Buy all your VW California Accessories at the Club Shop Visit Shop

Roof tent problems, back corner.

U

ulrikmailand

Messages
15
Location
Denmark
Hi.

First of all, really cool forum you've got here. Happy to join from Denmark.

After 3 years with at Mercedes viano marco polo I've finally got the california of my dreams :)

All in all i think everything is at little nicer than on the Marco Polo, I have an issue with the roof tent though.

In one of the back top corner the tent(rubber edge) gets loose from the "rail" (aprox 4-5 cm) where it is supposed to be totally closed.

Anyone with a similar problem or maybe a solution ?

I don't think there is a problem with water etc. because it is in the top corner close to the roof it just looks a little wrong when you look at it so would like to have it fixed or at least know if it's something i just have to live with.

:)

BR
 
calikev

calikev

Administrator
Staff member
Admin/Founder
Messages
15,540
Location
Kettering
Vehicle
T4 PopTop
Hi and welcome
The problem you have sounds quite unusual. To me it sounds like the canvas has come out of
It's channel do you have any pictures of the problem :?: how old is your van :?:
 
U

ulrikmailand

Messages
15
Location
Denmark
the cali is a 2008 so nearly 6 years old.

Will try to take some pictures asap.
 
bvddobb

bvddobb

VIP Member
Messages
1,227
Location
Netherlands
Vehicle
T5 SE 174 4Motion
We have the same issue, with a 6 year old Cali. Just a few centimeters of the top righthand back corner the rubber has come out of the roof's rail. We haven't bothered about it thus far.


Verzonden vanaf mijn iPhone met behulp van Tapatalk
 
calicasas

calicasas

VIP Member
Messages
409
Vehicle
T5 SE 180
I have been following this type of problem for the last few years, and I have two possible theories.

1). The fabric which comes away from the edging is almost always at the rear. There is a good reason for this. As water runs down the roof to the rear, then the fabric at the rear always becomes more wet than other parts of the fabric. The Cali fabric does not shrink much but does shrink a little despite what the dealer may tell you and over many wet/dry cycles may shrink sufficiently to pull the fabric away from the edging. Because the distance in fabric at the rear is shorter, then the shrinking effect is less forgiving whereas towards the front where you have a longer length of fabric then any shrinkage has less effect.
This problem tends to happen on older calis and I have two friends with older calis and who on the whole do not use covers.

2). Another theory may be that the hydraulics lose their travel over time they extend slightly beyond their original travel length, thus applying higher 'stretch' to the fabric. After all, the hydraulics are rarely serviced or checked any the hydraulic fluid is hardly ever replaced.

Well two possible theories which are food for thought....
 
U

ulrikmailand

Messages
15
Location
Denmark
bvddobb said:
We have the same issue, with a 6 year old Cali. Just a few centimeters of the top righthand back corner the rubber has come out of the roof's rail. We haven't bothered about it thus far.


Verzonden vanaf mijn iPhone met behulp van Tapatalk

OK, good to hear - think i'll see if i can fix it and if not live with it.

Happy new year :)
 
onsvwbuske

onsvwbuske

Messages
2
Location
Belgium
Vehicle
T6.1 Ocean 150
Hi all. My first post on this forum, so I hope this will go well :). Although this is a very old thread I would like to come back on this subject. Our van is nearly one year old and we have the same problem since a few months. The dealership has "fixed" is but the problem keeps coming back. If anyone would have a solution, that would be great. We are still in contact with the dealer and VW because this kind of problem is -I think- not acceptable.

image_55415491.JPG
 
GrumpyGranddad

GrumpyGranddad

Lifetime VIP Member
Messages
2,129
Location
Wendover
Vehicle
T6.1 Ocean 199
Hi @onsvwbuske, I seem to recall somebody on here suggesting that there was a batch of roof bellows showing this problem? Obviously your van is still under warranty so unless the workshop can provide a permanent fix, then maybe you should pursue them for a new bellows.
 
Perfectos

Perfectos

Top Poster
VIP Member
Lifetime VIP Member
Messages
2,988
Location
Hertfordshire
Vehicle
T6 Beach 150
The dealer has not “fixed” the problem they have merely put it back, insist on a new bellows as the ones you have are not as they should be and are not fit for purpose

I.e. They don’t do the job they should
 
jimmywease

jimmywease

VIP Member
Messages
147
Location
Kent
Vehicle
T6 Beach 150
I had exactly this problem, in exactly this spot, in my 2017 Beach. I climbed up and shoved the rubber back into the slot. At the next service, I asked the dealer to check it and they reported all was okay. I was surprised that there was no reoccurrence but will definitely have to re-inspect before the warranty runs out.

If the problem had occurred further back, I would have suspected that it was caused by kids leaning against the inside.

Perhaps it was caused by the time one roof latch opened at 70mph, allowing air to rush into the gap.

If your problem keeps reoccurring, then (assuming you’re not driving around with the roof half open!) I think either the dealer is failing to fully insert the rubber back into the track, or the bellows is incorrectly manufactured and does indeed need replacing.

Have you tried pushing it back in yourself? If the canvas so taught, along the vertical line of stitching, to make this difficult then I would say that the canvas is incorrectly made. If it is easy to fully insert the rubber into the track yet it comes out again, then the rubber or track must have a defect.

