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MaxxFan service lubrication repair help?


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The lid shudders and jerks when operating. I have removed the whole fan from the roof and plan to investigate further. 

The lid gearbox AKA "operator" appears to be two halves held together with screws. Has anyone dissembled this unit, cleaned and lubed it? What lube did you use? Mine has a bunch of accumulated crud around it and I suspect the lube has leaked out. I can get a new one but since mine is out of warranty I would rather just service mine if possible. I haven't found anybody who has done this online.

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Operator replacement and SYNCHRONIZING instructions: ... https://www.rvupgradestore.com/v/vspfiles/assets/pdf/MaxxFanLiftInstructions.pdf

Thanks for any comments.

John Davies

Spokane WA

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"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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Well, this is what my roof looks like now.... i am waiting on some 3M 4000UV sealant, the good stuff, before I can reassemble it.

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Other than the shuddering, I had a small nuisance water leak from the rear curbside corner of the inner trim piece. This shows evidence of the leak:

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I discovered that the upper mount flange screws were not sealed, and the sealant inside was misapplied during the build, so that that corner had a gap, notice the dirt entry into that corner via the screw heads:

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I got the shuddering issue fixed, I will write all this up as a new thread with lots of pics and some tips.

Darn it...... this is sloppy work. But OTH, in a stick and staple trailer, this would probably have screwed up the roof.

John Davies

Spokane WA

Edited by John E Davies

"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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  • 9 months later...

John,

Thanks again for your pioneering help on this device. My gear box self destructed and I will be climbing up on the roof of to replace it.  It was nice to find your topic and the guidance is appreciated.

Did you ever find out what kind of lube it uses?  Maybe a lithium based grease will suffice? The fan cover opening was a bit jerky and only 3 years old.

Update:  The remnants of the OEM gearbox showed a residue of a sticky grease - but not alot of it present. The casting was toast though.

Cheers,

Terry

Edited by skalywag
update 1272020
Legacy Elite I

#240

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7 minutes ago, skalywag said:

Thanks again for your pioneering help on this device. My gear box self destructed and I will be climbing up on the roof of to replace it.  It was nice to find your topic and the guidance is appreciated.

Did you ever find out what kind of lube it uses?  Maybe a lithium based grease will suffice? The fan cover opening was a bit jerky and only 3 years old.

Thanks for the kind words. I do not know what lubes they use during assembly. The problem IMHO is the slotted tracks and pins get dry and start binding, thus the lightweight rain cover hops around and judders. Mine was fine for a while but that problem has returned. It is a design flaw, along with the fact that you cannot prop open the inner lid a few degrees without causing the rain cover to be really loose. I would love to be able to get two inches of ventilation while keeping the rain cover tightly held down onto the roof...

PLEASE, if you can, during your gearbox replacement, take lots of pics and post them here, or start a brand new thread so I can include a link to it at the top.

John Davies

Spokane WA

"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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I replaced my gear. Be sure to look at the link in John’s first post that takes you to the RV upgrade store - before you disassemble.  I over disassembled looking for the problem without properly researching and made the job twice as hard. It actually is pretty easy besides having to get on the roof. 

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Scott&Ricki

2017 Legacy Elite II Twin, Hull 225, The Bus 
2007 Tundra 
Prev: 2003 Casita, 2009 Weekend Warrior 

 

 

 

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I replaced the gearbox for the Maxxfan today. It took about 20 minutes following the included instructions performed on top of the Ollie. I am starting to feel that this must be a common occurrence by the matter of fact way the instructions read. The instructions were very well done and easy to follow. I could improve on them.

The replacement gearbox was more robust looking than the original one I removed. A better casting for sure. Also, I should add that the price was almost twice the cost of the one shown in John's OP (from eTrailer) and that is since January. Could that be a symptom of life during a pandemic?

Legacy Elite I

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16 minutes ago, skalywag said:

. I am starting to feel that this must be a common occurrence by the matter of fact way the instructions read.

I agree.  I think now that I seem to have gotten my Truma sorted out, I’m going to bestow the title of Most Troublesome Component to the MaxxFan.  Ours recently decided that it wanted to stay open.  I’d close it, and a few minutes later it would open again.  I’d close it again and it would open again.  Finally I just flipped the breaker.  A few days later it started working and has been fine since.

