13 August 2018
We have wanted to tour the Tiffin Motorhome factory for awhile and now we were passing close to Red Bay, AL, where they are located. We saw that they give a guided tour in the mornings, but we were not going to get there until mid to late afternoon and were unsure if we would be able to see the plant. As we drove into town, we knew we were in the right place as there were mini RV parking lots everywhere in town with lots of Tiffin motorhomes waiting their turn for service.
I have read on blogs about the change in service policy at Tiffin. Apparently, a few years ago, they changed their policy to allow only coaches within the one-year warranty period to make a service appointment. The rest have to arrive and take a number and wait until they are called. It was amazing and a bit disconcerting to see so many coaches waiting for service.
After floundering around for a bit, we found the entrance to the plant after 2pm. We told the guard we would like to have tour. He showed us where to park and directed us to a small reception office. We asked about a tour and the gentleman said no problem. To our surprise, we were free to tour all of the plant on our own and take pictures. He pointed out a few buildings we were not allowed in due to safety issues like the welding shop. He gave us some badges, safety glasses and a map and out the door we went. We had a time limit due to the late hour we arrived but had enough time see most everything. The very high temperature was the real limiting factor for deciding when we were done.
Having done several other motorhome factory tours, I would say this one had the same level of organized chaos to the observer. We watched the process from assembling the frames to the inspection section and water testing of the coaches. They also had an area of just completed and checked coaches that we could walk thru. We did a few, but the heat finally drove us back to the office to return our badges and head out. When it is time for our next coach we will certainly include Tiffin in the process.