After a couple of weeks getting our motorhome all spiffed up at the Entegra factory and S&S Paint, we headed northward to the Spartan Factory, birthplace of our motorhome’s chassis. The Spartan facility is located in Charlotte, Michigan. Please note that the correct pronunciation of this city is shar-LOTT, not SHAR-lot (emphasis on the second syllable, compliments of its French roots). We pronounced it incorrectly before being set straight by a Michigan native! Duly noted.
The Spartan service facility is ALWAYS busy … always. Part of the reason for this is the Spartan Academy, a 5-day school for motorhome owners that is held weekly during much of the year. The class includes a thorough inspection of your rig and any needed repairs, which ties up much of the technician capacity. Class participants are given priority and other service appointments are scheduled around them. We tried to book almost a year in advance and were on the waiting list for months before an opening appeared for our desired dates.
The Spartan RV overnight parking facility is basic, but adequate. 50 amp hookup is available at every spot, and water was available onsite. As we were only there two nights, the electrical hookup alone was adequate for our needs, however, it is helpful to arrive with full freshwater tank and empty holding tanks! My only (minor) complaint was that the sites are not level. We didn’t put our slides out and just lived on a slant for a couple of nights. The folks in the class were given the “flattest” sites, but even they weren’t completely level. During our stay a dump station was under construction, which will greatly improve the site amenities as the nearest dump station is some distance away.
The customer lounge offered comfortable seating, free wifi and coffee, and restrooms. Although locked during off-hours, a card-key granting access to the lounge was available upon request. It would have been nice if they offered showers, but for a short stay that isn’t critical.
The service technicians were competent and efficient. We requested the annual/biennual service be completed which included changing out essentially all filters and fluids along with a complete chassis lube. They did a thorough inspection and found items needing repair, some of which were included under our 3 year chassis warranty. For example, we had noticed that our chassis air bags routinely leaked out almost completely within hours (overnight). Googling indicated that this may be normal, so we didn’t think too much about it. But, the tech found a leak in one of the connections (created by the installation of our toad air braking system) and fixed it. At our next stop, the air bags lost almost no inflation during our week’s stay! Who knew?
We had arrived early the day prior, so completed our paperwork in advance of our appointment day. The tech took our rig at 7:15 am, and by 5 pm everything was completed. Our wallet was more than $1900 lighter, but our rig was now repaired, maintained and fully functional. They aren’t cheap – but they are good.
Before leaving, we made another service appointment for September, 2020. We’ll be back!