Camping can be made much more fun if you have the right equipment. Is your camping experience always ruined by a tight tent?
Or, you wish for some extra luxuries for a great time in the wild?
This is where a teardrop trailer comes in. Don’t worry, it has nothing to do with you dropping any tears over it; the name comes from its teardrop design. If you are a camping geek, chances are that you are already familiar with a micro size teardrop trailer.
However, if you are new to the wild, you might as well consider the best for you as soon as possible. So, what is a teardrop trailer?
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What is a teardrop trailer?
A teardrop trailer can be thought of as an RV-type small compartment with wheels that can be towed along with a vehicle. It used as a resting area mostly during outdoor endeavors like camping or a road trip. A teardrop trailer has space for sleeping and storing stuff that one would bring along. You can recognize one by its unique teardrop shape and two wheels at one end.
Why use a teardrop trailer?
As mentioned above, a teardrop trailer provides you a comfortable and ample resting space. Adventurers can make the most out of it during camping or outdoor trips. You have a bed for two, a mini-kitchen, and extra storage space.
For further elaboration, here are few solid pros of teardrop trailers that you should consider:
|Trailer Make Model
2021 nuCamp RV TAB 320 CS-S Boondock
2018 TAXA Tiger Moth
2020 Vintage Trailer Works Inc XTR
2020 Rad Coast
2021 Braxton Creek Bushwhacker 10FB
|GVWR 2200 lbs
2021 Braxton Creek Bushwhacker Plus 17BH
|GVWR 3320 lbs
2017 Nucamp T@B CS-S
2017 Little Guy SILVER SHADOW 6X10 MAX
|Dry weight: 1200 lbs
2017 Little Guy MyPod
2016 Little Guy LITTLE GUY 5 WIDE PLATFORM
|Gross Vehicle Weight: 900 lbs
2017 Nucamp T@G XL MAX
2018 Rollingstar TRAIL MARKER Up and Out
|Gross Vehicle Weight: 980 lbs
2019 Jayco Hummingbird 10RK
|Gross Vehicle Weight: 1,545 lbs
Little Fox Teardrop Trailer, 2017
Advantages of teardrop trailers
Thanks to their compact size and lightweight design, teardrop trailers typically weigh at 3000 pounds or less. Meanwhile, the lightest of teardrop trailers weigh as less as 700 pounds. Consequently, you won’t have any trouble towing it either with smaller vehicles or even some motorcycles. You don’t necessarily need to have a truck, SUV, or heavy-duty vehicle to tow a teardrop trailer. Just harness it correctly and you are ready to hit the road. Compare to popup camper weight.
Just as their weight, teardrop trailers have a limited size as well. They are compact enough to fit in your garage; a perk that other trailers and RVs don’t provide. Typically, teardrop trailers are 5 feet wide, 9 feet long, and 4 feet high. Therefore, you don’t have to pay any off-site storage fee like those of caravans as teardrop trailers occupy minimal space and fit in your garage easily. Moreover, steering and controlling these trailers on the road won’t be of any trouble thanks to their small size.
- Low fuel consumption
As stated above, a teardrop trailer is visibly compact and lightweight. As a result, any car or even a motorcycle can tow it without expending a considerable amount of fuel. Typically, towing teardrop trailer will sap only 20% more fuel than your vehicle would normally do. This amount is no big deal considering how much fuel an RV would consume at the same distance. Thus, you get almost perks as an RV would have but lesser fuel consumption and no significant maintenance charges. Not to forget, less fuel consumption means less carbon ejection. Thus, teardrop trailers are more are just as environment friendly as they are user-friendly.
Being small and light, teardrop trailers have an economical design. Relative to motorhomes and RVs, a teardrop trailer does not only cost less to but it is easier and cheaper to maintain as well. Similarly, repairs, alterations, and decorations won’t put much stress on your wallet. Since there is no engine involved, you can do most of the repairing yourself.
No questions for this one. Sleeping on the cold ground in a tent or snuggling in a warm bed in a teardrop trailer; the choice is pretty obvious. A teardrop trailer is equipped with all the necessities that one would need in outdoors or even indoors. From a bed to a mini-kitchen and sometimes even a bathroom, a teardrop trailer has it all. Thus, you should be more concerned about how to make the most out of your time on your trip instead of worrying about where and how to sleep at night. Cook something to eat, grab a blanket, sleep tight, and get up fresh the next morning to continue your venture.
