In response to customer complaints raised over fifth-wheel trailer frame issues, Grand Design RV has announced it will extend its three-year structural warranty to include five years of coverage for the vehicle’s frame from the date of purchase. The change, effective for all current models, has been made retroactive to the 2020 model year.

For the past few years, certain customers have been complaining on social media and in YouTube videos about frame issues with Grand Design fifth wheels—as well as other brands. The reported problems arise on models with trailer frames manufactured by third-party supplier Lippert Components, Inc. 

Excessive frame flex is a condition in which the trailer’s frame warps out of the normal specifications, as defined by a set of measurements set out by the frame manufacturer. It may result in cracked fiberglass on the exterior of the RV and cause the walls and flooring of the trailer to separate from the frame. Some of these problems may also be related to improper attachment to the frame by the RV manufacturer. 

The situation came to a head throughout the first half of this year social media personalities have documented issues with frame problems from Grand Design customers, though the company believes the issue has been exaggerated. “Rumors and misinformation have been swirling online regarding excessive frame flex across the industry, including a small percentage of our large Solitude and Momentum fifth-wheel products,” a statement from Grand Design CEO & President Don Clark said. “In each case, we have performed a thorough review and are working directly with our customers to resolve concerns.”

Grand Design was slow to respond to the accusations, first releasing a “Frequently Asked Questions” page on the website in early March.

The warranty change seems to indicate that the company felt the social media frenzy had boiled over to the point where it needed to address the problem more directly. 

“We have also been working directly with our frame supplier, a third-party structural engineering firm, and industry experts to ensure that our products and processes meet and exceed industry standards.” Clark continued. “Our commitment to our customers is absolute and we continue to stand behind every product we build. At Grand Design, we are guided by our key principles and values: Do the right thing, put people first and be the best. These values always have and always will guide our decisions and focus our actions.”

The warranty extension applies only to the frame, not the rest of the structure, and is not transferable—it only covers the original owner. Grand Design will also not warranty frame damage that it determines is caused by aftermarket hitches, overloading, or certain other owner-caused conditions. You can read the full warranty extension here.

Customers with issues should contact Grand Design’s customer service at 1-855-879-4746.