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How to Measure for Travel Trailer or Fifth Wheel Steps

How to Measure for Travel Trailer or 5th Wheel Steps

Whether you're replacing broken or worn down steps or upgrading to a new set, you're going to need steps that fit your camper. This may seem obvious, but what's not always obvious is how to actually measure in order to find the right size steps.Travel trailers and fifth wheels typically use manual (non-electric) steps that either fold down or pull out from the RV. Below, we'll show you how to measure for both fold-down and pull-out step styles. Learn how to measure for:Fold-down steps (store inside camper)1. Measure doorway width2. Measure entry heightPull-out steps (store outside camper)1. Measure mounting bracket width2. Measure mounting bracket depth3. Measure entry height
Watch Now: How to Measure for New Trailer Steps

Measuring for Fold-Down RV Steps

A fold-down step is any step that folds at the anchor point in your RV's doorway. Some fold-down steps fold out as a single piece; others fold down at the anchor point and then "scissor" down from there.The Lippert SolidStep Manual Fold-Down Steps and TorkLift GlowStep Revolution Uprising Steps both require the same main measurements (as do most fold-down steps): the doorway width and entry height. Additionally, the TorkLift GlowSteps require you to measure the doorsill.
Lippert SolidStep Fold-Down RV Steps
Lippert SolidStep fold-down steps
TorkLift GlowStep Revolution Uprising RV Steps
TorkLift GlowStep Revolution Uprising fold-down "scissor" steps
Measure RV step doorway width
Measure RV Step Doorway WidthSince fold-down steps install inside your camper's doorframe, you'll need to measure your doorway width to determine what size steps will fit. Specifically, you'll need to measure the distance between your door frame flanges. (You may be able to "cheat" and find this information on your factory label, so check there first!)When choosing your steps, select steps with a width as close to your doorway width as possible without going over, since your steps will, of course, need to fit in your doorway.
Measure entry height
Measure RV Step Entry Height"Entry height" basically translates to how many steps you'll need. You can find your entry height by measuring from the doorway threshold (the "mounting point") to the ground. Your entry height should roughly match the height of your extended steps. The entry height specs will be listed for each step, so just make sure the specs line up with your measurements.
Choose RV Step Specs
Choose the Right RV Step Each step includes a list of specifications and dimensions. Match up your measurements to the step's specifications to make sure it will fit.
TorkLift GlowStep Revolution UprisingThe fold-down Revolution Uprising steps also require you to measure the doorsill. Measure the doorsill plate, both the height and the clearance between it and the bottom of the door. Check the specific description for your step product to see the minimium required measurements.
TorkLift GlowStep Revolution Uprising Measurements
RV Step Outrigger

Measuring for Pull-Out RV Steps

Pull-out steps install outside and beneath your camper. These kinds of steps are often preferable to fold-down steps because they are stored outside the camper and therefore don't track in mud, water, or debris to dirty up your camper floor.The TorkLift GlowStep Revolution Scissor Steps, Lippert Manual Pull-Out Steps, and Stromberg Carlson Flexco Steps all require the same main measurements (as do most pull-out steps).To measure for this step style, you'll need to measure your mounting bracket width and depth, as well as your entry height.
Pull-Out RV Camper Steps
Pull-Out Measure Mounting Bracket Width
Mounting Bracket WidthYour mounting brackets are located beneath your camper in the space just below your doorway. Measure from one mounting bracket to the other.
Pull-Out Measure Mounting Bracket Depth
Mounting Bracket DepthNext, measure from the front side of the bracket to the back.
Pull-Out Measure Entry Height
Entry Height"Entry height" basically translates to how many steps you'll need. You can find your entry height by measuring from your mounting point (mounting bracket) to the ground. Your entry height should roughly match the height of your extended steps. The entry height specs will be listed for each step, so just make sure the specs line up with your measurements.
Choose RV steps with appropriate specs
Choosing the Right StepEach step includes a list of specifications and dimensions. Match up your measurements to the step's specifications to make sure it will fit.
A Note on Outriggers: Depending on your steps, you may need outriggers for installation. Outriggers bolt to your RV frame and provide brackets for the steps to attach to, in particular when the old steps were longer or wider than the new steps.The specific location and orientation of the outriggers depends on the RV/trailer. However, the general instructions for installing steps and outriggers is as follows:
  • Ensure step is completely backed up against the step supports on frame.
  • Insert carriage bolts and flange lock nuts. Tighten down only until snug in order to make adjustments.
  • Verify that the step housing is square, level to the outrigger, and plumb to the chassis. Then, tighten the carriage bolts down.
  • Attach tech screws through the step supports, to the step supports on the chassis.
  • Attach lag bolt or bolts to floor through the outer end holes in the outrigger.
RV Step Outrigger
Still have questions?Give our experts a call at 800-298-8924, or contact us online. We're happy to assist any way we can!
Amber S.
About the AuthorAs a content writer for etrailer, I might spend my morning loading and unloading a bike on five different bike racks to figure out which is easiest to use. I might be in the parking lot, taking pictures of an impressive RV battery setup our techs came across in the shop and discussing the benefits of the setup with the owner. I might spend an afternoon in a manufacturer training classes for some hands-on experience with new products, and then sit down to assemble all this information into a coherent article.At etrailer, one of our core values is that we are always learning, and I learn something new every day. I start each morning with the goal in mind of taking all of this information and figuring out the best way to answer the questions people ask us (and the ones they don’t know to ask yet), and helping people get the solutions they need to make their lives easier, safer, and more fun. I’m a DIYer at heart, so it brings me great joy to help a fellow DIYer find what they’re looking for, whether that’s a product, an answer, or a community.
Related ContentRelated ProductsWritten by: Amber S.Updated on: 11/17/20

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