12 Quick Tips for RV Beginners

12 Quick Tips for RV Beginners

f you’re just starting as an RVer, first of all, welcome to the open road! You’re about to embark on a life of adventure full of fun, excitement, and possible obstacles. Yes, having an RV is a great experience, and you have a lot to look forward to. But be forewarned that it will also bring about some obstacles.

Obstacles are a sure thing with everything in life. The important thing has a place to turn to get the solutions you need. This blog will contain plenty of helpful tips for the beginner RVer to help guide you through your life on the road — from buying the right RV to knowing what to pack for the road. This way, you’ll already be ahead of the obstacles.

The goal of this article is to help you get the most out of your RV to ensure lasting vacations and memorable times spent with the family doing one of the most awesome things ever — living your best life on the road. If you’re ready to start your adventure, we’re ready to help. Read on for some of the coolest, quick tips for RV beginners.

1. Only Buy What You Need - Don’t Spend Too Much on Your RV

Before overspending on an RV, it’s best to get familiar with all the spending that will come with it once you purchase your brand-new toy. The dollars spent on RV living can easily add up after a while. Once you pay for all the accessories (hoses, wheel chocks, leveler, etc.), overnight stays, storage space (possibly), generator, etc., you may see the costs per travel a little more than you had planned for. So, rather than starting at a high point, take the time to understand all the costs that will truly be a part of this adventure. For now, just buy what you need; if you decide later to upgrade to something bigger, that’s great.

That said, there are some great options to choose from when looking to purchase your first RV. Some of the best places to look are Rockwood RV, Forest River RV, and Cherokee RV. As you consider size and style, don’t forget to check out Puma XLE and Winnebago. Take time to really research the RV Dealership that’s right for you.

2. Inspect Your RV Before It Leaves The Dealership

Before purchasing your RV, take the time to ensure that all appliances are in working order. In fact, you may even want to pay for an inspection. The last thing you want is to be on the road only to learn that you have no hot water, or worse, the toilet doesn’t work. You’ll soon realize that taking the time to inspect everything, even if it takes you all day, is well worth it.

Inspecting your RV is not limited to the interior but the exterior as well. Make sure the bodywork is intact by looking for cracks, warping, or anything else like bleaching on the paintwork. If you’re buying a used RV, double inspect it to ensure there is no mold or mildew, especially on the roof.

3. Take A Practice Drive

Familiarize yourself with your new RV by taking it on a practice drive. You’ll find that the vehicle is extremely large and may not be as easy to handle as you originally thought. When you take it on the road, it’s likely you’ll be out there for days or possibly weeks. You’ll want to be comfortable maneuvering your new ride on the road for days at a time.

Practicing is easy. Sneak off to a large, empty parking lot and play around with your new RV for a while. Take turns on it to get familiar with how wide your turns need to be. Practice backing it up, braking and parking as much as you can. You’ll find that backing it up and parking such a large vehicle can be two of the hardest things to do when handling it.

Then take it on the road and practice turning at intersections. Go farther out into the intersection before turning it to compensate for the increased turning radius. Because it’s such a heavy vehicle, it will take a little longer for it to stop than your car, so make sure you have a good amount of space between you and the vehicle in front of you.

Getting comfortable with your RV beforehand will make you feel a lot better about taking it out on long-distance trips.

4. Make Sure It’s Ready for The Road

Before you hit the road, it’s always a good idea to give your RV a quick inspection to ensure it’s ready for the road. Just as with any vehicle you take on the road, you want to ensure your RV is ready to go. With an RV, there’s just a little more to check.

  • Make sure your fluid levels are good.
  • Check your tire pressure.
  • Make sure your emergency brake is off before you hit the road.
  • If you’re towing another vehicle, make sure it’s properly hitched.
  • Roll up and secure all awnings.
  • Check the storage compartment doors.
  • Shut all cabinet doors on the inside.
  • Make sure the step is up.

5. You Can’t Bring Everything With You

Don’t try to pack everything. The fewer things you have, the more you’ll enjoy your trip. Seriously, the less you have with you to worry about, the better you will feel about it. Make a point of only bringing what you know you’ll need. Concentrate on the essentials. As you expand your travels, you’ll probably find yourself picking up so much cool stuff along the way, and you don’t want to be overloaded. However, there are some essential tools that every RVer needs.

6. Bring The Tools You Need

As you make your way to your RV adventures, it’s possible you may not be around a lot of stores and places you take for granted at home. That being said, it would be wise to have certain tools with you in the event you need to take some handyman action to keep your RV afloat.

Some tools to consider having on every trip include:

  • Lug wrenches
  • Heavy gauge jumper cables
  • Tire gauges
  • Wheel chocks
  • Leveling blocks
  • T-levels

No one likes being stuck on the road. A breakdown is always possible with any vehicle you have, including RVs. They can break down at any time and can cost you a pretty penny. Be sure to purchase an RV extended warranty. That way, should anything happen while you’re on the road, you’ll be protected, and your pockets will thank you later.

That being said, regular maintenance for your RV is a must to ensure it’s always ready for the road when you are. Doing so can hopefully fix any major issues before you get on the road.

7. Create a Checklist

Having a checklist will help ease the anxiety in knowing you haven’t forgotten any essentials and that you’ve done everything you needed to do before heading out. Your checklist is customized to best meet your needs. But a common checklist can include everything you need to inspect on your RV before hitting the road and the essentials you need to ensure you have with you, including your tools.

