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September 24, 2022
Non-Members (advertising-supported) edition
When hurricanes hit the headlines, your RV hits the road
By Russ and Tiña De Maris
Headline, September 18, 2022: “All of Puerto Rico without power as Hurricane Fiona slams island.”
Headline, September 21, 2022: “A hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico next week? Forecasters warn of ‘significant threat’ to US”
Headline, September 22, 2022: “Satellites track 5 storms as Atlantic hurricane season heats up”
Were/are you or a loved one included in the vast number affected by these storms? If you weren’t, don’t feel left out. It seems the pace of disasters is on the rise. Maybe it won’t be a hurricane, but what about a wildfire rushing toward your home or an earthquake disrupts utility services? Some years ago our family was placed on mandatory evacuation when a fire at a nearby pesticide storage facility endangered lives for miles around. At that time, we had no RV and we spent some uncomfortable nights on air mattresses on a relative’s floor. Still, that was better than a cot in a crowded gymnasium.
It’s not “if,” but “when”
It’s really not a matter of “if” some emergency will force you to evacuate, it’s more likely a matter of “when.” For RVers, having the old reliable rig ready and available to roll down the driveway at a moment’s notice can make a huge difference in comfort, and possibly in life safety. How ready is your RV to take on the assignment? Just what does it take to have your RV queued up as your “bug out vehicle”?
Whether you have a motorhome or a towable rig, there are common critical essentials that you can keep at hand, year-round. Keep the fuel tank on the coach or the tow vehicle full. Several RVers who have had to evacuate from disasters in the past have remarked on how long the lines at local fuel stations grew. And the more time that elapses from the notification of a pending disaster, the greater the chance that your local stations could simply run out of fuel. Having enough fuel in the tank to get at least a hundred miles or more away from your area could make a huge difference. And keep the propane tanks filled up, too.
You may notice something new at the top of this newsletter. We wrote, “Welcome to RVtravel.com, where readers come first, not search engine rankings.” We risk falling further and further down the popularity ladder by publishing accurate, truthful information about RVing written with editorial integrity with your interests in mind, not search engine rankings. Please read this article from publisher Chuck Woodbury to better understand what we mean. And please consider making a one-time or recurring donation to help our efforts. Advertising alone covers only some of our expenses. “Getting rich is not our goal; getting better for you IS!”
Here is today’s edition of our photo contest. Please vote for your favorite. Once you’ve voted, please submit your own photo for consideration. Winners receive a $50 Amazon gift card. Good luck!
Please note: We’ve changed the rules around a little bit. Please read the updated rules here. And don’t forget to submit a photo!
Psssst: Remember, you can vote through next Friday! If your photo is selected, share it with your friends and family. Everyone can vote once per day.
Rant: Shame on the RV manufacturers! Why would they do this?
By Karel Carnohan, DVM
My woeful tales of buying a used RV have been many lessons learned by me and provided you some head shakes and laughs. I considered chucking it all many times in the past year. … I have stepped back a bit to look at the real reasons I am having all these problems—a lot is my own dang fault. But the dealership, and the RV industry that supports it, are responsible, too.
Continue reading. Do you agree with Karel? She’s asking for your input.
Today’s RV review…
Tony has been on the road the last several days. Here’s a blast from the past — his most popular review within the last six months.
Tony writes, “Is this a perfect RV? Heck no. None of them are. But there are so many areas where this is exceptional, to my eyes.”
Linemen and other workers outnumbering snowbirds. RV parks are a-changin’
What do you picture in your mind when you hear the words “RV park”? The RV park in your mind’s eye may not match today’s reality. That’s because RV parks are changing. Really changing! One change? Workers. More than ever before, RV campgrounds are seeing an increase in the number of workers who need a place to live. More and more, these workers are choosing campgrounds as “home.” Continue reading.
We finally got it: Dealing with COVID while on the road
By Nanci Dixon
This isn’t good. We are currently traveling cross-country and are having to finally deal with COVID on the road. We did all the right things: masked up for two years, got our vaccinations and boosters, stayed away from large gatherings and even got up at 5 in the morning for senior hours at the grocery store. We were very careful … at least until Labor Day, when we spent three full days of family gatherings in close proximity. COVID finally got us. So now what?
