/ / 10 Winnebago Rialta Common Problems: Troubleshooting Guide

10 Winnebago Rialta Common Problems: Troubleshooting Guide

If you want to know Winnebago Rialta common problems you are in the right place! Regarding this exceptional RV that combines size, comfort, and fuel efficiency, like all RVs, it can encounter issues and exhibit some limitations. While some of these malfunctions are easily manageable and offer multiple solutions, others demand specific attention.

The most often Winnebago Rialta problems include generator hard-to-start, refrigerators, poorly designed air conditioning compressors, roof leaks, toilet flush issues, etc.

Keep reading to find out more problems and solutions related to Winnebago Rialta. Furthermore, I will take you through the pros, cons, and what to look for when purchasing a Rialta!

Winnebago Rialta – Overview 

Many travelers commonly view the Winnebago Rialta as the best RV choice. This recreational vehicle boasts a potent engine with remarkable gas mileage. Additionally, it’s simple to maneuver, even on twisting routes.

Winnebago Rialta - Overview
Credit: www.pinterest.com @poptopheaven

The Rialta was constructed using Winnebago’s Volkswagen Transporter (T4) cab chassis. Its features include a 2.5L five-cylinder engine, a 2.8 V6 motor with 201 horsepower, or a 2.8L VR6 engine with 140 horsepower. Here are some pros and cons of Winnebago Rialta.

Winnebago Rialta Common Problems. Gasoline Consumption
Credit: www.youtube.com @chrysstafford

Discover some of the advantages of Winnebago Rialta:

  • Easy to maneuver: Navigating through congested areas remains effortless with the Rialta since they are only 22 feet away. Thanks to its compact dimensions, it readily fits into most standard parking spaces.
  • Fuel-efficient: The Rialta delivers excellent gas mileage, with an average of 15 to 16 miles per gallon. Therefore, you receive exceptional value for your money.
  • High-quality materials and superb German engineering:  Rialta was crafted with top-notch materials, and thanks to the involvement of Volkswagen’s German company, it’s free from any mechanical imperfections. As long as you take good care of your Rialta, you can expect it to remain trouble-free in terms of mechanical issues. The helpful old VW van community is the most active Rialta with high-quality material but is rare for classic rear-engine models.
  • Outstanding warranty coverage: Winnebago provides a two-year, 24,000-mile warranty for the Rialta’s coach body, while Volkswagen offers a two-year warranty for the chassis and cab, covering every 24,000 kilometers driven. Additionally, the power train enjoys a five-year warranty for every 50,000 kilometers, courtesy of the company.
  • Often used as a third vehicle, particularly the QD model: Typically, larger families opt for “mini-vans,” However, most of them end up using the Model QD Rialta, accommodating 8 passengers. Other Rialta models offer versatility, and numerous women confidently use them for errands, easily parking in supermarket lots.

Here are some disadvantages of Winnebago Rialta:

  • Expensive parts: Certain components of your Winnebago Rialta come with a substantial price tag. Therefore, it’s advisable to get comprehensive inspections to diagnose and fix issues while they are in their early stages. Significant repairs could end up costing you hundreds of dollars.
  • Restrictions on the maximum load capacity: Your load capacity is limited in such a way that you will need to carry under 1,000 to 2,000 pounds. This weight encompasses all your possessions, food, water, and cooking necessities.
  • Not a good option for tall people: The interior ceiling height is 5’10”. If you exceed this height, there are only two spots where you can stand upright: inside the side door entrance and beneath the skylight. Elsewhere, you risk bumping your head, particularly on the roof air conditioner controls.

Winnebago Rialta Common Problems and Solutions Table at the Glance 

Discover the Rialta common problems and their solutions in the table below:




Replace the rusted parts

Roof leaks:

Resealing the damaged part

Engine stalling:

Contact a qualified mechanic


Avoid overloading the engine

Brake issues:

Regular inspections

Generator hard-to-start issues:

Refill the gas tank or call contact a mechanical expert

Toilet flush issues:

Refil the water tank and remove foreign objects

Refrigerator issues:

Check if the plugs are in

Transmission shifting issu:

Add an efficient amount of transmission fluid

Electrical issues:

In case of dead batteries, replace them with new ones

Winnebago Rialta Common Problems and Fixes:  

Despite Winnebago being very easy to drive and affordable, they come with several common problems. Ultimately, linked problems are likely to corrode the electrical systems, especially the chassis ground points.

Let me take you through common Winnebago Rialta issues and their solutions for now.

1. Generator Hard-to-Start Issue

Starting the Rialta’s generator is generally takes a lot of work. The main reason for the generator malfunction is the improper functioning of the carburetor and fuel system issue, which makes it difficult for the machine to run continuously.

