RV Fluid Analysis 

BLOOD TESTS FOR YOUR RV: How Complete Fluid Analysis Significantly Reduces Your Risk
of Purchasing the Seller’s Engine, Transmission or Generator Problems

JG Lubricant Services (JGLS) provides oil and coolant
testing and analysis on fluid samples pulled during
NRVIA1 certified RV inspections.
The NRVIA fluid sampling and analysis program includes
review of the condition of the engine oil, automatic
transmission fluid, generator oil and engine coolants (both
main engine and generator engine), as applicable. NRVIA
certified Level II RV inspectors are specifically trained to
drawn samples from these chassis’ installed powertrain and
power generation components.
JG Lubricant Services periodically reviews NRVIA fluid
sample data and provides us with a summary of what the
inspections show. The table below shows the most recent
summary of results. The data represent samples drawn over
the past 5 years and are summarized by Component Type
and show the percent of tests that come back as either
ABNORMAL or CRITICAL. As shown in the table, we have
found that a significant number of sampled RV components
show alarming levels of Abnormal or Critical test results.
These systems would not be considered “road ready” due to
the need for either preventative maintenance, further
diagnostics or possible repair.
Think of it this way … fluid analysis gives us the ability to
“look inside” these complex and expensive driveline and
power generation components. Just pulling the dipstick to
check for fluid is not enough. Fluid sampling and analysis
permits the next level of inspection. There’s just no other
way to get this kind of information before you purchase your
RV, except through fluid sampling and analysis from your
certified NRVIA inspector report. Most abnormal reports
indicate something to be monitored or perhaps only the
need to change the oil or coolant. These items can often be
negotiated into the deal just as in a home inspection.
Critical reports, on the other hand, show a more immediate
need for attention as they may indicate either internal part
wear or more serious fluid contamination issues.
Complete fluid analysis has proven to be a real eye opener
to buyers as it reveals the true condition of these expensive
driveline and power generation components. On more than
a few occasions, fluid analysis results have been the deciding
factor in proceeding with the purchase. Fluid analysis
provides protection against the chance that you might


1 NRVIA = National RV Inspectors Association (www.nrvia.org)

inherit someone else’s engine, transmission or generator
problem. It could mean the difference between your having
peace of mind and having to continually worry whether you
might experience costly powertrain or generator repairs
down the road. Just as with Home Inspections, the RV
inspection should cover all major items including fluids. That
is why NRVIA inspectors recommend complete fluid
As you can see from the tabulated data, it turns out there’s
a good chance that fluid sampling and analysis may find at
least one maintenance deficiency issue. Finding one critical
issue will alone pay for the complete fluid analysis. Better
to find issues with these complex and expensive systems
during the pre-purchase inspection. Again, adding complete
fluid analyses significantly reduces the risk of unknowingly
purchasing engine, transmission, generator or cooling
system problems. The NRVIA strongly recommends having
the complete series of fluid samples drawn during your pre-
purchase inspection. If any of your test reports indicate
issues, you‘ll have the chance to work with the seller to get
them taken care of as part of the deal. Fluid sampling and
analysis will reduce risks and give you peace of mind. Fluid
analysis test reports are included with your RV inspection

ABNOMAL indicates maintenance issues related to
diminished oil or coolant properties where a simple oil and
filter or coolant change should alleviate the problem.
CRITICAL indicates more immediate problems related to
contamination and/or component wear. These issues may
require immediate maintenance and/or repair.
Apr 2020