Why you need to be nice to your RV dealer
When your new RV has box problems and you have a chassis problem, too, which should you fix first? That’s easy. Can you get them both fixed without having to run around yourself, when the RV dealer is just across town but the chassis dealer is halfway across the state? Well, maybe…. Get some tips from the nation’s leading expert on RV lemon law here.
RV Service Centers and Repairs Report: ‘They LOST my couch and put a hole in my recliner!’
A few weeks ago, we asked you to tell us about your experiences with RV service centers. You came through with hundreds of responses. This week our readers report on the place to take your RV for service in or near Chattanooga, Tennessee; more complaints about slow or poor service; but also more recommendations for mobile repair companies and service centers. Read more.
Highlights from this week’s RV Daily Tips Newsletters
- Hobbies for RVers: Yes, you can make yours work in a small space
- Brake failures and the importance of a wheel bearing pack service
- Bet you’ve never thought of these uses for cardboard tubes while RVing
- RV hydraulic system maintenance
- See wildlife up ahead? Great! Here are some tips for safely observing wildlife
My Weirdest RV Moment
In this new column, readers tell about their weirdest (strangest, funniest, most unusual, etc.) experiences as RVers. In this episode, a reader writes:
“Baboons sit on our RV, pooping, tearing off wipers”
Around the Campfire: RVers question if it’s safe to RV
By Gail Marsh
I just love how I feel when we’re RVing: relaxed and free from worry. At least that’s how I felt until last night’s campfire conversation. Several folks voiced the same concern: Is it safe to RV? Read about several topics discussed here, then please weigh in with your thoughts.
Video: How to inspect your RV for water damage
In the six-minute video below from RV Education 101, veteran RV technician, author and video producer Mark Polk shows you how he inspects an RV for water intrusion and damage. There isn’t much worse you can do to damage your RV than expose it to water leaks, especially those you do not fix immediately. If the leak is not stopped it will destroy the RV, eventually making it unusable and practically worthless. Watch the important video.
RV boo-boos: Hit-and-run bends Blue Ox
Imagine pulling up to a stoplight in your motorhome and patiently waiting for the green light. Before the light changes, some clown plows into the rear of your coach, mangling your Blue Ox tow bar. Reader Howard S. says it happened to a family he was on a tour with. Check this out.
You may change your mind about RV rentals after seeing these RVs
Love RV camping but want to leave yours behind? Try an RV rental! Most are fully outfitted and already in an RV park so you can enjoy the camping without the hassle. You’ll probably save some gas money, too! This is a new trend that is fast gaining popularity. People who have an RV and those that don’t are booking these fully furnished RVs, some new and some vintage, and driving their car or flying to an RV park. Think Airbnb for RVs. Continue reading.
If you had to use one word to describe this website, RVtravel.com, what would it be?
Please let us know. After you click your response, you’ll see how others have responded. Feel free to leave a comment.
POPULAR POLL FROM THIS PAST WEEK
We asked: Did you camp with a tent before taking up RVing? What do you think? Did most RVers say yes or no? Find out here.
Incredible art along the Enchanted Highway should not be missed
Driving the Enchanted Highway was a fabulous short stop on the way to Glacier National Park. The highway from Gladstone, North Dakota, to Regent, North Dakota, is a 32-mile stretch through richly rolling farm fields. Artist Gary Greff had a dream to help revitalize his hometown of Regent, North Dakota. He brought together local farmers and ranchers to use the skills they knew best—welding. They started creating the biggest metal sculptures in the world and hold the Guinness Book of records for them! Continue reading.
Ghost Town Trails: Greenhorn—Oregon’s smallest incorporated city
Greenhorn, Oregon, is the featured ghost town in this month’s installment of Ghost Town Trails. … Gold was first discovered in 1864 on Olive Creek, leading to the formation of a community known as Robinsonville. Greenhorn was settled shortly afterwards a short distance to the southwest of Robinsonville. When Robinsonville burned to the ground in 1898, Greenhorn became the supply hub of mining in the area. The town was incorporated as a city in 1903. Continue reading about Oregon’s “smallest [just how small is it?] and highest incorporated city in Oregon.”
Know Your RV: Everything about winterizing for newbies (or anyone)
Got a new-to-you RV? Live where the outside temperatures drop below freezing? Then you need to winterize your RV. Like you learned in science class, when water freezes it expands. If it expands inside your RV’s plumbing, you could be in for some serious damage. It doesn’t take long to winterize your RV, and it’s a whole lot cheaper than fixing broken pipes. Learn about winterizing here.
