Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

Discussion in 'General RVing' started by DougP, Jul 10, 2011.

  1. DougP

    DougP New Member

    I first began RVing full time, a few yrs ago. Then I went to half time (all summer in the RV in MI) and now just being the long weekender type of RVer in FL. This was because, my 23 ft Class C RV was just not big enough, to live for long periods of time.

    To get an RV, large enough to live in full time. You really need slides on both sides and at least 25 feet of length. This means a big travel trailer (TT), or a 5er (5th wheel) or a large fairly expensive motorhome (MH).

    Some disadvantages of MHs are, only 2 gas chassis makers (GM and Ford), having to buy an expensive & complex piece of equipment from a RV Dealer. We all know about Diesel Pushers. While they are very nice, but they are very expensive, to buy and repair, etc.

    The major problem with MHs are high costs, like deprecation, fuel, maintance & repair, interest expense, insurance costs and licence tags. Repair and maintenance on MHs, is often very expensive, often much more than repairs on a regular car or light truck. There are also a limited number of repair facilities, that can handle a large RV and this is one reason, maintance & repair is more expensive.

    Another MH problem, is the need for a toad, because most people really need a toad (a convenient car to buy groceries & to see things), otherwise you have to un-hook the MH and then reset-up your MH, every couple of days, to buy food and go see things.

    I found it difficult to full time, without a toad. So, you really need a special little car, that will work as a toad, to be happy with fulltiming, in a MH.

    Plus the initial cost of a toad, because most cars will not work as a toad (i.e. they don't have a drive-train, capable of being towed behind a MH). This is another major expense and it means, more deprecation, 2 insurance policies, still more maintance & repair, etc.

    The toad towing apparatus, is also an expensive and complex system, with yet another set of problems.

    You generally can't stay in the MH, when it is getting major service or repair. When this happens to a full time RVer, you have to stay in a hotel.

    Also, currently, there is a very limited resale market, for used RVs in general and MHs in particular. There are a lot of used RVs for sale, in FL, which is always been the case. But they are just not moving, I drive by and there is nothing happening. Other than salespeople just looking at one another and/or gabbing and having a smoke. No customers coming in or calling, just plain nothing happing.

    I have also noticed, dealers in my area of FL, have few new RVs, on their lots and do little advertising, compared to the past. Before high fuel prices and the economy headed south, back in 2007.

    When they do advertise, the ads have used RVs in them, as opposed to in the past, when mosty new RVs, where in the ads. Once you buy a MH, you are stuck, if things don't workout as planned. In most cases, the buyer will take a substantial loss, if they have to sell, anytime soon after the purchase.

    Many folks can't afford the loss and the RV gets repossessed. That is one reason, it is still hard to get a real good deal, on a used RV in today's market. An owner owes more on it, than the RV is worth. So the owner can't sell it in the open market.

    When an RV is repossessed, it ends up on a dealers lot. I am surprised that dealers, have been able to maintain the price levels, of the NADA Guide. Sense there is so little demand. I guess the reduction in RV models and less total production, by RV makers has done the job.

    Some TTs and 5ers, with slides, give a decent amount of living space. Getting around some of these problems, that HMs have. But most of them weigh so much, you need a specialized 3/4 or 1 ton TV (tow vehicle, a pick-up truck), to pull them. Here again, there are only 3 makers of 3/4 & 1 ton trucks, the Big 3. Meaning less
    competition in price and a limited selection.

    Most 3/4 & 1 ton pick-up also come w/4 wheel drive. This is a costly, complex, high maintenance and MPG reducing option. That has no real value to RVers, who generally do not go where it snows. Those trucks often come with other questionable options, more designed to make profit, than do anything for the buyer. The MPG of gas 3/4 & 1 ton pick-ups, is not good. Like 7-8 MPG hwy and 4-5 MPG city, when towing a TT. That is a lot of cost, in fuel to go places and see things. Which is why your out RVing in the first place.

    These are some of the reasons, 3/4 & 1 ton trucks cost so much. A diesel truck used to be a great way to pull an RV. They had long life, got a little better MPG and had good resale. However, new emission requirements, changed all that. Adding even more to the cost, and undoubtedly reducing their reliability. They will also be
    more expensive to maintain and repair. I would not buy a new diesel truck at this point.

    A diesel truck, is what I had wanted at one point. But with fuel costs, I am gald I did not buy one.

    It is really a shame what has happened to the RV Industry, RVers and the Auto Industry. I see RVing continuing to shrink, until fuel prices come back down, if that happens anytime soon. Because many RV makers, have consolidated, or gone out of business. There will be a less competition in the RV marketplace, preventing price and selection from improving for the RVer and the consumer.

    Just my expericence and thinking on all this. I really hope it does not go this way. Besides lower fuel prices, I think more makers of gas RV chassis and 3/4 & 1 ton TVs, would help, with price and selection. Maybe Toyota and Nissan get in to the market, l think that would improve things, for RVers and consumers.

