Sunday, September 26, 2021


Beginner’s Guide to RVing Newsletter #118

Welcome to the Beginner’s Guide to RVing from The information we present here every Monday through Friday is for brand-new RVers – those in the market to buy their first RV and those who just purchased theirs. If you are an experienced RVer, this material may be too basic for you.

This newsletter is funded primarily through advertising and voluntary subscription contributions from our readers. Thanks to all of you!

Thursday, December 17, 2020

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DID YOU MISS reading this morning’s RV Daily Tips Newsletter? Good stuff there.

RVing Basics

Are rusty propane tanks normal?
Reader Ron M. adds something to the “RV living’s little mysteries” department: “Our RV dealer claimed it was normal to see rust and wear on propane tanks, even on ‘brand new’ motorhomes. Perhaps it is, but it’s odd.” Good point, and one to ask more about if you run into it. Thanks, Ron.

Rustproofing propane tanks
Mel Goddard writes on the same topic: “Finding rust on your propane tanks seems to be fairly common, and can be usually found at the welds. When I see where the rust is, I spray some sort of a rustproofer such as Krown or Rust Check on the rust to preclude further rusting; all seem to be working OK. Wipe up the excess for neatness.” [Editor’s note: For those of us in the “Lower 48” you may not find the specific products Mel cites. Check with your hardware or paint store for similar products, or here are some on Amazon.]

Screen TapeDon’t scream, just fix the screen!
This roll of screen repair tape is just what you need to fix those torn or ripped screens in your home or RV. Don’t waste money on a new screen! Cut as much tape as you need, stick it over the torn patch and you’re good to go. Learn more or order here.

Quick Tips

Eliminate windshield reflections
If windshield or side window reflections are a problem – especially while driving at night – use a dark-colored, non-reflective cloth (like polar fleece) to cover your dash. This will prevent most of the reflections.
The cloth needs to be washable. Get two pieces instead of one large one so it will be a bit more manageable. Thanks to Ron Jones,

A grass-saving alternative for an under-awning “carpet”
Wanda K., like other RVers, loves to be outdoors. Sometimes her travels keep her “parked” with the RV for weeks at a time – and she likes having the awning out, with a mat down. Trouble is, the average under-awning “carpet” system kills the grass. Mental lightbulb time – Wanda got a chunk of leftover suncreen fabric, put in some grommets to hold it in place with stakes, and even after extended stays, the grass is fine. You’ll find this fabric in a variety of colors. Thanks, Wanda!

We welcome your Quick Tips. Submit them here. Thanks!

Riverside Retro 225FKSToday’s RV review…

In today’s column, industry insider Tony Barthel reviews the new 2021 Riverside Retro 225 Travel Trailer. If retro is your style, you’ll love these little trailers. “Riverside has done a nice job echoing an era,” Tony writes.  Learn more.

Did you read Tony’s review yesterday of the 2021 Gulf Stream Vintage Cruiser 23TWS Travel Trailer? If you missed it, you can read it here.

For previous RV reviewsclick here.

“If you could tell someone new to RVing just one thing, what would it be?”

From the editors: We asked our readers this question recently. Here is one response: 

“Take the time to think through the kind of RV camping and traveling in an RV you will do. We are active retired travelers, who enjoy National Parks and scenic hikes. For us, realistic enjoyment meant easy set up and break down. We did not want to tow our car.

We decided on a smaller rig than we thought we wanted. We went to shows, and we asked people in campgrounds questions (we were still tent campers). After much discussion and research, we spoke to folks at campgrounds who had larger rigs. Many wanted to downsize or wished they had not bought so big. For many reasons. Don’t buy a larger rig than you truly need.” — Carol Kellogg

Random RV Thought

If parking near other RVs in a boondocking situation (say, with friends), try very hard to position your RV so the exhaust from your generator does not blow into your neighbor’s RV. This could cause a very dangerous condition.

• If you’re a member of Facebook, be sure to sign up for our groups RV Buying Advice, RV Advice and Budget RV Travel. For a list of all our groups and newsletters, visit here.

• If you buy a defective RV and are unable to get it fixed or its warranty honored, here is where to turn for help.

• If you need an RV Lemon Law Lawyer, Ron Burdge is your man.

Why you should never finance an RV for 20 years!

Read previous issues of Beginner’s Guide to RVing newsletters here.

RV Travel staff

Need help? Contact us.

Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Editors: Emily Woodbury, Diane McGovern.

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 or this newsletter. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. Regardless of this potential revenue, unless stated otherwise, we only recommend products or services we believe provide value to our readers.

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

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Richard Hughes
9 months ago

If you have grass, why is a carpet necessary?

9 months ago
Reply to  Richard Hughes

I know I prefer a mat for the immediate area under the awning to keep me from being muddy there after a rain, I’m also frequently popping outside in bare feet and there’s much less chance of stepping on problems with a mat. If the grass is lush and thick, neither of those would be much of an issue but how many places do you camp where that’s the case??

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