The long, long RV trip
Week 16: Mississippi River Camping and Wisconsin wines
By Cheri Sicard
This week’s stops include Burr Oak Winery, Lisbon, WI, with Harvest Hosts, and camping at Blackhawk Park, DeSoto, Wisconsin. After several weeks of socializing with friends in Chicago, Atlantic City, Baltimore, and Virginia, it was time for some alone time and catching up on writing and other work. I turned to my new favorite group, the Army Corps of Engineers, and found some amazing Mississippi River camping at Blackhawk Park in Wisconsin. Continue reading about Cheri’s latest adventures.
Is this your RV?
Win a $25 Amazon gift certificate if today’s RV photo shows your rig
Every day we post a photo of an RV either submitted by its owner or by our editors as they move about the country.
How would you like to win a Bella Electric Griddle?
This 1500-watt electric, non-stick griddle can cook up to 10 eggs at once!
How to win
We’ll select a winner at random out of all entries we receive today (September 24, 2022) by 7 p.m. Pacific time. Remember, you can only enter once and after we notify you by email via RVcontests@gmail.com that you won, you have 24 hours to respond or we’ll give the prize to someone else.
Dave Solberg is a leading expert in the RV industry and author of the “RV Handbook”.
Reader wonders: Where have all the RVs from the ’60s to ’80s gone?
What has happened to the majority of the RVs from the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s? Where are they today? —Al
This past week’s questions that Dave answered:
- Water line valves stuck. Is there a way to lubricate them?
- My RV’s vinyl floor is loose and puffed up. How can I fix it?
- Can I add a disconnect switch to my trailer’s two 6-volt batteries?
- Can I retract RV’s rear slideout manually?
- A few questions about storing an RV at a campground through the winter
RV Gadgets and Gizmos
Inflatable cooler solves lots of problems for RVers
Coolers are a fixture in the RV world but they usually come with some inherent disadvantages. Fortunately, Jim Phelan at AirSkirts® has solved many of the downsides of coolers for RVers by inventing an inflatable cooler. It’s a 58-quart cooler that really has a lot of unique features that serve RVers well. But the most important job a cooler has is to keep the contents cold, of course. The AirSkirts cooler uses an air gap to accomplish this, and air is a surprisingly good insulator. Learn more.
?? MYSTERY PRODUCT OF THE DAY ??
This has us cracking up. Even if you’re not into the subject of this, you’ll still laugh.
with Mike Sokol
Mike goes to Detroit (Rock City) to check out EVs
Yes, I’m in Detroit (Rock City) for the International Auto Show. And I’ll be looking at current EVs that will soon be available, as well as a future possibility for an EV chassis that could serve as an electric RV. Will it work? I’m not sure, just yet. There are a lot of variables to consider such as available charging spots and is there enough energy from the grid. But I have a personal invite to check out one possible EV chassis which could become a Class C EV. While I’m here at the show I’ll be checking out some currently available EV offerings. This is a fascinating time for a motor head like me. Continue reading.
Just Ask Mike (J.A.M.) Session: How much solar power do I need?
Video of the day
Tour the prototype eRV: Winnebago’s first all-electric RV
By Cheri Sicard
James from The Fit RV caught up with Nick from Winnebago’s advanced technology group recently to tour their prototype eRV. That’s right, Winnebago is working on an entirely electric RV. The electric motorhome, not yet on the market for us mere mortals, uses no fossil fuels whatsoever, although it is currently on the road.
RV Tire Safety
Do we need to be smarter than the tire salesperson?
By Roger Marble
It would be nice if we could all simply depend on the salesperson to know exactly what we need for our RV. However, with numerous tire companies making hundreds of tire designs in countless combinations of type, load range, size, and tread design, that’s an almost impossible task. With a little effort on our part, we can help the salesperson offer a smaller, more reasonable selection and end up getting a set of tires that better fits our individual needs. Here’s what you need to know when shopping for tires.
Ask Roger anything about RV tires on his RV Tires Forum.
