Professional Inspections Before Buying

by Meg
(Northern IL)

Question: I'm in the preparation phase of buying a class B van to live in full-time. One of my concerns is, how do I know I can trust the professional inspector I may hire in another part of the country? Is there a licensing/certification body? How do I know they aren't working for/with a dealership informally...just to approve the vehicle? Sorry to be so skeptical, but it's a lot of money to pay if it doesn't work out so well.

Guess what I'm also asking is, how do I safely buy something either on ebay or at a dealership or privately when I can't take the vehicle to my trusted mechanic?

Thanks for your help.


Robbie: I do work for a local dealership and totally understand your concern. I would strongly suggest you have the unit sent to a dealer like Ford ,Chevy etc... to have the engine and drive train inspected. Then have the selling dealer fax you a copy of their PDI (Pre Delivery Inspection). This should be done on all RVs before they're sold. Most dealers have them done long before you buy it so they know what is wrong before you do.

Then you could have the unit inspected again by a mobile service or have the unit delivered to an RV repair center. When you call, ask them before you say why your calling if they do any work for local dealers?

Most RV centers do their own inspections and you should get a warranty at the time of purchase if you plan on living in it. Another idea is you might have the dealer promise to cover any deductable charges from the warranty for the 1st 6 months... But get it in writing.

You'll normally receive no warranty from the inspection you'll have done. They only check to see everything is working and they should do so with detail to things you can't see; including all electrical, propane and appliances, the roof condition etc. Basically bumper to bumper on the RV. Remember that engine and drive train, brakes, safety and recalls should be done at the Dealer, Ford, Chevy, Dodge etc...

Good luck and I hope this helps,

Comments for Professional Inspections Before Buying

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Aug 03, 2015
Clarification neeeded
by: Michelle

You stated:

"When you call, ask them before you say why your calling if they do any work for local dealers?"

You didn't say why. Could you please expand on this a bit? Like what to do if they say "yes" or "no" for instance. Is this a good thing or a bad thing?


Oct 14, 2018
Bad inspector NEW
by: Anonymous

I hired a inspector out of Tampa Florida. My RV was all the way in Jacksonville. So we were supposed to meet there at a certain time. Well he went down an hour and a half before me and took money from the seller to convince me to buy. So many people, they just want your money. And please beware of anyone that says I’m a Christian I don’t lie.
It seems you cannot trust anyone but yourself

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Robbie Warford, San Diego RV Repair

Hi, I'm Robbie. Welcome to!

Like the name implies, this site is all about helping you save money while keeping your RV in tip-top shape--and that is all about you having the knowledge to do so.

I've been a technician in the RV industry for 30 years, operating out of San Diego, California. And let me tell you, I love my job.

But I also love empowering RVers with the knowledge they need to make the right decision on repairs, or to make the fix themselves--and that, my friend, is the reason for this website. I hope you enjoy.

Or, learn more about me, my RV service practice, & this website here.