Bear attacks on campers are quite common. Bears have a very strong sense of smell and can pick up on their prey easily. So, if you recently bar-b-qued your meal during camping, a bear might be already on its way to join the party! In such cases, a mere tent simply won’t hold out against such a powerful intruder. A bear may enter or rip your tent and attack you. Just Google, “bear attacks on campers” and you’ll know what I mean. However, a teardrop trailer is like safety insurance. How light it may be, it’s still rigid enough to hold out against such an attack. If you are under attack or spot any predator coming at you, encapsulate yourself in a teardrop trailer and you are safe.
- Aesthetic and add-ons
As I mentioned earlier, it’s not about just spending the night somehow, a teardrop trailer is your mini-home, your identity. Customize it as you will, paint that wall, roll-out a carpet, hang your favorite curtains, hang your photos, and posters. Additionally, you can install a wooden interior or exterior or customize the ceiling. If you plan to spend more time in your beloved trailer, do not hesitate to install an electrical system to enjoy fans, AC, TV’s or to charge your devices while out. In short, a teardrop trailer represents an entire lifestyle and not just a mere ‘sleeping area.’ Do you get the same perks with a tent?—pretty much not.
- Customize it to make more space
To make space for extra people, you can place a rooftop tent on your trailer. Doing so will give your tent a solid base to stand on while safe from wet ground and predators. You can easily increase the capacity from two to four persons. Furthermore, if you wish so, you can remove any unnecessary stuff from your interior and make some sitting space. This option saves you a big deal if you are considering going for a larger RV instead. With only a few customizations, you can almost double the resting space.
- Easy cooking
A good diet is fuel for a great journey. A teardrop trailer doesn’t neglect that fact and thus, you get a spacious enough kitchen to prepare meals. Don’t worry about undercooked meals the next time you are camping. The kitchen has enough storage to keep all the raw food items and cookware that you’ll need on your trip. Simply open up the rounded side of the trailer, where the kitchen is installed, and you have all the accessories you need to prepare your favorite dishes.
- Travel with style
If you have a ‘no compromise’ policy on your style and comfort then a teardrop trailer is for you. People can’t help but notice your cute little mini-house. You’ll be immediately the center of attention as soon as you hit the road. Others might want to take a closer look and start a conversation about it like how to get one or how much it costs. Moreover, you’ll be a part of the community of your trailer’s brand. You may meet like-minded folks, discuss common issues, and plan trips together. Conclusion of the story: you travel with style.
NuCamp – https://nucamprv.com/
High Camp – https://www.highcamptrailers.com/
Little Guy lightweight trailers https://golittleguy.com/
Timber Leaf Trailers https://timberleaftrailers.com/
Compare various make and models https://www.thewaywardhome.com/teardrop-trailers/
Guide to Teardrop Trailers https://www.generalrv.com/blog/teardrop-trailers-guide-best-teardrop-campers-to-buy/
Though how handy a teardrop trailer maybe, few shortcomings come with it. Here are a few to start with.
- Small size
On one hand, the small size makes teardrop trailers lightweight and compact, but on the other hand, some users might find it too small even for themselves. Especially if you are a tall person, you may find yourself bumping your head on the ceiling. You have to move around with your head down and may have trouble stretching your legs. Plus with extra luggage, you may have to just ‘fit in’. As stated above, the average height for a teardrop trailer is 5-feet, and its bad news for folks with a height more than that.
- Limited capacity
Unlike an RV or a standard camper trailer, a teardrop trailer has only limited capacity. Typically, the maximum passenger capacity for a teardrop trailer is 2 persons. So, if you have a big family or are planning a trip with a group of friends, a single teardrop trailer certainly won’t accommodate all. You can install a rooftop tent if you wish but that doesn’t change the capacity for a single teardrop trailer. You just have to compromise.
- Limited storage
Just as the passenger capacity, a teardrop trailer has limited space as well. So, don’t expect to load a lot of luggage. Remember, you are going for a trip so carry along only the essentials. Try to pack your equipment wisely in the most compact form possible to occupy minimal space. If you are packing clothes, fold them to compress as much as possible. If you have a lot of cookware, place them in a box and place that box on another one. However, remember to place the luggage evenly on both sides of the trailer to avoid any misbalance.
