This is a collection of RV tips and tricks for the RVer. Here you will find RV advice and ideas on a variety of subjects related to your RV lifestyle. We welcome you to browse these topics and also to send in your own RV tips.
We often receive questions from fellow RVers – you may find someone else has the same question as you. We provide answers based on our experience, and appreciate the input of others who may be knowledgeable in electricity, plumbing, solar, or other RV technical matters.
Owning an RV and using it to travel can be a hobby for some and an outright lifestyle for others. The hobbyists enjoy using the RV for camping and visiting family for extended stays, while others might use an RV to become a guest host at National Parks across the country.
Whatever the reason for being devoted to the RV lifestyle, there are 17 RV camping tips and tricks that make it a lot more fun and enjoyable.
1. Storing Eggs: Traveling in an RV means downsizing in many ways. One of those ways is dealing with smaller than normal appliances. If storing a dozen eggs in the small fridge, you should cut the carton in half, which makes for easy stacking.
2. Keeping Out Heat and Light: You can use foil bubble material, cut to fit windows, as a means of keeping the sun from heating up the inside of your RV. This can really come in handy on hot summer days, especially if you have no tree cover where you’re parked. It also works well, situated in bedroom windows, for keeping out light when you want to sleep.
3. No Harsh Chemicals In The Waste Tank: Instead of choosing a cleaner that contains chemicals, you can use a mixture of half a cup of Borax laundry detergent and one-quarter cup water softener. This prevents the smell that is normally present from these tanks as well as making it extra slippery, preventing anything from sticking to the sides of the tank.
4. Knowing Your Propane Level: Propone is an incredibly important factor for Rv-goers and knowing how much propane is left in your tank is of the utmost importance. One way to check this is to look at the tank early in the morning. Where ever the dew stops on your tank is where your propane level is. You can also pour a cup of boiling water down the side of the tank and watch where the condensation starts. Finally, you can also weigh the tank. A fill tank weighs about thirty pounds plus the tank weight.
5. Gauging Black Tank Dump Time: Once your black tank starts to get completely full, it will begin to sound different. There will be a gurgling sound and more than likely, air bubbles will appear. This means that the fill level is above the vent line and you should attempt to dump at the nearest convenient dumpsite.
6. Ice In Your Black Tank: Right before dumping your black tank, empty a couple bags of ice into it. The sloshing around will clean off the inside walls of the black tank and make sure it is more completely emptied.
7. When To Turn Off The Plumbing: If you are planning to leave your RV unattended for an extended period of time, always remember to turn off the plumbing going into your RV. In the event of some type of interior plumbing failure, this tip will save you untold amounts of clean up and possibly an expensive repair bill.
8. To Make a Gas Oven Better: One of the biggest problems with an RV gas oven is that it will often burn the bottom of whatever you are baking. Placing a pizza stone right into the bottom of the oven, but not directly onto the burner, will prevent this from happening as well as evening out the temperature.
9. Use A Water Splitter: It’s a good idea to use a splitter where the water goes into the RV. This allows you to have an extra spigot for attaching a hose for such things as cleaning. It also makes it easy to depressurize the water when it comes time to unhook it, thus saving you from being sprayed in the process.
10. Keeping Showers Clean: If you will use some type of super absorbent cloth or towel to completely dry your shower stall after each use, it will prevent the growth of any molds and keep hard water stains from forming. It only takes a few extra minutes but is more than worth it in the end, especially if you are out in your RV a great deal.
11. Solar Light Saves Batteries: Using the solar powered lights that you can pick up from any lawn and garden center can really save a lot on battery use. Hang them from a shepherd’s hook, which usually holds flowers in the front yard, during the day to charge and then use them anywhere a night light is needed after sundown, such as in the bathroom.
12. LED Lights For Power Saving: Replacing normal incandescent bulbs with LED’s can save exponential amounts of energy, as most LED’s use one-tenth the amount of power of normal bulbs. This really adds up when you are on battery power, as your batteries will drain slower and need less recharging.
13. Making The Most Of Small Spaces: Most RV’s have a lot of cabinet space, which is great, but it still leaves a lot of wasted space. By installing wire baskets in strategic places, such as behind cabinet doors and in the tops of cabinets, a lot of that wasted space can be utilized. It serves a second purpose of keeping things stable during movement of the RV.
14. Corkboard Behind Cabinet Doors: Installing corkboard on the backs of your cabinet doors is a great way to pin and save recipes, instruction pages or any little piece of paper that you don’t want to lose track of. It makes for safekeeping while on the road, until you can get back to where a more permanent storage method is possible.
15. Sewer Odors In The RV: If you find that you have a problem with smelly odors inside the RV, try installing a fan to the top of the tank vent. This will draw off both odors and gases that can build up inside the RV leaving a foul odor.
16. Add A Fish Eye Mirror: As big as some RV’s can be these days, there is a lot of danger involved with blind spots and a fish eye mirror can reduce that somewhat. It will also help when it comes time to back your rig up, especially when near other objects.
17. Keep A Stocked First Aid Kit: Being in an RV can usually mean that you are miles from the nearest medical facility. In the event of a medical emergency, you need to make sure you have anything you might need to hold things over until help arrives. A first aid kit that has a variety of different things in it is invaluable to the RV traveler.
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And here is more technical advice!
We doubt there are many RVers who knew everything right from the outset. Part of the journey is learning as you go.
As we travel and enjoy our own RV living, we learn through our own experiences and research. And we often pick up new and helpful ideas from fellow RVers we meet along the way. We keep our eyes out for new and innovative ideas and make use of proven products designed for RVers.
We will continue to share what we learn, and will continue to add new subjects.
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What is Boondocking?
Question: I just ran across the term ‘boondocking’…what does it mean?
Workamping Question: I am recently retired and want to travel around the country in my RV. I am not sure if I want to give up working all together. Are there jobs out there for people in this same situation.
Jill Miller is the founder of Your RV Lifestyle. Trading corporate America for the open road, Jill, along with her partner Jose, began their RV journey, making an unconventional start by wintering in New Jersey. A natural adventurer, she was motivated by a desire to explore the USA and beyond, embracing the varied landscapes, communities, and cultures across the country.
For Jill, the allure of RV living was not about material accumulation, but rather the pursuit of an adventurous, fulfilling lifestyle. A lover of golf, bicycling, hiking, and line dancing, she has carried her passions across the country, engaging with them in diverse settings. Jill’s commitment to the RV lifestyle came after years of careful research, numerous consultations with RV owners, and personal trials, including living in a rental RV.