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FMCA: What To Consider Before Buying an RV

RV Travel is Still Taking a Hit as High Gas Prices Change Plans

FMCA: Which RV is Right for Me?

FMCA: Which RV is Right for Me?

If you’re new to the RV world, it can be hard to figure out which RV suits your needs, and the market can be overwhelming with information. With so many different types of RVs, it’s a challenge to know where to start your search. To help you out, RV Trader and FMCA are breaking down all the options of RVs available when shopping on the marketplace.

Categories of RVs

At the broadest level, RVs can be divided into two categories: motorized and non-motorized. Motorized RVs have an engine and can be driven, while non-motorized RVs need to be pulled by a vehicle. Both motorized and non-motorized RVs come in a wide range of sizes and with varied sleeping arrangements, amenities, and storage options. We’re taking a look at the three motorized RV options—Class A, Class B, and Class C—and three non-motorized options: fifth-wheel, travel trailer, and pop-up/expandable trailer. Plus, we’re offering a glimpse at toy haulers, which are available in both motorized and non-motorized options. 

Motorhomes/Motorized RVs

1. Class A Motorhomes

Class A Motorhomes are very luxurious, offering all the amenities of home on the road. This includes full-size kitchen appliances, washer and dryer options, and sizable bathrooms. They typically can sleep six to eight people depending on bunk and slideout options, which increase both the sleeping and living areas. 

As the largest type of RV you can drive, Class A vehicles are usually 21 to 45 feet in length. They’re built on the same frame as a bus or commercial truck, allowing the raised living quarters to offer a wealth of undercarriage storage. They can run on either gasoline or diesel. Diesel-engine motorhomes are commonly referred to as diesel pushers since the engine is usually in the rear of the RV and pushes the motorhome down the road, though some diesel-powered motorhomes do have front engines.

2. Class B Motorhomes

Class B Motorhomes, also known as camper vans, are often built with van or panel-truck chassis and have extra headroom for standing and moving around inside the cab. They range in length from 16 to 21 feet and can sleep up to four people. These smaller RVs are often built with off-road adventure in mind, and many come equipped with an auxiliary generator for boondocking. But don’t be fooled by the compact body, because there is no wasted space here. Each square inch is strategically used to make the most of the space available. Plus, you don’t lose any of your at-home luxuries, as many of them have a small galley kitchen and bathroom.

3. Class C Motorhomes

Class C Motorhomes are midsized motorized RVs that offer a wide variety of designs. The Class C can be compact, full-sized, or super-sized, and also have gasoline and diesel options. Class C chassis manufacturers include Chevy, Ford, and Mercedes-Benz, which means most Class Cs can be fixed in any repair shop. They range in length from 25 to 30 feet, while most have at least one slideout to increase living space. Their distinct over-the-cab design provides more room for beds or storage, and they can sleep up to eight people depending on floor plan.

Towable/Non-Motorized RVs

4. Fifth-Wheels

Fifth-Wheels are the largest and most spacious option of towable trailers. These large RVs can sleep up to eight people, have higher ceilings for more headspace, taller cabinets, and can have up to six slideouts, which offer a substantial amount of living and storage space. 

Ranging in length from 21 to 40 feet, fifth-wheels need to be pulled by large trucks that have a special hitch located in the bed of the truck. This helps center and distribute most of the RV’s weight over the rear axle of the truck. Because of their distinctive towing system, the front overhang usually houses a bedroom. However, in some of the newer models, you can find living rooms and kitchens in that spot. Many fifth-wheels are equipped with auto-leveling systems for easier setup at the RV site.

5. Travel Trailers

Travel Trailers, also known as bumper-pulls, are some of the most popular non-motorized RVs, and they are easy to set up. There are plenty of different floor plans to choose from that fit almost any budget. With a wide range in length options, from 13 to 40 feet, travel trailers range from teardrop trailers to a house on wheels. They can sleep up to 10 people, generally have two or more beds, and often include bunk options. Larger travel trailers have slideout options to increase living or sleeping space. 

6. Pop-Up/Expandable Trailers

Pop-Up/Expandable Trailers allow you to feel a little closer to nature than your typical RV, as they mimic the feeling of sleeping in a tent with soft siding and screens on all sides of the trailer. These trailers can offer expandable sections in the living room and soft-sided pop-out beds. They include a small kitchen, breakfast nook, and storage space, while some even have a toilet and shower. Pop-up trailers can sleep up to seven people and are easy to store.

Toy Hauler – Motorized or Non-Motorized

7. Toy Haulers

True to their name, Toy Hauler RVs offer lots of room to haul your off-road toys in a garage-like storage area in the back of the RV. They come with rugged flooring to safeguard against dirt and oil stains, and have protective walls to help avoid interior damage. The unique garage door and ramp on the back of the RV provides easy access to loading and unloading, and in many models, you will find that it doubles as a raised patio complete with railings and an awning.

There are many types of Toy Haulers ranging in size and function, such as travel trailers, fifth-wheels, and motorhomes. They vary in length from 21 to 40 feet with the ability to sleep up to 11 people.

Deciding which RV is right for you and your next adventure is a big decision, and we hope that you enjoy the journey. When more questions arise, check out the FMCA Forums and take a look at what FMCA members have to say about these RVs.

And now that you know more about these vehicles, be sure to see all the RVs available on the nation’s leading marketplace, RVTrader.com!


 

FMCA educates, equips, and empowers RV owners in their journey to creating, experiencing, and benefiting from the outdoor lifestyle they dream of and deserve. FMCA is your ally to the outdoor lifestyle you love and enjoy.

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Ryan Miller
Ryan Miller

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