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Buying a used motorhome

by Steve York

Items to bring:
  • Flashlight.
  • Spark plug wrench.
  • Coveralls.
  • Lug wrench.
  • Heavy duty jack.
  • Air gauge.
  • Paper towels, wet wipes.
  • Voltmeter.

  • Tires: Cracking? Excessive wear? Signs of mis-alignment? Proper inflation?
  • Rims: Dents, cracks? All bolts present and tight?
  • Excessive wheel bearing play?
  • Brakes: Leaking lines? Excessive wear?
  • Drive shaft: excessive freeplay in u-joints?
  • Exhaust: Excessive rust? Holes? All hangars in place?
  • Fluid Leaks?
  • Any signs of chassis damage from rocks, debris, etc?
  • Lube points look properly maintained
  • Hitch - Properly mounted?
  • Spare tire: Present and in good condition?
  • Sufficient jack available?
  • Holding tank(s) condition?
  • Storage compartments - rust? Leaks?
  • Recent emission test?
  • Propane tank(s) condition? Any leaks (odors)?

  • Overall condition - Hail damage?
  • Signs of leaks or repairs?
  • Cracked/broken vent covers, etc?
  • Proper mounting of accessories?

  • Oil level and appearance?
  • Brake fluid level and appearance?
  • Transmission fluid level and appearance? Radiator rust or corrosion?
  • Radiator level and appearance?
  • Spark plug condition? (remove and inspect)
  • Loose hoses or wires.
  • Air cleaner - Proper seal? Filter Condition?
  • Carburetor - Clean? Freely moving parts?
  • Battery leakage or corrosion? Water levels? (if appl) Charged?
  • Belts/hoses in good condition?

  • Signs of water damage or leaks? Check vents and windows especially.
  • Fridge in working order on propane, DC and AC (if appl)
  • Stove/oven in working order?
  • Water heater in working order?
  • Electric pump operating?
  • Heater and thermostat in working order?
  • Roof mounted air working properly?
  • Converter works properly?
  • All lights and accessories functional?
  • Wiring appears safe?
  • Sink(s) drain properly?
  • Toilet works properly?
  • Shower works, drains properly?
  • Signs of propane leaks - odor?
  • Windows and doors open and close properly?
  • Entry door latch in safe working order?
  • Owners manuals?

On the Road:
  • Engine starts easily?
  • Wipers function properly?
  • Headlights, turn signals work properly?
  • Horn works?
  • Radio functional?
  • Gauges and indicators working properly?
  • Engine: Smooth running? Sufficient power? Excessive noise?
  • Brakes: Positive feel? Smooth operation? Excessive pedal travel? Pulling? Noise?
  • Transmission: Shifts smoothly? Excessive noise? All positions work?
  • Exhaust noise or odor?
  • Excessive steering play? Wheel centered?
  • Internal noise, rattles?
  • Windshield condition?

Back again:
  • Check hubs for excessive heat.
  • Check for radiator leaks, levels.