Tuesday, October 3, 2023


Beginner’s Guide to RVing Issue 1

Issue 1 • November 16, 2018

This newsletter is brought to you monthly by RVtravel.com and is funded primarily through voluntary subscription contributions from our readers. Thank you!

U.S. shoppers: Shop at Amazon.com
Canadian shoppers: Shop at Amazon.ca


By Chuck Woodbury

Welcome to the first issue of the monthly newsletter Beginner’s Guide to RVing from the editors at RVtravel.com.

RV for sale
Every week we’ll tell you how to buy wisely and how to use your RV once you get it.

It’s taken us a while to get this newsletter underway, and in that time I suspect many of you have already purchased your RV, and others have put enough time on the road to know the basics. If either case is you and you do not wish to receive an email alert for new monthly issues, then simply return to the email alert you received announcing this issue, scroll to the bottom and click unsubscribe.

For those of you who stick around, we’ll provide a lot of great information to help you buy intelligently (many RVers don’t and regret their mistakes later), and use your new RV properly — and even more important — safely!

If you are not already signed up for the weekly RVtravel.com newsletter, then you really should. Every issue is packed with helpful news, information and advice.

For now, would you please take a moment to answer the question below? It will help us determine what we should write about to serve you best. Please leave a comment. And feel free to email editor Emily Woodbury at emily(at)rvtravel.com with your ideas about how this newsletter might best serve you and other novice RVers.

Thanks. And welcome!


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What it means to finance an RV for 20 years
We posted this article a couple of months ago on RVtravel.com, but it’s probably even more important that we share it with new RVers, especially those who have not yet made their purchase. Please read this if you have not already signed on the dotted line. And if you have already purchased, please read so you can share what you learn with your friends who plan to buy an RV.

Pack your cabinets so contents don’t escape
“How do you store stuff in your cupboards?” asks a new RVer. Fearful that the shifting and bumping of the road would cause grief (and broken crockery), the question becomes, “How do you store your stuff safely?” Our contributing editor Russ De Maris has advice.

Safety tips for new RVers
Before you hit the road for the first time, it is recommended that you purchase and understand how to use the following: (A) Any state- or provincial-mandated safety equipment that you are required by law to carry. (B) Two to four orange traffic cones (these collapse for easy storage) — they are handy to have. (C) Emergency flares. (D) A 6-volt flashlight or any rechargeable light.
—Thanks to Ron Jones, AboutRVing.com.

Effortlessly get water off your slideout
In wet conditions, before retracting your slides, raise or lower the front end of your trailer and almost all the water will run off the slide before it comes in. Thanks to George Bliss, Casey Piton, and others who mentioned they do this when their slide doesn’t automatically tilt when being retracted.

Want more quick tips? Be sure to sign up for our RV Daily Tips newsletter, which you’ll get in your inbox every Monday-Thursday. Tons of great tips and information you won’t want to miss! Sign up here.

Join our new Facebook group, RV Advice, where prospective RV buyers can ask veteran RVers what they think of an RV they’re considering buying. Click here.

Where to stay for free or nearly free in your RV
OvernightRVparking.com is your best source of information for staying free in your RV. There are more than 13,000 locations listed. Wow! You’ll save a lot of money with this. Click here for a free preview.

Links to helpful articles:

  1. Study reveals habits and desires of new RVers
  2. Storing RV batteries during a harsh winter
  3. Tips for RVing comfortably in the cold and snow
  4. Concerns of soon-to-be new RVers
  5. Your new RV: Where will you store it?
  6. New RVer asks: Should I use holding tank treatments?
  7. What do all these campsite utility designations mean?
  8. Buying a new RV? Be sure to check the tires!
  9. Think differently when buying a new RV
  10. Family sours on RVing over new RV’s problems

Our favorite products for RVers
We’ve put together a collection of our favorite products for RVers at Amazon.com. You’ll find great gifts for your favorite RVer, and great gizmos, gadgets and other handy items for you to make your RVing more enjoyable. And there’s a long list of books we recommend too. Click here to visit and stock up! 


Click the pic to play the video.

Never, never, never buy an RV without doing this! 
video camera WPRVtravel.com editor Chuck Woodbury has some advice you must heed before buying your next RV. This is such a critical step, yet thousands of RVers every year forget to do it, and then must live with a constant hassle that they could have easily avoided. Click the image to play.

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IF YOU APPRECIATE THIS NEWSLETTER and others from RVtravel.com, will you please consider pledging your support? Even $5, $10 or $20 is appreciated. Many readers set up an ongoing contribution, typically $5 to $10 a month. Your contributions make it possible for us to produce 26 highly informative newsletters every month. Learn more or contribute.


It’s always wise to attend a few RV shows before you buy — a chance to compare many RVs in one place, talk to salespeople and even factory representatives, and maybe even pick up a bargain (but not always, which is another story…). Here’s a comprehensive list of upcoming shows.

Check out the long list of great RVing-related websites from RVtravel.com.

