RV SLIDE OUT sections...
Can you live WITHOUT ?

Should you buy a recreational vehicle with RV slide out sections?

A RV slide out consists of a section of the RV rigid side wall that can be pushed mechanically outward, thus making the interior space wider.

Let's look at PROS and CONS.

Many modern north american recreational vehicles feature at least one or two contrary to the old models of the past.

It consists of a section of the rigid side wall that can be pushed mechanically outward, thus making the interior space wider.

Many RVs either camping trailers (travel trailers, fifth wheels, truck campers) or motorhomes have them now. Often, they are on opposite sides to increase the width even more.

Newer and larger units (over 30 feet long) have three, up to four of these sections: one where the kitchen counter and appliances are, one at the eating area, plus others for the living room and bedroom.

Before making a decision if you should have this option, here are some points to consider:


  • when it is extended, the living space is increased on the width of the vehicle and we instantly have a sensation of a more comfortable area.
  • it is a strange feeling to realize how a few more feet on the width can add to the spaciousness of the RV. Two slide out sections on opposite sides can increase the width from 8 to 14 feet.
  • it may be desirable to have the same living space area in a shorter and more maneuverable RV, equipped with rv slide out sections, instead of a longer unit without.


  • a RV with this option will cost more to purchase.
  • every mechanism added to an RV increases the eventuality of a failure necessitating repair.
  • basement storage space is lost to its mechanism.
  • among the first ones being introduced on the market, some had leaking problems. Even if it is something of the past, keep in mind that these sections have to be checked on a regular basis.
  • Mostly make sure that the rubber joints around the section are in good condition to protect against any leakage.
  • the hydraulic or electric mechanism necessary add considerable weight to the RV. This has a negative effect on the gas mileage.
  • it may have for consequence the selection of a bigger and more expensive 'tow' vehicle with an increased towing capacity .
  • make sure you can still walk through the RV when the slide outs are in or at least you have access to the bathroom, kitchen and bedroom.
  • sometimes, even the access to the refrigerator is impossible and this is annoying when you stop to have a quick snack and no food is accessible.
  • in some places, like in the national parks, public forest campgrounds and older sites, the camping areas are so small that there may be problems to extend it having a tree in the way.

So... What is your final decision? Is a RV slide out an option to have?

Selecting a Recreational Vehicle with a slide out is a personal choice.

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