Wednesday, May 25, 2022


Beginner’s Guide to RVing Newsletter Volume 2, Issue 97

rv travel logoWelcome 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!

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

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

Today’s Tips of the Day:
What should I do when I have to leave the RV behind for a few days or weeks?
Ask Dave: Why do my RV’s entry steps extend when engine is turned on?

Today’s RV Review:
• Rockwood Mini Lite 2109S travel trailer

RVing Basics

Can you explain RV “weight information”?

Every manufacturer includes weight rating information, often on a sticker or certificate. Here’s what all of that information means.

GVWR – Gross Vehicle Weight Rating: The maximum total weight of a motorhome or trailer and its contents as allowed by the manufacturer’s engineering. For safety it’s critical not to exceed this weight.

GCWR – Gross Combined Weight Rating: The maximum total combined weight of the tow vehicle plus anything towed. This is a good gauge of how well the vehicle will tow in terms of muscle. The closer your total weight gets to this number, the tougher towing performance can become.

GAWR – Gross Axle Weight Rating: The maximum weight that can be carried by the axle, including tires and wheels.

UVW – Unloaded Vehicle Weight: Also known as “dry weight,” this is the claimed weight of a motorhome or trailer as it rolls off the manufacturer’s line. What’s added after that, by the dealer or a previous owner, affects that weight.

NCC – Net Carrying Capacity: The amount of weight you can add in terms of gear, food, water, sewage, even passengers. NCC is found in older rigs, but has been replaced recently by a couple of other terms, which follow.

SCWR – Sleeping Capacity Weight Rating: The manufacturer’s designated number of sleeping positions multiplied by 154 pounds (70 kilograms).

CCC – Cargo Carrying Capacity: This is the “new” description of Net Carrying Capacity, but doesn’t include the weight of fresh water, LP gas, oil, and engine fuel. It’s a complicated formula. GVWR minus UVW, and minus the weight of full fresh (potable) water (including that in the water heater), the weight of full LP gas, and SCWR.

Camco vent insulator keeps you warm or cool!
Is your RV too hot in the summer? Too cold in the winter? Camco’s vent insulator and skylight cover features a thick layer of foam which helps stop heat transfer, keeping you warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer. Installation is easy. The insulator is designed to fit standard 14″x14″ RV vents. Learn more or order here.

Quick Tips

Campground setup tip
If you’re going to a campground and don’t have a preassigned campsite (is there even such a thing anymore?), do your best to arrive at your campsite during daylight. Setting up in the dark, particularly before you have a routine down, is hugely difficult. You’re looking for a level spot, with easy access, long enough for your rig, amenities such as a fire pit and picnic table, and things like the proximity to the shower house. Is it dark? Nearly impossible to evaluate these features! If you are “stuck in the dark,” you’ll need a helper with a strong flashlight and a walkie-talkie or cell phone connection with you.

Sewer cap tip from a sadder-but-wiser man
Dan H. sounds like a man with experience. He suggests: Before taking the cap off your RV sewer outlet, “Make sure all tank valves are closed. There is a lot of pressure behind 50 gallons of gray water!”

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

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

“Don’t get an RV unless you want a hobby. If you treat it like a car and take it to the dealer for every repair, you will (1) go broke, and (2) never have it in your possession.” —Ward Simmons

slideout-seal656Protect your RV’s slideout with this rubber seal lubricant
If you don’t take care of your slideout you’re asking for problems including dangerous, costly water damage. This rubber seal lubricant from Thetford prevents fading, cracking and deterioration. It cleans, conditions and shines, keeping seals flexible and protected from sunlight destruction. It is also useful on door seals and window seals. It’s a mineral oil product and also acts as a lubricant. Learn more or order.

Random RV Thought

When you haven’t been RVing in a while and your thoughts turn to getting away again, it’s really tough to get the thought out of your head. If you are at work, it’s especially bad. Who can focus on work when their head is filled with thoughts of being away in the RV, seeing new places and things and enjoying nature? So don’t resist: Just find a way to go! (Safely, of course.)

• 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! Staff

Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Editor: Emily Woodbury. Associate editor: Diane McGovern. Senior editors: Russ and Tiña De Maris. Senior writers: Nanci Dixon, Tony Barthel, Mike Gast. Contributors: Mike Sokol, Gail Marsh, Roger Marble, Dave Solberg, Dave Helgeson, Janet Groene, Julianne Crane, Chris Guld, Machelle James, James Raia, Kate Doherty, J.R. Montigel, Clint Norrell, and Chris Epting. Podcast host and producer: Scott Linden. Special projects director: Jessica Sarvis. Moderators: Gary Gilmore, Linda Brady. Financial affairs director: Gail Meyring. IT wrangler: Kim Christiansen.

Honorary CorrespondentsLoyal readers who regularly email us leads about news stories and other information and resources that aid our own news-gathering efforts.
Tom and Lois Speirs • Mike Sherman • George Bliss • Steve Barnes + others who we will add later. 

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.

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Bill Brogan
8 months ago

Re: sewer cap tip. Thankfully it wasn’t the black tank valve left open.

1 year ago

Hello from Florida. We love!!

RV Staff(@rvstaff)
1 year ago
Reply to  TreeHouse

Thanks, TreeHouse in Florida! loves you too!!! Take care, and stay healthy. 🙂 —Diane at