When looking to buy a motorcoach (or another kind of RV) there are things you need to consider. You do not want to waste time and money on a vehicle that is not worth it, after all. Here is a breakdown of what you should know before you seal the deal on an RV purchase.
We have kept the information generalized, so it works no matter what brand or type of motorhome you are trying to get. So, for example, if you want a certain type of RV and you want more information on Thor RVs, we should have you covered.
The Type Of RV
As we have alluded to already, there are multiple types of RV that you should consider. Knowing what type of RV you want will change a lot of the logistics behind finding, transporting, and storing the vehicle.
So, what are the different types of RVs out there?
- Class A (Gas & Diesel)
- Class B
- Class C
- Small Camper
- Pop Up
- Travel Trailer
- Fifth Wheel
Naturally, how much space you want will determine which ones you get. The same can be said for how many people will be staying there, too. Small campers are the smallest while Class As are the largest. Those last three in the list are towed while the Class RVs are drivable.
Another practical consideration that you may have covered already, you should know the price of the RV you want to get. This does not just mean memorizing a figure, it means you should know the fair worth of the type of RV you want to buy, so you can avoid being overcharged by somebody.
For example, if you know an RV is worth a certain amount, but it is not in great condition, you should have an idea of how much it is worth but also how much it is worth when slightly damaged. Then you can negotiate a fair price that both the buyer and the seller can agree on.
As a word of advice, buying a used RV is your best bet 90% of the time. Not only is it cheaper but, if it is in good condition, you know it has been lived-in and can cater to your needs.
The Condition Of The RV
If you are new to buying an RV, you may not know what to look out for. Fortunately, here is a short guide. You should not just check out the exterior and the interior to see if there are any obvious blemishes/structural issues, you should also look out for serious issues like:
- Damage/malfunction in plumbing.
- Damage to the floor of the RV.
- Any mold presence inside the RV.
- The quality of the tires on the RV.
For the RV floor, you should jump up and down across parts of the RV where water is run. Most floor damage is caused by water, which is hard to see, but you can feel it when the floor isn’t stable and potentially rotting.
Mold is much more serious. It is a health risk, after all. It will also take your RV out of commission if it advances enough. Like with water damage, it’s typically caused by leaks that are causing excess moisture to build up. Check the corners of ceilings and floors and make sure cabinets are not warm. Sometimes you can smell it too if you are familiar with how mold smells.
Lastly, the tires should have nearly perfect treads on them but you should also ask how old the tires are. RV tires should be replaced when they hit five years old. If the RV owner does not know, there should be a four-digit code on the sidewall. The first two numbers are the week and the second two are the year the tires were made.
The RV’s History
Just like with the tires, it also helps to know the history of the full vehicle. You would do it for a used car, so you should definitely do it for a vehicle that you plan to live in. The RV should have a Vehicle Identification Number that you can use to see its history. You should be able to see if the vehicle has ever been damaged/rebuilt or stolen, along with any outstanding recalls for components used in the RV.
Once the vehicle is in the clear, you should test drive the motor coach so you get a sense of how it handles and feels on the road. Make sure it tackles your planned terrain well and listen for any noises that could signal damage or repairs needed.