A towable RV, a pop-up camper is a lightweight and economical camping utility vehicle for entry-level RVers. Since a pop-up camper comprises walls crafted out of light yet strong fabrics, it often lacks high-end amenities such as extra furniture, electricity supplies, air conditioning, and others. It is an excellent means to experience closeness to nature.
Despite the advantages over other camping trailers or RVs, the lifespan of a pop-up camper has always remained a point of bother. Thus, if you plan to invest in this towable RV class and wonder about its lifespan, this article is worth going through.
How long do pop-up campers last?
The exact lifespan of a pop-up camper varies from model to model. While specific models offer an affordable service spanning over several years, others hardly live up to the company’s claims.
Nevertheless, you can expect your pop-up camper to serve for at least 10-15 years depending upon several factors such as:
- How often do you use the trailer?
- How well maintained is it?
- How do you store the trailer in the off-season?
However, as said earlier, you can even extract more service years from the camper by looking after it in the way you should.
Factors that can impact the life of a pop-up camper
Maintaining a pop-up camper or any class of recreational vehicles is a tough job, especially if you are unaware of its know-how. If you owned a regular camper and had previously owned a pop-up camper but could not use it for long, here are the few things that would have lowered its life.
1. The exterior of the camper
Talking specifically about a pop camper whose exterior forms out of fabrics, it is necessary to pay special attention to the surface of the pop-up camper. It is preferable to follow the user manual instead of trying out random hacks to clean the body just for the sake of a few bucks.
Going by what brands usually recommend, hot soapy water is the best friend of the pop-up camper body. To use, follow these steps.
- Rinse the messy exteriors of the camper with fresh water to remove as much dirt as possible.
- Once done, rewash the fabric with hot soapy water using a height-adjustable broom for better reach to the top.
- Clean the material one more time with fresh water and dry naturally.
Never use a high-pressure cleaner for your pop-up camper – the key exploiter of the camper’s exterior body.
2. Trailer seal and opening systems
If your pop-up camper has windows besides door(s), their maintenance also plays a significant role in the overall condition of the RV.
Waterproofing the entire trailer is an excellent way to ensure all-around protection against humidity and corrosion. For this, use a decent lubricant that can work well with rubbers and plastics alongside metal.
Furthermore, poor condition of the opening systems such as door hinges or axles is also the main factor that impacts a pop-up camper’s life.
3. Trailer connectors
If you have an advanced trailer model with electronic systems, you must take care of the connectors to expand the lifespan of the RV.
These electronic systems primarily power the lighting system of the camper. Use a connector cleaning spray to keep the trailer connectors tidy and clear from dust, carbon, or oxidation.
Never use any other random liquid for this purpose as it can damage the internal circuitry and cause problems in electricity flow.
4. Condition of the tires
A camper travels across some of the roughest terrains throughout its life. Do you know which specific part of the camper undergoes maximum wear and tear in the process? It is the tires.
According to studies, the tires of pop-up campers suffer more wear and tear than those of regular vehicles, including cars.
Hence, if the camper’s tire condition is not up to the mark, it will affect the overall performance and lifespan.
Change the pop-up camper tires frequently or as mentioned in the user manual. Use high-quality tires from reputed camper manufacturing companies to save money and time.
The condition of the overall camper body also plays a significant role in reducing or increasing the lifespan of your pop-up camper.
The better its situation, the higher the lifespan and vice-versa. When not in regular use or during the off-season, campers accumulate lots of dust and wear due to several reasons.
To overcome it, park the pop-up camper inside a well-maintained and ventilated space like a garage.
Besides, do not forget to check the various parts of the trailer, such as hinges, locks, and bicycle rack, for lubrication or waxing to avoid rusting. If any visible damage increases with time, get it repaired quickly instead of waiting later.
6. Roof condition
How often do you inspect the roof of your car? You might answer – only during the service or routine manual cleaning. The same goes with pop-up campers with most owners and is again a point of bother concerning the lifespan.
The roof is the first point of contact of harsh climatic conditions, hailstorms (while camping during chilling winters), sun, and the likes.
Due to all these, it is necessary to pay special attention to detail to the roof condition to prepare your camper for the long haul.
So, these are the main factors that leave a significant impact on your pop-up camper lifespan.
Signs that you Need a New Pop-up Camper
If maintained well, even a base-level pop-up camper can last for 10-15 years. If not, you might need to invest in a new vehicle frequently. If you doubt when it is time to say goodbye to your beloved pop-up camper, the following signs are clear indications. Let’s check them out.
1. Water leakage
Be it your well-constructed home or a widely tested pop-up camper. Water is a potential threat to the structural integrity of both. Or even the greatest killers of all times, as reported by owners.
If you can see any water leakage from the ceiling, walls, or floor, you must act promptly. It includes figuring out the primary source of the leak. If the damage is too significant to reverse, start looking for a new camper.
2. Mold growth
Are your camper’s ventilation units not working fine? If so, the humid air from the kitchen or bathroom might not escape at the rate it should to prevent mold growth.
It, again, impacts your camper’s life and compels you to purchase a new trailer.
3. Poor interiors
Is the interior of your pop-up camper too old to stay in now? Is the upholstery too musty or kitchenware nearly rusted? If your answer to the above questions is yes, you must go for a new camper.
4. Frequent electrical failures
If your pop-up camper is facing frequent electrical failures and costing you tons of money every time to get them repaired, you better discard it and get your hands on a brand new one.
5. Movement problems
Are you experiencing movement problems with your camper, such as continual engine breakdowns? It is another vital indication to let it go.
These are the main signs of a degrading pop-up camper and indicate investing in a new one. Not just for yourself, but others as well.
A self-owned RV or trailer is the best one-time investment to simplify your camping trip for regular campers.
If any camping trailer fits under all budgets, it is a pop-up camper. With so many options to choose from, it becomes challenging to shortlist one taking note of your budget.
A pop-up camper is not only lightweight but easy to maintain as well. It is because of its limited accessories and loadings. Furthermore, a pop-up camper can last for as long as 10-15 years or even more, depending on several factors discussed above.
- 1 How long do pop-up campers last?
- 2 Factors that can impact the life of a pop-up camper
- 3 Signs that you Need a New Pop-up Camper