    Doug, Dog Little Buddy all in FL
     
  2. Triple E

    Triple E Senior Member

    Re: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    Wow Doug you make many good points. Hopefully in 2012 we will have someone who cares about us people and try to get us back on the right track. Our freedoms are quickly disappearing. :dead:
     
  3. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Re: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    IMO ,, as an rver and spend alot on camping resorts ,, i can only say this ,, most full timers will find away and go no matter what ,, i may be wrong ,, but i have no prob spending 100 bucks a night at a nice rv resort ,, or do i worry about the fuel cost ,, as most if they want to go ,, they will go ,, as far as maint ,, yea DP's are very expensive to keep up ,, but there are alot of that maint u can do ur self ,, and save ,, but alot of customers i have are staying put a lot longer in one place ,, and in very high end parks ,, as for the toad ,, why not find u something used ,, that is good condition ,, and that can be toad 4 down ,, many older vehicles can do this ,, i toad a 80 cj-5 jeep ,, sometimes ,, most of the time ,, the wife will just follow me in her car and such ,, we did this the last 3 yrs when we went to MB ,, and MH fuel cost was $470.00 ,, car was another $200 ,, and campground fees at one spot was over $1,200 ,, plus the other ones we stayed at when we left our base camp ,, all in all we spent over $2,000 in cg fees ,, in the many spots we went to ,, but i guess what i am saying is ,, rver's will go no matter what the cost ,, i know i will ;) :approve: :) :)
     
  4. akjimny

    akjimny Senior Member

    Re: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    If I really considered the costs, I'd probably burn the thing and try to collect the insurance. Not really looking forward to the fuel price for the trip back to Florida, but the damned thing just won't coast that far. :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:
     
  5. big bilko

    big bilko Senior Member

    RE: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    G,Day Doug ,I beg the question Is there any upside ,Why do you do it if you see everything as a negative. Your glass is obviously half empty.Look for the advantages and you will find that they will outweigh the disadvantages by a long way.Take time out to smell the daisies. CHEER UP. Regards BIG BILKO :) :laugh: :cool: :bleh: ;) :blush: :clown: :kiss:
     
  6. H2H1

    H2H1 Senior Member

    Re: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    I agree, I would rather go camping than sit and moan how much it cost. We all agree that ownership of a RV isn't cheap, but we do it because we love it. The only problem I have is the wife has volunteer to baby sit the GKs during the week and that create bad camping time. I have mention that the GKs need to be in summer school when they are out of school so we can get out more. Well the daughter is doing just that when an opening comes available, I am hoping to be back on the road again.
     
  7. cougarkid

    cougarkid Senior Member

    Re: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    Well, we didn't start Rving until about 4 years ago.
    Yep, just about the time fuel prices started to go haywire.

    We have made several trips (long and short) and love every minute of it, even when we are on the side of the road and I am under it making repairs on the fly. Never need a tow, yet. Fuel filters, water pump, alteranator, belts - all on the road.

    Home maintanance for tune-ups, oil changes, brakes, bell-crank fix, leak fixes, water heater replacement. Even rebuilt the roof last year. We now live full-time in our 32 footer. Easier than a house and we can drive it if we want to go somewhere - always home!

    We currently have a 454 gas engine. We are looking to upgrade to a larger diesel pusher with a slide.

    As far as fuel costs:
    Diesel cost more than gasoline, but the per-mile fuel cost is less with the diesel.
    6 mpg with our gas compared to 10 with a diesel saves a lot of money.

    Gasoline @ $3.49/gallon at 6 mpg = 58 cents per mile.
    Diesel Fuel @ $3.79/gallon at 10 mpg = 38 cents per mile.

    Diesel parts cost more, but scheduled oil changes are at 3 times the interval of gasoline engines.

    As stated in above posts, RVer's will RV anyway.

    The "glut" of new and used RV's on the market are good for people like me wanting to upgrade. I can buy more for less. Looking at one right now that is almost a 1/3 of NADA valuation.

    Keep on RVing!

    Mike
     
  8. DougP

    DougP New Member

    RE: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    The electric when cooling, an apt on the top floor, during summer, in FL, can be as high as lot rent. That's one
    reason. So, when RVing, I beat the heat and most of the cost. After the higher fuel costs, starting in 2007.
    I figured my RV was worth very little, so not selling it did not have any downside. In milder months in FL,
    you can drive to and even on the beach. No cost at all and it's very pleasent at the beach. Nice brezze, dog
    can run around, etc. You just need a way to keep food cold, and you can have a decent weekend.

    My RV is more of a bed on wheels, with a built-in cooler. But I have gotten a lot of use out of this way. I just
    wish it would stop breaking down on me. Right now I use it as my regular transportation. I plan to buy a new
    auto, I really want a truck. But have no real need, if I'm not pulling anything. A truck burns a lot more fuel than a 4-cly car. My RV has let me put off the decision. That way maybe I can find an excuse to get a truck.
    It also allows me to shop, without being in a hurry. I can wait to see if cars or trucks go on sale at yr end,
    like they used to. So there ya have it, some of my reasons. :)
     
  9. DougP

    DougP New Member

    Re: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    I would think at 1/3 of NADA is a very good buy. So, good in fact, that I have never heard of such a buy before. After reading many RV forums over the yrs, what I have found, is that few people drive enough
    miles, to over come the intial cost of diesel. But with the 1/3 figure, that might be a different story.
     
