Automatic Steps - Ouch!

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Len and Jo

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My brother and sister in law stopped over night in their class 'C' on the way "up north" (Michigan jargon).  My sister in law had an interesting story about their last trip.  They were in a city and she tried to enter the RV via the side door.  They have automatic steps that extent.  She was standing on a "high" curb and and as the steps extended they trapped both her feet between them and the curb.  It was painful. 

It never occurred to me that these things might not have any safety feature on them that would prevent this pinching from occurring.  Do some auto steps have safety features????  Or do they all just extent when the door is  opened and assume they are 8" off the ground and nothing human is in the way???

We don't have this convenience feature on our 'B'.

What is the read from you 'A' and 'C' RV'ers :eek: :eek: :mad: :eek:
 

Tom

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That's a very big OUCH Len. Most coaches have a switch just inside the door to lock the steps in one position or the other. I occasionally forget to flip the switch, but I won't after reading your story.
 

Shayne

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Jan 22, 2006
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My Lovely wife decided to clean the door window on our MH some time ago and she closed the screen door and went to step on the stairs to be able to reach the window.  Bam the steps closed and she fell on her backside and heit her head on the back lash of the fall.  He head hit the soil, had it been the concrete I would have had to replace my friends Concrete and his body shop.  Those steps can be tricky.
 

Tom

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Shayne,

That sounds like another big OUCH.
 

Ned

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Unless we're on the road, we lock the steps in the extended position to avoid such accidents.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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Even when locked extended, they will retract if you start the engine. We leave ours locked extended all the time.  But I don't think that would avoid the "pinch" problem - when the steps go out, they do not seem to have any "auto-reverse" if they hit something. Surprised nobody has fled a suit like they have on garage doors and power windows, which now stop or reverse if stopped prematurely.
 

Ned

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Yes, ours will retract when the ignition key is turned on but when the motor home is shut down, we leave the steps locked in the extended position.  By the time the key is turned, we're ready to go :)  I suppose the risk of injury from the steps is so much less than from a garage door or power window that the actuaries figure it's cheaper to pay a few claims than complicate the mechanism, and increase the cost.
 

John From Detroit

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Apr 12, 2005
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Davison Michigan
The Automatic steps on my MH are supposed to retract as well when you fire up the engine

However yesterday they did not

Damage is only to the wrap around step mat and I think I can fix it, however they usually work as designed, Yestarday they did not, 2nd time that's happend in one year
 

scottydl

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Reading these threads, that "feature" seems like it can be more trouble than its worth.  What's the problem with the old style of just reaching down and pulling the step out?  ???
 

Ned

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When you go to leave the motor home and the steps aren't out, it's a long way down.  It's a very nice feature, but like most conveniences, you have to be aware of them and how they work.
 

Bob Zambenini

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Mar 4, 2005
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Orange County California
scottydl said:
Reading these threads, that "feature" seems like it can be more trouble than its worth.  What's the problem with the old style of just reaching down and pulling the step out?  ???

NO!!! One of the big problems with following these forums and groups is you see a couple of incidents and soon in your mind it becomes a big problem.

I have had auto steps on two Motorhomes over the past 16 years and they have worked every time as designed. I would say these auto steps are one of the most reliable features in an RV. Even so I am careful before stepping out to see that they are extended. Also, I sometimes stand on them to clean my right side mirror or the door but I know you must be careful not to push the door toward close and have them start to retract while standing on them.

Bob
 

scottydl

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Bob Zambenini said:
NO!!! One of the big problems with following these forums and groups is you see a couple of incidents and soon in your mind it becomes a big problem.

Well yeah you're right about that... I am a veteran to internet forums in general so I should know better than to generalize.  ;)  Oftentimes as you say, you only read about the problems and the perfectly-working functions are never reported or discussed.
 
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