What to Look for When Buying a Used Travel Trailer?

Buying a used travel trailer is a financially smart move to make in today’s economy. The vehicle can be bought at half the price of a new one.

This leaves a lot of budget to spend on meals, sightseeing, shopping, and other things that actually matter. 

Plus, platforms like offer a diverse range of used travel trailers. This simplifies the search process and helps you find a trailer that aligns with your specific requirements.

However, the road to the perfect travel companion involves more than just a browse through listings. You must visit the vehicle and inspect it to make a well-rounded decision.

To help you, here is a list of what to inspect and how to do it properly. Read on below to learn exactly what you need to look for when are buying a used trailer.

Use this guide to find the perfect used trailer for your next road trip across Europe or the US and be confident you are getting value for money.

 Buying a Used Travel Trailer
Buying a used travel trailer can definitely be a financially smart move to make in today’s economy

1.The Outside

The exterior of a used travel trailer is the easiest to inspect. Begin by looking for visible signs of rust, corrosion, scratches, and dents on the vehicle body. Then, get inside and evaluate the condition of the furniture, doors, windows, and fittings. 

If you find big holes, cracks, and rust patches, the vehicle can create a lot of problems in your travel. It will leak during rain and allow critters to get inside.

A ruined exterior can also injure you or your little ones. What’s more, these damages will cost a lot to be fixed. So, it’s better to go for a used travel trailer that requires small repairs and fixes. 

2.Electrical System 

There are three main things you must inspect in the electrical system: AC power, DC power, and the battery bank. You will require basic knowledge of circuit testers and multimeters to do this.

But if that’s something you’re unfamiliar with, we recommend you ask a professional to come along and inspect them. 

Apart from this, you should get inside the travel trailer and examine the switchboards. Check whether the buttons are functional, the lights are fixed properly, and the necessary electrical appliances (like a fridge) are present. 


The underside of the travel trailer will give you the best insight into its condition. Grab a flashlight and have a look under the trailer.

Search for corroded and rusty areas, especially on important parts like exhaust and suspension.

how to buy a used trailer
The best way to check the condition of a used trailer is to check the underside of the trailer


A travel trailer should have a freshwater tank, a greywater tank, and one or more fully functional washrooms. First, locate where the tanks are and check for leakage problems.

Go through the complete pipe system to ensure there is no major repair work needed. 

Then, go inside and test every plumbing fixture. This includes faucets, sinks, showerheads, and toilets. We also suggest asking a professional plumber to check the drainage system for blockage.

5.Safety Features

It doesn’t matter how old the travel trailer is. There should be some equipment and features to make your driving experience safe. 

You should check for the basics, like seatbelts, horns, fire extinguishers, and rearview cameras. If the vehicle is a few years old, also look for poisonous gas detectors and smoke alarms.

Lastly, Take It for a Test Drive!

Once you’re all satisfied with the trailer, don’t finalize the deal yet. Ask the dealer to let you take a test drive. This will give you a much better idea of how well it fits your needs.

And, well, if the dealer seems to hesitate or straight-up refuse test drives, know that there’s something fishy with the vehicle.

The adage “try before you buy” holds true, as it serves as a crucial step in evaluating a used trailer’s performance, comfort, and overall condition.

A transparent and confident seller will readily encourage test drives, recognizing it as an integral part of the purchasing process.

What to Look for When Buying a Used Travel Trailer? Summary

Tu sum everything up, purchasing a used travel trailer can be a wise financial decision. And if you can save more money to buy a value for money used trailer then this can allow for significant savings that can be redirected towards more meaningful aspects of travel.

Online platforms can simplify the search for diverse options when it comes to used trailers, but beyond online browsing, a thorough physical inspection is crucial.

It is very important to consider evaluating the exterior, electrical system, undercarriage, plumbing, and safety features. This is to ensure you are undertaking a a well-rounded assessment of the used trailers’ condition.

Attention to details such as rust, leaks, and functionality of essential systems can prevent future complications and costly repairs.

Finally, insisting on a test drive is paramount – any hesitation from the dealer should be regarded as a warning sign. A comprehensive inspection and a test drive ensure a confident and informed decision in acquiring the perfect travel companion.

Last Updated on November 16, 2023

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