Generator Hard-to-Start Issue
Credit: www.youtube.com @viarvllc7470

Discover some of the tips to do away with generator starting issues:

  • Check the engine: Before turning on the generator, ensure the engine is on if your coach’s battery is weak.
  • Inspect the gas tank: Most generators shut off independently because gas may be less than one-fourth in the tank. So, it is essential to inspect the gas tank.
  • Verify the oil level: Furthermore, ensure that you check the oil level because if it is less than the required, it will be hard to start the generator.
Cost of the Maintenance

The expense for generator repair is contingent on the gravity of the problem. In the event of significant repairs, a higher cost is incurred.

  • To address such matters, you must call a qualified mechanic to do it on your behalf.
  • The hourly rate for a proficient professional typically hovers around $200.

Check out the video below showing the generator hard to start issue:

2. Refrigerator Issues

Most Winnebago Rialta are prone to refrigerator issues. The following are some symptoms that show Winnebago Rialta has refrigerator problems:

Refrigerator Issues
Credit: www.youtube.com @SailingLunaSea
  • Freeze that stops cooling;
  • The refrigerator may run but will not cool at all;
  • It may stop operating at all.

Here are some causes of refrigerator problems:

  • Electrical system issues;
  • Leakage in the cooling system;
  • The buildup of the ammonia sediment;
  • The freeze burner fails;
  • Interior open detect set to off.

In case of electrical problems, consider doing the following:

  • Check the regulator;
  • Ensure that the refrigerator is plugged in;
  • Confirm that the breaker is functioning as intended. If it does not, it’s recommended to reset it.
Important! If the problem is not electrical, then you need professional help. Do not attempt to repair the problem yourself. It can be dangerous.
Cost of the Maintenance

The cost of resolving the Rialta refrigerator problem is not fixed; it varies based on the seriousness of the issue:

  • For example, if you need to fix a coolant problem it will cost you from $100. Plus an additional from $100 in labor charges for the technician.
  • In some cases, a complete refrigerator replacement might be necessary.

3. Roof Leak

Although it is a minor issue, most Winnebago Rialta are prone to it. Roof leakage can damage almost every part of the Winnebago Rialta. The primary cause of roof leaks is poor maintenance.

Roof Leak
Credit: www.youtube.com @PaddyWagonTravels

To solve this problem, consider doing the following:

  • Identify the leaking part and reseal it using self-leveling decor or silicon.
  • After resealing a high degree of maintenance, it is advisable to inspect and check the roof for potential leaks after a reasonable timeframe to avoid further damage.
Cost of the Maintenance
A roof leak due to improper nailing during installation may cost around $170 for minor damage. To fix it, locate the leak and reseal it with silicone caulk.

4. Toilet Flush Issue

Though this is not a common problem, it can only be satisfied if it happens on your side. The two leading causes of this problem are:

Toilet Flush Issue
Credit: www.youtube.com @BigGLittleo
  • There is no water in the tank, or the water is very little in such a way that it is not reaching the comet.
  • Flushing problems may be caused by a blockage in the drain line due to foreign objects drained there that cannot be flushed.

Toilet flush issues are the easiest ones to solve among all other Winnebago Rialta problems. Here is what to do:

  • Refill the water in the tank if it is empty or minor.
  • If the drain line is clogged, remove any foreign materials.
  • Fixing leaking pipes to avoid water wastage.
Cost of the Maintenance
The toilet flush is the cheapest issue to deal with. You only need to refill a tank and remove foreign objects that will cost you approximately $90.

5. Engine Stalling

Engine stalling is the most dangerous Rialta problem that can cause further damage to your machine if not taken seriously.

Engine Stalling
Credit: www.youtube.com @Endfloat

These causes include:

  • Dirty air filter;
  • Low oil level;
  • Faulty spark plugs;
  • Fuel system issues, including a clogged fuel filter or fuel line.

For you to tackle the engine stalling problem, you have to:

  • To solve any engine-related problem, get it checked by a qualified mechanic.
  • Check the oil level from time to time.
Cost of the Maintenance
The typical yearly repair expenditure is approximately $501.

Here is the video of some of the causes of engine stalling:


6. Transmission Shifting Problems

Transmission shifting is one of the problems you must have experienced if you have ever been in contact with Winnebago Rialta.

Transmission Shifting Problems
Credit: www.youtube.com @vwbus79

The leading causes of this problem include:

  • Low transmission fluid level;
  • Worn-out transmission filter.

To solve Transmission issues, consider doing the following:

  • Inspect the transmission fluid level regularly and ensure that it is filled.
  • Always add an efficient amount of fluid to improve its running speed.
  • Furthermore, inspect the transmission filter more often and replace it if it is fractured.
Cost of the Maintenance

Transmission issues can be quite costly:

  • The mean expense for transmission replacement is approximately $2,600, with a range of $1,800 to $3,400.
  • Repairs are somewhat more economical, with an average of $900, but could vary between $300 and $1,500 based on the problem.

Here is the video for transmission shifting problems:

7. Electrical Issues

The commonly known electrical problems in Rialtas are:

  • Dead batteries;
  • Blown fuses;
  • Faulty wiring;
  • Corroded electrical connections.
Electrical Issues
Credit: www.youtube.com @OzMechanics

To solve these electrical problems, here is what to do:

  • Replace dead batteries with new ones.
  • Always use long circuits to prevent the blowing of fuses.
  • In case of faulty wiring, always call a qualified electrical technician.
Cost of the Maintenance
The most affordable battery on the market costs around $48.25, and the expensive goes upto $699.88.

