If your RV electricity were monitored would you be more careful with its use?

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Most RV parks charge a flat rate for electricity for stays of a day, up to a week. But very often, if not most often, RVers who stay a month or longer pay for their electricity depending on how much they use.

If you’ve been RVing for long you have likely experienced both situations, one where you could use all the electricity you want but pay a flat fee, just like everyone else in the park. But in other parks, your usage is monitored, so you pay for what you use. If you are an electricity miser you pay less. If you are an electricity hog, you pay more.

Which are you? If you were charged for how much electricity you actually use, would you be more careful about much you used?

Inquiring RVer minds want to know. And remember, the poll may take a few moments to load, so stand by. As always, the wait will be worth it.

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45 Comments
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Bob p
2 days ago

When we go to warmer climate for the winter we are always on the meter, but we don’t do anything different than at home. The only difference is the size of the home we’re living in, we still have our coffee and toast or roll in the morning, and our evening meal. We still entertain ourselves with our iPads and TV and go to bed at 9.

Einar Hansen
2 days ago

We have been on a seasonal campsite for the last 4 seasons. And it is metered already and we do sort of keep an eye on our power use. And we have been told that the rates go up every year by the owners, because of the short term campers taking advantage of the power that is included in paying by the night and week. And they are now looking into having every site metered and having all sites pay for their power bill when checking out to leave. I am glad that they will be doing something about it. Folks turn on AC and lights for the day and go out for the day, then come back sometimes after dark. What a waste and we ended up paying for their stupidly because we are seasonal campers looked at as having deeper pockets. Not fair at all!

sdw
3 days ago

I don’t worry about it. I don’t stay in RV parks very much. Have solar panels and batteries.
RV parks are mostly just dirt parking lots. I bought an RV to see and be in scenery.

Gene Bjerke
3 days ago

Since we drive a Class B, we don’t use much electricity to start with. I expect that this poll is aimed more at full-timers.

Lydia Bishop
4 days ago

I have no problem with metering! But I think the campgrounds should give allotments of electricity to every campsite. If you go over your per night allotment you pay for the excess usage. People with modest rigs or trailers could easily stay within their allotment, and people with giant luxury motorhomes will just have to ration their usage more carefully.

J J
4 days ago

If you can’t see the poll, temporarily turn off your ad blocker. I use the EFF’s Privacy Badger to block intrusive trackers and it always blocks the polls here.

We have two dogs so we’re running the A/C all the time to keep them from overheating. Anyways, pretty much all RV’s are just one room so any comparison to home air conditioning usage is irrelevant.

We also have the small Splendide combo washer/dryer and we use it daily if just to dry bath towels to keep the interior humidity down. But if we used the campground washers and dryers, and who knows what people have washed in them, we would be paying $5 or $6 per load. So while the onboard washer/dryer increases our electricity usage, we’d be paying out the same amount of money or more in laundromat fees.

If we’re on a 30-amp service we will shut the electric water heater off and switch it to propane and also change the RV fridge to propane. But propane is more expensive than electricity.

J J
4 days ago
Reply to  J J

I am going to buy the Hughes PowerWatchdog or similar before our next winter trip to track and monitor our KWH usage. This past trip one campground tried to way over-charge us for electricity as compared to the previous places and it was a big argument to get it fixed.

It turned out that campground reads their electric meters on the 25th of the month while most people arrive on the 1st. They said they do that because it gives them time to prepare the bills. So they charged us for six days of electricity usage from someone else, probably a big all-electric diesel pusher motorhome.

They said “It all balances out because your last five or six days are paid by someone else.” Yeah, it balances out for them.

So now if we’re being charged for electricity, if I can locate it, I take a picture of the electric meter when we arrive and when we leave, or a month later, and send it by email to the campground. If I cannot locate the meter I ask the campground for our starting reading.

www.livingboondockingmexico.blogspot.com
4 days ago

Funny how wasteful most people are with electricity. We have three minisplits (high wall) air conditioners, a pool filter (runs for 1.5 hours a day) a well pump, and all our lighting is LED. We use the A/C only in the room we are in at the time (only after 4 p.m.) and turn off lights when not in use. With a well-insulated house, our highest monthly usage is less than 500 KwH. We’re billed every two months and the last bill was 563 Kwh for April and May. Most friends and family in the U.S. have the central air (sometimes two) running 24/365 and at temperatures that would keep meat fresh for a day or two not to mention the complete lack of concern about lighting. We all want to be comfortable but it doesn’t mean abusing the planet. Average U.S. usage is over 900 Kwh per month.

