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What To Do! Do You Level Your RV With Slides In Or Out?



Get a group of RVers together and a lively discussion is likely to ensue on a whole range of travel topics. When you have an RV-related question and you’re wondering what to do, what better people to go to than a posse of like-minded RVers who have real experience dealing with your actual issue? And one issue that is often asked by new RVers is whether to level your RV with the slides in or out. It’s a great question and one that will draw different responses depending on who you ask. Let’s dig a little deeper into this question and try to find a clear answer.

Picture This ...


Imagine that you are holding onto a ten pound weight. This weight will represent your RVs slide out. Now imagine that your legs are your RV's leveling jacks. With the weight hanging down by your side, it’s much easier to reposition your legs and there isn't much stress on your arm. Now hold the weight up and out to your side. As you can imagine, the weight now feels a lot heavier because it is no longer in your center of gravity, and the tension on your arm is increased. With this idea in mind, let's ask the question again: Do you level your RV with slides in or out?

slides in vs slides out

The General Rule


Generally speaking, most guidelines state that you should level your RV first, and then deploy the slide outs. If you try to level your RV with the slide outs extended, it puts unnecessary strain on your RV's leveling jacks which will speed up wear and tear and possibly damage some of the leveling components. Similarly, it is easier for your slides to deploy on a level surface rather than at an imbalanced angle. Extending your slides before your RV is level could damage the retracting mechanisms of your slides.

level it first

What’s Right For You?


The undeniably correct answer to the question of whether to level your RV with the slides in or out is whatever your owner’s manual states. All RVs are designed differently, and while you can take advice from other RVers, know that you might not be comparing apples to apples. If you have different types of RVs, you might not have the same answer. So if you’re wondering what’s right for you, consult the owner's manual for your specific RV!

read your manual


Hopefully we’ve helped to clear up the question of whether or not to level your RV with the slides in or out. What does the owner’s manual for your new or used RV suggest? Let us know by leaving a comment!

What Do You Think?

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