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Steps won’t go in, then starts back working


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Got ready to leave INTRO rally in Lebanon, TN and step wouldn’t go in. My buddy and I worked on them about 30 minutes, then just started working without us knowing what we did, if anything. It worked for over a month and this morning, I went out to the coach to get something and the steps would not go in. I tried several times before I left to go on an errand. When I came back to see if I could fix it, it was working again. Any suggestions on where or what I need to do to prevent from happening on a trip?

Woody O

2006 Dynasty

 


 

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I would start with checking two places. Check your ground connection for the step controller plus pull apart the controller connector then clean the contacts of each end of the connector.

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They will probably get worse.  Been there...done that.  Also talked to Techs and Lippert. Also many folks.

Richard is correct. Make sure the ground wire is on cleaned surface and tight. Pull loose the connections.  Spray with Electronic Contact cleaner. If they still act up....and the drive gear and the rack are lubricated....as in the pivot points....MOTOR.

You have the earlier model, per the dates on the recall 07 - 15. That was for the upper end Two Step. Just make sure that all is lubricated.

There are a few signs.  The steps work sometimes....then NOT others. The magnets in the motors are glued or adhesive attached. When the magnet shifts or vibrates, then the motor will hang up. The motor is also supposed to have a current limiting circuit. Basically, it is a power window (Regulator is what it is called) motor. The OTHER thing....the plastic drive gear in the motor is GONE. Sometimes it will engage...other times NOT.

Many fixes are out there. I think there are pictures and the model numbers or the years that the motors were used in this PU Truck or that Taurus or whatever.

You can buy the motors on eBay. I pulled mine out. PITA, at least for this 77 YO that can still slither with the best of them underneath. BUT, the non OEM motor would not go back in. There are (typically) 3 bolts and there are spacers on either side of the motor housing.  So, you have to get a bolt in and its spacers...then start the threads. BUT, the next two bolts are tough...with the spacers. THEN, my motor, which was SUPPOSED to be OEM, but no marked would not work. There was maybe 1/8" more metal in the housing holes or the housing holes were not exactly 120 degrees apart. Two bolts would line up....the third NO. Many people just drill out the housing holes....that works.  But I found that CW had my motor on sale as cheap as Ebay and that CW would install it for a flat $85 or so. GUESS WHAT....they fixed it.

The ONE WORD OF CAUTION. If the motor tries to lock in in the open position and doesn't....and then moves back in, that is DANGEROUS to whomever is coming down. I almost tripped and my 15 YO GD did. God save us if it had been my wife.

SO....watch the steps....and be careful.  My new motor has been in place for 2 years....crisp. Mine is a simple single step, but the two steps are the same principle.

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In thinking about the steps, I noticed today when the steps were operating, that when the steps would retract, the step motor would do a hum for about 5 seconds after the steps closed. It did it twice today, immediately upon closing. What is that telling me?  Woody O

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Mine wood stutter, then work or as it got worse would go part way in the need help to finally close. I cleaned all the contact and no help. When I pulled the old motor apart it was dry and grease had solidified. Worked for a long time for all the use it got.

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43 minutes ago, Woody O said:

In thinking about the steps, I noticed today when the steps were operating, that when the steps would retract, the step motor would do a hum for about 5 seconds after the steps closed. It did it twice today, immediately upon closing. What is that telling me?  Woody O

Be prepared to purchase and install a new motor.  These steps are not like the step well cover, or at least the older ones with a single shaft DC Motor.  They had reversing relays.  The power window regulator motors have a defined travel distance and current limiting.

Just my guess….so do the simple…but make sure no one gets hurt.

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Thanks, I’m assuming that the part number is still somewhere on the motor in order to get it from Napa , hopefully!

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The stair company  sent me a new motor which was wired wrong for 250 and when I called them they said I needed the updated components for 650. I gave the old motor to a guy at my local Napa and offered him 100 to find me a motor. He found it in California Napa for 85 including shipping. He gave me all the info on where the motor comes from.

good luck,

paulb

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I have replaced TWO of the gearbox/motor assemblies in 11 years.  Mine uses a Ford Taurus window motor, and is NOT protected against entry of water during a hard rain.  I wrapped tape around the vent openings on the last one and have not had a problem since.  I ALWAYS carry a spare motor/gearbox.  IIRC, it was less than $100.

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Had mine worked on a few times was told that’s all they could do. It worked but clicked real quick kick about 18 times. Sounded like gear slipping. Worked for a while then would only lift half way but I could pull it the rest of the way and it would stay. Got worse and worse. I’ve gotten a lot of advice and welcome more. I have the wedge shaped controller so I guess I have been updated. Here in a few days this old body is going to crawl under there with a pigtail, 12 volt battery and my steps manual and see what I can find out. Oh, I will also have all the tools I think I will need while I’m down there. 2000 Safari Continental Panther. 
 

