Last Updated on December 15, 2021 by Jessica Lauren Vine
Are you trying to figure out how to find RV recall information?
There are wonderful, adventurous, and glamorous parts about living the RV life, and then there are things like insurance, titles, maintenance, and research. Whether you’re already a full-time RVer or just getting started, an important part of your research phase should be making sure your rig is safe and meets federal standards. One way to do this is to check for recalls and know what to do if you find out your RV (or a part of it) has been recalled.
What Is A Recall?
A recall happens when a manufacturer determines that a vehicle or specific vehicle part does not meet minimum safety standards. Vehicles that fall under this recall are eligible to have the issue fixed for free.
Common RV Recalls
A manufacturer will issue a recall if a part fails to meet safety standards, not because it falls apart easily or was made with cheap materials. Design issues typically aren’t recalled. Some of the most common RV recalls are due to:
- Engine and battery malfunction
- Faulty brakes
- Issues with fire alarms
- Safety concerns due to electrical, plumbing, and AC problems
- Broken slides, outriggers, and axles
- Inadequate tiresHow To Find RV Recall Information
How To Find RV Recall Information
Typically, a manufacturer will notify all owners of the recalled RV by mail. However, many full-time RVers have to get creative when it comes to receiving mail, and risk missing important recall information this way. Thankfully, there is another way to check if your RV has been recalled
Use the RV VIN to look up recall information on the NHTSA. To find this information, you may need to look in a few different places.
- If you have a travel trailer or fifth wheel, the VIN is usually on the exterior of the trailer towards the front or along the framework of the pin box, in the interior cabinets, or along the tongue.
- If you have a Class C, the VIN will be in the framework of the door on the driver’s side.
- For class A’s, you’ll find the Vin on a sticker on the inside wall, somewhere near the driver’s seat.
- For quick access, you can also find your VIN on your insurance and registration paperwork.
- Remember: your tires will have their own identification (TIN) and will need to be checked separately.
Enter the VIN into the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) database. This will pull up all of the safety recalls for your specific make and model in the last 15 years. If your RV has been recalled, you’ll need to take the next steps to make sure the issues are taken care of properly.
Reading and Understanding A Recall
A recall is a detailed document that may look overwhelming at first, but when you break it down into smaller sections, it’s easier to digest all of the information.
First, identify the:
- Campaign number for the recall
- Name of the manufacturer
- What issues are being recalled
- The predicted number of units affected
- A summary of the problem
- The suggested solution and corresponding details
- The make, model, and year of the affected RVs
- The defect notice report
Once you can identify each of these parts, you will know whether or not your particular rig has been recalled. If it has, even if it seems minor to you, you should take action steps to get it corrected.
What To Do If Your RV is Recalled
So you find the VIN, you plug it into the NHTSA database, voila, you’re rig has been recalled. Now what? As you read the report you’ll find the manufacturers suggested remedies for the recall. The document will even offer information such as how to get the problem fixed, what facilities in your area can fix it, and whether or not the repairs will cost you anything, From this report, you’ll find contact numbers, the official recall reference number, and the dates in which the recall is effective.
Armed with this information, your next step will be to schedule the repairs. All recalls related to safety issues will be repaired through the manufacturer. Appliances and other systems can usually be repaired by an authorized repair shop.
A safety recall is a serious issue and repairs should not be put off. Most recall notices will also list suggestions on how to safely live in and use the rig until the recalled part is repaired.
Other Things To Know
Tire recalls work a little differently. They are valid for tires purchased within a five-year window of the defect. The best way to have your tires repaired or replaced without having to pay is to bring them in for service within the first 60 days of receiving the recall notice. The longer we wait, the greater your chances of having to pay for the repairs out of pocket.
Typically, if your rig is less than 10 years old you won’t have to pay for services related to a recall. Older rigs, however, may not fall under the same category. It’s always worth checking with the manufacturer to see if they’ll cover services as a result of a recall
You shouldn’t have any issues having your recall repairs done, but it’s important to know that all dealers are required to repair recalls as it aligns with the recall notice. If for some reason they refuse, you can file a complaint with the NHTSA
Recalls definitely don’t make the list of the most exciting issues to deal with as a full-time RVer, but they are a valuable tool in keeping you, your family, your rig, and others on the road safe. Hopefully, you’ll never have to deal with an RV recall. But if you do, having all of the resources and information on hand will help you make informed and confident decisions.
Don’t stop reading here. Check out a couple of our other articles here: How Many Solar Panels Do I Need for My RV? and Gifts for RV Owners – Gifts for the Camper Who Has Everything