Friday, June 2, 2023


Beginner’s Guide to RVing Newsletter, Volume 3, Issue 40

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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Friday, July 29, 2022

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

RVing Basics

What is pavement camping?

It’s when you park your RV for the night on pavement, like in a store parking lot or along the curb on a quiet street. Parking in a hospital or church parking lot would also be considered pavement camping.

I’ve heard you can stay the night in Walmart parking lots and similar places. Is this true?

Yes, this is generally true. Many Walmarts across the USA will permit an overnight stay in a self-contained RV. But always look for “No overnight parking” signs in the parking lot before you put on your pajamas. And, no, it is NOT okay to stay in a pop-up trailer (although we have seen it done). The idea is to blend in with the surroundings — to be invisible. You should ask permission if you can stay. Park in a corner of the lot, away from shoppers. Do not extend your slideouts unless absolutely necessary. Don’t extend your awning. Do not put down automatic levelers as they can damage the pavement. Keep your lawn chairs, grills and any other belongings inside or in storage. Walmart is not a campground. Stay a night to get some sleep, shop in the store to say “thank you” and then move on. Do not abuse this privilege.

What are “pull-thru” campsites?

These are campsites where you can drive into the site and then drive the same direction going out. They are very handy for RVers with long trailers, fifth wheels or motorhomes pulling a car because the RV will enter and exit the space without needing to back up. For a short stay, there is no need to even unhook the towed vehicle.

At last! A directory of where to camp on public lands!
The Bureau of Land Management Camping book describes 1,273 camping areas managed by the BLM in 14 Western states. Details for each camping area include the number of campsites, amenities, facilities, fees, reservation information, GPS coordinates, and more. You’ll want this book if you camp or are interested in camping on BLM land. Learn more or order.

Quick Tips

Egg cartons offer protection and stability in fridge
Place egg cartons on refrigerator shelves lengthwise, front to back, and they will never fall out. Even if they vibrate toward the door, the door will stop them from tumbling out due to their length. Usually, the carton lid will protect the eggs if anything falls in the fridge while driving. Use the eggs from the rear of the carton first. This will provide stability when you lift the egg carton. Use some empty egg cartons as separators in your fridge. They will buffer and protect items. Thanks to Ron Jones,

Save your knees with these!
“Have you ever parked on a gravel lot? Hard concrete? Yep, me too. But I have a secret weapon against bruised knees while setting up or digging through my lower storage compartments on the ol’ RV. Not that I am getting old or anything! But I always have a set of knee pads on hand. Don’t leave home without them! So, on your next stop at a home store, get some and save your knees.” Thank you, Chris Noble

A tip for DIY skylight covers
“Here’s a tip for a shower skylight cover, or for any 14-inch vent. Cut your own foam insert and place Reflectiix on one side after wrapping the foam first with your choice of cover. Keep them in place with Velcro tabs or a strap of your choice.” Thanks to Larry Young

Easy way to check slideout tops
“We love and try to baby our fifth wheel, so we check the top of our slides for debris before closing. We purchased a ‘selfie stick’ so our phone can reach up and take a picture. Works like a champ and we only have to get out a ladder if there is something that must be removed. Big saving in time and effort!” Thank you, Roy and Janie Ann Slade

Water your plants while away from home
Wanda and Bill spend a lot of time in their RV, doing service work as volunteers. Their efforts may keep them away from their home for up to a month – and leaving plants at home unattended can lead to disaster. Solution? Water globes for plants. “A large globe (or ball) on one end and a long stem to push into the planter. You fill with water and as the soil dries out the water will drain into the soil. They come in different sizes for different-sized plants. So far, no loss of plants while we are gone.” Thanks, Wanda and Bill [They’re available, of course, on Amazon.]

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: 

“Research, research, research. Only by knowing what type of camping you will be doing, can you succeed in buying your ‘third RV first.’ Tons of valuable info will develop from doing a lot of research. That includes forums, dealers, RV shows, and other RVers.” — Dale Sain

Random RV Thought

Noises on your RV roof will likely get your attention much more than at home. Even a small bird walking on the roof makes noise. A pine cone dropping from a tree sounds like a bomb. A branch rubbing the roof in a strong wind can be annoying. On a rainy day, when the clouds open up, it can be hard to conduct a conversation until the downpour stops or slows.

• 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!

Don’t forget to clean your headlights! 
When was the last time you gave those headlights a good scrub? It’s been a while, huh? Get yourself this 4-piece headlight restorer kit from Turtle Wax for about $11, and have your headlights looking as good as new in less than 5 minutes. It can be used on all lenses, plexiglass and plastic surfaces, and will restore all dull, yellowed headlights. Learn more or order here.

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Editor: Emily Woodbury

Editorial (all but news)
Editorial (news)
Help desk:
 Contact us.

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 2022 by RV Travel LLC.


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10 months ago

New to Rv’ing. Don’t buy just on appearance and all the fancy stuff inside. Make sure it will fit your needs. Ignore half the stuff the salesman pitches. Cabinet, closet space, counter space. outside storage space, lighting arrangement, seating areas able to watch TV when sitting without turning , being able to use the bathroom when slides are in (just in case). Lay on the bed and see if it’s comfortable, new mattresses aren’t cheap. Look closely at the fit and finish of cabinets and hardware. Bathroom/shower big enough for your needs. None are perfect, but choosing wisely will be a better experience. Most of all, get something you will be comfortable driving or pulling.

10 months ago
Reply to  Bob

I hadn’t thought about the lighting situation. I love to read so this would have become a very big issue had I not considered this while shopping. Thanks!

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