 

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9 hours ago, John Rowin said:

Had mine worked on a few times was told that’s all they could do. It worked but clicked real quick kick about 18 times. Sounded like gear slipping. Worked for a while then would only lift half way but I could pull it the rest of the way and it would stay. Got worse and worse. I’ve gotten a lot of advice and welcome more. I have the wedge shaped controller so I guess I have been updated. Here in a few days this old body is going to crawl under there with a pigtail, 12 volt battery and my steps manual and see what I can find out. Oh, I will also have all the tools I think I will need while I’m down there. 2000 Safari Continental Panther. 
 

 

my bet is on the motor. If you have the original CoachStep single step, it was probably made in Texas. The trick that worked on mine was to buy the OEM motor, which is listed as a Stromberg Carlson motor from Camping World, who usually has it on sale.  That motor matched up with the three bolt holes and the tech put it in in less than an hour. He MAY have drilled out the three holes so there was more play. The plastic gear was stripped. 

Good Luck

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I had to replace the entire step mechanism except for the single step itself. The curved metal arm snapped last Thanksgiving while at Lazy Days CG. I called Lippert technical service to get the exact part number that I needed then ordered it form Amazon.

The tech stated that I needed an upgrade system as they no longer supply parts for my original step mechanism.

Here is what I ordered from Amazon.

https://tinyurl.com/kc77by4f

 

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Okay guys, I removed the motor from the coach. Prior to removal, it would not work at all. I removed the motor and tested it with a 12 volt battery and it works in both directions, so it must be in the switch box that tells it which way to turn, whatever thats called. So, what part am I looking to replace and what is it called?

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Thanks Dr, where do you recommend that i source the Step Control Module?

Just now, Woody O said:

Thanks Dr, where do you recommend that i source the Step Control Module? Can you get that at Napa, also?

 

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2 hours ago, Woody O said:

Okay guys, I removed the motor from the coach. Prior to removal, it would not work at all. I removed the motor and tested it with a 12 volt battery and it works in both directions, so it must be in the switch box that tells it which way to turn, whatever thats called. So, what part am I looking to replace and what is it called?

So, the step unit moves freely with the motor linkage disconnected?

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49 minutes ago, Woody O said:

Thanks Dr, where do you recommend that i source the Step Control Module?

 

NOPE.  Your steps are two, if I am correct as the lower food chain like mine is a single one.  Mine was made by CoachStep.  Lippert bought them and swallowed them up and moved the manufacturing to Elkhart.  Lippert will be your source.  You have to go in and ask for “Parts”.  Long story, the aftermarket or replacement part numbers are different from the OEM PN.  Don’t ASK.

 

You MAY HAVE Kwikee line.  If you have, I assume, the motor still out, you need to do some googling with the motor to see which brand.  I do NOT a know the relationship between the two brands, but yours, if it was a Coach.Step, was probably made in Texas based on the dates.

Lippert Components 909510000 Step Control with Over-Ride

put the above in Amazon.  There are two listings….read the questions on this one. There is also a Kwikee for sale.  

Pull out the controller….look for the part numbers and start googling.  You will find the new number.  You can also try to put that PN in .Amazon or eBay and get info.  My advice….buy a Lippert .  The knockoffs, like the motor, can be “less than reliable”. The only word of caution….make sure you have a GOOD mating connection on the pigtails.  I had a new controller installed under extended warranty.  It quit about 200 miles later.  The tech told me to unplug the two pigtails and use electronic contact cleaner and then plug back in and reseat a few times,  that was in 2014.  I lost the motor in 2019….and the controller is still fine.

I DO lubricate the gear and the joints at least once every 2 seasons or maybe every year.  There is a “safety circuit” in the motor I believe so if there is an overdraw or a high current, the motor shuts off to prevent damage.

I would temporarily hookup the motor, letting it hang down, and then use the switch to cycle the motor….after I cleaned the mating plugs.  If it still doesn’t work, get a new one.  Regardless, after you fix it, you need to use RTV Windshield sealer to seal the backs of the pigtails and the side joints of the plug….you get a LOT of water splashed up.

BTW…if you DO have an original CoachStep Texas unit, the controller PCB was not sealed or “potted”.  That was the first “design improvement” that Lippert made…

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Yes. The steps move in freely when disconnected. So, I decided to take it to repair shop since it might be the controller or it might be the magnets .

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