  10. try2findus

    try2findus Senior Member

    Re: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    As long as we can afford it, we will continue to travel with hopes of full-timing in the future.

    Most everything in life is unsure, but one thing we are sure of, we LOVE RVing!
     
  11. Pillaz

    Pillaz Senior Member

    RE: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    Fuel for My 36ft MH damned expensive
    Fuel for the boat that I tow behind the MH really really expensive

    watching the sunrise over the water = Priceless
    Places I have seen = priceless
    Timed spent in RV with loved ones = priceless
     
  12. H2H1

    H2H1 Senior Member

    Re: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    Jim I could not had said it any better. :laugh: :laugh:
     
  13. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Re: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    sounds like Jim runs a good fuel in that boat ,, kinda like the fuel i run in the racecar ,, $5.50 a gal ,, :eek: :eek: :eek: unless he runs alky ,, and that runs about 12 to 15 a gal ,, ,, but since he did say "very,, very,, expensive " i kinda think he may be running nitro ,, and that is about ,, $200 a gallon ,, :O
    :) :cool: :cool: :cool:
     
  14. try2findus

    try2findus Senior Member

    Re: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    Ouch! ;)
     
  15. finernfrogfur

    finernfrogfur Member

    RE: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    Hi Doug,

    Thanks for the tip about NADA!! I used it and found it to be within what the dealership had noted on the 5th wheel's window.

    I'm strongly considering full-time RVing using a 5th wheel with a loaded weight of 16,000 pounds. The 5er will be brand new and the towing vehicle can be used. I'd be interested to hear what you have to say about gas vs. diesel pick-ups. What size and how many axles? Guessing a 3/4 single axle...yes /no?? Once parked on the site tourist or shopping travel with the truck would be in the low to mid range mileage wise. Any tips about cost, torque, etc?

    My dilemma is that my PT Cruiser is the first brand new car I've ever owned and I treat her like the Queen she is. So, nobody drives her except me. Not willing to give her up and trying to figure out the best option for me. Do I give in and let my co-pilot drive the PT while I drive the truck and 5er? Should I get a "home base" piece of property leaving the PT there? If only they made a toy hauler that could garage my PT :).
     
  16. Pillaz

    Pillaz Senior Member

    Re: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    Rod,
    I am not that fancy or rich, Just run 89 octane in it. But the MPG on a boat is not in the same ball park (much worse) than even the Class A MH . That and for some reason I wander all about thinking there are fish out there somewhere and then come home when the 45 gal tank is about empty. But again its all worth it to me... One of these days I will find a fish out there. :laugh:
    Chesapeake Bay this weekend!
    wait, now that I think about it...which I try not to do......
    6hr drive to the Bay with Class A and boat in tow $210.00 in Fuel each way!
    Fuel for boat for the Three days that I am there $300.00
    Taking the wife out to dinner because I did not catch anything $50 per night.
    and yet I can't wait to go.... but I never claimed to be that smart :laugh:
     
  17. Coyotegroovy

    Coyotegroovy New Member

    Re: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    The wife and I are not full timers. We have another 15-20yrs before that is even a thought! We too strugle with the cost of fuel and such. Another possibility for you to consider is to stay at places where you can walk or bike, providing health and weather are permitting. ;) We offten walk to the store for food and bike to places that are fairly close by for sight seeing. I understand the flustration and share some of your points, but as long as I have a rv, WE WILL CAMP!!! Take it all in stride and enjoy your time on the road! Hey, Walmart had free parking for RV's ;) :laugh: :cool:
     
  18. akjimny

    akjimny Senior Member

    Re: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    Jim - Don't even start thinking about it. How many airplane tickets could I have bought for the price of my motorhome and the gas needed to drive it back and forth from Florida to Alaska. :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek:
     
  19. Kirk

    Kirk Senior Member

    RE: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing



    Really? You mean that we have been doing this all wrong for the past 12 years, with a gas rig that has no slides at all? Does that mean that we must toss out all of our pictures, souvenirs and great memories and just consider all of that time wasted? Somehow my experience has been just a little bit different from yours! :cool:

    Some of us just never seem to get it right and are so foolish that we even think that we have had a great life. Reading your post it seems that we have done everything wrong and so it must be impossible for us to have had so much fun and happiness. Some folks are just not intended to be RVers and you seem to be one of them!
     
  20. cougarkid

    cougarkid Senior Member

    Re: Here are some of the problems I found with RVing

    BTW,

    Full timing does not necessarliy mean traveling all the time. You can full-time RV AND stay in one place.

    My wife and I are currently living in our 32' RV full time. We both have full-time jobs (40+ hrs/wk).
    We are parked beside a rented warehouse / office where we are plugged in and hooked up (water, elec, sewer, internet). Gives us storage space, washer/dryer, garage for cars and maintanance. We are working on downsizing and getting to semi-retirement within 5 years. We have been parked here for almost 2 years.

    We will unplug and go off for the weekend to a campground or resort we bought in to. Still planning longer trips.

    Guess you could say we are Full-Timing at home.

    Mike
     

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