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truenorth
05-06-2021, 11:10 AM
Hi,
I am wondering how to know whether the trailer is properly leveled when I set up the trailer. Do I have to purchase a large level and a pack of level blocks or is the level issue not so important?

Maineiacs
05-06-2021, 11:22 AM
Please tell us what type of trailer you have and we can give you pertinent answers.

MarkEHansen
05-06-2021, 11:32 AM
If you want to be comfortable inside the trailer, you want it fairly level. If you have a standard RV (absorption) fridge, it will want to be within a small amount of level for it to operate properly without causing problems in the burner.

Assuming your trailer does not include an auto-level feature, the leveling is the same as other trailers.

You can determine the level-ness any way you like. Most would place a level on the kitchen counter or perhaps the floor. You can use a bubble level application on a smart phone too (I've done this - it works pretty well).

You first level side to side, by placing blocks/wood planks under the wheels on the low side to try to raise it. If you know the right side is low, you move the trailer forward/back, place the block/planks into position, then pull the trailer onto them. Then check the level again - and repeat as necessary.

Once you have it level side to side, you then unhitch and adjust the tongue jack to level the trailer front to back.

Once that is done, you use your stabilizer jacks to help stabilize the trailer (reduce the rocking). Note that you can't put too much pressure on the stabilizer jacks - they aren't made for this and will fail.

Good luck.

wiredgeorge
05-06-2021, 11:41 AM
Hi,
I am wondering how to know whether the trailer is properly leveled when I set up the trailer. Do I have to purchase a large level and a pack of level blocks or is the level issue not so important?

These questions have more context if you go to the UserCP and add your trailer's year, make and model plus the same for your tow vehicle.

If the trailer isn't level, your refrigerator may malfunction. I have stick on levels on the driver side on the front and side of my 5th wheel. I keep an eye on those when leveling east/west and the drop my front lifts to level north/south. Some folks have gizmos and some put a level inside the trailer.

dutchmensport
05-06-2021, 11:41 AM
Every trailer is designed a little different, but one that is true about all of them, is the fact, none of them have any 2 spots that are the exact same "level".

Your floor may be bowed, your frames may be bowed, your counter tops may sloped slightly. What should be truly level. You get the window perfectly level and the refrigerator is clear out of plumb. You get the counter top level, but the beds feel like you are hanging onto the side of a cliff. The tongue is perfectly level, but the toilet seat keeps falling down.

In our previous Keystone Springdale, it was 31 feet long and no spot on the floor was level. The frame looked straight as an arrow, but the floor always seemed like we were walking either up hill or down hill, and no level ever found a level spot in 2 places. I finally realized the floor was built on an arch, front to back.

That's when I learned the best spot to use for "level".... the entry door frame.

All you need is a small carpenter's level. Place it on the door frame, up and down. Facing one direction you get the left-right (East-West) or side-to-side level. Turn it 90 degrees and you get the front-to-back level. The entry door frame seems to always work. I've done it that way for years and years now.

Now, getting it level side to side .... yes, that requires the use of RV Lego blocks or lumber of some sort. I prefer lumber. All the lumber I use for my camper(s) has always been scrap lumber, all of it is treated lumber and I've used the same lumber for over 25 years now.

The lumber goes under the low side of the trailer tire wheels and you might have to pull forward, pull backwards, move side ways just a little to find a spot where everything comes really close to level side-to-side. I carry different thickness of lumber so I can make 1/2 inch adjustments, as well as my 2x6's and my 2x8's cut to length so they can stack on top of each other in a pyramid fashion so rolling the tires up and down them is easier.

Front-to-back leveling is done by using your tongue jack. So, get as level as you can side-to-side and then second, front-to-back.

Some folks use the inside of their refrigerators as their zero level spot. Some use a counter top. Some use a door frame. I have found that when the doors (inside and outside) do not swing open or shut, but stay put where they are, at any position, the trailer is level. I absolutely had having doors close behind me, or close on my face when I'm trying to enter. Thus, the entry door frame works very, very well.

