Freedom campers are produced by Coachmen and consistently rank among the best-selling campers on the market.
Although Freedom campers remain popular among consumers due to their spacious layout and relatively low price-tag, they suffer from some problems.
We’ve researched the most common problems with Freedom campers that you should be aware of before deciding to buy.
1. Leaks Can Be an Issue
Leaks can be a problem with any camper, and the last thing you want to worry about when it starts raining is water entering your living space.
Not only is it unpleasant having to clean up water from inside your camper, but unseen leaks can cause damage that you might not be aware of until it’s too late.
Here are the most common areas for leakage in Freedom campers:
Freedom users love the convenience of having a private bathroom in their camper.
However, a common complaint is that leaks are all too common in the bathroom. Whether from a badly sealed toilet or a substandard shower head, bathroom leaks are frustrating and messy.
Another area of concern is the bathroom wall, which is reported to be badly caulked, allowing water to leak out into the main living space.
If these interior leaks go unnoticed for too long, mold can develop inside the camper, which is not only unsightly but can also be hazardous to your health.
Freedom campers have slide-outs which provide valuable extra living space.
Unfortunately, many Freedom customers complain that the slide-outs are prone to leaks, leaving many people with wet beds and couches.
The seals on the slide-outs are the problem here, and if the camper is still under warranty, Coachmen should be able to replace them.
When you buy any camper, you’re not going to be expecting a leaky roof. Having to worry about getting wet is the last thing you’ll want when you’re camping.
That being said, quite a few Freedom users have noticed that faulty roof seams are allowing water to enter the camper.
Another issue can be excess caulking around the awning, allowing water to pool and then drip through doors and windows.
Although you don’t expect your camper to have leaks, you should always take the extra precaution of keeping it covered when not in use for extended periods.
2. A Poor Design is Frustrating
Although most Freedom customers have enjoyed their campers’ spaciousness and convenience, there are quite a few complaints about baffling design flaws.
Firstly, the slide-outs can damage cabinets and fixtures if everything hasn’t been closed and folded away properly. The pantry latches, for example, can be torn off unless they are closed just right.
You can make sure to prevent damage from slide-outs by having a thorough checklist of what needs to be folded away and closed properly before the slide-outs are closed.
Another possible design flaw that Freedom users find particularly frustrating is that the water heater and tank monitor’s control panel can’t be accessed when the slide-outs are in.
Although the slide-outs are a popular feature of these campers, solo travelers aren’t always going to want the hassle of sliding them out every day, making the control panel placement a perplexing design choice.
3. Poor Quality Materials and Workmanship
The most common complaints that Freedom camper users have are with the use of poor quality materials and sub-par workmanship.
Many customers express dismay at loose screws, ill-fitting fixtures, and sawdust left over from the build-out scattered about their camper.
One of the most popular features of Freedom campers is the generous amount of storage, with plenty of space to stow everything needed for a long trip.
However, there are many reports of flimsy drawers that can’t hold as much weight as they should and also latches that fail too easily.
These are problems that can be taken care of if you’re willing to buy and install new hardware, but not everyone wants the hassle of dealing with that themselves.
Another example of poor build quality is the trim, which is notorious for peeling off. This leaves unsightly spots that no-one wants.
Again, if the camper is still under warranty, Coachmen will replace the peeling trim, although the customer service team can be slow to respond, and long wait times aren’t uncommon.
Most Freedom campers come from the factory with OEM tires, manufactured in China.
These tires aren’t the best quality and are prone to failure after only time, so it’s a good idea to upgrade to higher quality tires if you buy a Freedom camper.
Better tires on your camper will definitely give you extra peace of mind when you’re on a long trip, as you won’t be constantly worried about a tire blowing out as you’re driving.
Water Tank Braces
Freedom campers come with large freshwater tanks that are supported by braces underneath the camper.
Sadly, the aluminum used for the braces isn’t sturdy enough, and full water tanks can cause the braces to bend.
If this problem isn’t addressed, the braces could end up snapping, so many Freedom users recommend upgrading to a sturdier type of material for the braces.
4. Electrical Issues Can Be Dangerous
Electrical problems are common with all Coachmen campers, and there are many reviews from frustrated customers.
One of the most popular features of Freedom campers is the motorized awning, which makes it super convenient to open.
However, the awning motors are prone to failure, which can be a real issue if the awning is already extended. In this situation, the only solution would be to remove the awning altogether.
Bad wiring is another electrical complaint, with several users mentioning faulty AC units, TVs, and fridges.
In some cases, customers have even discovered incorrectly wired appliances that they’ve had to fix themselves. This kind of problem can be especially dangerous, as it could lead to a fire in the camper.
You should never attempt to fix electrical issues in your camper unless you have experience doing so.
General Pros and Cons for Freedom Campers
Freedom campers are designed with luxury in mind. This includes the bedroom, which has wardrobes on either side of the bed, and convenient ceiling reading lights.
People love the Freedom camper’s spacious living area, which features a generous amount of seating, a large kitchen area, and LED lighting throughout.
As well as the indoor kitchen, there’s an outside kitchen area, which gives Freedom users more options for camp cooking.
Freedom campers are designed to be towed by a variety of vehicles, from mid-size SUVs to larger trucks. Freedom campers range in length from 22′ to 35′, meaning you’ll be able to find a camper that fits your needs.
Freedom campers have more than ample storage for extended trips, including bathroom, bedroom, and kitchen storage that’s generous and well-designed.
- Leaks can be an issue
- Poor design is frustrating
- Poor quality materials and workmanship
- Electrical issues can be dangerous
What Do the Reviews Say?
Freedom campers, though quite heavy, are spacious enough for families with larger vehicles.
“The Freedom Express 257BHS is an excellent family travel trailer. At 5263 pounds, it’s better suited to families with a large SUV or a pickup truck, but it’s got plenty of features and a very functional layout.”[Source: rvlifemag.com]
Although some people are unhappy with the quality of materials used, Freedom campers come with a lot of cool features that make them great value for money.
“Coachmen RV offers the Freedom Express Select ultra light travel trailers with its signature vacuum bonded Azdel sidewall construction, and many standard features at a great value such as having a private master bedroom, seamless kitchen countertops, and an entertainment tower.”[Source: rvingplanet.com]
“Love the look of RV and floor plan, but quality is lacking. Already had to fix sliding door track, carbon monoxide detector, shower floor, and now the roof is messed up in less than a year.”[Source: rvinsider.com]
What’s the Resale Value On Freedom Campers?
|Freedom Express Liberty Edition||2016||$32,300|
|Freedom Express Select||2017||$16,995|
|Freedom Express Ultra Lite||2018||$26,500|
There are many reasons why Freedom campers continue to be so popular.
Aside From features like a spacious master bedroom, and ample storage for everything you’ll need on the road, these campers are an affordable option for couples and families alike.
All campers can have problems, so it’s always best to do detailed research and look at multiple options before buying.
As long as you make sure to do a thorough inspection, you might find that a Freedom camper is the perfect option for your adventures!
Morten is the founder of GoDownsize. He has filmed and interviewed people living in tiny houses and RVs since 2011. He grew up on the coast where his dad took him boating from a young age. He has completely rebuilt two RVs in which he travels with his family for months at the time. Read more about Morten here.