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1 hour ago, Overland said:

I agree.  I think now that I seem to have gotten my Truma sorted out, I’m going to bestow the title of Most Troublesome Component to the MaxxFan.  Ours recently decided that it wanted to stay open.  I’d close it, and a few minutes later it would open again.  I’d close it again and it would open again.  Finally I just flipped the breaker.  A few days later it started working and has been fine since.

More than likely your problem will reappear; my did the same, it started working after the power was off for a few days but it did not last but a few weeks.  It had lots of problems, it was cheaper to replace the complete unit.  In October 2020 I had to replace the circuit board which was under warranty.  I coated the replacement circuit board multiple time with a clear circuit board coating.  MaxxFan said just trash the defective board, they did not want it back.  So I was able to repair it and appears to be working correctly on the work bench; I also coated the repaired board after the testing was done. 

Horace & Dianne

Chesapeake, Virginia

2016 Toyota Tundra Crewmax 4x4 Limited

2015 Oliver Legacy Elite II - Hull # 93

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Yes, I've already replaced the circuit board once and I'm sure that I'll need another at some point.  It seems to be moisture related.  The first time, it went out after a slight rain with the fan open.  This time it happened right after a dusting of snow, again with the fan open.  I keep meaning to get a spare control board.  

I was just glad that this time it was stuck on rather than off.  If it's stuck on, I can at least control it with the circuit breaker.

Edited by Overland

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2 hours ago, Overland said:

Yes, I've already replaced the circuit board once and I'm sure that I'll need another at some point.  It seems to be moisture related.  The first time, it went out after a slight rain with the fan open.  This time it happened right after a dusting of snow, again with the fan open.  I keep meaning to get a spare control board.  

I was just glad that this time it was stuck on rather than off.  If it's stuck on, I can at least control it with the circuit breaker.

I agree that it is moisture related; when it is warm in the cabin and colder outside that’s when the condensation forms and drops beads of water down on the circuit board and other electrical parts.

When ours failed the first time the lid lift motor kept driving until major damage was done to everything before I could pull the fuse.

This time I just coated the replacement circuit board multiple times hopefully to prevent this issue in the future.  I also installed a power on/off toggle switch, so if this happens again, the power can be killed very quickly.  I just leave the switch in the  off position until the MaxxFan is needed.  When I have had issues in the past the remote or key board switches would not do anything.  I have weep holes all around to drain any pooling water that may form from the condensation.  It would be nice to have some way to prevent the condensation from forming in the first place.

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Horace & Dianne

Chesapeake, Virginia

2016 Toyota Tundra Crewmax 4x4 Limited

2015 Oliver Legacy Elite II - Hull # 93

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10 hours ago, Maverick said:

This time I just coated the replacement circuit board multiple times hopefully to prevent this issue in the future.  

I'm curious which  type of coating you  used and if spray or brush on. Looks like  quadcopter  hobbyists sometimes do this to  the circuit boards.

Jim and  Yanna, Woodinville WA

2004 Ford E250 camper conversion

Oliver Elite II hull #709

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15 hours ago, Jim_Oker said:

I'm curious which  type of coating you  used and if spray or brush on. Looks like  quadcopter  hobbyists sometimes do this to  the circuit boards.

The clear coating I used is a spray.  The name of the product is "Silicone Modified Conformal Coating" made by MG Chemicals.

 

MaxxAir Fan - Circuit Board Clear Coat.jpg

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Horace & Dianne

Chesapeake, Virginia

2016 Toyota Tundra Crewmax 4x4 Limited

2015 Oliver Legacy Elite II - Hull # 93

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3 hours ago, Maverick said:

The name of the product is "Silicone Modified Conformal Coating" made by MG Chemicals.

 

Cool, thanks. That is  what I  had homed in on based on just a little  "DIY conformal coating" reading. Seems like the makers of these  fans should  be coating  the  boards  (perhaps  they do but not well  enough??). If it's not wildly hard to get the board out it seems like a good prophylactic step to  take with a new trailer's fan (one of  which I'll  be receiving in short order). As you note, that spot is bound to  be a condensation magnet in certain conditions.

Edited by Jim_Oker

Jim and  Yanna, Woodinville WA

2004 Ford E250 camper conversion

Oliver Elite II hull #709

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  • 1 month later...