Your checklist can be as extensive as you need it to be. The more RV experience you have, the more you may need to add or take away from your checklist. But remember to start with an initial checklist and work from there.

8. Recalculate The ETA Google Gives You

When you’re planning a drive with a GPS in your car, you can expect the ETA that google gives you to be almost to the letter. However, when you’re driving your RV, think differently. It will take you longer to reach anywhere you go in your RV than in your car. That’s because the RV is a much larger vehicle, and you will need to drive slower. So, you should add at least two hours to the Google ETA to have a more realistic time of arrival at your destination.

9. Plan Your Trip

Your trip plans don’t start when you get to the campsite, they start before you even leave your house. That means knowing every route you’ll be driving along the way. Be careful of the roads you drive your RV on. You’ll need to take into consideration your RV weight, height, and ease or non-ease of how it maneuvers. If you don’t do it before you leave, trust me — you’ll wish you had. Driving an RV is not like driving a car, and your GPS doesn’t know that. There may be some roads where you’ll drive your car, but you’d think twice about taking that route with your RV. So, plan out every route to your destination.

Planning your trip involves more than just knowing the route you’re going to take. It also involves knowing how much you plan to spend, the meals you’ll be prepared along the way, the stops you will make along the way, and knowing exactly where you will be lodging for the night.

Having an RV and being on the open road for some can be synonymous with winging it. But winging it is not what you want to do. Take the time to plan everything from your budget to your route. This will make for a much more enjoyable and safe adventure in your RV.

10. Plan For Tank Dumps

If you’re on the road long enough, you’ll need to dump your tanks, so plan for this. It’s good to know if your RV camping spot has full hookups or if you’ll need to prepare to do more. That could even mean holding tank dumps at a remote station. So, plan your tank dumps by knowing how often you will need to stop to dump as well as the location.

Remember to bring the necessary tools you will need for your tank dump, including dump gloves. Other tools include sewer hose supports and sewer hose extensions.

11. Reserve Your Camping Spot

Remember to reserve your camping spot. The popular spots book really fast, so don’t plan on staying at any of them unless you reserve it. There are some camping spots that are first come, first serve, but again, if it’s all filled when you get there, you’re out of luck. So, it’s best to reserve in advance. Many campground sites are booked months in advance, so book as early as possible.

Remember to ask about:

  • Check-in and check-out times
  • The use of generators
  • The availability and location of water, power, and dump facilities
  • If full hookups are available
  • Vehicle dimension limits
  • Trash receptacles
  • Bathroom and shower facilities
  • Pets (if applicable)
  • Closest supply stores
  • Campground map
  • Road closures (due to weather, etc.)

Keep a copy of your campground reservation on you or in your vehicle at all times, just in case it’s ever needed.

12. Don’t Hesitate To Ask For Help

There are many benefits to having an RV. One of them is you have access to an extensive community of people just like you who enjoy living on the road. The RV community is extremely loyal to one another, and when you arrive at a campsite, you’re bound to meet a friend. Remember, every RV owner was once a first-time RV owner and had the first experience, so they’ve been in your shoes. Furthermore, most RVers are always ready to help a first-timer in need.

So, never hesitate to reach out for help and ask fellow RVers if you have questions or need to find a certain location.

The Right RV Means Everything

At the end of the day, it’s all about the RV and buying the right one for your needs. Once you do that, everything else will eventually fall into place. These tips are great to follow, but you won’t pick them all up on the first road trip, the second, or the third. You’ll adapt to them as you continue to hit the open road as often as you can in your RV, so it all comes back to buying the right one.

RV Wholesalers is home to the nation’s premier RV brands and services. It has a nationwide service network and is the best place for finding the right RV for your needs.

One of the first things you’ll want to be realistic about is your budget. Know the rough budget you’re able to spend on an RV. That will play a huge part in the type of RV you will buy. Once you know your budget, you’ll be able to decide on features that are important to you. Once you have your shortlist, RV Wholesalers is the place to go. There are different ways to live on the road. Some of those ways include towable trailers, truck campers, drivable RVs, Class A RVs, Class B RVs, and Class C RVs. Your budget, along with your camping desires, will help guide you to the right one.

Some other things that are good to know as you’re planning to buy an RV is whether you want a towable or one you can drive and whether you want a barebone option for storage and sleeping. If you do, a popup or toy hauler will work for you. Maybe you’d prefer one with additional features like a kitchen and bathroom or more advanced features like multiple bathrooms, a fireplace, and a family sitting area. Don’t stop there; you’ll also have to decide if what you buy will be new or used. RV Wholesalers has all of these options available and can even give you the pros and cons of buying new versus old.

You’ll also want the best financing and interest rates for the RV of your choice. Remember to include the cost of owning your RV and include insurance, maintenance, and repairs. At RV Wholesalers, we offer competitive pricing and financing for up to 240 months, and most decisions are made within 48 hours.

Shop RV Wholesalers Today

The right RV Dealership means everything. RV Wholesalers has the information to allow you to do as much research as you need when it comes to finding the right RV for you. Here is some of what you’ll find at RV Wholesalers:

  • Learn the different types of RVs and which you should buy
  • Learn the differences between Rockwood RV, Forest River RV, Winnebago, and Cherokee RV
  • Learn the best cities for RVing
  • Learn how much it actually costs to live on the road
  • Learn everything you need to know about RV parking
  • Learn what every RV needs
  • And more

Shop RV Wholesalers today! For all things RV!