What are the worst 5th wheel trailers? (& the best 3)

In this blog post, we will answer the following question: What are the worst 5th wheel trailers? We will share with you what are, in our opinion, the less attractive 5th wheel trailers. We will also discuss whether getting a 5th wheel trailer is a good idea in the first place. 

What are the worst 5th wheel trailers?

In the table below you can see what are the worst 5th wheel trailers currently on the market. We tell you why you shouldn’t get these models and why previous owners were so dissatisfied with them. 

5th wheel trailer brandWhat we don’t like about it

Fleetwood (Regal)
Poor quality materials used for the interior;An unreliable battery that will refuse to recharge. 
Coachmen (Chaparral) Bathroom leaks;Low-quality standards;Roof leaks;
Gulfstream (Sedona)Deceitful generator;Poor quality amenities;High repair costs. 
Winnebago (Minnie)Cheap materials;Roof and wall leaks;Collapsing panel walls. 
Dutchmen (Voltage, Wild Thing)Poor insulation;The bathroom is just badly built;No airflow, great environment for mildew. 
Keystone (Crossroads Zinger, Cougar)Water leaks;Electric refrigerator;Confusing electrical system. 
Jayco (Eagle)Poorly constructed;Wiring issues (overheating);Poor customer service. 

What is a fifth-wheel trailer?

The fifth-wheel hitch is a U-shaped hitch that fits into the rear of the tow vehicle – typically, a pickup truck – and connects to the trailer. The place where the trailer connects to the tow vehicle, in essence, acts as another point for the trailer to connect and rest its weight.

It is a design similar to the type of hitch used by a semi-truck. This means that it is a very safe and sturdy hitch. It is the one that can be used for large and heavy loads. The trailer has a “kingpin,” which locks into the U-shaped hitch allowing you to tow the trailer safely.

Is a fifth-wheel trailer a good idea?

The design of the fifth wheel has many advantages. A trailer with a fifth-wheel hitch design will feel more stable when towing. It shouldn’t experience a lot of trailer sway. This is because the weight of the hitch is on the rear axle (drive axle) of the tow vehicle, which means that the weight of the trailer is better distributed over the entire rig.

In addition, the robust design of the fifth wheel hitch provides a more secure connection than a typical ball hitch. This stronger connection and high level of stability mean that most fifth-wheel trailers can be built with solid, sturdy, heavier, and often more luxurious materials and features.

If you want a towable trailer and want a true luxury model, you want to buy a fifth wheel. Many fifth-wheel models come with solid wood cabinets, king-size beds, and full-size appliances. This equipment is not included in the caravans, often in part because of the weight.

What are the disadvantages of a fifth-wheel trailer?

The first arises from the size of most fifth-wheel trailers. Fifth wheels are large and heavy, and someone new to towing might feel overwhelmed. That said, because fifth wheels are designed for stability and manoeuvrability, they are generally easier to handle on the road than a trailer of the same size with a typical ball hitch.

The other big downside is that you need a full-size or heavy-duty pickup truck to tow the fifth-wheel trailer. Because fifth-wheel RVs are often larger and heavier than a conventional trailer, they require a more powerful truck. It also results in a more expensive truck, which can put fifth-wheel trailer rates out of reach.

What is a good fifth-wheel trailer?

If you now think a fifth wheel is for you, here is our pick of the best of them.

We used criteria: price, design, technical reliability and a little of our subjectivity (but not too much, we promise).

Keystone Montana Fifth Wheel Trailer

How not present to you this fifth wheel which had already made it to our TOP American motorhomes?

The Keystone Montana fifth wheel is ideal for all motorhomes looking for the best value for money in their next fifth wheel. Indeed, the brand that builds this model, Keystone, is renowned as one of the best in American fifth wheels. Their role models are good and they listen to their customers. The series we are presenting to you, Keystone Montana, is particularly successful.

Let’s start from the outside. The body is made of particularly robust fibreglass with welded aluminum walls and floor. You will find a large crossing storage space to store all your belongings with a thick and durable floor.

The interior has everything to accommodate a large family. A 4-door refrigerator, a large kitchen which accommodates an oversized sink and a microwave oven!