Beginner’s Guide to RVing Staff

Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Editor: Emily Woodbury (Emily-at-rvtravel.com). Managing editor: Diane McGovern. Contributing writers: Russ De Maris, Bob Difley, Gary Bunzer, Roger Marble, Mike Sokol, Greg Illes, J.M. Montigel and Andrew Robinson. Advertising coordinator: Gail Meyring. Marketing director: Jessica Sarvis. IT wrangler: Kim Christiansen.

ADVERTISE on RVtravel.com and/or in this newsletter. Contact Gail Meyring at Gail(at)RVtravel.com .

Everything in this newsletter is true to the best of our knowledge. But we occasionally get something wrong. We’re just human! So don’t go spending $10,000 on something we said was good simply because we said so, or fixing something according to what we suggested (check with your own technician first). Maybe we made a mistake. Tips and/or comments in this newsletter are those of the authors and may not reflect the views of RVtravel.com or this newsletter.

Mail us at 9792 Edmonds Way, #265, Edmonds, WA 98020.

This newsletter is copyright 2018 by RVtravel.com

Emily Woodbury
Emily Woodburyhttps://www.rvtravel.com
Emily Woodbury is the editor here at RVtravel.com. She was lucky enough to grow up alongside two traveling parents, one domestically by RV (yep, Chuck Woodbury) and the other for international adventures, and has been lucky to see a great deal of our world (and counting!). She lives near Seattle with her dog and chickens. When she's not cranking out 365+ newsletters for RVtravel.com she's hiking, cooking or, well, probably traveling.


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Erinn Mayer
4 years ago

Just a few days ago, I found a list of “RVing Terms” & what they mean – sort of like a dictionary. I want to print it, and now cannot find – Can you please show me where it is? THANKS!

Mike Sokol
4 years ago

I’ve considered reposting some of my basic RV electricity articles in this newsletter. Maybe include topics such as how to pick a portable generator, what the 20-, 30- and 50-amp outlets on a campground pedestal can power, what an inverter and converter do, etc…. Any other electricity basics you think would be important to include?

4 years ago

I can see a positive thing here with a newsletter that is specific to New RVers. However, as the RVing lifestyle goes, many people who are considering buying or have purchased an RV, have or will do so without doing any research and then make the HUGE MISTAKE of going to an RV Dealership and NOT knowing the difference between a Travel Trailer and a 5th Wheel. These Newbies will ultimately get hooked into something they cannot afford or even know how to operate and eventually will try to sell the RV or simply let it sit and never use it.

Newbies should know that purchasing an RV is a HUGE Expense and should not be taken lightly. For instance, young families with several kids should consider buying something small and affordable, that they can Tow with their existing vehicle (if possible) and not have to invest in a new tow vehicle.

A Newbie checklist for buying, insuring and maintaining an RV should be published for everyone who is considering purchasing an RV.

New RVers need hard facts on what to watch out for when buying. NEVER SHOP AT CAMPING WORLD, NO MATTER HOW GOOD THE DEAL LOOKS! Stay with a Local Dealership or other reputable national dealership.

GET the basics out to New RVers first and then go from there. Too much information at the onset, can and will confuse people and drive many of them away.

The Biggest things to initially strive for is: Expense and Affordability. Slowly spoon feed the New RVers first.

OK, Off my Soapbox for today.

You all take Care.

Bill Massicotte
4 years ago
Reply to  Jeff

Absolutely precious advice that should be adhered to. Especially about Camping World.

Ann Andrews
4 years ago

For the new RVer, keeping the drains free of material that can decompose is an important concept. We come from the garbage disposal habits in our sticks and bricks. I learned to wipe off every plate, bowl, utensil so there is not food residue. When I am ready to wash dishes, I use Dawn Erasing Dish Foam. One sqirt onto moist dish cloth, wipe over both sides of dish, utensil, pot. Stack as you go. When you are ready to rinse, rinse all utensils. I collect my rinse water into coffee containers with lids. I use that water as extra flush water in the bath room. I store 2 coffee containers in bathroom in the tub. This conserves water and keeps the kitchen drain clean. I wipe out the drain screen after each dishwashing.

Jerry Bloom
4 years ago

I’d love to see an article on RV short term storage. Draining lines and adding antifreeze for a couple weeks is a pain. For instance; would a 100 watt light left on inside generate enough warmth to keep plumbing from freezing…what about stuff like the HW heater that is closer to the exterior?

4 years ago

Never see an article discussing how to deal with rodents, especially mice, while RV is in storage. Would appreciate any advice available primarily because it is that time of year when people are putting their RV into storage mode.

Claud Addicott
4 years ago
Reply to  Robert

Robert, I saw these in one of the past news letters, https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00L236OMW/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o08_s01?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Seems to work, and IMO smells good.

4 years ago
Reply to  Robert

I bought a stack of round, cotton facial wipes that are used to remove cosmetics. Dosed them with peppermint oil and dropped them into cabinets. Both are available at Wal-Mart for under $10. My Scamp smells minty fresh. I will let you know if this method gets me through a rodent-free winter.

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