These Are the Pros and Cons of DIY RV Projects
Thinking of a Do-It-Yourself RV Project? Here’s What to Consider.
For many RVers and motorhome owners, DIY projects are a huge draw for the medium. Customizing your RV is a rewarding experience, and it’s an inevitable part of reaching that magical “home on wheels” feeling once you’ve bonded with your vehicle enough.
A lot of motorhome owners will attempt a DIY RV project at some point in their lives, and while these can be incredibly rewarding in their own right, they can also come with a couple of drawbacks.
Pro: The Initial Cost
Opting to go the DIY route can seem incredibly cost-effective at first. Budgeting your projects can make you appreciate just how much of an RV service center’s cost goes towards labor—a cost you’re effectively eliminating by going DIY. In theory, going DIY means you only have to pay for the parts and supplies you need for your project, saving you one of the biggest sources of expense.
Con: The Actual Cost
Did you catch the operative word in that last point?
Yes, DIY projects can seem cost-effective at first, but DIY projects that finish under budget are about as common as six-leaf clovers and albino unicorns. When you visit an RV service center, the price you’re quoted is calculated from years of experience and an acute understanding of the parts and labor required.
However, choosing to go at it alone means you’re going to be running primarily off optimism and educated guesswork, and you’ll almost always end up paying more than you budgeted for.
Pro: You Can Personalize It
Every RVer is unique. From weekend warriors to cross-country adventurers, everybody brings their unique experiences and desires to the world of RVing. This naturally means everybody’s RV needs will be somewhat different, and going DIY means, you can modify projects to custom-fit your tastes.
Want neon LEDs under all of your counters? You absolutely can do that. Shag carpet in the common areas? It will be a pain to clean, but there is nothing physically stopping you.
Con: The Quality Is a Gamble
RV service centers and motorhome garages have to abide by a strict code of quality for every single renovation and repair they make. An unhappy customer isn’t likely to be a repeat customer. That means these locations will go to great lengths to make sure any repairs or renovations are up to snuff—for free, if absolutely necessary.
Unfortunately, going DIY means you don’t have this same guarantee. The ultimate quality of your project depends on the level of expertise you bring to the table. If you’re not confident in out-doing the pros, you might just want to leave it to them.
Pro: It’s Uniquely Rewarding
Let’s face it: there’s something awesome about stuff you make yourself. The same principle that makes home-cooked meals taste better also applies to the world of DIY RV projects. Carpet feels uniquely comfortable when you install it yourself and things like custom RV decorations or storage solutions feel appropriately unique too. If you plan to spend a lot of time in your RV, DIY projects are an excellent way to take authorship over your space.
Con: It Can Also Be Uniquely Exhausting
When things go poorly, DIY RV projects combine all the worst parts of DIY home repair and car repair. In the event you make a particularly big, particularly expensive mistake, you can look forward to sharing a drive with it for the next season or so. Few things can completely suck the joy out of an RV adventure, like having to constantly step around a 40% completed kitchen replacement disaster while you’re out on the road.
Of course, the benefits of going DIY don’t have to be either/or. Finding a good RV service center willing to work with you on custom projects means you can enjoy all of the benefits of doing DIY without any disadvantages.
Check out our service page to learn more about how we can help your current RV become your dream RV!