We’ve had our travel trailer for 2 plus years now. We have camped in it 117 nights. So, with that experience, I am writing a review of our 23FBKS Forest River 2019 Micro Lite travel trailer. Perhaps this review will provide some perspectives on those considering a purchase. Maybe it will spark an idea to someone who already has a travel trailer. Or perhaps it will inspire one of you to give us an idea for our travel trailer. Who knows where this will lead, but here we go!
Overall, we are very pleased with the quality of our travel trailer. Early on, we had a few minor issues – such as a screw loose on a drawer. The most “serious” issue though was when an electrical connection had shaken loose, and some critical functions stopped working. We wouldn’t have known how to fix this. However, we were very lucky, and a friendly fellow camper fixed it for us.
The one area where we feel the quality is not prime is the screen door. The slider on the door, which gives access to the main door handle, broke due to a tiny piece breaking off when the wind took the door. With this piece broken, the screen section could not be closed tight anymore. You know what that means – mosquitoes! The suggested repair was a whole new door, but instead, I fixed it. My repair held, but then we had another issue with the screen door.
The screen door handle was also plastic, and at one point, it broke. We could not get into our travel trailer. So, we had to “break” the door handle to get in, and then it would no longer latch. After this, we did have to replace the entire door at a cost of about $150. I can see our screen door breaking again as the new door handle and slider peg (issue #1 above) are still just flimsy plastic. If this does happen, I will think of something else to do because we are not paying for a new screen door again.
We are very happy with the amount of storage inside and outside of our travel trailer. We have never run out of room. As an organizer, I feel I have plenty of spaces to organize our items in a logical and accessible way.
My only “complaint” are the storage compartments on each side of our bed (which is a Murphy Bed.) Based on what I see in Facebook groups, this is a very common issue. The solutions show various shelves and hanging storage. However, the issue for me isn’t using the space, it’s the fact that I can’t reach into the compartment easily. I am 5’10”, and it is very hard for me to access anything in there – whether it is clothes hanging up or boxes I have put in there. We do use these areas to store bottled water (which I never buy except when we travel in our RV) and soda. Dan is taller (6’8″), so he can reach this more easily.
The Murphy Bed is great. My concern when we bought it was that it would be a hassle to put this down each night and then back up in the morning. Dan takes care of doing this, and it is a piece of cake. I would guess it takes about 30 seconds.
From what I see in Facebook groups, it appears many people replace their new RV mattress very quickly. Not us. Our mattress is perfectly fine, and we have really enjoyed the heated mattress on cold nights. That’s a savings on propane, too.
It would be a nice upgrade if the switch to turn off the overhead lights could be accessed when we are laying down. We like to read in bed, but when it’s time to turn out the lights, Dan has to sit up to reach the switch. We also have to pull out the curtains a bit to block the lights from the panel by the door. If we forget, then Dan has to sit up a second time. I’m just glad Dan chose that side of the bed. Lucky me!
The Murphy Bed goes up, and then we pop up a leather couch . So, that area of our travel trailer goes from a bedroom to a living room. The couch does have recliners on each end. Now, it is is not as comfortable as the recliners we have at home – or those we see in a nice Class A. However, it is “good enough.” There is also a tray which can be attached at each of the couch. This has come in handy when we want to eat a meal while watching TV or when we are just overnight somewhere and don’t want to go to the bother of setting up the table.
While sitting on the couch, the TV seems a bit far away. I guess we could put in a larger TV, but, you know me, I am pretty frugal. Once we start watching a show, we get engrossed, and the TV is just fine.
We chose this model as the table was larger and in the booth configuration. The U-shape configuration did not feel quite right to us; we felt too far away from each other. We use the table a fair amount as we like to play Scrabble.
The counter space in our kitchen area is minimal. There is some space behind the stove and sink, but you have to reach back to access it. This works great when I use the slow cooker. But when I want to do prep work, I usually use the table. I’ve thought about adding a drop down leaf on the side; however, this would block access to the cabinet that’s right there.
The bathroom in our travel trailer seems very spacious. There are two tall storage cabinets, one with a rod for hanging clothes. This makes up for the awkward storage on the sides of the bed, and it is where we hang all our clothes.
The shower has curved doors. We seem to have a constant issue with these doors. There is an additional strip on each door which has a magnetic edge. The issue is the magnet sticks real good. So good, in fact, that the plastic edging comes off one door and sticks to the other side. So, then we have to push it back to where it should be – again and again. We did ask the dealer about gluing this strip to each door, but there was some reason why it couldn’t or shouldn’t be done.
The decor of our travel trailer is okay, maybe a bit on the drab side. I have tried to brighten it up here and there. I know others have changed out the curtains, valances, bedspread, cushion covers and even painted the cabinet doors. Since we bought ours brand new, I didn’t want to do this.
We bought our travel trailer at an RV show. With Dan being 6’8″, there were only 2 travel trailers where he could stand up. The other model had a kind of Frank Lloyd Wright glass insert in some of the kitchen cabinet doors – which I really, really liked. However, this model also featured the U-shaped kitchen table, so the Forest River 23FBKS won out. At the time, Dan remarked that we could maybe change our cabinet doors to have this kind of fancy feature. Not sure we ever will.
When we bought our travel trailer, we upgraded the steps and bought a power jack. We’ve also added a bike rack, a slide topper, a cover for the vent lid, bug screens, and hitch locks for both the car and camper. We’re very happy with all these additions.
I looked into purchasing a backup camera this past Christmas, but the model we needed is no longer available. So, this would be something I would recommend purchasing right away. We would also purchase an auto leveling system if such a thing is even available for travel trailers. Not that it’s a big deal, but I think we would love an auto leveling system.
There’s so much more I could say – like the awning lights are too harsh, but I may have broken one of my own rules and made this post too long.
Overall, even though I wrote about a lot of piddly things, we are very happy with our travel trailer. Whether you have an RV or not, please feel free to put your thoughts in the comments below. If we can’t go camping right now, at least we can talk about it!