You will find a large TV in the living room with high-quality sound. You can end the day by making yourself comfortable in a large memory foam mattress. You’ll also appreciate the central vacuum system to keep everything clean.

The Redwood Fifth Wheel Trailer

When a famous brand like Redwood decides to give the name of its brand to one of its vehicles, we suspect that we are going to be dealing with seriousness. Redwood is no exception to the rule.

This fifth wheel was designed for year-round occupancy, so it contains everything you could possibly need.

The model is an example in terms of insulation, the thick floor is heated and all the ducts are wrapped in aluminum with foam cores: you will be warm even in the dead of winter.

In terms of interior design, the Redwood will not disappoint.

The living area has plenty of seating, including a sofa and lounge chairs. The kitchen houses a 3-meter-tall refrigerator, bread oven, three-burner stove and much more.

Other optional amenities are LG TVs, JBL soundbar, and all gear is satellite ready. Add to that a large bathroom, and plenty of storage, and you have a fifth wheel that’s ready to welcome you and yours all year round!

The Heartland Bighorn Fifth Wheel Trailer

This fifth wheel has a very beautiful interior and exceptional design that make it truly luxurious. The Heartland Bighorn model has real solid wood cabinetry and plenty of storage space outside and inside.

There is also an impeccably designed kitchen with stainless steel appliances, storage space and most importantly, an American style kitchen with an island to prepare all your delicious meals.

We can no longer really speak of a room but rather of a suite! Indeed, this fifth wheel accommodates a king-size bed as a central bed and a large bathroom that accommodates the shower and the WC.

Finally, the living room is equipped with a large sofa facing a 4K TV screen. Another element that makes this fifth wheel essential: its 3 slide outs. Here is a model that breathes American culture and way of life!

How to choose between a fifth wheel and a caravan?

You may not want to buy a pickup or get a new license to drive the fifth wheel. You may be wondering if the caravan is a good alternative.

Here is a list of things to consider when choosing between these two types of vehicles.

  • The towing capacity of your vehicle. You probably won’t need to buy a new vehicle to tow a trailer or caravan. In fact, the towing capacity of many cars is often enough to tow them. For fifth-wheel trailers, you will likely need to invest in a pickup in order to tow it. One point for the caravan!
  • The size of the coupling. Do you feel comfortable driving a 9, 10 or even 13-meter coupling? Fifth Wheels can easily reach 10 meters, adding the length of your car will make your tow bar a significant size. Smaller caravans can be found more easily. If you are looking primarily for a compact model, the caravan will probably be more suitable.
  • Driving comfort. A fifth wheel is much easier to drive than a caravan thanks to the fifth wheel attachment system. This system also makes driving safer. The attachment point located at the rear of the pickup that tows it allows a higher degree of hitch movement and avoids the more frequent swaying with a conventional trailer.
  • The price. Classic trailers are less expensive than fifth-wheel trailers. Even more, if you plan to buy a new vehicle to tow it.

The verdict: If you can’t buy a new vehicle to tow a fifth wheel and the prince is your number one criteria, buy a caravan! If safety and comfort are your priority, a fifth wheel will probably be more suitable.

Conclusions

Are you ready to buy your first fifth wheel and hit the road? To recap, the fifth wheel caravan takes its name from the fifth wheel which connects it to the vehicle towing it. It has the advantage of allowing a very stable ride.

We selected the Keystone Montana, the Redwood model and The Heartland Bighorn as the best fifth-wheel trailers available. 

What is your favourite 5th wheel trailer brand? Did any of the above-mentioned models surprise you to be on our list? Please feel free to leave a comment!

FAQ on What are the worst 5th wheel trailers?

What are the worst travel trailers to buy?

The following are considered the worst travel trailers to buy:

  • Hurricane.
  • Coachmen.
  • Jayco.
  • Coleman.
  • Keystone.
  • Winnebago.
  • Fleetwood.

What is the most reliable travel trailer brand?

The most reliable travel trailer brands are:

  • Airstream.
  • Winnebago.
  • Forest River.
  • Jayco.
  • Keystone.
  • Oliver.
  • Happier Camper.

Do travel trailers hold their value?

Travel trailers do hold their value longer than RVs or caravans. A travel trailer can hold its value between five and 15 years, more or less regularly. 

References