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what to look for in used travel trailer

what to look for in used travel trailer插图

What should I look for when buying an RV?

Check awnings for proper function and make sure that no tears are present. If the RV has slide outs, make sure that they are fully operational and without damage. Inspect tanks and water heater for any leaks and check the plumbing as well. Check the water pump and turn on all faucets.

How to check the water systems in a travel trailer?

When checking on the water systems, an important aspect will be to check for any water leakage from pipes, hose or tanks. This is one part will be hard, as such leaks wouldn’t be visible easily. One solution, is to try using the water in the trailer and take your own time to identify any such faults and issues in the water system.

What should you avoid when buying an RV?

One of the biggest reasons to avoid buying an RV is if it has water damage. Walk through the rig, checking for mold, bubbling, and rot in all corners. Check for soft spots on the walls and around bathroom fixtures.

Are used travel trailers a good deal?

A used travel trailer can be a good deal looking at the depreciation that we see in rv’s. But, one of the important points when buying a used trailer is “avoiding a lemon”. A good way to save on initial cost can turn out to be complete waste of money or a lot of expenditure on repairs and replacements.

Motivations and Goals

Before you get all excited and purchase the first travel trailer you come across, slow down and make a list. It is important to clearly lay out your motivations and goals for purchasing a travel trailer.

What to Look For In a Used Travel Trailer

You may be wondering what you should look for when you are buying a pre-owned RV. This section will go into detail about what to look for and things you should avoid.

Miscellaneous Items You May Need

The following items are commonly overlooked when purchasing a recreational vehicle.

Trends Push Prices Through The Roof

We are living smack dab in the middle of the tiny house movement, and do-it-yourselfers have caused a surge in the popularity of travel trailers which makes them a hot commodity.

Getting the Best Bang for Your Buck

Many times you can negotiate down on the price a lot if there is damage because the person who is selling it does not want to spend the time and money fixing it, and you can play on that emotion and get a good deal.

Other Ways to Get the Best Deal

The following list will go into more detail on how to shop for and get the best deal on a used travel trailer for you and everyone to enjoy.

The Best Time of The Year To Buy

You may be wondering when the best time to buy a travel trailer may be. The following list will enlighten you on that subject:

How big should a trailer tire be?

So, how much diameter should a trailer tires have? The best answer here would come from the manufacturer. Try to check with owner and get the manual and see if you can find out the recommended diameter for the trailer tire. It actually depends on the load range, a load range of around 4500 lbs needs tires that are approximately 30 inches in diameter. A 1000 lbs load range on the other hand would need a trailer tire of around 24 inches diameter.

How long do travel trailer tires last?

On an average a travel trailer tire would last for around 4-5 years (remember, this is from the time the tires were manufactured and not from the time they were put into use). Check and ask how old the tires are, check the exact manufacturing date on the tires.

Why are tires important in a trailer?

Tires in case of trailer are important as the trailer wont have its own engine and will be pulled by a car. And, this makes the tires more important. Check if the tire size being used for the trailer is correct, if not perfect. The tires should be able to pull off the load on the trailer and for this, size and pressure on the tires matter.

What is the most important part of the overall system?

And thus, the most important part of the overall system is the hitch and other things that finally connect the trailer with the car. Driving a trailer has a lot to do with the way a trailer is connected to the car. And thus, you must check on the hitch, its class. A hitch can be of different class ranging from I to V.

Why are my tires blowing out on my RV?

Blowouts in rv or trailer are mostly because, the tires are either too old, or low quality or there was too much weight on rv.

Why does my RV smell?

In most cases, a used rv smells due to toiler not flushing properly. So do a thorough check on toilet flushing. In most cases, a thorough cleaning and fixing issues with sinks, toilet flush can get rid of such smells. But, its better if you try to get a trailer that is not plagued with such odors.

How long does a RV roof last?

Check if the roof itself was replaced. A rv or travel trailer roof normally has a life of around 10-12 years if proper maintenance is done.

How heavy of travel trailer can you tow?

The first question you need to ask, is if you are using a current vehicle, or will be buying a new vehicle for your towing needs.

What length of travel trailer is right for us?

Don’t buy a 27’ trailer if you can only fit 22’ in your driveway unless you want to pay for offsite storage. Along with fitting your trailer where you will be storing, consider the locations you will be camping, and if there any size limitations in these sites.

What is the best travel trailer floorplan?

Once you have a good idea of size and weight, now is the time to consider your needs. Do you have 3 kids and need a bunkhouse, is it just you as a single person looking to get away. Are you staying for just weekends or for months at a time? I cannot help you decide on what floorplan to get, but I can tell you that we started looking for a 24’ bunkhouse, almost stepping up to a 26’ as they also had a couch. I had been researching trailers for some time and read to always buy smaller than you think. We rented a 1700BH and realized that for our needs we needed a place to sleep as we have a newborn and a place to hang out in while it rains.

How much storage do travel trailers have?

Make sure to consider storage options while trailer shopping, you need to have room for all of your hiking gear, bbq, wood, food, clothes, rugs, chairs, etc. Everything needs to fit somewhere. The space under the front of the trailer understood as pass through storage is also called the “basement”. The door size is critical, make sure it will fit the size of your bbq or generator or larger item you want to store in there. Rubbermaids are available in many sizes, on my unit, my basement is limited to 11” in the middle and I was able to find Rubbermaid’s that were 10.5” to fit in there. YES, something finally actually worked out.

How many windows do you need in a Travel Trailer?

Having two windows on either side of the bed are perfect for crosswind to help you cool down at nights.

