Sunday, October 2, 2022


Do you know the exact height of your RV?

Do you know the exact height of your RV? We mean the “exact” height, not what’s printed in your owner’s manual.

We’ve all seen photos and videos of RVs losing an air conditioner or even their entire roof by trying to drive under a low bridge. It’s an ugly sight, that’s for sure. And the only way to avoid that happening to you is to know the exact height of your RV — to the inch — and then avoiding taking any chances by trying to squeeze beneath a bridge or overpass that’s too close for comfort.

So what about you? Do you know the exact height of your rig?

Oh, here’s what can happen if you don’t pay attention to bridge height warning signs.


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John Koenig
11 months ago

When I got my rig “Smart Weighed” at an RV rally, the service provider also measured the height. 12’5″ at the top of the satellite dome. 12’9″ is the least amount of clearance I would accept when driving under an overpass and, at that expected clearance, I would take it through slowly.

11 months ago

’09’ Thor Four Winds Class C. I haven’t measured it. Fed law is a max of 13’6″. I simply don’t go under anything lower than that. Going on 6yrs and haven’t hit anything yet!

Bob P
11 months ago


11 months ago

i have measured all 3 RV’s we have had. So I am adding to keep in mind with 5th wheels, your “real” height is affected by the tow vehicle. We use a Garmin RV GPS that allows us to help avoid the dreaded “crunch” as we lose the AC unit. And I know someone who has!

Last edited 11 months ago by Steve
11 months ago

Our RV is under 12′ high. It has to be, it fits into it’s home with a 12′ door and just the radio antenna twangs on the door bracing.

Dennis G.
11 months ago

Measured ours at 11′-3″, but I used 11′-6″ as my bench mark.

Neal Davis
11 months ago

The manufacturer’s brochure for our RV says we are 12’4″. However, I have our height as 13’6″ in our Rand McNally RV GPS. I will probably actually measure our next one , but never bothered with this one.

11 months ago


11 months ago

Had it measured when it was weighed (4 corner) and then posted the height PLUS 6″ on my dash.
I trust my measurement, but not the road crews! Resurfacing the road can diminish height without replacing the sign!

11 months ago

Height of our RV was a go or no go when at the dealer. It had to fit in my carport. The dealer told me what the book said. I told him that was not good enough. I would be a sale or no sale. He got a tech out there on a ladder with 2×4, level, and tape measure. He got up and leveled the 2×4 on the highest point and dropped the tape measure to the ground and gave me a reading. That and replacing a slightly scratched headlight lens made the sale. Honest dealer OR hungry salesman – ? THEY met my specs.

11 months ago

we don’t carry anything on the roof that wasn’t put there by the factory. our roof clearance is 12’6″.

Heather Smith
11 months ago

But, like others below, we do manually measure the exact height when kayak loaded on roof-top of our jeep – too many near misses. Plus we put a safety post (those neon orange ones hiway workers put out) in front of our covered carport as we have actually accidentally went in – luckily stopped just in time with no damages to kayak;).

Heather Smith
11 months ago

Our manual shows height including the AC!

11 months ago

I have a label on the dash that has two heights: the height of the a/c and the height of the antenna added to it. If the antenna rubs no problem as long as the a/c clears but hearing it hit gives me reason to double check.

Don N
11 months ago

When I first bought my Class C, I measured the highest point and used a label maker to put a label just above the speed-o-meter. I use that number to know my clearance. Also after you are packed ready for a trip, the height will be somewhat lower. Better to be safe than have to make repairs.

Roy Davis
11 months ago

We’re 13’4″ but I set the GPS at 13’6″. Believe it or not, we encountered a 13’6″ clearance on interstate 90 going through downtown Chicago but, as is typical of Chicago traffic, we were only going about 10 Mph. Coming from Ohio, we now stay on I-94 and have discovered that, while it adds 20 miles more, it actually is faster than staying on I-90 when heading to “The Dells”.

."Gene Bjerke
11 months ago

While I haven’t actually measured it myself, the manufacturer states the height as 9’6″ so I use a working height of 10 feet.

11 months ago

Exactly! After watching repeat videos of those “low bridge” disasters, I got my son to help me measure my Class Cs height. Eleven feet, eight inches which takes into account fully aired tires and the roof mounted AC. My only concern now is those bridges that aren’t marked!

11 months ago

Yes, I used a straight 1×2, a level and measuring tape on a flat surface and had my wife read the tape, the motorhome’s overall height at the AC unit is 2 inches higher than advertised. My GPS is made for truckers and RV’s and I can put my height, width and weight measurements in it + 6 inches for the height, the GPS once warned me of width issues for the route. I also have all measurements on my dash area in inches and metric + 6 inches for height.

11 months ago

12′ 6″ I am very cautious when I see anything less than 13′.

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