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Old 07-03-2017, 10:14 AM   #1
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Some opinions on levels

Just looking for some opinions on levels for RV's. I used camco and others and the ones I just put on the new trailer...Camco stick on...in April, the fluid is already faded to clear and the bubble has grown from a 1/4" wide to 3/4" wide...no idea how they do that in a sealed enclosure. Had another set do the same thing...bubble grew to 1 1/4" wide...and never leaked. We have a bumper pull and I have one on passenger side body and one on center of frame behind battery compartment. Like to hear your thoughts.
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Old 07-03-2017, 10:22 AM   #2
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On the 304 I would just use a 1-2 foot Carpenters level right inside the entrance Door Floor! Youroo!!
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Old 07-03-2017, 10:33 AM   #3
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I do what youroo does. carpenters level on the countertop.
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Old 07-03-2017, 10:36 AM   #4
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On the 304 I would just use a 1-2 foot Carpenters level right inside the entrance Door Floor! Youroo!!
Same here. 24" plastic carpenter level on the floor in front of the refrigerator.
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Old 07-03-2017, 10:44 AM   #5
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I set up the whole trailer level when i purchased with 4 6' levels and 2 4'. The stick on are quick and easy...side to side, front to back and 2 steps from switch for jacks. They just don't seem to last.
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Old 07-03-2017, 10:46 AM   #6
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Same here. 24" plastic carpenter level on the floor in front of the refrigerator.
X3 Sometimes simple is the best
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Old 07-03-2017, 10:56 AM   #7
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X3 Sometimes simple is the best
One thing I've learned...30 levels in a trailer...29 different readings.
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Old 07-03-2017, 10:57 AM   #8
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Use the Level Master big level on the outside so I can see while still in the truck.

http://www.adventurerv.net/giant-lev...source=Froogle
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Old 07-03-2017, 11:00 AM   #9
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Neighbor has that on his 2008 Montana. Only one he ever put on. Truly...you get what you pay for.
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Old 07-03-2017, 11:02 AM   #10
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Use the Level Master big level on the outside so I can see while still in the truck.
Doh! I forgot. I have this, too.
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Old 07-03-2017, 11:03 AM   #11
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Thanks guys !! Think I'll up the quality of the next and spend a little more.
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Old 07-03-2017, 11:11 AM   #12
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Got to share this with you. 3 wks ago at campground. Couple pulls in with 20' TT. Wife jumps out...looks at front level, grabs two 1x8 from storage...hubby pulls forward, she lays boards, he backs up...the trailer is now farther off level. She has him pull forward and she drops two more boards down. He backs up, notices the lean and starts laughing. That's one good husband...did say a word, pulled forward, moved boards to other side, parked trailer, kisses his wife and all is well in the universe.
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Old 07-03-2017, 11:28 AM   #13
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One thing I've learned...30 levels in a trailer...29 different readings.
Only 29!
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Old 07-03-2017, 11:44 AM   #14
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Only 29!
You're bound to hit two...once in a while.
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Old 07-03-2017, 11:51 AM   #15
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On the 304 I would just use a 1-2 foot Carpenters level right inside the entrance Door Floor! Youroo!!
DITTO.

but that Level Master in post 8 looks pretty interesting.

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Old 07-03-2017, 12:25 PM   #16
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I use a small stick on level just on the side of my 5er next to the controls for the landing gear. I can tell without ever leaving the switch area when it is level.

I have never had a problem with the fluid changing color because it is clear. I have not had a problem with the bubble growing or shrinking either.

Since my refrigerator is located on a side wall the fore/aft leveling is the most critical as far as its operation and health are concerned.

As far as side to side, we use 2x6 boards to drive up onto to level it side to side. IF it is not just perfect, we don't notice and don't care. After a bit of time you will know whether to use o 1 or two boards, or none if the site ls level enough.

Others may disagree but this has worked very well for us for over 15 years with two different 5ers.
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Old 07-03-2017, 12:41 PM   #17
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I'm a huge fan of all things Camco, but I like the Hopkins for one simple reason. They have a straight edge on the bottom, and this simplifies lining up the level with the trailer frame. These are disposable items...especially the one on the front of the trailer...because a stone can blow them out in a second. But I keep a couple spares in the camper, and they are very easy to replace without having to level the camper first. https://smile.amazon.com/Hopkins-852...ords=rv+levels
I don't just rely on the sticky tape...I also screw them to the frame.

As for carpenter's levels, they are great, and far more precise, but with a PUP, leveling the trailer typically comes well before the opportunity to throw a level on an inside counter. Plus, the Hopkins levels are more than accurate enough for sink drains, fried eggs on the stove, etc. I rough in side-to-side leveling on my single-axle PUP with my handy Camco wedge. https://smile.amazon.com/Camco-44573...co+rv+leveling My wife monitors side-to-side leveling as I pull the PUP up the wedge, then she throws a wheel chock in to hold things. When I unhitch, my wife monitors the front-to-rear level...on the curb side of the PUP frame as I crank the tongue jack. Once we're roughed in, I use the stabilizer jacks to tweak things a tiny bit, and we're dead center on the bubbles in both directions. (Stabilizer jacks aren't meant for leveling, but they can handle an inch or two of lift with no harm done. I always start with the lowest corner, jack until just beyond level, then snug up the other three corners without throwing the PUP out of level. In my 4th season with no problems.)

One other tip for leveling on more "extreme" slopes. Dig a hole on the uphill side for the tire(s) to drop into. Very effective, and saves a big first step on the stairs. We camp near a lake frequently, and the side slopes can be pretty severe. I use the hole and wedge techniques there.
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Old 07-03-2017, 12:47 PM   #18
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<<snip>> I rough in side-to-side leveling on my single-axle PUP with my handy Camco wedge. https://smile.amazon.com/Camco-44573...co+rv+leveling <<snip>>
Much as I like my Camco Wedge, it won't work on double axle trailers, and frankly, it's not as precise or as easy to lock the tire in place with a wheel chock as these Anderson's appear to be. Next time, I'm buying these: https://smile.amazon.com/Andersen-Hi...on+rv+leveling (I'd just need one, but this setup is great for double axle trailers and beats the hell out of stacked plastic blocks.)
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Old 07-03-2017, 01:16 PM   #19
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Last thought.
If you're a stickler for dead level, setup the RV on a paved surface. Use the carpenter level technique, and get it perfect. Then install your frame mounted bubble levels so they read perfectly level. Then the Hopkins levels will be every bit as good as your framing level.

I've done a LOT of construction through the years, and when I buy levels, squares, calipers and so on, I find the best level, square, or caliper money can buy and then use it as a reference against which to compare a cheap level, square, or caliper. This technique works well when "calibrating" the Hopkins levels, too.
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Old 07-03-2017, 01:23 PM   #20
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Those bubble levels are notoriously off level except at dead center on level. Even the more expensive ones are grossly off of the gradients on determining how much leveling planks to add under the wheels. As for the expanding bubble, either the oil is leaking out the vial or the size of the vial is expanding .... possibly heat from the sunshine.
I use a 24" carpenters level and a tape measure on the back bumper or just inside the door on the floor. Since 24" is 1/4 the width of the RV, just raise the low end of the level until it is level and measure to the floor or bumper on the raised end. Every 1/4" is 1" of leveler between the tire and ground. I usually go over by 1" on the slideout side since the TT tends to settle some on that side once the slide is deployed.
I usually place the level on the tongue for the front to rear leveling since the jack is right there and I can keep an eye on it as it operates. Swampy
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