What Is a Fifth Wheel and What Are It’s Advantages?

Camping is a delightful pastime that is on the rise in the US. Between 2014 and 2018 the number of households with at least one person who likes to camp rose by 6 million to reach 77 million households.

Millennials especially are drawn to the activity and their generation accounts for 40% of all campers.

The cool thing is that there are many ways to camp from roughing it with just a sleeping bag and maybe a tent to luxury accommodations in an RV or fifth wheel. There is something for everyone!

So, what is a fifth wheel anyway? Let’s find out!

What Is a Fifth Wheel RV?

Fifth wheel trailers are large, usually luxurious RVs. Instead of connecting to the back of the towing vehicle like a regular travel trailer, there is a hitch coupling in the bed of the towing vehicle. The front of the fifth wheel extends up and over to couple with the towing vehicle up in the bed.

Why Is It Called a Fifth Wheel?

The name comes from this different hitching setup. The fifth wheel’s design gives it five points where the weight of the vehicle rests — the four tires and the hitch.

Having this fifth point is part of what gives the fifth wheel the ability to be a larger vehicle. Since part of the weight rests in the towing vehicle, less is being dragged behind the vehicle. Of course, to have the capacity to pull the fifth wheel in the first place, you’ll need a larger towing vehicle, such as a heavy-duty or full-size pickup. Small trucks can’t usually handle the weight of a fifth wheel.

What Are the Benefits of a Fifth Wheel?

The major benefits of the fifth wheel come from being larger and usually more luxurious. It is not uncommon to see king-sized beds, solid wood cabinets, and full-size appliances in fifth wheels. These RVs are set up for those who really want to camp in style. Travel trailers often can’t accommodate these upgrades because of the extra weight. The small ball hitch on the back of the towing vehicle just can’t handle it.

Even though their sheer size can be intimidating for drivers who are not used to towing, the hitch setup actually makes for more stable and maneuverable towing.

The bottom line, if you want a large, luxurious vehicle that is relatively easy to pull, a fifth wheel is a better bet than a regular travel trailer.

Where to Get Your Fifth Wheel

So, what is a fifth wheel? The perfect RV for getting out and exploring the many fabulous sights that Texas and the surrounding states have to offer. It’s time to get your own fifth wheel RV and hit the open road!

Visit us here at Gypsy Road RVs for an awesome selection of new and used fifth wheels and travel trailers. Contact us with questions or drop in any time to pick out the RV of your dreams!

Share Button