How to Buy a Used 5th Wheel Trailer

by Nick Mann

5th wheel trailers are similar to normal travel trailers except that they extend over and attach to the tow vehicle. Also they do not have an engine or transmission which means there is less need for major repairs. Buying a used 5th wheel trailer can seem intimidating if you are unsure what to look for. Luckily, finding a quality model is possible for most people when keeping a few factors in mind.

Search for a 5th wheel trailer at used vehicle dealer lots or in local newspaper and online ads.

Look for a model that is roughly 3 to 4 years old. This is the ideal age because the trailer will have significantly depreciated in value but is still likely to be in good shape.

Inspect the trailer thoroughly, both inside and out, for any signs of damage or rusting. Obviously you will not want to purchase a model that has indications of either one of these.

Measure the back end of the trailer diagonally using a measuring tape. Go from the lower left to upper right and lower right to upper left. Both of these measurements will be the same if the trailer is in good shape. If the measurements are different, it means that the trailer has been torqued and you should look elsewhere.

Test all the appliances inside the trailer and check the plumbing by flushing the toilet. If there are any problems, this should be a red flag to not buy the trailer.

Inspect the tires for their tread. If they look overly worn or uneven that means that there may be an issue with the axle.


  • check Take your time and check out a few 5th wheel trailers before making a purchase. This will ensure that you find the best deal.
  • check If you know someone with knowledge of trailers, have them come along with you when you are shopping.

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About the Author

Nick Mann has been a writer since 2005, focusing on home-and-garden topics. He has a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of North Carolina at Asheville.

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Photo Credits

  • photo_camera camping,trailer image by Greg Pickens from