Rather you are thinking about repairing your own RV or if you are looking to buy a RV for yourself, RV salvage yards can be a great resource. The price of replacement parts for RV,s is an eye opener if you are looking at dealership prices or checking new part prices.
Many times you can find a part that is in 100% working conditions for a fraction of the price from RV salvage dealers. If you are looking for a new RV you obviously will not find one in a salvage yard, but if you are mechanically inclined, you may be able to find a late model that is still in perfect condition, just missing an engine or needing some other serious work. If you are willing to spend the time and money to fix up a salvaged RV, you can get a real steal on your next RV.
What Type Of RV Salvage Parts Are Worth Buying Used?
There are not many parts that you cannot find in good shape if you talk to a RV salvage dealer. Most of the internal parts will be in perfect shape because they will be protected from the elements since they are inside. Some of the hoods on the roof and other external parts may show some wear and tear if they are sitting in the sun. To a lot of RV owners a little sun fading makes little if no difference to the value of the part, especially any part that sits on top of your RV considering that it will never really be seen. There are some electronic parts that you should be wary about buying from a RV salvage yard if there is no warrantee included. Alternators, electric motors and any other part like this can be in working order but there is no way to tell, so you need to make sure that you can get a warrantee before you buy these items.
You can find all sorts of paneling, replacement windows, handles, door assemblies and other parts that can save you a lot of money at these places too. These types of parts are easily inspected and are usually the more common parts to break and need replaced. One word of caution while looking at these parts, don't look for parts if you do not know that they will fit the RV model you own. Some people are quick to buy if the part “looks the same” and this is not a good idea unless the part comes off of the same model as the RV you are going to install the part on.
The biggest deals can be found on furniture RV salvage. These are commonly a part that wears down and may need to be replaced, due to common wear and tear. Since you will be spending the most time in the driver's seat this is one of the most common seats to replace. However, depending on how often you use your RV, seats at the table and the sleeping quarters are also some commonly replaced RV furniture that you will be able to find at these salvage yards.
Other common parts to try to find at RV salvage dealers are tires and wheels. On some RV's they are odd sizes that can be very expensive if special ordered, but at RV salvage yards, you can get some real deals. You may find that you can get additional savings if you don't require them to remove the tire from the wheel, so make sure to ask about this.
What If My Local RV Salvage Dealer Does Not Have The Part I Need?
It really depends on the dealer, but most salvage yards and used parts dealerships are involved in used parts networks. This means if you ask they may be able to order a used part from another RV salvage parts dealer for you. Now they will tack on a small fee for delivery and there sir charge, but you can still usually save a lot of money compared to buying new. This is something that you may want to look into. If you are going to be buying a large part or there are other used RV parts dealers within a short drive, you may be able to get it cheaper and rationalize going to pick it up elsewhere.
How Can I Find RV Surplus Salvage Dealers?
The quickest way to locate RV salvage parts dealers may be to take a quick look in your yellow pages. You can find this type of business under RV's and recreational vehicles. Some listings are simply under automotive depending on your phone book provider. If you do not find RV salvage yards, but just general salvage yards, you may give this company a call and let them know what you are looking for and see if they can refer you to another place that may be able to deal with your specific needs. If you do not find what you are looking for in the yellow pages, checking online can be another way to find salvage parts for RV's without much trouble.
RV Salvage Parts Online
There are not many sites that specialize in RV parts but there are a few that do. Here are some that you may find helpful in your search:
http://www.timberman.com/salvage.htm - A very simple webpage but offers a large listing with addresses and phone numbers to RV salvage yards across the country. Not a place you can buy direct, but a good starting place to find other salvage yards very quickly.
http://www.colawrvsalvage.com – Colaw™ offers new RV sales but they also have a large stock of old and used RV's and RV parts. They have a few main categories of large parts like engines and rear ends that are for sale on eBay® from them and also offer contact information for smaller parts upon request.
http://www.rvsurplus.net/ - You will find a large selection of new and reconditioned parts on RVSurplus.net. This company has a lot to offer, but you will have to wade through the new items to locate the deals on the RV salvage parts you are after, but there are some good deals to be had here.