I am planing on buying a bumper pull camper this spring .I have never owned a camper at all and I was wondering about quality. Dealers , of course , say theirs is best. Are there any brands that I should stay away from? I want medium to high quality .Thanks for any help.
First of all, you need to determine the tow capacity of your tow vehicle. That will help. Next, you should know that the weight of the trailer is bare weight without any options. a/c, awning, propane tanks and spare tire (yes the spare is sometimes considered and option) will add up quickly. Yes dealers claim their units are best. Furthermore, most sales types, not all but most, will assure you that whatever you're driving will adequately tow whatever they're selling.
Another consideration is service after the sale. I once was looking at a trailer and while inspecting the stove, a salesman came over and informed me he didn't like me messing around with their merchandise. Now with an attitude from sales like that, I wondered what the service department would be like. I didn't wonder long because I immediately waked out the door and drove a couple of miles where his competitor releived me of a few thousand dollars. And the service dep't. there was great, too.
Are you considering a hard side travel trailer (TT), a folding one? Trailmanor and Hi-Lo makes folding trailers that will fit in a garage. Some of the smaller units consider a full bed to be 48 inches wide. A full size bed in your home is 54. As for brands, I'm sure you will get answers here.
Bumper pull? I presume that means that you have a ball bolted through your bumper and that is it. Well now, the very first step is to find out the rating of that system, which I suspect is less than the vehicle itself is capable of towing. If so, you might want to consider a 'real' hitch which mounts to the frame rather than the bumper.
In any case, make sure you don't exceed any weight limitations anywhere in the system. The weakest link is your limitation.
In ultra low weight campers, generally the popup's rule. Small and light when pulling, they unfold into moderately useful RVs at the destination. Most use canvas, which I hate. So I would first look at the solid wall popups, like Alpine Chalet.
A lot of people call travel trailers "bumper pull". Does not necessarily mean that he has a ball in his bumper. IF you actually do, please install a real hitch.
As far as "medium to high quality", like you asked for, look into Sunnybrook's Sunset Creek. Top quality vs. price. Standard Aluminum Frames, Heated and Enclosed underbelly's, glass shower doors, porcelain toilets, walk on roofs, battery disconnect, GREAT fit and finish, and lots more in the same price range of a wood framed trailer without everything else I just mentioned.
If you want an un-biased opinion, or as near to that as possible, go to www.rv.org and join the RV Consumer Group. They are the only organization that rates RVs who do not depend upon the advertising of the RV industry for their income. For that reason it will cost to join, but for about $150 they will supply you ratings of the different RVs by make and model as well as educational information about how to do your own ratings and explainations of just what each of their ratings mean and how they were arrived at. The information is not perfect, but it is by far thebest that is available.