If you think about it, the door frame is placed square to the trailer frame. I think it's about the only that that is.

Once you get your "level", then put some of those bubble levels on the end camp of your camper so you can see them easy when back into a campsite. moving the trailer just a few inches forward or backwards can make the trailer horrible un-level, or spot on.

JRTJH
05-06-2021, 11:53 AM
Most absorption refrigerators current recommend "less than 3 degrees off level"... More than that "can" cause a problem with proper liquid return to the boiler tank.

When calculated, in a trailer that's 8 feet wide (96") a 3 degree angle at the floor computes to about a 5" rise from side to side...

Most of us would not feel comfortable walking, sitting, cooking or sleeping in a trailer with a 5" off level condition... We might "endure it" but we would all probably "go outside and adjust something.

For most of us, if we're comfortable inside the trailer, it's "level enough not to cause a refrigerator problem"....

For us, I have a "big semicircular level" on the pinbox. One mark equals 1" off level on the low side. So, when backing into a campsite, if I'm showing 2 marks on the level, then I put 2 blocks under each wheel on the low side.

That's always been "level enough" for cooking, sleeping, relaxing.... My grandkids have outgrown marbles, so even on rainy days, I don't have "lost marbles under the recliner" with this setup process....

We won't discuss other reasons for "lost marbles".....

travelin texans
05-06-2021, 01:42 PM
If yours is anything like mine, ask your wife if it's level enough.

NH_Bulldog
05-06-2021, 02:14 PM
Hi,
I am wondering how to know whether the trailer is properly leveled when I set up the trailer. Do I have to purchase a large level and a pack of level blocks or is the level issue not so important?

Being fairly level is important for a number of reasons. Getting level usually requires at least some kind of blocks and a level. The lego blocks are pretty cheap and can also have other uses.

I hate spending time leveling so I use a LevelMatePRO and Beech Lane (less expensive than the Anderson version) leveling chocks. It isn’t the least expensive option but it saves a ton of time, headache and frustration.

linux3
05-06-2021, 02:56 PM
IMHO level is over rated.
You do want your head higher than your feet else you will get a headache.
I have a level on my power jack that I spent some time getting right and for over night its enough.
I too like the lego blocks and am fussy for longer stays.

sourdough
05-06-2021, 03:07 PM
With my last bumper pull I ended up with the LevelMate Pro and Andersen levelers. It doesn't get much easier than that. Used wood blocks for decades, lego blocks for years more but really appreciated the Andersens and LevelMate Pro - DW "adored" them vs trying to help and/or guess how many blocks were needed to level a 1/2 bubble. :D

JDDilly
05-06-2021, 04:57 PM
I have a 5th wheel, but it is the same as a TT. I have a "big semicircular level" on the front and use the Andersen Leveling blocks, great combination. I have electric auto level, but need to be close.

LHaven
05-06-2021, 09:42 PM
Hi,
I am wondering how to know whether the trailer is properly leveled when I set up the trailer. Do I have to purchase a large level and a pack of level blocks or is the level issue not so important?

Two issues here -- how you get it level, and how you tell if it's level.

In my old rig, I had "arc bubble levels" glued to the front and side, and manual stabilizers. I'd use the "Lego-type" level blocks (yeah, you're going to need those no matter how you do it) and the tongue jack to get the rig close to level according to the arc levels, then DW would go inside, set up her iPhone flat on the floor, and use the builtin level app (which is now the second screen of the "Measure" app) to tell me how to tune it in as I was cranking the stabilizers. (I know there's also one on Android, I just don't know what it is.)

Since I got the Cougar, I just eyeball the gross level with the Lego blocks if necessary, then push the button on the auto leveling jacks. Gee, I'm so lazy now!

flybouy
05-07-2021, 02:52 AM
DO NOT USE THE STABILIZERS TO RAISE, LEVEL, OR "FINE TUNE"! Stabilizers are just that, to srabilize the trailer and not to lift it in any way. Doing so can cause seious issues such as twisting the frame.

