What to look for when buying a used RV

I’ve looked at a half dozen RVs so far, but checked out a lot more online. There are a lot of things to look out for, but a few key problems I avoid at all costs:

1. Water damage. If it looks like it has leaked at all, even if the owner swears it has been fixed, I immediately go look elsewhere. Water damage is one of the worst things to have on an RV since it typically gets into the wall panels and mold and rot, both of which are obviously bad. I know that in my price range, I’m not going to get a perfect RV, but I want something that isn’t going to fall apart in a few months of road travel.

2. Engine trouble. I understand I’m going to need to do a little work, but I don’t want an RV that won’t start. Or needs a new engine, or needs exhaust work. Some engine issues are minor and can be fixed, but if it needs a lot of work and money put into it, I run away.

3. Hacks. I looked at an RV last weekend that was a little pricey for what it was, but it ran well and was the perfect size for what we were looking for. The only problem? The previous owner had hacked his way through things instead of getting them properly fixed. I plan on doing some of this myself, but I want to know what the process was to get there, what the reasoning was for doing something, and where all those random wires go. This one had a solenoid that switched between house battery and car battery. Normally, it automatically switches. Well the previous owner didn’t want to fix the part, so he installed a toggle switch in the dash to switch between the two. Not at all the proper way to go about things.

4. Craigslist scams. I’ve found quite a few of these. If an RV is priced way too low, its probably a scam. If it only has one image, very little info, and the text is on the image, its probably a scam. If you text or email someone and they respond saying they are posting it for a relative and you need to email them directly for more info, watch out. I don’t know who falls for these things, but someone must since they keep popping up. Just stay away.

Thats about it. I’m sure there are more things that immediately turn me off, but those are the big ones.

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