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Mod #88: 5th Wheel RV Leveling System

Posted By ModMyRV On November 9, 2009 @ 10:53 am In exterior | 4 Comments

This modification was designed and completed by Professor Randy T. Agee, D.Ed., April 2009, on a Cedar Creek 34SATS fifth wheel trailer. This article carries a copyright. Permission must be obtained from the author before duplication or reposting. Contact professor95@comcast.net

I own a 2009 Cedar Creek 34SATS. It has the now industry standard underpowered and slow as molasses Lippert electric front landing gear mechanism.

Yes, all you need to do to raise, lower or level the fiver is press and hold the extend/retract switch. Unfortunately, my arthritis inflamed fingers ache so badly by the time I have held the switch for what seems to be an eternity that it takes an extensive Ben Gay massage to find relief.

Mod Difficulty:

To hook up using the OEM system I find myself making the following moves:

  1. Raising the fiver by holding down the switch (takes forever and ever).
  2. Getting into the truck and backing up to the pin.
  3. Getting out of the truck to hold the switch and fine adjust the height.
  4. Getting back in the truck to back up and lock the pin to the hitch.
  5. Getting out of the truck and holding the switch to lower the trailer and raise the jacks – then raising the feet/pads.
  6. Getting back in the truck and doing the pull test.
  7. Getting out of the truck to remove the wheel chocks.
  8. Pulling out – finally.

When I get to my campsite I pretty much repeat the above steps in reverse then hold the button forever once again to drop the trailer to the level position. This really gets old fast – especially if it is raining!

This is honestly the most exasperating aspect of my hook-up, set-up and pull-out routine. There are way too many steps involved. My old ball-and-hitch TT was much simpler than this!

After seeing the article on the LevelEase in Trailer Life, I decided to throw caution to the wind and let go of enough money to order the kit. Sure, it was almost $300, but it would save me design and building time for the system I was contemplating putting together. Additionally, I would have the immediate satisfaction of eliminating what I considered a pain.

The images below detail the step-by-step installation. Click on any link to view the step’s image.

  1. The contents of the LevelEase kit
  2. The extremely well designed printed circuit board and components
  3. The four points where power and motor connections are made
  4. The location selected to mount the LevelEase - just inside the streetside compartment door
  5. Circuit board mounted - remove the extend/retract switch and cut the four wires
  6. Wire nut onto existing OEM switch wiring or run supplied wiring to existing OEM connection points
  7. Connect power wires from LevelEase to landing gear motor
  8. Attach the magnetic switch to the closest landing gear leg with the supplied brackets and hardware
  9. A small piece of aluminum around the landing gear leg needed trimming away for the switch to fit
  10. Less than an hour later (even working in 97 degree heat) the system was completely installed

I followed the instructions for programming the unit. It only took a few minutes to get the basic functions set-up. They should not need changing unless I trade trucks or move the LevelEase module to another location.

Now to hook up:

  1. I press the CONNECT button once, walk away and the trailer moves to the correct connect height.
  2. I back up to the pin and latch.
  3. I then press the RETRACT button and the legs move to the up position. My landing gear legs extend far enough that I do not need to raise the lower section manually.
  4. I am hooked-up!
  5. When I get to my campsite I press the DISCONNECT button and the trailer rises to the correct height for me to pull the hitch latch and drive out from under the trailer.
  6. I then press the LEVEL button and the trailer moves to a level position.

Bottom line – I found the LevelEase system extremely easy to install. It definitely reduces my set-up and hook-up aggravations.

ModMyRV recommends these parts for this mod:
LevelEase - the Automatic 5th Wheel RV Leveling System


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URL to article: http://www.modmyrv.com/2009/11/09/5th-wheel-rv-leveling-system

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