Leveling Your RV Travel Trailer in 5 Steps with 4 Tools
Posted: March 12, 2020
Leveling Your RV Travel Trailer in 5 Steps with 4 Tools
Not all campgrounds or RV parks spots are created equal. Depending on the site, your travel trailer just won’t sit level and this can cause all sorts of issues from your refrigerator malfunctioning to your tires sinking into the ground so that you can’t pull out when it’s time to go home. Leveling a travel trailer isn’t hard to do, it just takes a bit of patience. To make it easy, we've put together this step-by-step guide for how to level a camper trailer.
Top 4 Tools to Manually Level Your RV Travel Trailer
In order to level a travel trailer properly, you want to ensure you have two levels on board when you travel. One level will be used for going left to right, and the other will be used for going front to back. You really need both to ensure you’re properly leveled. It makes a difference, especially when sleeping at night.
You can purchase travel trailer levels at any RV outlet store or online. For travel trailers, or any type of trailer, you’ll place both levels outside. One will go on the passenger side of the front of the trailer left to right, while the other will go on the driver’s side front to back. This will give you the most accurate measure if you’re level or not, especially after making adjustments.
Another item to have on hand is a wheel chock. Keep at least one with your travel trailer at all times. The wheel chock ensures that your tire will not move once you get it set up on the leveling blocks. If your whole site is uneven, you may need more than one for the safest setup.
In order to use wheel chocks, you'll get your travel trailer in place on the leveling blocks, then place the wheel chock opposite the blocks. While experts go back and forth on whether you need more wheel chocks, it really depends on where you're leveling your travel trailer. It never hurts to have more than one wheel chock on hand in the event of getting an especially uneven site.
You’ll also need leveling blocks, another item that can be bought online or at RV outlet stores. Before you buy your leveling blocks, measure the width of your trailer tires. You want to ensure your leveling blocks are wider than your tires for easier leveling. A 12-piece leveling block set allows for three blocks per tire minimum, depending on the type of travel trailer you have. Depending on the campground or RV park, and how level their sites are, you may need a second set of leveling blocks. Some RVers utilize wood blocks, lumber and other ways to level their travel trailers, but until you get the hang of leveling your trailer, use leveling blocks, it’s much simpler and less frustrating.
Many travel trailers come with pre-installed stabilizing jacks, like Lippert Power Stabilizer Jack, that make it much easier to stabilize your RV once level. A stabilizing jack isn’t meant to level a camper, and anybody who tells you otherwise doesn’t know what they’re talking about. A stabilizing jack is designed to keep your trailer steady when you walk around inside of it, after leveling it. While most of these get the job done, if your travel trailer doesn’t have one installed, you can opt to get one or you can utilize a manual or electric stabilizing jack.
How to Level a Travel Trailer in 5 Steps
Leveling a travel trailer is relatively easy, once you get the hang of it. If you’re a first time travel trailer owner, patience is key. Follow these steps if you want to learn the best way to level a travel trailer:
- One of the most important steps to level an RV travel trailer is to choose the right stop. Don’t just park anywhere within the site you’re given. Park your trailer for a moment, get out, and look around. Identify the most level part of the site, then back your trailer onto it about a foot in front or behind where you will actually park. This gives you some leeway to back up onto leveling blocks, move forward and get centered properly.
- From here, you’ll want to use your leveling blocks and place them behind your trailer tires if you backed in or in front of your tires if you pulled through. Make sure you use the leveling blocks to form a type of ramp, so that your tire can be driven up or backed onto them.
- Now, you’ll back onto the leveling blocks or drive onto them slowly. Having someone looking at your levels on the outside of the travel trailer will help you adjust whether you need to back up more or drive up further to get completely leveled. If you don’t have someone who can help you, you’ll need to keep popping in and out of your tow vehicle to check the levels yourself. Make sure you always turn off your vehicle when doing this.
- From here, you’ll need to adjust your leveling blocks if you’re still not level. Add or remove them, pull up or drive through, and keep checking your levels until you’re set.
- Once level, you can use your stabilizing jack to stabilize the trailer, and you’re set for the duration of the stay.
For some trips, it can take some time to get your travel trailer level. Stay patient, don’t get frustrated as you’re finding the perfect spot, and you’ll be level in no time.
Interested in Auto-Leveling?
Lippert offers many auto-leveling solutions for RV travel trailers, from our full Ground Control® TT Kit to our Smart Jack™. Watch this video for more info...
About the Author
Contributor Melissa Popp is a content strategist based out of Denver and shares a 2013 Kodiak 300BHSL with her Trailerbroker.com partners. She's also the RV Travel Expert for About.com. When she's not writing, she heads up to beautiful Buena Vista, Colo., to kick back, relax and enjoy the RV life.
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Pictured: Ground Control® TT Kit