Solving the "Door Noise" Problem
Ever since I bought my 1999 Discovery, like most owners of pre-2001.5 models, I have been trying to make the door and front end more quiet. The Discovery has a history of doors that rattle or let in air, making wind noise. There are other sources of wind noise as well, like the front awning arm that allows wind to whistle through and around it. Shortly after I bought my coach in 1999, Fleetwood installed their "Third Generation" door, which was supposed to fit tighter. That didn't really help much, however.
The good news is that there are several things that can be done to help with the problem. My Discovery is much more quiet now than it was when I first owned it. Here are some of the things I have done to improve front end wind noise, and other noises while underway. You can see pictures of some of these "fixes" below.
|1. Tilted radio antenna (above driver area)
back to a 45 degree angle.
2. Glued foil-backed insulation all around the outside of the entrance stair well.
3. Stuffed fiberglass insulation in all open areas between the overhead front cabinets and the front top cap. I gained access to this area by removing the TV set, and the side and upper windshield garnish.
4. Sealed many open areas around the outer edge of the front deck, as well as the top marker lights. (Some of these poorly sealed areas were letting in both wind and water.) You have to temporarily remove much of the plastic windshield garnish to get to this area - especially the lower garnish.
5. Installed foam rubber adhesive backed weather stripping between the inner and outer front awning arm.
6. In February of 2002, Fleetwood sent me a re-designed plastic cover for the front awing arm. This prevents wind from going between the arms and also between the awning arms and the side of the coach. This has helped a lot in cutting down wind noise from the front awing arm. The plastic cover must be removed before the awning can be opened, but it snaps on and off fairly easily with heavy plastic "Velcro".
7. The thing that has helped the most to quiet the door, was the installation of the "Door Camber Kit" that Fleetwood also authorized in February of 2002. The top and bottom outer corners of the door were flexed slightly inward, and then a heavy metal tension strip was riveted into place along the outer edge to retain the new flexed curve of the door. This has the effect of making a much tighter seal all along the outside edge of the door when the door is latched closed. Now, with the door flexed in at the top and bottom, it is a bit harder to close (you have to give it a good yank), but the door no longer whistles or rattles, while driving.
Some owners of pre-2002 Discoveries have said that they have had difficulty obtaining the Door Camber Kit from Fleetwood. The last time I checked up on the availability of this part was in March of 2006, and I was told the part was still available from Fleetwood at that time. It is identified as Part# 206386.
|Under side of entrance stair well
showing foil-backed insulation that was cut and glued all round the
well - bottom and sides. Then the foil was painted flat
|Awning opened to show the foam weather stripping that was glued in to the side of the inner arm. This prevents wind from going between the arms when closed.||This is a close up of the weather stripping shown in the last picture.|
|This shows the plastic awning arm cover that Fleetwood provided. Notice the flange that prevents wind from going between the arm and the side of the coach.||This picture shows how the tension strip (the door camber kit) was attached to the inside of the door edge.||This is a close-up of the tension strip that shows the cut-outs for the latch and dead bolt. You can get a good idea of the thickness of the metal strip from this picture.|
At the Discovery Owners Association rally at Lazy Days on 2/8/2000, Member Frank Bongiorno gave a seminar about all the various things he has done to reduce noise in his 1999 37V Discovery. I had the honor of attending Frank's lecture. You can read an overview of this seminar in the June 2000 issue of the Association news letter.
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