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What To Watch Out For When Buying A Used RV

Buying a used RV is a great way to save money, but if you aren’t careful you could be buying into a problem! Follow these helpful tips to make sure you’re informed when shopping used.

If you are new to the RV lifestyle, or have an RV but want to upgrade, buying used is an excellent idea. However, buying an RV is a big investment, and issues like water damage, plumbing issues, and other problems that can/have occurred are difficult to spot if you don’t know what to look for. Especially with water damage, the costs to repair these issues can greatly exceed what you paid for your RV. If you follow these tips, you can ensure you are buying a solid RV that will last you or your family for many seasons to come:

Check For Water Damage

The number one issue which causes RVs to reach the end of their useful life is water damage. So many RVers purchase trailers and motorhomes with pre-existing water damage inside the walls which is difficult to spot with the naked eye, but lead to a host of issues including rotten structure, interior wall and floor damage, electrical issues, and more!

When looking at a used RV, be sure to check the interior walls for any signs of water staining – including behind any cabinets/cupboards, behind cushions, and especially at the front and rear of the RV. Another test you can do is to apply light pressure to the wall in varying locations – if there is any rotten or compromised wood in behind the wall, it will have a noticeable flex.


Over the life of an RV there are many maintenance items which should be addressed. Things like tires, brakes, and the condition of the exterior seals should be checked regularly, and some consumable items such as bearings will need to be replaced. If the maintenance records are available, this shows that the RV was well maintained and cared for, whereas the absence of these records can indicate the opposite.

Check The Appliances

One of the most important parts of an RV are its appliances – without them, it’s very difficult to keep food cold or cook food, generate heat, or have an enjoyable time camping. RV appliances have a useful lifetime, and once exceeded will need to be replaced which will add extra expense. Before you sign on the dotted line, make sure to turn on all appliances and ensure the stove, furnace, water heater, and fridge all fire and function normally. This will also allow you to evaluate whether or not the propane and electrical systems in the RV are functioning correctly.

Questions? Ask The Pros!

We are Edmonton’s most trusted source for RV Parts, Service, Sales, and Advice! Whether you’re in the market for a quality used RV, have one already and need RV Parts or RV Service, or just have questions, we are only a click or call away.