Here are pictures of the gear broken in pieces. And a picture of the new one beside it. The new one is better built. I order an extra one to keep on hand. I replaced the gear the hard way from inside. Remove the arms that raise the lid and used a very small socket w/Phillips bit. It is tight but doable.  I cleaned, painted and lubricated all the metal arm parts. I also cleaned the rubber seal and applied 303 to protect it. I found it was sticking with dirt, grime, etc and believed that this may have contributed to the gear failure by cause stress on the gear when first opening after sitting for some time. Also the instructions say to make sure it is timed correctly so once it lowers it does not continue to turn. 

 

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Edited by Fran
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As far as the fit of the fan shroud base I chose to use a technique  I found on utube. This was a fan I installed on a Nissan NV 2500 build but would be pretty much be the same on others . I cut 1/8 inch thick aluminum strips to go on top of the plastic to reinforce the base. I used mastic ( keep this in fridge until ready to use if it is hot outside...it will become a ticky mess if not kept cool/cold before use)and dicor self leveling caulk. I wanted to make sure the fan was not going to leak especially if the fan base became brittle in years to come. Overkill but I sleep well knowing I did extra. 

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Edited by Fran
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15 hours ago, Fran said:

Here are pictures of the gear broken in pieces. And a picture of the new one beside it. The new one is better built. I order an extra one to keep on hand. I replaced the gear the hard way from inside. Remove the arms that raise the lid and used a very small socket w/Phillips bit. It is tight but doable.  I cleaned, painted and lubricated all the metal arm parts. I also cleaned the rubber seal and applied 303 to protect it. I found it was sticking with dirt, grime, etc and believed that this may have contributed to the gear failure by cause stress on the gear when first opening after sitting for some time. Also the instructions say to make sure it is timed correctly so once it lowers it does not continue to turn. 

 

 

 

Fran,

What did you use to Paint & Lubricate all the metal arm parts?

And what is 303?"

Maggie & Bryan | Arnegard, ND | 2020 LE II (Twin Setup) Hull #665 | 2010 GMC 1500 Ext-Cab Sierra SLE 

 

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I used rustoleum spray paint after a light sanding to remove flaking or bubbling paint. After sanding, remove dust and oil (from hands) with a rag dampened with mineral spirts...let air dry before spraying paint ( make sure to let rags with mineral spirits air dry for a few days before putting in trash (possible fire ) . I used a heavy grease pushed down into gear area of openings. I used a lighter oil for hinged moving parts. The 303 on the seal of the lid and plastic covers. 

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Edited by Fran
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  • 2 months later...
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Posted (edited)

I just replaced the “Operator Mechanism” on my Maxxfan just as others have done.  Mine shattered into a bunch of pieces.  I got a new one directly from Airxcel, the manufacturer.  It was on backorder for a week so that tells me it must be in demand.  I had removed the fan and disassembled it to see what was going on and also to give it a good cleaning.  To replace the operator mechanism you don’t have to remove the fan.  You do have to get up on the roof.  I didn’t open the new mechanism to see how it was lubricated.  I spoke to a technical help guy at Airxcel and learned that the way it works is that when you hit open the lid lifts until enough resistance is felt then it shuts off.  Closing is the same, it continues to close until enough resistance is felt then the motor is shut off.  I think that pressure eventually takes a toll and the operator mechanism fails.

 

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Edited by Mike and Carol
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Texas Hill Country | Elite II #135 | Ram 2500 6.7L

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Dumb question. I was looking at John's blow-up of the fan parts and did not see where the circuit board is located. 

Can someone explain where it is located and how easy/hard it is to replace.

Thanks Richard

2018 Oliver Elite II, Hull #354

2018 RAM 1500 Rebel 4 x 4, 5.7 Hemi

 

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4 minutes ago, dewdev said:

Dumb question. I was looking at John's blow-up of the fan parts and did not see where the circuit board is located. 

Can someone explain where it is located and how easy/hard it is to replace.

It’s not on John’s diagram.  He shows the outside parts of the fan.  There’s an inside assembly that attaches from the inside.  You can see that in the parts diagram from Airxcel here.  You can drop the inside assembly and the circuit board is on top of the control panel that is in the corner.  I don’t know how hard it is to replace, but it easy to access.  Mike

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Texas Hill Country | Elite II #135 | Ram 2500 6.7L

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