LHaven
05-07-2021, 02:57 AM
Yeah, I've read the warning. Thing is, unless you put some tension on the stabilizers, they don't stabilize; and once you have enough tension on them to stabilize, they invariably alter the trailer level. The art was to get it close enough before cranking them down that you could kill two birds with one stone. Given that it was going to happen anyway, the trick was to make it work for you.

Campermike
05-07-2021, 04:00 AM
I am not super picky with leveling. Close usually does it for me. I simply use the little level that is in my tongue jack and know where level is(it's actually accurate left to right but not quite front to back). I use camco levelers similar to the anderson levelers and find them super easy to use. Only issue is they don't work well on soft ground.

flybouy
05-07-2021, 04:59 AM
I am not super picky with leveling. Close usually does it for me. I simply use the little level that is in my tongue jack and know where level is(it's actually accurate left to right but not quite front to back). I use camco levelers similar to the anderson levelers and find them super easy to use. Only issue is they don't work well on soft ground.

I use the Anderson levelers as well. I also keep 2 planks of 2X8 about 2' long of pressure treated lumber. It seems to keep the levelers from sinking so much as long as the needed height difference can tolerate the height of the boards.

Javi
05-07-2021, 05:01 AM
I have always carried a 6" Bullet Level and set it inside the door level to within a 1/4 bubble and I'm good...

Now-a-days I still carry the level and every so often I'll check the auto level to see if it's good.. :D

truenorth
05-07-2021, 10:45 AM
It's a premier 29rk

cavie
05-13-2021, 11:29 AM
get a level app for your phone. place it in the doorway. get it close. then place stick on bubble level from the HW store on the corners .

TinaMBee1
05-14-2021, 05:30 AM
"""For us, I have a "big semicircular level" on the pinbox. One mark equals 1" off level on the low side. So, when backing into a campsite, if I'm showing 2 marks on the level, then I put 2 blocks under each wheel on the low side.""

=what do you mean by "the pinbox"? I don't know about others but leveling the camper is THE hardest thing to do. It's caused lots of 'loud discussions' with my partner. I spoke with another camping lady I know and she and her husband go through the same thing. I bought the LevelMate pro app and that helps some but still - hate it hate it hate it.

cavie
05-14-2021, 06:00 AM
"""For us, I have a "big semicircular level" on the pinbox. One mark equals 1" off level on the low side. So, when backing into a campsite, if I'm showing 2 marks on the level, then I put 2 blocks under each wheel on the low side.""

=what do you mean by "the pinbox"? I don't know about others but leveling the camper is THE hardest thing to do. It's caused lots of 'loud discussions' with my partner. I spoke with another camping lady I know and she and her husband go through the same thing. I bought the LevelMate pro app and that helps some but still - hate it hate it hate it.

Leveling is very easy to do. Put the RV in place where you want it. If leveling a trailer, look at your attached levels on the side of the rig which you should have put on a long time ago. Use drive-on wood blocks to level side to side first. Touching the bubble to the line is close enough. Then go to your front tong jack and raise on lower the tong as needed. Again touching the bobble to the line is close enough. Now set the stabilizers and chock the wheels. If your driving a motor home, do the drive on block thing first then use you leveling system. Always keep the wheels on the ground. there is an app for your smart phone you can lay at the front door. Again, touching the bubble is close enough.

PS. "Pinbox" is where the 5th wheel hooks to the truck. The box with the pin on it sticking down in front of the trailer.

TinaMBee1
05-14-2021, 07:25 AM
I have a pull behind camper so we don't have a pinbox. I'm thinking one of those big leveler thingys might be help. Where would the best place to put it, and did you have a link for it?

cavie
05-14-2021, 07:36 AM
I have a pull behind camper so we don't have a pinbox. I'm thinking one of those big leveler thingys might be help. Where would the best place to put it, and did you have a link for it?

