Having your car serviced, or leaving your house while the carpets are cleaned is a hassle … but when your vehicle is your home, and your home is your vehicle, things get slightly more complicated.
Just like your car, our motorhome requires regular maintenance. And, just like your house, we usually have a few things that needs to be fixed. But not all service centers are equally reliable, and knowing where to go is difficult.
Sometimes you get lucky and your technician is well-trained and does a great job. Other times … well, let’s just say that we’ve left feeling worse off than when we arrived. Add to that the long wait to get an appointment – sometimes several months – and it can be an all-round frustrating experience.
The Winnebago Experience Is Different
Years ago we learned that taking the RV back to the Winnebago factory in Forest City, Iowa for service is a much better option. The technicians know everything there is to know about Winnebagos, they have every part you’ll ever need right in the warehouse, and they accommodate customers who drop in without an appointment!
The downside is that, depending on where you are in the country, it can be a long drive to Iowa. That’s why we’re so excited that Winnebago purchased the old Country Coach facility in Junction City, Oregon! They’ve renovated it, and now they’re providing the same quality service on the West Coast!
A Service Appointment in Junction City
Comparatively speaking, getting in for service on short notice is much easier in Junction City than Forest City – perhaps because Winnebago owners are just finding out about the Oregon facility! We had a pretty major list of repairs and were able to get on the service schedule within a week. (Of course, after this blog post, that may change.)
Similar to the arrangements in Forest City, customers who arrive for service are welcome to stay on the grounds. They have two parking areas with electric hook ups, and a dump station with potable water access.
These spots are filled on a first-come, first-serve basis and, as you can see, most were occupied during our stay.
White Glove Treatment
Okay, it’s not exactly white glove, but the customer care here in Junction City is every bit as fantastic as we’ve received in Forest City. At 8am on the morning of our service appointment the technician assigned to our coach knocked on the door. He listened and took notes while we explained the necessary repairs or maintenance items, then he drove our rig over to the service area, and we were free to get comfortable in the waiting room, or head out for some sightseeing.
The waiting room in Junction City is not as large and doesn’t have all the conveniences of the one in Forest City, but they are pet friendly, and the staff is very pleasant.
Since it was a gorgeous day, we opted instead to drive the 17 miles down to Eugene and for a picnic in the park and a walk around the city. Our technician, Tom, was fabulous – calling us with updates and to clarify any questions he had as they checked off the items on our list.
At the end of the day, your tech will deliver your coach back to the parking area so you can make dinner and sleep at “home.” If your service requests aren’t complete, your tech will be back again at 8 the next morning to pick up your motorhome and get back to work.
Take the Opportunity to Get Away
If you know it’s going to be a couple days until the work on your RV is done, getting a hotel is another great option. It gives the techs an extra hour per day to work on your rig if they don’t have to drive it back and forth from the parking area to the service bays, and we find it’s much more convenient with the dogs. Ty and Buster like to have space where they can stretch out and get comfortable.
We found a pet friendly La Quinta Inn and Suites in Eugene, directly across from Alton Baker Park. The park is perfect for walking the dogs, has a fenced, off-leash area, and provides access to several trails, so you can easily get most anywhere in the city!
Having your motorhome serviced is never convenient, but our experience at Winnebago’s new Junction City location couldn’t have been better. Keep it in mind if you’re in the area!
(Winnebago’s west coast service department is open to all types of RVs from towables to Prevost conversions. Additionally they also offer body and paint services. For more information call the service center at 541-234-2167.)