally. I don't agree with that policy, but I understand it. And, I don't have time to be running all over the country trying to find someone who will order a simple part for me when I have the schematic and know the exact part number I need.

So, at this point, my opinion of Shurflo has been raised somewhat. She was very nice and willing to help me get what I need to fix this unit.  She even said she was going to run this past their product engineer to see if there's an issue with the product.

When the parts arrive, I'll update this thread to more accurately reflect my overall thoughts.

It's not often I find a company that's willing to go the extra mile to please a single customer. That alone speaks well of Shurflo.

craig

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Craig Shepard
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http://bus.gumpydog.com - "Some Assembly Required"
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« Reply #5 on: June 27, 2006, 05:23:32 PM »

I am not happy with the one I installed last week,,, it will not run while I drive??? I have no idea what temp I have it set at...  Also it rattles like the devel when open while I drive??? I am leaving this week for my first 30 day trip but plan to take it out when I return... Just my 2 cents...

Texas to Ala to Ga to Ohio then hopefully back to Texas...
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« Reply #6 on: June 27, 2006, 07:24:27 PM »

Craig,

I had the same experience with an "always on" solenoid. I call the company and got nothing from a guy I talked to. Later I tried on the net and got an email thing going with a nice lady who not only replaced my two bad ones but sent me five total.

I did notice that all the new ones had a different type bracket than the ones that failed. I had a long discussion with her as to why I thought the brackets were cracking and I guess someone listened.

Is it just me or are these women doing a better job than the guys?
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PD4107-152
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« Reply #7 on: June 27, 2006, 07:58:11 PM »

Craig, I'm really glad to hear that someone cares about customer support.  It is really too bad that the person you originally spoke to cast such a poor shadow on the values of the company.  Keep us posted...
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gumpy
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« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2006, 08:51:27 AM »

Well, as the woman indicated, a package arrived from Shurflo yesterday. It contained 2 sets of the following: the lever arm assembly (which is what broke), the worm gear assembly (which I didn't think was damaged), and bushing sets.

The lever arm is what had broken and that's all I thought I needed. When I went to install it, I noticed that the worm gear was also damaged, so her forethought was very much appreciated.
The bushings were not needed as the new parts have new bushings on them, but they'll be held
to future maintainance on my two units.

I think the lever arm broke because the plastic dome stuck to the rubber gasket that seals it when it's closed. Before I put it all together, I sprayed the gasket with dry teflon spray. I'm hoping that will keep the plastic dome from sticking to the rubber gasket.

So, I have to say, that once I got in touch with the right person at Shurflo, they went above and beyond what I would consider customer service, and I greatly appreciate that.

I've been pretty happy with my Polar-Aire vents up until this event. There are a couple things I'd have changed if I were the design engineer, but they're pretty minor. One is I don't like the way the switches are interlocked, but it's more of an irritant than anything. The other is the screen is attached with about 8 screws and is a real pain to take off for cleaning. It would have been a big improvement if the screen clipped in place somehow.

craig
« Last Edit: July 08, 2006, 08:58:39 AM by gumpy » Logged

Craig Shepard
Located in Minnesquito

http://bus.gumpydog.com - "Some Assembly Required"
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