- Outdoor kitchen only
Want to make a sandwich? Go outside and make one. Yes, that’s right because almost every teardrop trailer is equipped with an outdoor kitchen. It means you have to go outside every time you have to cook something. In case it is raining outside, I doubt you can cook something and you have to wait for the rain to stop. Therefore, it’s recommended to get a cover or overhang to avoid getting wet or sunburn under the scorching sunlight in summers. Frankly speaking, I can’t see how one cook inside a teardrop trailer as doing so would fill the interior with smoke. Also, there can be a possibility that fire breaks out.
- No bathroom
This shouldn’t come as a surprise. Teardrop trailers have limited space and one simply cannot install a toilet inside it. You have to ‘live with nature’ every time you need to use a bathroom. Similar to stealth campers.
There are only a very few models that have a toilet and sink installed but don’t expect every other teardrop trailer to have the same. You may have a sink to wash your hands though. However, if it comes to using the toilet, you have to look for other options. If you find this con to be too inconvenient, it is fair to reconsider your decision to but a teardrop trailer.
So, here are the most prominent cons related to teardrop trailers that you need to consider. However, keep in mind, the sole aim of a teardrop trailer is to provide all possible features in the most minimal size and design.
Sure enough, a teardrop trailer is doing so. If you really want an indoor kitchen and bathroom that much, you can consider going for an RV. But again, a teardrop trailer is best at what it does.
No running hot and cold water.
Why consider shifting over to teardrop trailers?
If a tent or RV has been getting the job done for you, it might compel you to wonder, why opt for a teardrop trailer? Is there more to get out of it? If the above-stated arguments are not enough to make up your mind, let’s explore more.
- Hotel vs. teardrop trailer
How do you plan to stay the night on your next road trip? In a lavish hotel or a cheap motel? In any both cases, you are paying for the night and if your trips elongate a few more days, your expenses can rise up. What if you wish to spend some more time on your trip but run out of money to pay for the rooms? Instead of paying for something temporary, you can purchase a teardrop trailer and get rid of this headache for once and for all. It’s a one-time investment and totally worth it. Now you have the freedom to enjoy as many days and nights as you wish without worrying about a thing. So, if it’s hotel vs. teardrop trailers, the latter is the clear winner!
- RV vs. teardrop trailer
As mentioned before, RV obviously costs a ton more than a teardrop trailer and the same can be said about its repair and maintenance charges. Not to forget, your fuel expenses will increase significantly. However, on more neutral ground, it’s fair to admit that the luxury of comfort that an RV offers is unparalleled. Still, a teardrop trailer gives more than enough that one would need on a trip or camping. Unless you want to go only for the best and have a lot of cash to spend, a teardrop trailer meets all our needs.
- Tent vs. teardrop trailer
The only attraction that tents have is their cheap price. Other than that, a teardrop trailer leads in all departments such as comfort, safety, style, capacity, and storage. You can almost double the fun on your next camping when opting for a teardrop trailer. So, there is no comparison here; teardrop trailer all the way.
What to consider when buying a teardrop trailer?
Now that you know WHY to go for a teardrop trailer, it’s time to discuss HOW to buy one. Yes I know, by going to a relevant store, but what I really mean is how to buy the right one for you. To make the right purchase, you should know what to consider when buying a teardrop trailer. From size to design and price, every detail matters a ton and can shape your experience either into a pleasant one or otherwise. However, not to worry, we have discussed below all the factors and buying essentials you should know when purchasing one. So, don’t get scammed and get a teardrop trailer that exactly meets your needs and style. Let’s get started!
- New or used
This is the first choice you’ll need to make; to buy a brand new or look for a used one. Fortunately, you can get a used trailer in great shape for a relatively very less price. Just like mobile phones and cars, the price of teardrop trailers drops significantly when one used; even for a day. Therefore, you can get an ‘almost new’ teardrop trailer in excellent condition and affordable price. The money you’ll save can be saved to spend on your next trip or you can go ahead customize your teardrop trailer as you like.
