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Wish-I-Were-Fishn

Is a RV a money pit

28 posts in this topic

Was looking at RV's on hsolist. Lots of good deals, but I'm wondering about the overall cost of ownership considering maintenance.

I would think a trailer, or 5th wheel would be less expensive to maintain than a motor home. I was blown away by one guys listing of a nice motor home that listed all of the things both he and the previous owner had replaced, or repaired in it.

Your thoughts please.

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heres my story. i grew up with a cabin in nortern mn. got remarried started to do tent camping. was ok. good friend owns campground, bought a $2500 older camper to try out on a permenent site. loved it. 3 years ago sold it bought a 3 year old 5th wheel. love it even more. did a lot of repairs on old camper but it WAS OLDER. have done a few small repairs on new one,standard maintence stuff mianly. guess my point is if you put a camper on a seasonal lot you shouldnt have as many repairs as one that gets moved every weekend because its not bouncing down the road and eveything is jigglin and vibrating. personally i wouldnt own motorhome but to each his own, and i think there are good deals from private owners. this is my opinion and hope it helped. by the way we still have cabin will give up camper if it gets to that point.

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I had a motorhome and sold it for a 5th wheel and truck. Way harder to work on a motorhome if you have problems compared to truck, and it is easier to find someone experienced on working on trucks than motorhomes. Biggest issue is wiring, they are kinda merged together and very hard to troubleshoot issues.

I agree with what glen said about maintaining an RV, if you are moving it around especially on bouncy dirt roads expect more maintenance no matter what you buy.

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I bought an 01 travel trailer 5 years ago. have not spent more than $100 on maintainance. I wash it in the spring, wax it, treat the rubber roof once a year and wash it in the fall and put it away. And we use the heck out of it!! After this weekend, we'll have spend probably a total more than 30 nights a summer in it. it's not on a seasonal, we take it wherever we go. insurance is cheap as well.

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what do you do to treat your rubber roof? i just recently caulked the seams but never treated other parts of the roof.

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you can get a bottle of rubber roof cleaner/treatment at wal-mart. just mix with water, scrub it on and rinse it off. it will keep the rubber from drying and cracking. i do it once a year

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thanks i will need to do that. i already pressure washed it off. i assume i could get that other places other than wal-mart. i have issues buying at wal-mart.

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yes, you can also get it at any camping store, like camping world, or you should also be able to get it at gander...etc

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Biggest issue is wiring, they are kinda merged together and very hard to troubleshoot issues.

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What about wall construction?

I know some trailers use aluminum skinned wall panels with studs and others use a foam core. Which is better?

Also, what brands are good in a trailer, motor home, and 5th wheel?

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C'mon fellas. K.I.S.S. Answer his original question.

"Is a RV a money pit"

Yes. The Point cannot be argued. You'd better love RVing, and do it often enough to justify the expense.

RVing is a money pit. Fun, but a money pit.

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The entire charging systems for both cab and the coach mix together on the same blocks, all the leads come in to the cab/coach in the same bundle, and until you have to troubleshoot an electrical problem, you won't see what I mean. I had a problem that I worked on for a while and wound having a mechanic work on it and even he said that was one of the more miserable things he ever had to work on.

We were camping last spring and a guy from out of state was having engine electrical issues and he had a hard time getting anyone to even work on it. The RV dealers don't work on the engine wiring and the dealers don't like to work with the coach and engine wiring mix. He spend a whole morning trying to find someone North of Duluth to work on his rig.

Quote:
I have seen some of them really falling apart. It could be lack of maintenance or just because they are cheaper models. Either way, I don't see much difference in quality comparing apples to apples on motorhomes vs. 5th wheels. When you go out and actually start looking at them, you will see the difference in quality and if it is used, the difference in how it was taken care of.

I know people that have motorhomes that are in pretty poor shape too. Some are poor quality and some are just cuz people don't fix things as things break. Fact is trailer or motorhome have things that move or get bounced around and things that get moved around or bounced around break. And no matter what you buy, if you buy the real bottom of the line you can't expect it to last as long as a quality rig.

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yes, the wiring can be a real pain! when they wire the coach

part, they don always use the same color wire as the wiring

diagram says. seems they use whatever color is within reach.

class c motorhomes arent to much different than a standard

van, but when you get into a class a motorhome anything goes!

most of the time, we find bad grounds or bad connections.

randy

rv tech

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What about wall construction?

I know some trailers use aluminum skinned wall panels with studs and others use a foam core. Which is better?

Also, what brands are good in a trailer, motor home, and 5th wheel?

with wood studs you will have aluminum siding,but aluminum

damages easily. the aluminum studs and foam will be pylon [sp]

or gel coat. a lot tougher but has had delamination problems.

more so if you have a small water leak. pylon also is easier

to keep clean, also its a lot heavier.

as far as brands, thats a ford/chevy polaris/honda debate :]

structurally the major brands are built pretty much the same

way.most of the warranty we did was paneling coming loose or

trim not cut right and plumbing leaks.

randy rv tech

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the big ones are fleetwood, forest river,dutchman,r-vision,

winnebago are a few. but for example forest river has a few

different brands under their banner like salem,wild cat among

others as does fleetwood. are you looking at buying new?

randy

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No, it would be used, if at all. Just exploring the pros and cons right now. Nice to know which ones to look at though.

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check out the dealers, they want clear their lots of used stuff.

probaly get a better deal. they got to make room for the 2009s

randy

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Go kick some tires. Look for things like fit and finish. When we were looking there were some really poorly taken care of trailers. Seen one where some must have left a chair in the wrong spot when they brought the slide in and pushed out part of the wall.

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Ouch! That will lessen the resale value!

I think I'm leaning away from a motor home. As far as 5th wheels, or trailers go, how are these brands: Jayco, Palomino, Holiday Rambler, Cherokee, Coachman, Keystone?

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I have to say, the nicest 5th wheels I have seen are Montana's. These seem to be the caddy of caddy's, not the GMC of caddy's if you know what I mean.

Choosing a camper, whether it be a tag trailer, 5th wheel, motorhome, slide in......it always comes down to how much you are willing to spend, and your personal needs. Not all, but most will always choose a trailer of some type because they are less expensive.

Have fun shopping and I hope you are happy with your final decision. You are using it and it's your money. Just don't get anything too big for your tow vehicle, otherwise you are shopping and spending again. smile

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one good thing with a trailer, you can unhook and still

have a vehicle to get around with. with a motorhome you

have to tow a vehicle. the wife loved the motorhome, she

could use the bathroom on the road.

randy

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"Is a RV a money pit"

Yes. The Point cannot be argued. You'd better love RVing, and do it often enough to justify the expense.

RVing is a money pit. Fun, but a money pit.

I completely disagree. when you say "money pit" yes it takes money to own and operate a camper. but the camper itself is not a money pit. Mine is paid for and I spend around $100 a year for insurance and next to nothing for maintainance, other than elbow grease. I don't think the original poster wants to take into consideration, gas, camping fees, firewood, and the many, many other incidentals that go with camping. I believe his post was just wondering about the camping unit itself.

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Yup, just the unit itself. Stuff breaking, or wearing out. Window issues, roof sealing, heater & A/C units going out, water heater, etc.

Can't get away from fuel costs and camping fees.

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roof and window sealing is maintenance whether a trailer

or motorhome. cheap to do, just takes time. sure you will

have vent covers that weather and crack, window cranks break

ect. just hope a refer dont puke on you.. big money there.

all in all they are pretty reliable if taken care of.

randy

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