Shouldn’t really be your problem with a one-year-old van though. Give the problem to the dealer to solve or change to another dealer for servicing, if possible.
 
onsvwbuske

onsvwbuske

Messages
2
Location
Belgium
Vehicle
T6.1 Ocean 150
Dealer promised to come back to me next week. I pushed the rubber back myself a few times, as did the dealer (I don’t take a ladder with me in the van ;-)). Problem was not caused by kids or driving with the roof open ;-);-). I’ll keep you posted!
 
R

Resfeber

VIP Member
Messages
120
Location
Cumbria
Vehicle
T6 Ocean 150
Dealer promised to come back to me next week. I pushed the rubber back myself a few times, as did the dealer (I don’t take a ladder with me in the van ;-)). Problem was not caused by kids or driving with the roof open ;-);-). I’ll keep you posted!
I had the same issue when I picked my Ocean up at 6 months old.
The dealer refitted but it re-occurred within a few weeks.
By then I was back home some 245 miles from dealership.
With the roof part open and a trusty plastic kitchen utensil, I was able to insert the canvas rubber edge into the roof trim and ensure it was correctly gripped by the “teeth” in the corner plate.
No further issues in 30 months .
Give the dealer the benefit of the doubt and ask them to correctly refit into the corner plate with a suitable tool, just pushing in by hand will not do the job.
If after 2 visits for remedy and under warranty ask for the canvas to be renewed.
Some appear to be slightly too short and when the roof is fully open the canvas is stretched so tight that the seal is torn out of the teeth in the corner piece and cannot be refixed and stay in position due to the damaged caused when it pulls out
 
R

Resfeber

VIP Member
Messages
120
Location
Cumbria
Vehicle
T6 Ocean 150
Hope the attached images helps with identifying the “teeth” in the corner section of the channel that the edge rubber needs forced into.
There are other threads that discuss this issue 5BE9DE55-F9E2-4886-8BBE-24BD6BB37BC8.jpeg
 
barry

barry

VIP Member
Messages
528
Location
Glasgow
Vehicle
T5 SE 174
VW have a plastic tool that's used to force the rubber across the "teeth' without damaging the rubber. It's not really possible to generate enough directed force with the thumbs/fingers to do this althougfh it looks as though the jobs been done it only lasts a few raising and lowerings. If you use a flat blade screw driver to force the rubber into place instead of the plastic tool, the rubber is very very easy to pierce and ruin. Which is a pity because a big flat blade screwdriver with a big handle would be otherwise perfect for the job. .
For a belts and braces solution add spots of gorilla glue (the version that sticks rubber to metal) immediately before forcing the rubber in - and leave it for a few hours to set.
 
CamperFam

CamperFam

VIP Member
Messages
166
Location
Colchester
Vehicle
T6 Ocean 199
Morning all,

So - funnily enough, I had this repaired by Chelmsford VW just yesterday after a bit of a saga (warranty, rather than dealer).

In short, it's a replacement roof bellow that's needed. No matter how often you try to 'feed' it back in, it'll continually pop out - if it hasn't yet, it soon will.

Yes, you could 'glue it', but i'd only suggest that IF you were outside of warranty. To replace it properly, excluding the 1.5k+ in the bellow itself, the job itself is 4+ hours of labour.

For reference, VW themselves state that it's a replacement bellow, rather than any other fix. It's a known issue, and they shouldn't be wasting your time with 'temporary fixes'. The temporary fix they've tried will be the exact same as what anyone else can do - feed it back in, which will only come out again soon enough....

Push VW to replace it completely under warranty.
 
R

Resfeber

VIP Member
Messages
120
Location
Cumbria
Vehicle
T6 Ocean 150
Morning all,

So - funnily enough, I had this repaired by Chelmsford VW just yesterday after a bit of a saga (warranty, rather than dealer).

In short, it's a replacement roof bellow that's needed. No matter how often you try to 'feed' it back in, it'll continually pop out - if it hasn't yet, it soon will.

Yes, you could 'glue it', but i'd only suggest that IF you were outside of warranty. To replace it properly, excluding the 1.5k+ in the bellow itself, the job itself is 4+ hours of labour.

For reference, VW themselves state that it's a replacement bellow, rather than any other fix. It's a known issue, and they shouldn't be wasting your time with 'temporary fixes'. The temporary fix they've tried will be the exact same as what anyone else can do - feed it back in, which will only come out again soon enough....

Push VW to replace it completely under warranty.
Think the facts are that you are in the hands of the dealer or van centre that you go to for remediation.
If vehicle under warranty, take photos of defect, ask dealer to confirm intended action, ask dealer to verify if there is a VW technical service bulletin action about this defect and get everything confirmed in writing.

Does anyone know the VW statement details/bulletin number that confirms a new bellows should be the warranty action?
Should the “temp fix” not work then seek a replacement bellows ASAP.
The evidence photos and statements also help with VWCS if you want to force the issue of a replacement bellows under warranty or the problem recurs outside of warranty and you have to seek a “goodwill” replacement (good luck) or a County Court small claim £10000 case limit ( see for matters to consider)
 
CamperFam

CamperFam

VIP Member
Messages
166
Location
Colchester
Vehicle
T6 Ocean 199
Also - make sure you remove any bellow bungie cord - theyre highly culprit in causing the issue, and VW will likely have grounds to refuse it as a defect, if you've applied something that 'pulls it' out from the corner.
 

VW California Club

Top