Teardrop trailers come in varying sizes and heights. Needless to say, if your head is constantly bumping on its roof, the trailer won’t do much good to you. Always check the height of the teardrop trailer and make sure it won’t give you any trouble. For short to medium heightened folks, a moderate heightened trailer will do just fine. However, if you are the kind of person who has no trouble dunking a basketball, you need to find yourself a more spacious teardrop trailer. You can confirm so by standing inside the trailer, laying on the bed, and moving around. If you think you can’t do any of the above easily, keep searching for a bigger trailer.
- Load capacity and wheels
How much stuff do you plan to load in your teardrop trailer—as much as you can? Sorry, you can’t do that. Although your vehicle may not have much trouble towing your heavily loaded teardrop trailer but the trailer’s wheels certainly do have a limitation. For instance, 12-inch wheels can withstand a maximum trailer weight of 1,600 pounds. Any extra load can cripple the wheels, especially when towing the trailer at high speed. Thus, if you plan to carry more, get a teardrop trailer with more load capacity. Stay safe.
- Electrical system
Does your teardrop trailer come with a built-in electrical system? Or you wish to install one later yourself? Especially if you are buying a second-hand trailer, carefully check all the lights, turn switches on and off, try all the plugs and sockets. In short, make sure that everything is working fine. In addition, it is highly important to check the condition of the battery—the power source of all the electricity. Ask the seller about the battery timing and how old is it. If you find the battery to be too weak, it’s better to buy a new one if you don’t want to be left in the dark.
How spacious is your teardrop trailer? Is it enough to store all your equipment? If yes, then good for you. Otherwise, keep looking for s bigger option. Note that, the bigger trailer you’ll buy, the price will increase accordingly.
Mostly, there are two main materials used for the build of a teardrop trailer; aluminum and fiberglass. Fiberglass is heavier while aluminum is stronger. Prices also vary accordingly. However, before buying a teardrop trailer, check for any cracks and make sure the exterior is sealed firmly.
- Manufacturer and warranties
It’s always recommended to buy from a recognized manufacturer. Not just because you’ll get a higher-end teardrop trailer but you may also get a limited-time warranty. In case something goes wrong. Anything breaks, you can always come back at the store for free or cheap fixes. Make sure to ask the seller for any warranties that come with the product.
You’ll find teardrop trailers in varying designs, sizes, and colors. You can get a wooden finish exterior or a plastic one. Similarly, the interior can have a soft or hard floor, multiple windows for ventilation, a space for a fridge or bathroom, etc. It all depends on what you seek.
This is the most obvious one. You have to keep your budget in check after all. You can expect the branded teardrop trailers to be much more costly. However, don’t hesitate to bargain with the seller for a possible discount if you are going for a second-hand teardrop trailer.
Cost of a teardrop trailer
Let’s say you have finally made up your mind to buy a teardrop trailer. Isn’t it good to know a rough estimate of their prices beforehand? Doing so can help you carve your budget accordingly and let you know which model of teardrop trailer to buy.
- Cost of new teardrop trailers
The prices for a teardrop trailer vary between $5000-$2000 if you are buying a new one. Generally, the prices can be sub-divided as follows:
- For a small, low-end trailer with basic amenities: $5000-$12000
- For a midsized, average quality trailer: $10000-$16000
- For a high-end/luxury teardrop trailer: $18000 and above
Surely you must be wondering, why such a wide cost gap? As I have even mentioned with each price, just like cars, mobile phones, and other electronics, teardrop trailers come in varying ends. They can be the most basic one with just some sleeping space as stated above or can be with a high-end build, built-in electrical system and working TV and air conditioner. It’s obvious that the prices go up. The more sugar you add, the sweeter it gets. As you add more features to your comfort, the prices vary accordingly. Compare to pop up costs.
- Cost of second-hand teardrop trailers
The cost of a used teardrop trailer really depends upon the seller. However, you can have a thorough checking of the trailer, observe its condition, and bargain for a reasonable price. I have already elaborated on everything you need to check when buying a teardrop trailer. Do check out that section above. Good for you, the price of a teardrop trailer drops significantly even if used for a single day. Thus, you can estimate to get a used teardrop trailer with a 35% drop in price. Thus, a teardrop trailer costing $10000 will now be available for $6500.
