FAQ's [frequently asked questions]

Why should I hire an RV inspector?


Short answer, your own peace of mind! Purchasng an RV is not a inexpensive purchase, neither is repairing one. Would you purchase a home without having it inspected first? Why should an RV be any different. What is the roof condition? Is there prior water damage? Should I have fluid analysis done? Is the chassis rusting? Do the appliances work? Buying an RV can be a stressful experience. Savvy buyers have their future RV inspected by an independent third party NRVIA Certified Inspector before they sign the purchase contract. When you bought a new home, who did you trust to inspect it? You didn’t call a handyman or contractor working for the realtor. I hope you called a third party home inspector. The same should be true when you buy an RV. All NRVIA Certified RV Inspectors are trained to thoroughly go over any RV to find safety and underlying issues. NRVIA has a published Code of Ethics and a Standards of Practice that all NRVIA Certified Inspectors must follow. Additionally, NRVIA Certified Inspectors must complete continuing education (CEU’s) every year to keep current with their membership.




I'm purchasing a new RV from an RV dealer. Do I still need an inspection?


Yes, absolutely! However, your salesperson won't tell you this. They will say...

  • "One of our certified RV techs will do a full inspection prior to delivery."
  • "You don't need an inspection, if there's a problem it's covered by your warranty."
While these statements are accurate, it is still recommended that you hire your own inspector. Why? First, because we are impartial. Our job is to make sure you are buying an RV with no underlying problems. Today's RV manufacturers are building hundreds of RV's everyday. While they always strive for quality, people make mistakes that can cost you a lot of money to fix. RV technicians are trained to fix problems and do what is called a Pre-delivery inspection [PDI] using a one or two page checklist provided by the dealer. RV dealerships are so overwhelmed with repairs, that they typically spend the least amount of time possible to complete a PDI on your RV.




How much does an RV Pre-purchase inspection cost?


The cost varies with the type of RV we are inspecting. A luxury class A RV takes longer to inspect than a travel trailer. For that reason, we quote prices based on the type, size and systems we will be inspecting. At Compass RV Inspections when we schedule your inspection, you are the only customer we inspect that day. This means we can spend the amount of time needed in order to give you a thorough and complete RV inspection. After the inspection is completed and you have received your inspection report, we take the time to explain the report to you. We want you to understand what was found and why it's important these items be addressed. This gives our clients peace of mind knowing that we are completely unbiased. Taking the time to go over your future RV thoroughly is what NRVIA Certified RV Inspectors are trained to do. Click here for more information




Where do RV inspections happen?


We travel to the location of the RV to complete the inspection. We will go over all the details with you when we schedule your appointment.




I found the perfect RV in another state. Can you help me?


Absolutely! Many of our clients are located out of state. Sometimes the perfect RV can be across the country. We can travel to the location of the RV and perform an NRVIA certified inspection. The photos you see online may not be the best representation of the RV. Photos are typically taken in a way that makes the RV look really good. While we always hope that seller's will be honest, it isn't always the case. By doing an inspection ahead of time, you know the real condition before the purchase. It is always preferred that the prospective owner be present during the inspection, however, it is not required.




What is an NRVIA certified inspector?


The National Recreational Vehicla Inspectors Association [NRVIA] is a membership organization that provides certification and credentials for professional recreational vehicle inspectors across North America. NRVIA Inspector members are required to follow a specific Standards of Practice and a Code of Ethics. This ensures that the customer receives a high quality, high caliber inspection that allows them to make an educated decision about the RV they wish to purchase. When you hire an NRVIA certified inspector, you can be assured that you will be receiving a professional, standardized and thorough inspection of your RV equipment. Are you ready? CONTACT US today to get started.




How fast can I get an inspection done?


As long as our schedule permits, we can come out as early as the next day. Contact us directly at 281.780.3770 if you require immediate assistance.




Why do I need an RV inspection?


An individual new to the RV marketplace can soon be overwhelmed with all of the features and systems on RV's today. A professional RV inspector will test all the systems for proper operation, and identify any areas of concern. A professional inspector knows what to look for and can detect water intrusion, areas that have been previously damaged and underlying structural issues like rotten flooring or questionable electrical systems. We are an experienced, unbiased and impartial inspection service that, by our Code of Ethics, does not have any financial interest in the sale of the RV. The written report we provide the buyer includes detailed information about the RV they intend to purchase. This allows the buyer to move forward, and purchase with confidence.




