Re-Leveling the Playing Field: A Guide to Tuning Up Your RV’s Auto-Levelers

So you’ve been living the #RVlife for a while now, enjoying the freedom of the open road and the convenience of having your home with you wherever you roam. But lately your rig’s had some trouble getting perfectly parked and leveled at campsites. Those handy auto-leveling systems sure seem a bit off their game these days, leaving you slightly tilted to one side or another. How frustrating! Before you call the repair shop, hold up – with a few simple calibration tips, you can get your coach’s auto-levelers smoothly self-adjusting again.

Take Control of the Levels

Your RV’s auto-leveling system uses a computer control box and sensors to check the vehicle’s slope. Then electric motors move the jacks until the unit’s flat and steady. But over time, shifting and settling can throw things out of whack. Recalibrating puts you back in charge.

First up, sit in the driver’s seat and hit the auto-leveling control panel. Now drive slowly forward and stop on flat, even ground – avoid slopes! Park, put it in neutral, and set the emergency brake.

Next, activate the auto-leveling sequence and observe – are all four corners lifting evenly until the coach levels out? If one side seems off, you likely need to recalibrate.

Don’t force faulty levelingabort the sequence and retract the jacks to start fresh. Now roll up your sleeves and let’s fine-tune this baby.

Locate the Leveling Sensor Targets

Each jack has a sensor target plate mounted nearby along the frame. They look like metal or plastic boxes. Find and clean each target so sensors can accurately read them. Use a rag to remove dirt, oil, and grime.

While you’re down there, check all moving parts on the jacks and motors. Give them lubrication to prevent binding and excessive wear.

Show Image

Now comes the fun part – zeroing in the sensor targets to sync up with the computer.

Reset the Sensors

To recalibrate, you’ll put the suspension in the same loaded condition as when the jacks are extended. Park on a flat, paved surface. Engage the emergency brake and chock the wheels for safety.

Using the control panel, extend each jack until they barely contact the ground. Look to see if any target plates are way off. If so, you’ll need to adjust the sensor height.

Slowly retract the jacks, ensuring they lower evenly. Minor tweaking of the targets may be needed to get all four planted correctly.

Once they’re flush on the pavement, mark the target locations with chalk. Next, restart the coach engine and release the emergency brake.

Carefully drive forward a few feet before stopping over your original marks. The targets should now be in the right spots relative to the loaded suspension.

Show Image

Re-Sync the Control Box

Here comes the reprogramming.

Refer to your owner’s manual for the proper auto-leveling calibration sequence for your model. It will involve pressing a sequence of buttons to put the system into calibration mode.

Typically, you’ll:

  1. Turn the ignition to “accessory” mode
  2. Hold down the front or rear auto-level button for several seconds
  3. Press other buttons like “retract all” when prompted

This resets everything to zero and stores the marked target locations. Some systems beep to confirm calibration is complete.

To double check it worked, run through the auto-leveling cycle again. If the coach sits evenly on all 4 corners – success! You recalibrated like a pro.

When All Else Fails…Call the Experts

Of course, taking on a calibration yourself requires some technical confidence. If the procedure seems daunting, consider paying for professional service. Many RV dealerships offer this, or you can look for mobile RV technicians.

Reputable brands like Bigfoot or HWH auto-leveling systems have dealers nationwide with expertise. Expect to pay around $150-300 for a pro recalibration.

Show Image

Techs have diagnostic tools to accurately find and fix issues. And they can replace parts like sensors or control boards if needed. This avoids further hassles down the road.

Either way, occasional calibration tune-ups keep your RV’s auto-leveling system in top shape. You’ll once again enjoy perfectly parked repose at every campsite.

Leveling Precautions

Before wrapping up, a quick reminder about safe practices:

  • Always level on solid, paved areas – avoid soft ground or mud.
  • Make sure jacks contact the ground simultaneously during deployment.
  • Chock wheels and set the emergency brake before extending jacks.
  • Use jack pads if necessary to avoid sinking or tipping.
  • Carefully watch that the RV doesn’t tilt or shake as jacks adjust.
  • If one side starts lifting higher than the rest, abort the sequence.
  • Retract jacks fully for travel after calibrating or leveling.

Stay safe out there and get ready to hit the road confidently with a newly leveled ride! #RVcalibrationFTW

About Author