Alko Air suspension [again]

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Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by Mel Battersby on Thu Apr 06, 2017 7:08 pm

It is near the end of the AS two year warranty and now intending to put a claim in for repairs to the AlKo air suspension. The offside air bellow is not holding air. It is a very small leak, losing about 0.4 bar in 4 weeks. That is, falling from 1.8 bar to 1.4 bar. This problem has lasted for over a year and therefore it has been routine to check the air pressure on a regular basis & pump in air as required. Thankfully there is no evidence of damage to the bellow from any protruding bolts, unlike some other forum members have experienced. Also I cannot find any evidence of air leakage in the valve system. I assume the Alko suspension was not fitted by Peugeot who built the base vehicle but was a later modification added by AS. So it will be appropriate to contact the dealer [Marquis] where I first purchased the MH. The problem I might have however is to prove to the dealer that it is a genuine fault, given it’s such a small and limited leak in one of the bellows or the connecting system. Any advice from forum members will be appreciated.
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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by Cymro on Thu Apr 06, 2017 7:46 pm

This won't be a comfort, Mel, but why have you slept on your rights for over a year? That doesn't invalidate your claim, but it doesn't convey any sense of urgency to get it fixed. I don't suppose, by any chance, that you kept a log of the dates and the pressure readings over the last few months? They would have been helpful evidence to substantiate your assertion that it's a definite slow puncture (or other leak in the system) which needs regular - if not much - topping up.
Start weekly readings now, I suggest.
But why shouldn't Marquis accept your word, and fix the problem under warranty?
Good luck!
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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by snow863 on Thu Apr 06, 2017 10:46 pm

Is this really a fault? We top ours up every few weeks. The book tells you to check every trip and top up as necessary so we assumed it was nornal to top up this frequently.
Will be interested to hear what your dealer says about this one.
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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by greycaster on Fri Apr 07, 2017 12:44 am

I have been topping mine up every now and again, but I then realised that the pressure fluctuates depending on the load. Mine was dropping pressure when we removed things from the mh, emptied fresh and waste tanks before going into storage, less compression on the bellows I suppose. I think the pressure also fluctuates with temp. I thought I had a problem as it was mostly the offside unit that the pressure dropped on, but that's also the side where most of our removable stuff is kept. Just a thought.
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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by Mel Battersby on Fri Apr 07, 2017 9:09 am

Good point Cymro, ‘waiting for a year’ was just waiting for other possible faults to occur, elsewhere on the MH, before contacting and visiting Marquis again - the last I hope before the warranty expires. Previous contacts and visits have not been happy ones. Good advice keeping a log, will follow this up.
Without going into detail I am confident to discount the possible effect of different loads or temperature fluctuations as a cause for the loss of air pressure on the offside suspension bellow, though I guess Marquis might try to convince me otherwise.
As always I appreciate your advice and contributions.
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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by Cymro on Fri Apr 07, 2017 9:18 am

For what it's worth, Mel, my Al-Ko bags lose some pressure (more or less equally). They drop from 28psi to about 24psi over the course of 5 or 6 weeks (with minimal use of van during that period).

From your description, there does seem to be a leak somewhere in your system, but it may not be with a bag per se.
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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by peugeotboxer on Fri Apr 07, 2017 1:31 pm

Is it possible to do the 'soapy water' trick on all the joints etc?

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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by Mel Battersby on Fri Apr 07, 2017 3:42 pm

Thanks C & PB . If the dealer doesn't fix it the 'soapy water' trick could be an option-though I might be waiting a while for the bubbles to expand, given its such a small leak.
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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by Spospe on Fri Apr 07, 2017 5:42 pm

Is it a leak?

I have noticed quite large pressure variations with ambient air temperature changes, both on the air suspension and the ordinary road tyres. Also there can be changes in pressure in the suspension caused by even quite small changes in the side-to-side stance of the vehicle (i.e how level is the 'van, side to side and are you measuring the pressures when the vehicle is stood in exactly the same place each time?).
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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by Mel Battersby on Sat Apr 08, 2017 10:49 am

Thank you Spospe. I agree fully with all your points. Observed such behaviour frequently myself.
However in my case, and not for the first time, the air pressure on the offside suspension bellow has dropped whilst stationary in the storage compound, which is on fairly level ground. For around a month I observed the fall in air pressure on one of the vehicle gauges, the left one, which measures the air pressure for the offside suspension bellow. This didn’t surprise me because I have frequently had to pump air into the offside bellow. Conversely the reading on the air pressure gauge for the near side has remained constant, set at 1.8 bar. And to be 100% certain that the readings are correct I also use a hand held pressure gauge. To be frank its not an important problem, like many others it requires checking now and again and pumping up when required.
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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by Spospe on Sat Apr 08, 2017 11:44 am

Mel

One other point and that is to try changing the valve on the affected side. I have had Schrader valves leak in the past (probably due to dirt on the valve seat) and this is a simple and quick thing to try (I mean to try changing the removable valve, not the whole assembly).
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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by Mel Battersby on Tue Apr 11, 2017 7:35 pm

Thanks Spospe...will do
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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by Tengah74 on Tue Apr 11, 2017 9:35 pm

Had the misfortune to have both changed. Costly !!.Now part of my preflight checks . Always carry a cycle pump, just in case!

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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by Mel Battersby on Tue Apr 11, 2017 9:57 pm

Sorry to hear your bad fortune Tengah74.
Thanks for the tip with the cycle pump. Wasn't sure one would fit the valve mechanism or be powerful enough to pump air into the bellows-now I know it will.
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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by kaspian on Sat Apr 15, 2017 5:44 pm

For what its worth Mel our Kemerton sits rock steady at whatever pressure we set it at from  1 year to the next . Only panic came when sitting on road outside the house which has a bit of camber and I opened the passenger door to see instead of both at 1.8 bar , one was around half a bar and the other around 3! After reversing into driveway checked again and both back to 1.8 bar so camber/ level definitely make a large difference .If you can be bothered a soapy solution sprayed or brudhed onto any likely joints or components would soon show up any escape of air even small.Best of luck!

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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by Wargenwolf on Sat Apr 15, 2017 6:31 pm

I'm fairly certain that my gauges were equal at hand over on Thursday and I noticed a difference between the two gauges this afternoon.
Unfortunately, I've been tied up with other matters, so will not be able to check before tomorrow! but if one side does need inflating, will a normal 12v inflator that I do the tyres with, be suitable (being careful not to over inflate) ?

I'm aware of the earlier problems of the mounting bolts wearing through the rubber, but with 104 miles on the clock, I'd be very disappointed.

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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by kaspian on Sat Apr 15, 2017 6:50 pm

Yes no problem with 12v inflator . Take care they dont hold much air! See above post regards level affecting readings...

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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by Wargenwolf on Sat Apr 15, 2017 8:03 pm

kaspian wrote:Yes no problem with 12v inflator . Take care they dont hold much air! See above post regards level affecting readings...

Thanks Kaspian. 

The van was on the flat at handover and on a slope on my driveway when I noticed the difference today. However, the slope runs down from rear to front; and nearside to offside is level, so that shouldn't have much of an impact on the levels.

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Re: Alko Air suspension [again]

Post by Mel Battersby on Wed Apr 19, 2017 9:53 am

Thanks to all for your observations and advice.
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