This is why we boondock and use solar, gets us off the grid and makes our footprint a little softer. It doesn’t have to be from one extreme to another. Remember Ready Kilowatt?

Paul S Goldberg
4 days ago

I pay attention when I am charged for electric. Propane may be more or less expensive for heat and more or less available to be delivered to my motorhome. these are trade offs. As for conservation, that is something we do all the time.

Mike
4 days ago

Prior to my retirement, wife and I have lived for 43 years in housing that included utilities as part of my compensation package. Out of respect for our employer(s) and the environment, we have always kept unnecessary lights and other unused electrical equipment OFF. We also monitored our utilities bills which caused us to catch utility problems (water pipe leaks and excess electrical use by failing appliances) – items that otherwise would have persisted and cost our employers much more if we had not caught and reported them. For this reason I responded we “Probably (would) Not” change our habits when plugged into an unmetered site.

Tom
4 days ago

Just like at home we don’t use extra electricity just because it’s included with the price. Using more because it’s included in the overnight price is wasteful and everybody in the park is paying for it. It’s not Free.

DL Johnson
4 days ago

I answered “no” because we are already careful with our electrical use. We have a small 24′ Class B van and have a reasonably small footprint however we are also aware that our use has a “cost” to both the RV park owner and the planet. I have sometimes wished that our site fee was based on our actual energy useage rather than a flat fee especially when I see much larger rigs using a lot more resources (sometimes egregiously indiscriminately) for the same “cost.”

David Hagen
4 days ago

I think that it would be a real problem to charge RV’ers for electricity (hydro for you Canadians) on 1, 2, or 3 night stays. Most RV parks charge up front for short stays, so how would they collect electricity for those that leave at the crack of dawn? When I am on a longer stay with power extra, I do think about power usage.

Ian C
5 days ago

With the cost of some R V Parks in California charging as much as $100.00 per night, they have surely included electricity costs in that nightly fee.

John Koenig
5 days ago

No. I can and have boondocked for seven ~ ten days. When I check into an RV park, I want FULL USE out of my Super-C diesel puller.

Ray Cordero
5 days ago

We try to avoid using the A/C until it gets unbearable (usually around 85 degrees depending on humidity). Same with heat during the winter when we keep it at 62 or lower. We have been to a couple of parks that charged extra for electricity and it hasn’t changed our use.

Bull
5 days ago

Hey Chuck,

Why not survey several RV parks IF they will anonymously share their information and post their summer months park electric bill versus number of spots they have for rent. I would say most folks would be greatly surprised at the large electric bill RV parks must cover every month.

Anyone who actually owns and operates a small business will know how large that electric bill is each and every month runs just to keep the doors open much less when your customers git to use that electricity with unfettered access and no concern about the amount of cost of the electricity they use!

wanderer
4 days ago
Reply to  Bull

Good idea. An impartial set of data would be helpful to everybody. I’m curious how much juice the giant coach with the 3 A/Cs is using compared to the little units.

Stan AtoZ
4 days ago
Reply to  Bull

Then abolish “Generator Hours” and lower per day rates.

Captn John
5 days ago

Not just no but hell no. When cool I don’t know or care which is cost effective propane or heat pump, I don’t have to carry an electric tank. When warm all 3 ACs run. I’m going to be comfortable. What I don’t spend the kids will and that few extra dollars neither I or them will miss

www.livingboondockingmexico.blogspot.com
4 days ago
Reply to  Captn John

The “me” generation. Good on ya!

Rvthereyet
5 days ago

I’m annoyed by advertising (heaters) that promote using the “free” electricity at RV parks. It’s not free. Our hosts have included the cost of a reasonable amount of utilities in the fee. Glutinous use or wasting has to be payed for by someone. You are ‘free‘ to use the lounge chairs at the pool but you don’t get to destroy them or take them home.

Mojo
4 days ago
Reply to  Rvthereyet

I share your frustration with the “free” heat ads. Nothing is free.- someone is paying.

Benny H Smith
5 days ago

I am no longer able to see the polls This has been going on for days.

Admin
RV Staff (@rvstaff)
5 days ago
Reply to  Benny H Smith

I’m sorry you’re having problems with the polls, Benny. Here’s what one of our IT folks says about this issue: “Sometimes script blockers and ad blockers interfere with our polls since they are from a third party site. If you have one of these try turning it off and see if that fixes the issue.” I hope that works for you. 😀 —Diane at RVtravel.com

bounder
5 days ago

yes….. we respectfully treat facilities as if they were our own, making sure not to abuse or be greedy. Always leave behind nothing more than foot prints.