I have experience with RV's. Why should I hire a professional to do the inspection?


Even an experienced RV'er can be easily overwhelmed during the buying process. Dealers many times try to pressure us into making a decision now. We can be easily caught up in the dream, thinking about what we can do, or where we can go in our new [or used] RV. Many times, buyers are looking at the aesthetics of the RV when determining if the RV meets their travel and comfort needs. It's easy for a buyer to become emotionally attached during the process, causing you to overlook things that could later lead to big [and expensive] problems. A third party inspector is detached from the buying process, and therefore, truly unbiased. We use specialized, detailed software that ensures a thorough inspection. We love it when our customers find the perfect RV and look forward to living the dream. Likewise, finding problems for our customers prior to purchase helps them to make a sound purchase so they can use their RV as it was intended.




Do you recommend if I should purchase the RV?


An inspector can't [and should not] answer that question. Our job is to provide accurate detailed information to allow you, the purchaser, to make an informed decision about the RV you wish to purchase.




How long does it take to perform my inspection?


Each RV is a little different, plus the options can vary. Inspections tend to take between 3 and 8 hours to perform. Your finished inspection contains details about each item inspected along with photos for clarification.




Do you take photos during the inspection?


Yes, we document the results of the inspection in writing and with photographs. Depending on the RV being inspected and the potential issues found, that number can vary. The number of photos varies with each inspection. If you are a long distance buyer, we recommend the Premier Inspection Package that provides extra photos & videos of the RV you intend to purchase. The photos and the written inspection are included in the price of the inspection.




How long does it take to receive my inspection?


We will verbally go over the inspection with you the same day. The wriiten inspection and photos are typically sent via email within 24 hours of the completed physical inspection. If you need it sooner, please let us know, and we will make every attempt to get it to you in the time frame needed. Please note: If you opted for fluid analysis, this can take up to 7 days, however, a rush option is available from the lab for $30 per sample. Please let us know ahead of time if you need to rush your fluid samples.




Should I have fluid tests done on my engine, transmission and generator?


Oil and coolant analysis gives us information about what's going on inside the engine. Fluid analysis can tell you when your oils and coolants experience signs of early breakdown or contamination. The lab can also check for indications of internal part wear. Fluid analysis can help detect anything that might need your attention before it becomes a problem. No one likes to have their trip interrupted by breakdowns, towing and expensive repairs. Click here for more information




Where do I start?


  1. Go shopping and find the RV you want.
  2. Tell the seller that you want to have the RV inspected by an independent RV inspector. Do not let the seller talk you out of this step. If they refuse, I would keep looking.
  3. Once the seller agrees, you will typically have to put up a deposit to hold the RV pending an inspection. You can work out the details with the seller. We suggest having a paragraph inserted into your sales agreement that the purchase is subject to an inspection by an inspector of your choosing and is subject to your sole satisfaction. Click here to download a purchase contact.
  4. Contact us to set up an appointment for the inspection. We will work out the logistics with you and send you a client agreement that can be signed online.
  5. Once the client agreement is signed, we will send you an online invoice that can be paid with any major credit card. Please note: the client agreement must be signed and the payment completed prior to inspection.
  6. We travel to the location of the RV to perform the inspection. We will need access to a water supply, 30 or 50 amp electrical supply and propane in the tanks [if appicable]. Click here for more information.
  7. Upon completion of the inspection, we will call you to go over a summary of what to expect in the written report.
  8. Your written report and photos will be finalized and emailed to you within 24 to 48 hours.
Have fun RV shopping and don't forgot to breathe!




Are you licensed and insured?


The RV inspection industry doesn't have any licensing requirements. NRVIA certified inspectors are required to complete detailed courses, hands-on training and take continuing education each year to remain a member. Additionally, we carry commercial liability insurance to protect all parties involved in the RV inspection.





Do you have any questions? Here you will find the most commonly asked questions related to RV inspection. If you do not see the answer to your question, feel free to CONTACT US.