- Cost to make a teardrop trailer yourself
Custom made teardrop trailers cost surprisingly low provided that you have the right equipment and knowledge to make one. However, to begin with, you’ll still need to purchase some mechanical parts and raw materials such as:
- Plywood for floor and roof
- Wood for hatch
- Galley and doors
- Electric system: wires, outlets, fuse box, converters, lights
After considering the cost of each of the above materials, we can roughly estimate a cost of around $2800 for a custom made teardrop trailer. Obviously, if you are aiming at something more minimalistic, you can ignore the cost of the electrical system and battery. Consequently, you can cut down your expenses if you will. Similarly, if your goal is to make a luxury teardrop trailer with air conditioner, bathroom, refrigerator, and stovetop then get ready to expend a whole lot more.
Teardrop trailer vs. camper trailer—what’s the difference?
I thought I need to clarify you on this one. Apart from RVs, a camper trailer is another prominent camping option that you’ll find when looking for a teardrop trailer. Although, both of them are closely related and similar to quite an extent but you need to know what sets them apart. It’s only fair to consider all the options before making any purchase. So, here is a bird’s eye view of the basic differences between a teardrop trailer and a camper trailer.
A camper trailer is like a big version of a teardrop trailer; it’s much larger and often may not fit in your garage. A teardrop trailer, on the other hand, as discussed before, is probably the smallest form of any towing camper that you’ll find and readily fits in your garage.
With larger size comes more passenger capacity. A camper trailer can easily accommodate about 4 people or an average of 6 passengers. This range is way too much more as compared to a teardrop trailer that accommodates a maximum of 2 people.
- Towing weight
A teardrop trailer weighs around 1000-3000 pounds and is much easy to tow thanks to its size. A camper trailer can weigh from 3000 pounds to anywhere about 15,000 pounds or more. Accordingly, you’ll need a bigger vehicle to tow a camper trailer.
Straightforwardly, a camper trailer has a ton of more space than a teardrop trailer.
There are only very few models of teardrop trailers that come with a bathroom. In fact, most of the models are too small to afford a bathroom. However, a camper trailer generally has a bathroom installed which is a great perk.
Camper trailer costs a great deal than a teardrop trailer for all the valid reasons. The price range for a camper trailer begins from $8000 and extends up to $30000. A teardrop trailer is clearly a more affordable option.
So what’s the verdict?
That’s not for me to say—It all depends upon you. If you are going for a more minimalistic option, a teardrop trailer is the answer. Otherwise, if an indoor kitchen and a bathroom is a necessity, a camper trailer says hi.
I rented a teardrop trailer for a vacation in the breathtaking landscapes of Colorado. It was a charming, retro-styled model, reminiscent of the classic 1940s designs, but with all the modern comforts one could wish for on a road trip adventure.
The teardrop trailer was compact, measuring around 10 feet in length and about 5 feet in width, a perfect fit for the two of us. Its lightweight design, roughly 1,200 pounds, meant I could easily tow it with my mid-sized SUV without any strain. The sleek aluminum and chrome finish of the trailer caught the sunlight and turned heads on the highway as we made our way through the winding roads of the Rockies.
Inside, the teardrop was a marvel of efficiency. The interior boasted a cozy queen-sized bed, which spanned the width of the trailer, ensuring we had a comfortable place to rest after a day of hiking and exploring. The cabin included LED lighting, a sound system, and even a small TV/DVD combo, perfect for the chilly nights when we wanted to hunker down and watch a movie.
But the real gem of the teardrop trailer was its rear galley kitchen. It was a compact culinary haven, complete with a two-burner propane stove, a small fridge to keep our provisions fresh, and a sink with running water. The kitchen was accessible by lifting the hatch at the back of the trailer, and it was a delightful spot to cook meals while enjoying the panoramic views of Colorado’s majestic mountains.
During our week-long journey, we traversed the state, from the vibrant city of Denver to the stunning peaks of Aspen and the serene waters of Grand Lake. The trailer proved to be an excellent companion, providing us the freedom to set up camp in various terrains, from established campgrounds with full hookups to more remote locations where we relied on the trailer’s battery and fresh water tank.
Each evening, we’d find a picturesque spot to park, pop open the galley, and cook up a feast as the sun dipped below the mountains. The teardrop trailer’s compact size meant it was easy to heat and maintain a comfortable temperature inside, even on the cooler nights at higher elevations.