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Old 02-22-2019, 03:11 PM   #1
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Model years to avoid

My wife and I are looking for a used 5th wheel. She has joined a facebook group for RVers and read there that model years 2008-2010 are to be avoided. The rationale given is that's when the recession started and build quality went downhill as manufacturers cut corners to save costs. She has taken this as gospel and refuses to even entertain the idea of looking at one in that range. My in-laws experience with their 2010 Dutchman seems to bear this out. They have had many issues since the day they bought it and continue to have problems. The refrigerator in theirs has a circuit board that seems to die every time they use it as an example.

Is this what you guys have noticed? Are those years to be avoided? Are there manufacturers who didn't cut corners?

I am also thinking that most of these issues have had nearly a decade to get sorted out. Is this the case? Her parents don't always approach things the way I would have. For the refrigerator example, I think I would have replaced the refrigerator with a more reliable model rather than replace the circuit board every time. Do these issues get worked out over time or do they just worse?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 02-22-2019, 04:43 PM   #2
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My 2008 model year trailer was constructed in 2007 when things were rocking and rolling. Remember, the economy fell off the table at the end of 2008, at which time they would probably be making 2009 models. I doubt many manufacturers had the foresight to reduce quality based on a projected financial crisis. Your theory may have merit but should include late 2009-2011 models.

I cannot detect any corner cutting on my rig. They did specify items from manufacturers that eventually went out of the business, such as Carrier air conditioners.
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Old 02-22-2019, 06:39 PM   #3
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Cost cutting and cutting corners is standard in the RV industry, regardless of year. I suppose there "could" be something to the theory that when the economy was tanking it was worse but you could also say employees were trying to keep their jobs so they were trying to do a good job. Trying to outguess the lows the RV manufacturing will sink to is like playing the lotto.
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Old 02-23-2019, 07:42 AM   #4
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My 2008 HitchHiker has given us no more or less problems than you would expect from an RV. We have been full timing in it for over 9 years now and love the unit.
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Old 02-23-2019, 08:42 AM   #5
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My 2010 Cameo has had NO problems and is as good as the day I brought it home. We are full timers. I would have no problem buying another one just like it if I ever need one.
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Old 02-23-2019, 08:47 AM   #6
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I had a 2009 DUTCHMAN product and traded it in after one season of use due to a large amount of issues. Not sure if that was because of the era it was manufactured or an issue with Dutchman quality.
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Old 02-23-2019, 08:57 AM   #7
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We had a 2013 Dutchman Infinity 5th Wheel, owned it for 5 years, not a single problem. Very comfortable from hot weather to ice storms.
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Old 02-23-2019, 12:25 PM   #8
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I'm not in agreement with the OP's wife, I'm sitting in an 2008 Monaco 5er Presidential Suite, and quite pleased with it's performance.
When I consider quality I break down the unit into a couple of areas, the equipment installed, and the quality of craftsmanship. All RV producers source equipment from mostly the same company's, when they install the components is a whole different story.
To condemn an RV company because a frig, stove, axle ,etc. failed isn't a fair judgement , they only installed it, but if the installation was faulty than the RV company get's the black eye. And that goes for the entire unit.
Craftsmanship varies with how hard the employees are pushed, that issue is across the industry. Some RV suppliers pay more attention to finish quality and it's reflective in the unit cost. But, even the top quality suppliers are not fault free. Our RV's are hand crafted but not the quality of a hand crafted automobile or an up scale brick and mortar home. Price,price,price is the factor.
Getting back to the OP's point, I don't think you can say RV's from X year to X year is valid. MHO

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Old 02-24-2019, 08:53 AM   #9
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They still cut corners on items.
As far as stuff breaking (fridge, stove, water heater, etc...) these are the same items installed by RV makers. There is a limited number of suppliers and almost each RV makers will get the item from them. Norcold fridge was not only installed in a Laredo, but numerous RV models. Atwood water heaters are used by numerous companies, not just one
So when a fridge, or what ever fails it probably was not built by the RV maker, but the component maker.

So I would look at the physical construction of the unit, to see if corners had been cut. For example, drawers are they stapled or dovetail, type of insulation and insulation valve, items like that come to mind.
But remember that the cheaper the unit the cheaper the materials went into making it, just my thoughts and opinion.
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Old 02-24-2019, 12:00 PM   #10
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I agree with most everyone posting here, the cheaper the unit the cheaper the material used


As far as the year, take the DW into a number of trailers an point out the same frig, stove, microwave etc in the upper priced TT an 5th wheels, as well look at the draws, the cheaper 5th wheels have staples an not dove tails, they also have plastic slides an not metal slides :(



As well the cheaper 5th wheels will have smaller I beams thus the frames are weaker an have more flex to them, the upper end 5th wheel will have larger I beams an be far heavier that say a cheaper model, all these stated are not because of the year but the price point ...



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Old 02-26-2019, 01:10 PM   #11
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Thanks for all the replies. You've given me lots more to look at besides model year.
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