Talking About Fifth Wheels, Not Third Wheels: Why You May Never Have Heard Of Them

Posted on: 3 January 2017


When someone says he/she does not want to be "the third wheel," he/she means that he/she does not want to be riding along with a dating couple on the couple's adventures. When you hear "fifth wheel", you might think it is something similar, like perhaps the fifth person riding along with two couples. However, fifth wheels are actually something quite different--they are RV-style campers. Here is why you may never have heard of them.

The Phrase "Fifth Wheel" Is a Regional Thing

Most people would refer to these recreational vehicles as "campers," "trailers," "tow-behinds," or even "RVs," although RVs are often inclusive of an engine and driver's cab. There are some defining features that make fifth wheels very different from all of the above, but it has not stopped consumers from lumping all of these vehicles and vehicle accessories together. As for the "fifth wheel" phrase, that is actually a regional thing, only used in certain parts of the country to describe a very specific type of camping and vacationing accessory.

There May Not Be a Fifth Wheel Dealer in Your Area

Campers and RVs receive a lot of publicity and there are always dealers and dealerships available for these popular, self-driven vehicles. Fifth wheels are quite different because they have a bolt-down connection similar to ones used with cattle and horse trailers. As such, you need the type of pick-up truck to which fifth wheels can easily connect. The special pick-up trucks and the bolt-down connections may not be sold in your area, and therefore the fifth wheel campers may not be sold where you live either.

Used/Second Hand Fifth Wheels Are Hard to Sell in Some Areas

Even if you spot an advertisement for used or secondhand fifth wheels, they may be hard to sell where you live. Again, this goes back to the manner in which they are hauled (and they are hauled because there are no fifth wheels that can be driven on their own). If you do not have the right kind of truck to pull a fifth wheel, then you have to invest in the truck first before you can purchase and add the fifth wheel. That said, you are more likely to encounter private owners who have them for sale, rather than a dealership. If you really want a fifth wheel "camper," then you should check local classifieds regularly, especially if there are no dealers in your area.

For more information contact a company like Brad's Trailer Supply.