AMAZON IS YOU FRIEND. https://www.amazon.com/rv-bubble-levelers/s?k=rv+bubble+levelers.

sourdough
05-14-2021, 08:23 AM
"""For us, I have a "big semicircular level" on the pinbox. One mark equals 1" off level on the low side. So, when backing into a campsite, if I'm showing 2 marks on the level, then I put 2 blocks under each wheel on the low side.""

=what do you mean by "the pinbox"? I don't know about others but leveling the camper is THE hardest thing to do. It's caused lots of 'loud discussions' with my partner. I spoke with another camping lady I know and she and her husband go through the same thing. I bought the LevelMate pro app and that helps some but still - hate it hate it hate it.



Tina what are the issues you're having leveling? I ask because the LevelMate pro was extremely easy to use and made leveling a snap compared to the "old" way of leveling we always did, which did in fact lead to some "conversations" between DW and myself. Are you using blocks or something like the Andersen levelers? I went with the Andersens at the same time I put the LevelMate pro in and it sure made it easier.

Edit: Here is a link to the Andersen levelers. You just place them under the tires on the low side and pull up until the LevelMate pro app says it's level then chock - never leave the driver's seat until it's time to chock.

https://www.amazon.com/Leveler-Andersen-Minutes-Levelers-Leveling/dp/B01LYQ1Z8S/ref=sr_1_3?crid=1D0ILR7GY3MAS&dchild=1&keywords=andersen+levelers&qid=1621010569&sprefix=andersen+leveler%2Caps%2C185&sr=8-3

TinaMBee1
05-14-2021, 10:43 AM
we use a combination of those Anderson type levelers and boards. maybe it's because we are usually boon docking - not in a campground - so that you just never know what you're going to get as far as level ground. Or maybe it's all HIM :lol:

sourdough
05-14-2021, 10:56 AM
Yeah, if you're usually out in the boonies it can take a bit of finiggling to get it set. When we boondocked all the time I didn't have Andersens or the lego blocks, just wood blocks. I used one level and over time knew how much bubble meant how many boards. The bubbles Butch (Cavie) linked help also but I could never get them to stay on. Another thing is my expectation of "level" was a lot less in rough country vs staying in developed campgrounds as we do now. I liked to make sure my head was up and the fridge would operate OK.:)

JRTJH
05-14-2021, 11:56 AM
We boondock as much or more than we camp in "organized campgrounds". I don't see where there's a problem with leveling any trailer, as long as the campsite is not "on the side of a mountain"... If the site is "within 4 or 5 inches of being level side to side" just use wood or Lynx blocks" under the tires on the low side. We've had as many as 7 or 8 Lynx levelers (7-8 inches off level) and the only problems we've faced is the need to find a block of firewood to place under the scissors jacks because we ran out of the "formal blocks"...

Once the trailer is level side to side, then just unhitch and level front to back.

The only "make it harder on yourself" issue that I can see is if you're unhitching, then trying to level side to side... I ALWAYS use the tow vehicle to position the trailer on the blocks, and whether it's no blocks, 1 block under each tire or 7 under each tire, it's essentially the same process, just a few extra moments to "build a Lynx ramp from Lynx blocks" so the tires will "climb the ramp"...

Now, if I tried any of this in an "unorganized, no plan of what's next" kind of haphazard process, it probably would result in just going back home... Setting up the trailer is a "mechanical process that has to follow established steps" try to do them out of sequence and it either is much more difficult or impossible to reach the end result...

lcarver02
05-16-2021, 03:44 PM
Hi,
I am wondering how to know whether the trailer is properly leveled when I set up the trailer. Do I have to purchase a large level and a pack of level blocks or is the level issue not so important?

Get two trailer levels - fair quality. Set the trailer level with a good flat place, a long level and patience. Once your level I put one level up front near the hitch for forward / aft level and the other one on the wall inside the trailer for side to side. Close is good, the fridge will be fine with a couple degrees if needed.