Motor Home Purchase

Submitted: Saturday, Feb 02, 2019 at 13:29
ThreadID: 137758 Views:1576 Replies:6 FollowUps:4
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I am considering the purchase of a Winnebago type motor home. My budget is around $70,000 to $80,000 dollars.
I have heard some negative comments about their construction and quality of inclusions.
Does anyone have some advice re brands and things to look for.

thanks,
Scout
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Reply By: mike39 - Saturday, Feb 02, 2019 at 19:21

Saturday, Feb 02, 2019 at 19:21
Not owning one, I can't provide any opinion on makes or construction.
But a couple of friends who do own them (we will eventually be in the market for one) suggest staying away from front wheel drive in preference to rear wheel drive.
It would seem that getting stuck on wet grass at a showground campsite is mucho embarrassment!
mike
AnswerID: 623602

Follow Up By: Ozhumvee - Sunday, Feb 03, 2019 at 06:28

Sunday, Feb 03, 2019 at 06:28
Yes steer clear of front wheel drive if you intend to visit anywhere without a bitumen surface. we've towed a couple over the years that have got stuck on soft sites in van parks never mind anywhere else.
They also have problems with your typical Aussie dirt track to lookouts and POI's in that ground clearance isn't good so the hump in the middle causes problems.
The later, newer, more expensive ones have traction control so the wet grass problem is solved but they are above your price bracket.
Look at ex hire as they turn them over regularly and advertise in the Wanderer the CMCA mag.
Peter
1996 Oka Motorhome

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FollowupID: 896824

Reply By: Mikee5 - Sunday, Feb 03, 2019 at 12:06

Sunday, Feb 03, 2019 at 12:06
Spend time reading Facebook posts on Lemon Caravans and RVs in Australia. Some Winnebago Australia, now called Avida, owners have had serious problems. Do a lot of research, a motorhome is a motor vehicle which needs a full mechanical check then it has an accommodation component with a lot of complex wiring and plumbing. Then there can be rot from water leaks, soft flooring, poorly fitting cabinetry. Do not let emotion get in the way.
AnswerID: 623611

Follow Up By: Member - peter g28 - Monday, Feb 11, 2019 at 18:00

Monday, Feb 11, 2019 at 18:00
The Lemon Caravan and RV should be the first port of call for anybody wanting to purchase a Caravan, RV or Campertrailer...there re plenty of first hand stories if you PM that person who have purchased a certain manufacturer and have got nothing but grief after they handed over their money.
It is really worth visiting that website....it may say you a lot of grief in the future...it has with me.
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Reply By: Keith B2 - Sunday, Feb 03, 2019 at 13:38

Sunday, Feb 03, 2019 at 13:38
If you find one you like, I'd put it over a weighbridge before deciding. One of my wife's uncles bought one new and couldn't fill the water tank without going over its max weight.
Keith
AnswerID: 623613

Reply By: Peter_n_Margaret - Sunday, Feb 03, 2019 at 13:44

Sunday, Feb 03, 2019 at 13:44
Had a friend who owned a Winnebago that had serious rot around the rear window from long term tiny water leaks. By the time it was noticed it was almost terminal.

Personally, I would only buy something made from fibreglass sandwich panel which is light, strong, easily repairable (not like aluminium skins), excellent thermal insulation and rot proof.
And yes, NO FWD. I once saw one in Europe trying to go around an up hill sharp corner on wet bitumen and failed.
Also those Fiat vehicles have minimal chassis behind the rear axle and many have zero towing capability as a result. If you own a motorhome, towing a boat occasionally is a big plus compared with a caravan, so don't compromise that capability.
And keep the rear overhang to a minimum.

Cheers,
Peter
OKA196 motorhome
AnswerID: 623615

Reply By: PeterInSa - Sunday, Feb 03, 2019 at 16:34

Sunday, Feb 03, 2019 at 16:34
Some motor homes have some form of rubber compound on the roof to seal it, over time this can deteriorate, this rubber can also be ripped by tree branches, but rips can be repaired, the deterioration if not recognized can cause severe water leaks and rot.

If I was buying a motor home I would purchase one with a Fibre glass roof. Its my understanding that the most common Mh's on Oz roads are the Jayco Fiat based front wheel drive units, there are a lot of happy Jayco owners and probably the majority at 1000plus. Campervan and Motorhome Association (CMCA) Rallies.

Jayco also make Mercedes Benz Sprinter rear wheel drive Mh's probably cost $10,000 more when new and still a bit of a premium at 2nd hand.

And not a Jayco owner, we have a Long Wheel base, High Roof Sprinter Campervan

Would also study and apply the following document:
https://www.caravancouncil.com.au/motorhome

Peter
AnswerID: 623618

Reply By: duck - Tuesday, Feb 05, 2019 at 11:21

Tuesday, Feb 05, 2019 at 11:21
1) Think about the size of the motor home for what you want to do & what licence you need & do you need a light, medium, or heavy licence. If it’s the Wife & you, Both should have it so that if something happens, one of you can legally drive it home etc. remember if you have a medical problem & the other can drive it you are still NOT legal
If you have held your truck licence for more than 12 months you can be the instruction & only if the other person has a car licence, they can drive it under instruction but only in the state of your licence but NOT if you have had a medical condition that prevents you from driving for x amount of time
2) Be very wary of what you buy as a good motor home normally will pull good $$$ & be very wary of M/homes that may have already been there & done it & done it again
3) I would never buy a front wheel drive model at all. I delivered one to cairns for some older friends of mine & even going into some service stations it would lose traction & in the hi wind it felt like it was pawing it way along
4) Check the construction they all have good & bad points & check what it’s made from & do your home work
5) Any damage will be costly to repair
6) check the weight most are illegal as there weight is above the GVM once loaded & filled with water etc. as many have stated on this Forum DO NOT BELIEVE THE APPLIANCE PLATE take it to a legal weigh station
7) think about how & where you will be travelling & is the motorhome suited for it, How many people will be travelling, remember to have extra funds if it breaks down & goes in for repairs as there will be extra cost as you will have to stay somewhere
8) are you going to free camp & for how long, is it set up for it, remember a lot do not carry that much water & some are lucky to carry a days’ worth of black water
9) Check if there is storage for the outside chairs table bbq etc.
Good luck I never found what on wanted, so I built my own
AnswerID: 623637

Follow Up By: Peter_n_Margaret - Tuesday, Feb 05, 2019 at 18:04

Tuesday, Feb 05, 2019 at 18:04
"Good luck I never found what I wanted, so I built my own."
Ditto...
If I had found it I would not have been able to afford it....
Cheers,
Peter
OKA196 motorhome
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Follow Up By: PeterInSa - Wednesday, Feb 06, 2019 at 10:42

Wednesday, Feb 06, 2019 at 10:42
Re (Think about the size of the motor home for what you want to do & what licence you need & do you need a light, medium, or heavy licence.)

And in NSW at least if the Mh is over 4.5t you need to call into their weigh stations for check ( and there are quiet a few of them) You will probably be waved on, but to me its still a drag.

Peter
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FollowupID: 896904

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