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Old 11-11-2020, 08:59 AM   #1
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Buying used questions

Of course we are still just looking and kicking tires and examining floor plans. I would like opinions on a couple of questions pertaining to used TT's please.

1. I'm seeing online reference to some having rebuilt titles or salvage titles. My understanding is some of these were insurance totals or something to that effect. I'm sure there are cons. Pros are, price, and some darn good ones. Thoughts?

2. Buying used from private seller. How much in detail would one go into inspection? I have a compressor and and various tools, circuit tester, meter and such. How much does or would a private seller put up with say, the TT is in another city or even state? I'm expecting that anything used could come with some needed repairs, or, not.

3. Say out of state. Make an appointment to drive to the location with TV. If all seems well, do the deal, assuming the seller actually has the title in hand, exchange a bunch of Benjamin's , hook up and drive home.

4. Concern with 3 is, are the bearings packed and in good enough shape to make the trip? How would one know? I could I guess jack up the axles and do a spin test. In the old days of front wheel bearing checks, I could tell if the grease was there or not mostly.

Thanks again in advance!
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Old 11-11-2020, 09:17 AM   #2
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No matter the type of RV, before purchasing, pay for an RV repair person (mobile RV repair is a good place to look) to inspect the unit and write a report of what is good, bad and in-between and how much it will cost to put the unit to rights.


Always take free advice for what its worth.
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Old 11-12-2020, 04:46 AM   #3
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If you are mechanical and you are buying something simpler, TT vs class A diesel, I think you could do the inspection. But it should take some time - hours not minutes.

Run everything on gas, run everything on 12v, run everything on 120v.

Run water on the tanks & city. Look for leaks - inside, basement, under TT. Dump the gray & black tanks - should only be the water you ran - to be sure the valves open & close ok.

On things like the slides, run them several times. Listen for any odd noises, look for smooth movement.

I would pull the bearing covers and inspect.

The one thing I would for sure pay someone to do is a leak test (https://rvleaks.com). Roof & window leaks are very common, and also not commonly repaired completely.

However, before you do all that first decide is this the one, based on your initial review/inspection. Agree on price and state, in writing, that deal will close upon completion of the detailed inspection. (A list of everything you will do should be included. ) Any issues over $x (relative to the purchase price) would be negotiated.

One final thing: you really want the owner to do many of these things while you are watching. This way if it breaks or doesn't work, there isn't an issue of who broke it. Plus a great PDI benefit if you buy it.
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Old 11-12-2020, 05:05 AM   #4
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I've never purchased a used high end RV but I have purchased over 20 used TTs, pickup campers and fivers. I've also sold those 20 RVs, usually for a profit. I check to make sure the refer, oven and hot water all work. I also check to see that the pump works and doesn't run when the faucets are closed. Other than that, I just give it the smell test. If it stinks when I open the door, I close the door and walk away. The extent of my inspection also depends on the price of the camper, If it's a steel of a deal, I don't look so hard. I always plan on packing bearings when I get home and a few hundred dollars misc expense. Most of the units I have purchased have been well under $10,000 and I haven't been in that hobby mode for about 15 years so my budgets are way out of line for todays market.
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Old 11-12-2020, 07:17 AM   #5
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A salvage or rebuilt title may make it difficult to insure and I think increase the need of a thorough inspection.
I would repack bearings and replace any tires beyond the date code before moving very far.
Most issues with appliances are easily fixed, but I would run any generators or engines and inspect brakes.
Water damage is a major concern. You can have leaks within walls or the ceiling that do not show up on the inside until extensive damage has been done.
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Old 11-12-2020, 02:42 PM   #6
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Used is used. Don't expect everything to operate perfectly on a used unit. The price should reflect the condition. A trailer that has had alot of travel put on it & use of slides may not matter so much to somebody who is looking for something to put on a seasonal lot & that is where it will stay for the rest of its days.
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Old 11-13-2020, 05:51 AM   #7
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Inspect for any sign of water leaks, this means getting up to roof level and looking closely at all the seals and caulking, as well as inside around the windows, slides, inside cabinets, etc. If you see signs of water run away as the rot will usually be far more extensive than it first appears.
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Old 11-14-2020, 06:46 AM   #8
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Im thinking some sellers may not want someone spending hours inspecting their trailer.
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