Newmar Recall Notice

Photo by Josh Reyes, Daily Press.

We follow several Newmar groups online. One of them being a Facebook group for Newmar motorhome owners. A member shared her story about a fire on their 2016 Newmar Dutch Star 4369. Based on her incident, many of us were concerned that the 2016 Dutch Star might have an engineering fault that could lead to a fire. And we were right to be concerned.

Here is the recall notice:

Newmar is recalling certain 2016-2017 Dutch Star and Ventana motorhomes manufactured January 22, 2016, to November 7, 2016, equipped with Cummins ISL engines. These vehicles, built on a Freightliner chassis, have a power steering hose that may be routed incorrectly, and, as a result, the hose may rub against the power stud on the starter motor, possibly causing electrical arcing and a power steering fluid leak.

Electrical arcing in the presence of leaking power steering fluid can increase the risk of a fire.

Newmar will notify owners, and Freightliner dealers will reroute the power steering hose for proper clearance, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin January 8, 2017. Owners may contact Freightliner customer service at 1-800-547-0712 or Newmar customer service at 1-800-731-8300. Newmar’s number for this recall is 16V 809.

I contacted my dealer and the Canadian rep for Newmar. Neither one had heard about the recall although they were very prompt in following up. I received the following from my dealer:

You have a great safety net looking after you and your coach. I have checked with both Newmar, and Freightliner concerning the issue that your friend had in regards to his Dutch Star.

I spoke with Freightliner, and the representative coincidentally had just finished speaking with Karl at Newmar. My understanding is that he will be contacting you by phone shortly.

Currently, Freightliner is determining the affected chassis serial numbers. If your coach falls into this serial number range you will most definitely receive a letter by mail from Freightliner and/or Newmar.

I also heard back from directly from Newmar. This recall campaign will begin early January. We’ll find out then if we have a potential fire hazard in our coach.

We continue to be impressed with the customer support that we have received with our coach. I have a bit of a concern with the potential for an engine fire as considerable heat is generated in that part of the coach. I am considering an engine fire suppressant system for the Castaway if just for the peace of mind.

5 replies
  1. Isobel Kameros
    Isobel Kameros says:

    We have a Newmar 2016 Dutchstar Model 4369. One week ago on August 9th we started our coach and it burst into flames. We did everything we could to fight the fire putting our lives in danger and eventually got it out. The coach sustained significant damage to the engine compartment, the engine, and the paint on the rear of the coach and some interior smoke damage. Freightliner Custom Chassis organized the towing to a Freightliner dealership. Preliminary observation suggests an electrical fire resulting in a severed fuel line causing a continuous supply of fuel to the fire. We are very concerned about the safety of our coach because of the extensive damage incurred. We are also very concerned about the diminishment of value of our coach due to the record of fire damage.

    We are full time RVers and this is our only home. We are currently paying for nightly rentals. Our insurance company, National Interstate, only supplies a small emergency hotel expense which we have already used up. All indications point to a lengthy process including subrogation, multiple inspections by multiple entities involved and eventually extensive repairs. We have been advised by our insurance company that this will be a very long term process. We did not receive a recall notice because our coach is an early model 2016 and built in 2015. We don’t know if our fire is related to the recall notice. We have asked Newmar to help us out but they will not pay for lodging or exchange our coach. Newmar and Freightliner Custom Chassis still haven’t sent out fire inspectors so our Motorhome continues to sit in the Freightliner shop. Our insurance company sent out a fire inspector right away. We’ve relied on the Newmar products for our home and never imagined there was any possibility for our home to burst into flames when turning the ignition switch on. We purchased the new motorhome in October 2016 for reliability and safety.

    Reply
    • Richard
      Richard says:

      Hello Isobel. Thank you for posting. I noticed that you had also posted on the iRV2 forum here: http://www.irv2.com/forums/f103/2016-newmar-dutchstar-model-4369-fire-356128.html

      We had ordered our coach in October of 2015 but it did not get off the line until sometime in March of 2016. And yes, our coach was on the recall list! I even called Newmar to see if it was safe to drive to the dealer. A friend told me how to perform a simple check to ensure that we could make the drive safely. Definitely a concern that such an expensive coach could randomly catch fire. So sad to hear your news.

      Reply
  2. Isobel Kameros
    Isobel Kameros says:

    The subrogation inspection last week (one month after the fire) by Newmar, Freightliner, Cummins Engine and National Interstate concurred the the fire was caused by what is described in the Newmar recall 16v 809. Our coach, however, was not included in the recall dates and we had no knowledge of the recall. We purchased our 2016 Newmar Dutchstar in October 2015. It is only because my husband was able to put out the fire that the cause could be determined. Newmar and Freightliner have not offered us any assistance even though their negligence could have easily cost us our lives. If we had been driving down the road the entire motor home would have burnt up. I hope other motorhome owners will not get injured before they are notified about this dangerous defect. I notified the National Highway Safety Administration as the cause was determined.

    Reply
    • Richard
      Richard says:

      I had a sense that it might be the same issue as the Newmar Recall. So unfortunate! Disappointing that Newmar and Freightliner are not stepping in to help. This seems so contrary to the experience that we have enjoyed with their customer service.

      Reply
      • Kameros Isobel
        Kameros Isobel says:

        We are very surprised as well. This is our second Newmar coach. We had a 2006 Mountaim Aire before the Dutch Star and until this horrific incident have always gotten excellent support from
        Newmar. They are putting the blame entirely on Freightliner and will not accept any responsibility.

        Reply

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