Camping in an RV with slide outs fully extended.

Do You Need to Use an RV Slide Out Stabilizer?

More and more RVs come equipped with slide outs. A slide out, sometimes referred to as a slide room, significantly increases the amount of living space in an RV. Many RVs now come with multiple slide outs which can turn an RV into something akin to a mansion on wheels.  Not satisfied with ”just” an RV anymore, the demand for increased real estate from RV shoppers has driven the slide-out explosion in the RV industry.

As well-engineered as these slides have become, they can add a significant amount of weight. The concern from RV owners about this weight and how it may affect their slide outs makes the reasoning for slide out stabilizers valid. Let’s explore the logic, the design, the benefit and the drawbacks to determine if you need to use an RV slide out stabilizer.

What Is an RV Slide Out Stabilizer?

Manufacturers of slide out stabilizers or supports say that they help save wear and tear on slide outs by reducing sag. Generally made of steel, they also claim to help prevent costly slide out frame repairs.

These stabilizers are designed to support the weight of the slide outs while you’re fully deployed. They can help reduce “bouncing” and take some weight off the manufacturer’s built-in slide out supports. They are fairly simple and straightforward; they are adjustable support bars that rest on the ground.

Should You Use an RV Slide Out Stabilizer with Your RV?

While stabilizers sound like a logical idea for slide outs, in most cases they should not be used.  There is more chance for slide outs to be damaged by these supports. In the event an RV becomes unbalanced, slide outs can be easily damaged by stabilizers.

Situations where tires deflate, pop, or sink into the ground are all instances where stabilizers could damage the slide out.  Any incident which would cause an RV to become unbalanced can lead to stabilizers actually damaging the slide outs. In fact, if a stabilizer is deployed when the RV leans, it will almost certainly damage the slide out.

RV Slide Outs Are Designed to Hold Weight

Modern RVs are designed with its slide out weights in mind. They are engineered to support not only the amenities such as dinettes, sofas, or bunks, but to support the weight of the people who would be using said amenities as well. So, unless you pack a significant amount of added weight into a slide out, it will be fine.

It’s more likely that you would exceed the gross weight limit of your RV before you caused a slide out to fail from bearing too much weight. However, there are some older RVs which may not be as reliable. But, as tempting as it may be, slide out stabilizers can still put even the older models at more risk than they help.

Beware of Warranty Woes

If you’re still intent on using stabilizers for your slide outs, you may want to keep in mind that most manufacturer warranties (and other warranties) are often voided from their use. When repairs to your slide outs becomes necessary, if any sign of damage to your RV looks to be caused by stabilizers or supports, your warranty won’t help you.  So remember to take a close look at your warranty before you consider investing in an RV slide out stabilizer.

What Use Are RV Slide Out Stabilizers?

Slide out stabilizer supports can be somewhat useful if used minimally to support slide outs only in the event of sagging. This could occur if slide outs are out for extended periods of time such as camping for several weeks or months at a time.  Though, keep in mind that manufacturers recommend that slide outs that will be extended for long periods of time should be actuated a couple of times a week. It is possible that RV slide out stabilizers would be useful on much older models which have manual slide outs that may not be engineered as well as modern slides.

Some RV owners use them if their RV is raised on blocks instead of the wheels. This could potentially alleviate damage from using slide out stabilizers as deflating tires is one of the most common causes of stabilizers doing damage to an RV’s slide outs.

Contact RV Wholesale Superstore

The professionals at RV Wholesale Superstore are ready to help you find the perfect RV for you and your family. Visit us in-person at 5080 W. Alexis Road, in Sylvania, OH or call us at (866) 640-9871

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