Replacing RV Furniture: Your Questions Answered
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Ashley Mann spent three years living full time in a 38-foot, 5th-wheel RV with her husband Josiah and their cat, Kitty. Her favorite thing about RV life is the challenge of finding the perfect way to organize a space, and she loves seeing all the creative and clever ways people come up with to customize their RVs.
Thinking of replacing your RV furniture? In this article we answer your commonly asked questions about replacing RV furniture—including where to buy RV furniture, how to get RV furniture through the door of your camper, and whether it's okay to put residential furniture in your RV.
Q: Where can I buy replacement RV furniture?
A: Here are some of the best places to shop for RV furniture:
- Facebook Marketplace. With so many people renovating RVs these days, a lot of RV furniture removed from campers ends up on the Facebook marketplace. Facebook often has the low prices with motivated sellers.
- Local RV Service Shops. Many RV service shops sell used furniture that they removed from campers. The selection may be limited, but you might find a good deal.
- The RecPro Website. RecPro is a well known RV parts supply store with a huge selection of RV furniture. Keep an eye on their “Scratch & Dent” page for a good deal on RV furniture that's discounted due to minor cosmetic imperfections.
- Amazon. You can find a lot of RV furniture on Amazon from name brands such as RecPro and Thomas Payne. One advantage to shopping on Amazon is being able to read reviews and see pictures from other RV owners.
- Residential Furniture Sellers. Good places to look for residential furniture to go in an RV include Ikea, Amazon, Wayfair, and Overstock.
Q: Can I put regular furniture in an RV?
Many RV owners choose to replace their RV furniture with residential furniture because it's often cheaper, more comfortable, and (in most people's minds) more attractive than RV furniture.
The biggest thing to consider is how heavy the furniture is, especially if you're traveling.
Q: Is residential furniture too heavy to go in an RV?
A: Not usually, but it depends on the furniture.
The sleeper sofa I removed from my fifth wheel was far heavier than the Ikea loveseat that I replaced it with.
If you shop for furniture online, the exact weight of the furniture you're buying is listed in the product specifications.
To determine how heavy your new furniture can be, you can weigh your camper before and after removing the existing furniture. (You've likely seen truck weigh stations at truck stops and not noticed them. That's the best place to go!) Then order furniture that is comparable or at least won't add enough weight to put you over your cargo limit.
It's also important to maintain a similar weight distribution when replacing furniture so there isn't too much weight on one axle.
Q: How do you get new RV furniture through the door?
A: All the furniture I added to my RV was purchased online, so it came unassembled in a box and I assembled it once it was inside my RV.
A bigger concern is getting existing furniture out, as it's usually bolted into RVs before they are fully assembled. You may need to take larger furniture apart to get it through your door, or try a window.
Q: How do you keep residential furniture from shifting while the RV is in motion?
A: Same way as you keep the factory original furniture from moving around—with tie downs, straps, and bungee cords. You can purchase additional furniture straps and D-rings to anchor your furniture to the floor of your camper.
Bungee cords and ratchet straps are also useful for holding everything in place.
Q: Will replacing the furniture decrease the value of the RV?
A: Removing the furniture can make it more difficult to sell your RV.
I discovered this when my local Camping World told me they couldn't accept my camper for trade without original furniture. This surprised me since they sell RV furniture, but whatever!
(We ended up selling our RV privately without furniture for more than what Camping World would have given us for it even if it had the original furniture.)
If you want to be able to trade in your RV to a dealer at some point, it might be a good idea to keep any furniture you remove so you can put it back in later, even if you have to rent a small storage facility to do so.
Or you can just buy replacement RV furniture later if it helps you get more for your RV.
If you sell your RV privately, you might find a buyer who actually prefers the new furniture (if you sell the RV fully furnished), or who appreciates the opportunity to choose their own furniture. And if you're fully renovating your RV, you'll almost certainly increase its value, especially if it's an older camper.
One thing I would recommend when selling your RV is to make sure the number of beds is the same as when you bought it.
When we moved out of our fifth wheel and rented a house, I wanted to keep the furniture we had bought for our RV, so I purchased a used sleeper sofa in good condition from Facebook Marketplace to sell with the RV so that I could list the sleeping capacity as the original number of 4 instead of just 2.
Q: How can you be sure you're getting good quality when you buy furniture online?
Many people are hesitant to buy furniture without sitting on it first, and that's completely understandable.
However, having bought most of my furniture online, I have found reading online reviews to be a pretty reliable way to get an idea of what to expect.
If you're afraid you might be disappointed, I would recommend shopping from somewhere that offers a generous return policy. Sending back furniture can be a hassle, but many online furniture stores offer a satisfaction guarantee and will pay for the return shipping.
For more ideas about replacing RV furniture, check out my other articles: