Oh No! Insurance and a Van Conversion

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karenishere

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Sorry I can't figure out if there's a forum for this, please move it if necessary!  

I'm in AZ.  So when I bought my converted Dodge B350 van in 2016 I tried to insure it as personal transportation.  Progressive said Oh No, it's an RV.  For five years it was insured as an RV with them with no problem.  Last week I got it stuck in sand, and when they saw pix of it, they sent me a letter saying it had an "inappropriate body style."  When I called for an explanation, they said, Oh No, this is not an RV, it has to be insured as a commercial vehicle, we can't offer you a policy renewal (thankfully I still have a few weeks to find some other coverage).  Well ok, fine.  Only I call the commercial department and they say Oh No,  this is not a commercial vehicle, it's personal transportation.   :mad:  Oh.  No.

I've tried calling several insurance companies and RV insurance companies and they always ask, Who Converted It?  This is likely a professional job done almost three decades ago.  It has a fiberglass roof with ac ,and external metal panels for hot water heater, 110V cord and so on, as well as being festooned with those horrid "wallpaper" panels like you see in trailers.  It looks like an old Pleasureway or Roadtrek. But it's not badged by any RV company, and as far as I can tell it's not RVIA certified, I doubt the RVIA even existed back when this was done.

SO:  1.  Do you have any advice on who in Arizona will insure a 27 year old not-exactly-an-RV that does have the usual RV amenities like a stove, toilet and even microwave?  I don't care about insuring the contents, although comprehensive (glass coverage) would be nice because it apparently rains rocks in Arizona.  Basically I just want liability that allows me to drive it without being burned at the stake.   :dodgy:

2.  How on earth do I find out who did the conversion???

TIA, Kib
 

WanderingRose

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Wouldn’t the vin# give you some information?

They would be on your title, and you may have two.

Since it is on a Dodge chassis, maybe go into a dealership and ask for some assistance.

My ClassB has a vin for the chassis and another for the RV conversion.

What is an RV in Arizona would be defined somewhere, like with DMV, I would think.

But if you want to insure just the van parts, insurance companies may refuse to do that because of the modifications.

I have State Farm, fwiw.

Good luck, and keep us posted here.
 

bullfrog

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First thing I would do is look on the title. The vin (vehicle identification number) could give you some answers as well as there is usually a make and model box as well and sometimes a description box. How did the insurance company make their determinations? If it was professionally done it almost had to be certified and somewhere a riveted tag or plate with the information, although they sometimes are missing from body damage or repairs.
 

highdesertranger

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well way back in the day when I did van conversions for a living there was no certification and no tag/sticker. but that was long before 27 years ago more like 45 years ago. 27 years old is not that old. that makes it a 1993 or so, it should be certified and have a RVIA sticker or a tag. do a search. look everywhere.

do you have any pictures?
where did you buy it?
are you the second owner?

highdesertranger
 

karenishere

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Stoked to find a filthy old RVIA badge hiding in a corner under the hood, along with a sticker for a defunct dealership in Clearwater Florida. (I think I'm stoked. Maybe that just complicates matters, but at least I have some indication that the conversion was "legitimate" once upon a time.) Unfortunately still wading through a lot of murky water here, the one company that said yes was pretty much don't ask, don't tell about any conversion. I don't care about covering the conversion but I also don't want any claim dishonored because of some lack of transparency...
 

highdesertranger

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I would get ahold of Progressive send them a picture of the RVIA badge I would not be happy about the whole mess and I would let them know it.

it's an RV, insure it as an RV.

highdesertranger
 

bullfrog

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It should have appeared on the title as well as an RV at least when it was new.
 
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