Owning and operating an RV is one of the most fun activities you can have. It unlocks a level of adventure that you won’t find anywhere else. But to make sure your potential RV will last, you’ll need to first get a seal of approval from an RV service inspector. Let’s talk about how to find good RV service inspectors in your area.
What is an RV Inspector?
An RV inspector is a professional who knows the inner-workings of an RV. They typically have a strong background in mechanics and know what to look for. In most cases, an inspector needs to be certified in order to officially inspect an RV.
An RV is a huge vehicle with plenty of places where something can go wrong. An inspector’s job is to look over the RV and make sure everything works well.
What Does an RV Inspector Do?
These inspectors do a similar job to mechanics when you’re looking to buy a used car. The inspector will look over the RV to find potential problems. It involves a lot of opening things, looking at the RV’s engine, and closely inspecting the structure of the RV.
After all, there are plenty of scenarios where disaster can strike your RV. This is especially true when you’re buying a used RV.
When Do You Need an RV Inspector?
You’ll need an inspector when you’re looking to buy an RV. Whether it’s new or used, it’s always a good idea to get an RV inspected. Why? You’re about to spend a pretty penny in a market that’s very much a “buyers beware” situation.
The inspector will look over the RV like a bloodhound. Without their blessing, you shouldn’t consider buying the RV. They will point out where things are broken or damaged, or what will require repairs soon.
To the untrained eye, a used RV might look perfect. An inspector might spot a problem that will require massive repairs within a year. That’s why you should always grab a qualified RV inspector before signing paperwork and writing a check for an RV.
Ways to Find Good RV Service Inspectors in Your State
So, how are you supposed to find a good RV inspector? Here are a few popular places to check out.
In today’s age, Google can solve anything. It might have even brought you to this article! Google is a massive search engine that does an excellent job of answering your questions and connecting you to the right people.
A search like “Qualified RV service inspectors near me” or replacing “near me” with the major city you’re near will work well. You’ll be presented with a number of results from a number of different sources.
From there, it’s your job to find the right inspector. More tips on that in a second.
Asking an RV’ing Friend
Word of mouth is another powerful search engine. Your RV’ing friends can act as your own personal Google. If your buddy bought an RV, ask them if they got an inspection, who did it for them, and if they were happy with the service they received.
A referral is a great way to vet potential options and make sure you’re getting the best service. After all, this is a huge purchase you’re considering – you deserve a highly-skilled inspector to look over the RV.
Use the NRVIA
The final database to look through is the National Recreational Vehicle Inspectors Association (NRVIA). Their whole association is built around finding the right RV inspector for you (hence the name).
The NRVIA website lets you look for local RV inspectors. They show you a map with inspectors in training and fully-certified members. It shows up as pins dropped across a map of America. You can click on any of the pins and learn more about the inspector, including contact information.
They don’t charge you a referral fee to find a NRVIA-certified inspector in your area. Inspectors go through a minimum of a two-course online learning curriculum and a five-day in-person hands-on class. The accreditation process costs them thousands of dollars and annual membership fees.
Why is this worth bringing up? It shows that these men and women are serious about what they do, and they’ve gone through serious training. “Level 2” inspectors go through this training and an additional five-day course plus some rigorous exams.
Needless to say, you can trust what these people have to say. Short of working through the NRVIA, let’s give you some tips when you’re looking for an inspector.
Tips to Find the Right Inspector
Knowing where to look is just one part of the equation. You also need to find candidates that are worth working with. In this section, we’ll talk about tips to find the right inspector.
Get Multiple Quotes
Whenever you’re getting a quote for work, it’s always a good idea to field a number of quotes. In this case, getting multiple quotes works on a few different levels.
It helps you see the full price range of a professional inspection. It also shows what certain inspectors do and don’t offer as part of their package.
More importantly, it will help you screen out people who might not offer the best service. If their quote is really low, they don’t seem to know what they’re talking about, and they don’t include parts of an inspection that other inspectors do, it’s not worth doing business with them.
Get a Third-Party Inspection
Some RV dealerships offer in-house inspections. They’ll either have an inspector on their payroll, or one will come in before the RV is listed and do a thorough inspection.
In the first scenario, you can’t trust what the inspector says. They’ll probably overlook some issues if it means helping the dealership make a sale.
In the second scenario, the dealership can simply not tell you about the results of the inspection. In some cases, a dealership wants to flip an RV quickly, so they won’t even inspect it or clean it.
These two scenarios are exactly why we always suggest getting your own third-party inspection. This is the only way to ensure you get the truth out of an inspection.
Learn More About the World of RV’ing
A high-quality inspection upfront will make sure you’re getting the best RV possible. This is great news for us because we love RV’ing and we love sharing our passion. If you want to learn more about the world of RV’ing, visit Travelcamp online. We can pair you with the perfect RV, camper, or trailer – or we can just chat with you about how great RV’ing is!