The electrical issue pertains to various electrical components. Repair facilities typically charge approximately $275 for rectifying the vehicle’s alternator.

8. Overheat

Winnebago Rialta RVs have been known to overheat often in hot weather. Here are the causes of Winnebago Riata’s overheating:

Credit: www.youtube.com @ericthecarguy
  • The engine cooling system is unable to circulate the coolant all through the engine as intended.
  • Overloading the engine can also make the Rialta overheat.

There exist some solutions you need to do to prevent this from happening.


Here are some solutions to this problem:

  • First and foremost, the coolant level should be full, and the cooling system should function correctly.
  • Furthermore, leave the engine out for a short timeframe.
  • If overheating detections are made in the engine, distinguish the air conditioning and keep the windows open for free air movement.
  • Lastly, always ensure the engine is off until it cools down.
Cost of the Maintenance
Following these guidelines, your Winnebago Rialta will be free from overheating. The entire procedure for repairing overheated components amounts to $285, covering both labor and fluids.

9. Brake Problems

The emergency brake warning light is a common problem that diminishes vehicles’ braking power. Other parts that experience brake problems include:

Brake Problems
Credit: www.youtube.com @RufusNDufus
  • Brake pad;
  • Rotors;
  • Calipers.

The leading causes of these problems include;

  • Worn-out parts;
  • Lack of maintenance;
  • Poor driving habits.

In addressing the problems of brake, you need to do the following:

  • Good enough, regularly inspect the brake system and ensure that it is operating normally.
  • In case of any problem, like corroding sounds, when you apply the brakes, you should get an expert mechanic to rectify it.
  • Furthermore, it is practical to apply good driving skills; avoiding sudden stops or hard braking, to do away with premature corrosion on the brake parts.
Cost of the Maintenance
The brake repair is priced at approximately $51. Opting for higher-quality brakes will necessitate a more substantial payment, with the repair facility averaging a charge of $171. Labor fees can vary based on the mechanic shop’s location.

10. Rust

Most metals experience rust over a gross period. Some of the rust problems include:

Credit: www.youtube.com @theconchonetwork498
  • Many screws on the top tank cover metal piece that are completely rusting, leading to a leaky roof.
  • Overstating the metal plates makes the plate fall apart, and then the cover would fly off and leave the propane tank open.

It would be best if you did the following to get rid of this rust problem:

  • Reason out a way to drill holes into a metal sheet and replace the one that has rust.
  • Replace the extreme, screws with rust.
Cost of the Maintenance
To fix rust issues, Winnebago offers the choice of undercoating at a mere cost of approximately $200.

What To Look For When Buying a Rialta? 

If you have an interest in Riaita’s purchase, then here are the guide points to make sure it is a proper one and not just a salvage:

  • Inspect the exhauster: Check if they operate and what condition they are in.
  • Test drive: Any time you drive the Rialta, pay attention to any strange noise. This will help you know if your Rialta has faulty brakes, steering, or other mechanical issues. You must constantly check if these are in good condition or expect expensive repairs.
  • Inspect the appliances: Ensure that everything is operating normally, from the water pump and boiler to the fridge and the AC unit. This way you will lower your budget plan to compensate for the repair expenses when not operating.
  • Check out overall condition: This includes whether the RV is in proper shape, the windshield, motor, appliances, water pump, and more. All these conditions you have to check when buying a Rialta.
  • Light bulbs: Inspect all bulbs to see if everything is working, or else you will be spending more money on the light than you had planned.
  • Keys: Before purchasing a Rialta, ensure the owner has all the keys to the two sets of ignition and locks. Ensuring all the keys are there is essential as it enhances security.
  • Inspect for a spare tire: The most crucial part that should be available at the time of sale is a spare tire.


How can I protect my 1995 Winnebago Rialta’s furniture from damage?

To protect your 1995 Winnebago Rialtas furniture from damage, regularly maintain the RV.

Why did Winnebago stop making the Rialta?

Winnebago stopped making the Riata when Volkswagen stopped receiving the Eurovan from the United States in 2003. This led to the decline in the supply of the ’03 chassis’ Winnebago had in stock.

What are the symptoms of electrical problems in my Rialta?

The most common electrical problems symptoms include the generator becoming hard to start, refrigerator marginal problems, poorly designed AC compressor, and a leaky roof.

What should I do if I have appliance problems in my Rialta?

If you experience any appliance problems, always check the user manual or contact your dealer because he has some experience.


Now you have it right. I have described the Winnebago Rialta common problems and possible solutions.

If you find out that your Rialta has issues like rust, engine stalling, roof leaks, overheating, and even more mechanical problems, it’s therefore advisable to call a qualified mechanic as soon as possible to avoid further damage.

Have you found the information shared above helpful for you? Let’s hear from you in the comment section.

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