Thursday, June 1, 2023


Beginner’s Guide to RVing Newsletter #23

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.

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Thursday, August 6, 2020

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

RVing Basics

What’s the best way to get started RVing after I buy my RV?
After you drive your new RV away, plan a two- or three-day shakedown trip close to home. Try to use all of the onboard systems on your first trip, even the air conditioner in the middle of winter – to be sure it works. Be sure to use your hookups, but it’s also a good idea to spend at least one-dry camping so you can become familiar with the self-contained aspect of RVing. Take notes on anything that doesn’t work right or that you may need to consult with your dealer about. Nine out of ten RVs will have problems that need fixing, most of them easily addressed, but some serious enough to keep an RV in the repair shop for weeks on end.

Where else could I keep my RV if I can’t keep it on the street or in my driveway?
Look for RV storage businesses in your area. They can be hard to come by, or booked solid. Also, many mini-storage businesses have space for RVs. In a rural area you may pay $50 a month, but in or near a big city, it could be $400, $500 or more a month. Be sure where you store your RV is secure. RVs in storage lots are common targets for thieves. Some RVers store their rigs at the homes of friends or family with extra room on their property.  A 2019 survey of readers revealed that slightly more than half of the 4,800 respondents paid to store their RVs. About 20 percent of those RVers paid more than $100 a month with 1 percent paying more than $500 per month.

RVs seem so tall. Does that cause problems?
For most RVs most of the time, the answer is no. But for the largest Class A coaches and fifth wheel trailers, it’s essential to know the total height, including roof-mounted air conditioners, so that you can avoid low-clearance problems. Drivers do need to be alert for overhead obstructions like low tree branches and drive-through awnings. A trucker’s GPS can be a big help avoiding low bridges and tunnels, but a much less expensive option is to purchase Rand McNally’s Motor Carriers’ Atlas which lists low clearances in the USA.

Double refrigerator bars ensure nothing moves while drivingRV Travel Newsletter Issue 857
It’s happened to most RVers – you open the fridge (even slowly) after a day of driving and a heavy jar falls on your toe – “Ouch!” Never have that happen again with these easy-to-install spring-loaded refrigerator bars. They’re also useful in cupboards and closets. Order for a good price.

Quick Tips

Easy way to get water out of sewer hose before storage
Putting away a recently used sewer hose can make a wet mess. After rinsing the hose, leave the “output” end of the hose connected to the drain, and starting at the RV-end of the hose, push a couple of feet of hose toward the output end. This forces the water out of the pleats of the hose. Wait a moment, and then repeat the process until you’ve pushed the hose together, and the water out. Now store your hose without the watery mess.

Noisy bathroom fan?
Bathroom fan so noisy it drives you nuts? Look for a replacement fan with a 12-volt high-capacity computer cooling fan. You may need to modify the mounting a bit to make it stay in the same place, but a little creativity can bring a “silent night.”

Best way to park safely during strong winds
During a strong storm with high winds, try to camp with your RV pointing toward or away from the wind. The RV will be more stable than if the wind was hitting it sideways. And beware of close by trees. If they don’t look strong and healthy, camp a distance away … just in case!

Important “rest stop” safety checks
Do a safety walk-around at every “rest stop”: Thump your tires – they should all “sound” the same. Feel the wheel hubs – excessive heat is a warning. Check lighting, hitch, safety chains, breakaway cable. Look for “loose stuff,” like a bumper-stored dump hose. Save time, save money, maybe save someone’s life.

Save power while reading at night
Inveterate bookworm but looking to conserve power? A “Kindle” or other e-reader device with backlight doesn’t need much ambient light to read at night. During the day, plug it in and recharge it while driving.

We welcome your Quick Tips: Send to

Common Terms Used by RV Salespeople

RATE SHEET: The Dealer Reserve Schedule used by an F & I (Finance & Insurance) salesperson to determine the amount of the kickback they will get from the bank or another lender who is going to finance the sale, in exchange for bumping the interest rate up above the minimum rate that the lender actually wants to get on the loan.

Another one next issue. Courtesy of the Burdge Law Office.

For less than $20 this could save your life. Millions sold. Click.

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: 

“Don’t go anywhere until you find and read all the manuals supplied with your RV. Ensure you have a manual for everything and if you don’t, find them online. Then organize them and sit down and read them again while taking notes to help you remember how to operate, maintain and troubleshoot all your equipment. Finally, go and physically locate everything you have a manual for.” — Rock

Random RV Thought

Treat your campground neighbors as you would want to be treated. Don’t play your music so loud that they are forced to listen to it. They may not share your love of Conway Twitty. Would you want to listen to their music? Always be considerate.

• 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!

Keep road flares in the RV for emergency
You should always have road flares in your RV in case of an emergency. This pack of three bright, waterproof, and shatterproof LED disks are perfect to keep tucked away. These bright lights can be seen from a mile away and can be used for traffic control, as a warning light, as a rescue beacon and they can also be used for recreational activities such as camping and hiking. Learn more or order here. 

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

RV Travel staff


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.

This newsletter is copyright 2020 by


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Robert Lopaka
2 years ago

What’s the best way to get started RVing after I buy my RV?……Try your 1st shakedown “trip” in your driveway. Cheers!

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