How much does a travel trailer weigh?

In our case, our travel trailer’s dry weight is 3,700 pounds, optional accessories of about 400 pounds, tank water capacity of 680 pounds, and food and gear is 500 pounds, our total weight may be 5,280 pounds. We have added 1,580 pounds to our starting weight that needs to be within our towing capacity. Given our capacity to tow is 9,400 pounds, a loaded 5,280 pound trailer is right around 56% of our rated towing capacity. I wanted to stick to around 50-60% capacity as we go over lots of mountain passes and steep grades where we camp as not to overwork the truck. To get the best idea of your weight, tow to a weigh station and weigh once with the vehicle, then once with the trailer and subtract the vehicle weight to get your exact towing weight. This will come in handy while tuning your weight distribution hitch. Learn about the average weight of travel trailers.

How long is Jayco travel trailer warranty?

From what we have seen, travel trailers typically have a one year warranty. We have seen a few brands with a two year warranty with Jayco being one of them. Some dealers offer a “lifetime” warranty but you need to spend money every year for the dealer to “check it out” which may or may not be worth it.

What is the most important part of a bathroom?

? The toilet is the most important part of the bathroom, so be sure to check it first. Make sure that the closing hatch fully seals. You should also pour some water into it to make sure that it pools. Return after a few minutes. If the water is still there, you are good to go. If it isn’t, that toilet needs repair.

Do motorhomes have automatic leveling?

? You need to make sure that motorhomes (and some fifth wheels) have automatic leveling. In the event that it doesn’t, you need to then check if it has powered levers. One of the others is super important.

Can you add furniture later?

Sure, you could always add furniture later, but now is better than later. ? Check all furniture carefully to make sure it isn’t stained or damaged. If those points aren’t important to you, you could probably haggle your way into a discount if the owner turned over a stained cushion so you wouldn’t see it.

Can a big rig fit in a campsite?

Apprehensive shoppers often shop small at first. When they want something bigger, they exceed their needs and get a huge rig that can’t fit into campsites easily. Make sure you check with the places you intend on camping and call ahead to know their limitations before you buy.

How to check if RV water heater is drained?

Water heater: If the RV hasn’t been used recently, check if the water heater has been drained. If possible, run water through the tank to check for signs of rust and scale being flushed out.

What is the best part about RVing?

One of the best parts about RVing is engaging with the community of traveling enthusiasts. iRV2 forums allow folks to chat with other RVers online, and get other perspectives on everything RVing, including products, destinations, RV mods, and much more.

Why is roof inspection important?

A roof inspection is extremely important and is an area that is vulnerable to multiple issues. A roof inspection should expose any prior roof repairs which can be cause for alarm. Roof repairs sometimes are necessary and if done properly can be non-issues, however, it is common for roof repairs to be patched up repairs.

What does a roof inspection show?

Your roof inspection will also show the condition of the roof covering and many seals on the roof around vents, sunroofs, antennas, and A/C units.

How to check if RV is running?

Check the filters and make sure they are clean and in place. Make a trip to the roof and inspect the condition of the fins on the unit and that while running there are no unusual noises. Ideally, the RV is powered and you can run the A/C long enough to confirm it is cooling.

What to look for when buying a used RV?

5 Things To Look For When Buying A Used RV. Buying a used RV can be a great choice that saves you money. However, it can also be a chance you take that costs you money. As with anything that is pre-owned, used RVs can present issues after being purchased. It has, after all, been used by someone else. All RVs, even new ones, will have problems and …

What does loss of charge mean on RV A/C?

RV A/C systems are sealed and in many cases, loss of charge means replacement of the entire A/C unit. Check the filters and make sure they are clean and in place. Make a trip to the roof and inspect the condition of the fins on the unit and that while running there are no unusual noises.

How to test drive a rig before buying?

Before purchasing, ask the owner to let you take the rig on a test drive. If they won’t let you test it, don’t buy it! Drive at top speeds on the freeway and practice maneuvering in an empty parking lot. You may also want to have the owner drive part of the time and experience the ride from the passenger’s seat. Check for odd noises or jolts while driving, and make sure that all systems are operational.

How to check if RV has slide outs?

If the RV has slide outs, make sure that they are fully operational and without damage. Inspect tanks and water heater for any leaks and check the plumbing as well. Check the water pump and turn on all faucets. Turn on the oven and stove and sniff around for any propane leaks.

What to do if you find a problem during an inspection?

If you find a few minor problems during your inspection, don’t panic. You may still get a good deal, though you will have to pay a little extra to fix the issues. Estimate repair costs and add them to the seller’s price to determine whether the purchase is worthwhile. You may even be able to point out problems that the seller had missed and use them to your bargaining advantage.

How to check if RV oil is leaking?

If possible, use a garden hose to spray the roof and windows, then check for leaks inside. Ask the owner to pop the hood so that you can check the RV’s oil. If there is engine damage, the oil will smell burnt. Check the power cord and battery bank, and make sure the battery is running at 12.6-12.8 volts.

How to check the size of a shower?

Don’t be afraid to peer into cupboards and closets with a flashlight and stand in the shower to check its size. Jump on the floor and push on the walls to test structural integrity.

What to do after a test drive?

After the test drive, make sure to run all other functions and look for issues. Check that all locks and latches are secure, and turn on light fixtures. Run all electrical systems, including air conditioning and heater. Check awnings for proper function and make sure that no tears are present.

What to ask about RV history?

Asking about the RV’s history can provide you with valuable information about the quality of the vehicle. How many people have owned the RV? If it has been through several owners and is still in good condition, chances are that it will last longer.