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Does a Best and Worst RV Brands List Really Exist?

Published on July 27th, 2023 by Rene Agredano

Not all RV brands are created equal. But is there really a “best and worst RV brands” list to help you find the best camper? 

Our answer is: nope! Here’s why.

The best way to  tell the difference between a well-built RV and a low-quality camper that’s destined for repairs is to decide how you will use the camper. Only you can create a list of RV brands that do or do not meet your particular needs.

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Let’s review things to consider when searching for your perfect RV. By the time you’re done reading, you will be able to make a “best and worst RV brands” list of your own.

Why Some RV Brands Shine (and Other Ones Don’t)

Some RV brands take care of customers better than others. Take Foretravel, for instance. These million-dollar RVs are simply gorgeous, with their sleek curves and beautiful design. Foretravel owners always seem to be happy to evangelize about the brand. From the exceptional handling to the flat-flush slideouts, they love everything about their homes on wheels.

RV manufacturers like Foretravel win customer loyalty more easily than others. They strive to make RVs with high quality construction and reliability on the road. But it doesn’t end there. These RV manufacturers also take care of their buyers if things go wrong, by not making them wait weeks-on-end for warranty repairs. These are the companies that make the top of everyone’s “best RV brands” list.

Unfortunately, not all RV manufacturers put customer after-sales care first. Those who don’t many land on everyone’s “worst RV brands” list. Their campers might look fabulous, but they just don’t stand up to the myriad ways in which customers use their RVs. Many RV service centers are currently filled with brand new campers gathering dust while waiting for warranty repairs. 

Questions to Ask When Choosing Best and Worst RV Brands

Before you buy a camper, spend as much time as possible researching how RVs in your price point are made. Jump into an RV discussion forum and you’re likely to hear chatter about which RV brands make the best campers, and which ones do not. If a brand sounds good to you, do not head to the RV showroom until you find answers to these important questions about that brand:

fifth wheel manufacturing at factory
How Northwood fifth wheels are made. (Image:

1. What materials and manufacturing processes does the company use in their RVs?

Learn more about the construction materials and manufacturing processes of the RV you want to buy. If a manufacturer advertises they use “Azdel composite panels,” do you know why it’s such a big deal?

Search for RV owner chatter about those materials the company uses. 
Do people report RV roof leaks, electrical system malfunctions, or other reliability issues?
 If so, buying a model with that kind of talk around it could result in frustration, frequent repairs, and potential safety concerns.

If possible, tour the RV manufacturing plant where your future camper is built. Smaller RV manufacturers tend to put more time and labor into each unit sold. Larger RV manufacturers run on more of an assembly-line system. In that kind of mass-production system, little details can sometimes get missed. A hands-on visit can help you gauge the overall build quality of the RV brand you are considering.

2. How do RVers feel about the brand?

Join RV discussion forums to chat with owners of the brand you’re interested in buying. Most importantly, don’t let anyone else talk you out of the RV brand that interests you. Explore online forums, RV communities, and owners groups on social media to gather insights about buyer experiences with different brands.

  • Can owners of the brand you want expect fewer maintenance issues, reduced repairs, and a longer lifespan for their RVs?
  • Do owners report structural integrity problems and premature wear and tear?
  • And do any report recurring problems with poor customer service experiences, and inadequate quality control measures?

3. Does the brand provide good “After Sales Service” to buyers?

Responsive and efficient after-sales service can significantly impact your ownership experience. First, investigate the RV manufacturer’s warranty coverage. How long is it, and how does it compare to other companies? Could buying an aftermarket RV warranty make up for any shortfalls?

More importantly, call a few RV service centers and ask how long it could take to get a common RV warranty repair done. Two of the most common RV warranty repairs are leaky slide-outs and electrical system malfunctions. 

4. Does that RV offer a good value for the price?

Just because an RV costs less doesn’t mean it lacks value for the price. RV’s at the bottom end of the price range can be awesome, depending on how they are used. For example, a low-cost RV might have great value for RVers who do occasional camping, but not for people who want to try full-time RV living.

Compare the features, amenities, and pricing of different RV brands against your lifestyle to determine the best RV for you.

Does the manufacturer deliver quality products at a more accessible price point, without sacrificing essential features? Remember that cheaper options may come with compromises in quality and longevity.

Every RVer’s Best and Worst RV Brands List Looks Different

During my 15 years of RV ownership, I’ve only owned towables made by Northwood Manufacturing. My husband and I put it in our “best 4-season travel trailers” list because Northwood RVs stand up to cold weather camping with 4-season insulation. They also have a rugged aluminum frame, which can take a ton of weather and road abuse over time.

Chances are that you don’t have the same RV shopping criteria as I do. And your neighbor probably doesn’t either. The truth is, there is no single “best RV” or worst RV brand to avoid, because we all have different needs and different budgets.

Doing thorough RV research, reading customer reviews, and visiting as many RV shows and showrooms as possible can help you make an informed RV buying decision. Understand the potential woes associated with different RV brands, and you can set yourself up for a stress-free RV camping lifestyle.

This post may contain affiliate links or mention our own products, please check out our disclosure policy here.

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