Saturday, September 30, 2023


Have you ever done any damage to your RV while backing up?

Backing up is not always easy with an RV, whether a big ol’ motorhome or a towable rig. How many of us have been entertained in a campground watching a new arrival struggle with backing into a campsite? Anyone who has been an RVer for very long has probably enjoyed this free entertainment.

But, the fact is, backing up does not always result in a good outcome. Many of us have sideswiped a tree or poked a hole in the siding from a tree branch that we somehow didn’t see. Or how about the times we’ve bumped into a tree stump or other object too low to the ground to see in our side mirrors?

So how about you? Have you ever struck something while backing up with your RV that caused damage that needed to be repaired?

Please feel free to leave a comment. And, remember, sometimes the poll loads kinda slow, so hang on. It may take a few moments to show up.

Chuck Woodbury
Chuck Woodbury
I'm the founder and publisher of I've been a writer and publisher for most of my adult life, and spent a total of at least a half-dozen years of that time traveling the USA and Canada in a motorhome.


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2 years ago

While travelling cross country I stopped by the side of the road at an old road construction site. Needed to back up to complete a turn around when a traffic sign post jumped up right behind that I didn’t see in the camera. It hit almost dead center in the diesel exhaust extension and bent it and broke some fiberglass. Was able to fix the exhaust with some elbow grease and repair the fiberglass.

Donald N Wright
2 years ago

Lucky me, I learned from an old guy, ” walk your site, look up, down, sideways”. :”See if it is easier to back in going the other direction”. Take your time, go slow, put some sort of markers out there to line up with.”

Bill S
2 years ago

1. My tow car assembly on the back of my motor home damaged a block wall while I was backing.
2. A tree jumped into the side of another motor home while backing. Little damage, except tree lost some bark

Dennis G
2 years ago

Tapped our RV twice in the rear. Both time there was very minor damage. The first time was when I backed towards a brick wall. Only pushed the plastic bumper end cap in an inch. Being flexible plastic, once I straightened the metal bracket all was well. Not even a scratch.
The second time I did not even hear or feel the touch. The left rear cap extrusion got a line pressed in about 2” wide. Need to pull off that metal part and straighten it from behind, using a paint less dent technique.

2 years ago

I’ve done damage a couple times..both slight. Years ago while moving our Class C at a boondocking campsite to take advantage of the shade under a tree, a branch hooked the restroom crank up vent (which was up, as we’d already set up camp) while backing up and broke the plastic cover. Rather minor, except the cover for those vents are no longer available, and indeed a mystery to every RV parts store I’ve ever been to. The plastic cover snaps onto a metal frame underneath, and the whole vent is far tougher than the current flimsy excuses for vents they use today. I still don’t know what brand the old vents are..and was forced to modify slightly to install a cheap new flimsy vent. Second time was backing our new travel trailer into it’s spot in the yard..I misjudged and scraped the top rail of the chain link fence. A spot of black touch up paint fixed that.

2 years ago

First time in this long term rv resort ( a dump) an new to our 5th wheel, I sideswiped a post on the rv door. Got to look at it for the rest of our many years. was a constant reminder lol

Mike Whelan
2 years ago

Not exactly a backing up problem but more of a hidden steel pipe low to the ground at a Tennessee State Park dump station. Making a tight turn into the dump station the right front found a hidden steel pipe. Just a slight bump, but still $2500 fix-it bill.

Bob Weinfurt
3 years ago

Not yet

D Haley
3 years ago

Nope but then again 99 percent of the time I have a spotter. Oh. object is to put spotter just in behind so you can see their hand(s) that way if you are going to bump into something you have some cushion not to damaged the camper and usually when you re that close they are screaming. Only kidding. But a spotter can be a great help if you communicate well as a team.

3 years ago

I was in Hatch, NM. I passed the driveway of the service station. I thought I’ll just back up a tad. Not used to the backup camera I didn’t look at it. It looked clear in my mirrors. So I proceeded to back my 43’ fifth wheel. Then I heard it…….THUG. It did a little scrape on the rear of my rig, hardly noticeable. The car I hit had a good size dent. The young lady either didn’t have a license or was scared because she said don’t worry about it. She just Wanted out of there. I felt bad but obliged.

3 years ago

i drive commercial. for now i run the yard goat three nights a week. must back up a good 100-200 times a shift (12+) hrs long.
not hit anything. but i have also been a class A driver for 40 years.
but backing up a rig is far and away different than a rv but all the workings are the same.

KK Idaho
3 years ago

I just put a new backup camera on my motor home & was backing out of the driveway into the front yard. My wife was guiding me but she finished while I was still backing. I backed right into a power pole in the front yard and smashed my new backup camera.
Years ago my wife knocked over a parking meter in a small town and reported it. However, nobody knew what to do about it.

Bill Fisher
3 years ago

Haven’t damaged the trailer, but have bent up the gutter on the house a bit over the driveway.

2 years ago
Reply to  Bill Fisher

I did the exact same thing. I put a hole the size of a gutter spike/nail through the aluminum siding on our trailer. This was one of the first times I backed up our 33’ travel trailer after we purchased it.

Vanessa Simmons
3 years ago

I answered No HOWEVER you should have an option for “No but did damage to something else.” On my first attempt to back into a space at a park I knocked down and broke the “hitching rail” that separated the back to back spaces. Cost me $30 to buy a new one.

3 years ago

With the help of a friend I backed into his fence. $3,500 damage to the coach, $100 to his fence.

Rory R
3 years ago

I answered yes, because while backing into a site, I’d checked everything, I got out and did a walkaround even. I did not look up and missed a low hanging branch and cracked the case on the forward AC. Dumb mistake…

3 years ago

Backing between garage and fence with less than six inch clearance on either side, snagged an inside fence post with back awning leg. Couldn’t get close to survey damage and had to pull forward to see, loose leg on awning put three inch gash in side near rear of trailer. I had a 33 foot trailer moving it with a half ton Chevy van with extension mirrors.

3 years ago
  1. Backed into light pole. No real damage.
  2. Jackknifed utility trailer with motorhome. Little dent in motorhome bumper, big dent in front of trailer.
  3. Took out water spigot at campsite at Salem (Virginia) Civic Center. Maintenance folks were very nice, had it replaced in about an hour, never said a word about it.
3 years ago

I nearly destroyed my new ladder on my last motorhome by backing into a post, and bent my rear bumper. Had to unbend both of them.

3 years ago

Depending on what you call “minor”. I think I am getting the hang of it, but all the damage on my rig is in the back.

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