Operating an RV Park
“Fire in the Sky” UTV event, and we’re almost to the finish line
By Machelle James
Last weekend was one for the record books of how to have fun and meet cool people! We were the Host Campground for an event called “Fire in the Sky UTV Fun Run.” This is our second year hosting this event and it just gets better every year! … Read about all of the fun everyone had here, including a visit from Travis Walton, the subject of the alien encounter movie “Fire in the Sky.”
Why so many RVing articles are B.S.
This week, our publisher tells you how too many content creators write their articles, often in just seconds. We at RVtravel.com — real flesh-and-blood writers — are horrified. And yet, this is what you are reading day in and day out. After reading this, we hope you will keep your eyes open for articles written by artificial intelligence.
Recipe of the Day
by Bonnie Glazier from Palermo, ME
A simple side dish that will be delicious alongside pork, chicken, or steak. There are bursts of flavor from the peas. Mushrooms add an earthy flavor. Combined with rice, it’s a very quick and easy side dish.
Readers’ Pet of the Day
“Meet Cody, the Savannah cat. He has been traveling with us for eight years. Cody goes on his leash twice a day and loves to climb up into a tree and look around. He also loves to wade in puddles and creeks.” —Cathy Fischer
My voice is tender, my waist is slender and I’m often invited to play. Yet wherever I go I must take my bow or else I have nothing to say. What am I?
(Answer in tomorrow’s Sunday news newsletter. And please don’t spoil it for other readers by posting the answer in the comments.)
Most married couples are happiest in their third year of marriage.
Laugh of the Week
Mildred, a full-time RVer, was lonely after losing her husband a couple of years and many miles ago, so she posted an ad on a popular website. The ad said: “Husband wanted.” She was surprised the next morning to find she had more than a hundred replies in her inbox. Unfortunately, they all said the same thing: “You can have mine.”
Current smoke and fire report for where you live or where you are traveling.
“RVs: Who Makes What” – This is a new free directory from RVtravel.com which lists every U.S. RV manufacturer and their makes and models. Learn more and/or download a free PDF copy.
RV Show Directory: See if a show is coming soon to your area.
Stolen RVs — Help us recover these stolen RVs. The more eyes we have searching for them, the better chance of getting them back to their rightful owners, and maybe putting the crooks who stole them in the slammer! See the stolen RVs.
Great websites. Check out our favorite websites of the day! We compiled a list of (almost) all the websites we’ve ever posted, and we update it weekly.
Where to complain about bad RVs, dealers, service, RV parks. This is an ever-expanding list of resources where you can report, share or discuss your problems with RV manufacturers or dealers.
Best Club for RVers: Escapees. Click here to learn more or join. Endorsed by RVtravel.com.
Directory of RV parks with storm shelters
In case you’re on the road with your RV and the weather report is showing a tornado headed your way, have this list handy.
What does financing an RV for 20 years REALLY mean?
In case you missed this article the first time around, here it is again. Important! Click here.
Stuck with a lemon RV? Contact Ron Burdge, America’s premier RV lemon law attorney.
The Best RV Trip Planner Apps and Tools. Everything you need to help plan your trip is here.
Dustin Simpson RV Repair and Maintenance Articles: Incredibly helpful!
Did you miss last week’s RV Travel?
Meet Earl and Burl Squirrel, from the mind of RVtravel.com friend R.L. Crabb.
RVtravel.com has room for two new writers and perhaps even a part-time editor. Must appreciate and practice good journalism. No “content creators” or “influencers.” Earn modest money or excellent money, depending how well you understand our readers and respond with interesting, helpful articles. All positions are freelance. Work from home or your RV. Contact chuck (at) RVtravel.com .
RVtravel.com All-Star Team
Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Editor: Emily Woodbury. Associate editor: Diane McGovern. Senior editors: Russ and Tiña De Maris. Senior writers: Nanci Dixon, Tony Barthel, Gail Marsh. Contributors: Mike Sokol, Roger Marble, Dave Solberg, Dave Helgeson, Mike Gast, Julianne Crane, Machelle James, J.R. Montigel, Randall Brink, Karel Carnohan DVM, Cheri Sicard, Dustin and Ashley Simpson, Dale Wade, Paul Lacitinola, Jeff Clemishaw and Johnny Robot. Special projects director: Jessica Sarvis. Moderators: Gary Gilmore, Linda Brady. Financial affairs director: Gail Meyring. Special Reports: Bradford Geer. IT wrangler: Kim Christiansen.
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 RVtravel.com or this newsletter.
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