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Issue 756 • Week of Aug. 20-26, 2016
With Chuck Woodbury
Chuck (at) RVtravel.com
It’s Thursday. I’m typing in my new motorhome in between packing. My head is spinning with story ideas. I don’t have time to write them. I’m too busy moving out of my condo.
For some reason I can’t explain, the right portion of my brain (the creative part) has opened so big and wide that I’m “writing” stories in my head all day long. And I’m waking up in the middle of the night with ideas. Because I’m semi-old with a 15-second memory, I must write these ideas down fast or they zoom away to word heaven. I’m losing some sleep. But no complaints: I will have much to write about once I hit the road.
It now seems almost certain that the sale of my condo will go through. If so, I should be moved out in two weeks and into the motorhome. I will post pictures of the Winnebago after I get settled in. Actually I will take you on a video tour, too.
CHANGING THE SUBJECT, three days ago I got new prescription eyeglasses. I have been fumbling around with “readers” for a long time for my close-up vision. Then, awhile back, my distance sight started going. My world has been slightly out of focus.
There was a benefit, though, because while I knew my friends were getting older, they didn’t seem to age. Yes, I was fully aware they were sporting new wrinkles. But with my slightly blurred vision, I couldn’t see those wrinkles. So I just blocked out the idea that they were even there. Everybody looked great!
Then, three days ago, yipes! I’d meet a friend, then another, and right on their faces were wrinkles. They were all over the place! Reality had reared its ugly head thanks to eyeglasses. I found myself staring at these people. I wanted to say “Geez, Patty, you sure do have a lot of wrinkles!” But of course, I would never do that lest Patty give me a whack!
Through the years, since I began to seriously ponder the aging process, I have often thought that it’s good we age gradually rather than, say, in ten-year increments. By aging so slowly we don’t see ourselves change, except when we get a new driver’s license and then compare it with the one five years before. For me, this prompts about 24 hours of depression which I combat by drinking massive amounts of root beer. If I were to age in 10-year increments instead of minute by minute, on the day I changed, after looking into my mirror and seeing myself a decade older, I would scream and then run to a shrink and beg him/her to do something to keep me from driving off a cliff.
* * *
I considered writing more this week about the problems in the RV industry, but I decided to take a break. But I’m not done. One subject I have written about lately is the lack of campsites to accommodate you and me plus all the newbie RVers. One reason is CABINS. Read my short article about why cabins at RV parks are bad news.
And don’t forgot to spend some time reading the many comments readers have left in the last few weeks about problems with their RVs and their difficulty finding places to camp.
That’s it for now. Please tell your friends to sign up to receive an email alert for this newsletter. The first time they visit this website they’ll get a giant “subscribe” prompt. And be sure to tell them we don’t send junk mail (spam). Never! We run a clean operation.
Did you miss last week’s issue of RV Travel? You can read it here.
Happy Birthday! Happy Anniversary!
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See this week’s greetings near the bottom of this newsletter.
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THIS WEEK’S CONTEST
Win the book “Travels with Charley”
Most RVers who have read this classic book by John Steinbeck consider it one of the most inspiring accounts about traveling America in an RV. In his case, Steinbeck had the camper built on the back of his truck — way back in the early 1960s! Delightful!
We’re giving away TWO BOOKS with the winners picked at random out of a maximum of 600 entries. The contest ends at midnight Sunday (PDT) or earlier after both prizes have been awarded. You can only enter once, so hurry so you don’t miss out! It takes about 20 seconds to participate. You’ll know instantly if you win. Only residents 18 and older of the 50 United States or the District of Columbia are eligible to enter. We’ll announce the winners in our next issue.
ENTER THE CONTESTCONTEST HAS ENDED
You can order the book here.
What RV do you drive or tow?
Send us a photo of your RV (and tow vehicle) with a 150-200 word description of where and how often you travel with it, and what you like or don’t like about it. Include your name(s) and hometown. We’ll post them to RVtravel.com. Send to assistant editor Diane McGovern at Diane(at)RVtravel.com .
CLICK HERE to see last week’s RV Travel Reader RVs.
Reduce air drag and boost fuel efficiency — Airtab® your RV!
Just peel and stick Airtabs™ to the rear sides and the rear roof of your RV coach or trailer to create swirls of air that reduce aerodynamic drag, save fuel and improve stability. Airtabs™ dramatically reduce trailer ‘fish tailing’ and crosswinds pressure to RVs from passing trucks, while improving fuel efficiency 2% – 5%! Click on the video.
U.S. sales of motorhomes rose slightly in June, when compared to June 2015. Statistical Surveys Inc. notes that registrations rose a little over 3 percent. In the mix, Class C registrations went up 6.5 percent, while Class A registrations flatlined with no year-to-year increase.
Mix a state fair with 5.5 inches of rain and you can imagine the outcome. The rain forced the Illinois State Fair in Springfield to close early Friday, August 12, and many RVers staying in the fairgrounds found their rigs afloat. A total of 54 RVs were declared “uninhabitable,” although, happily, nobody was hurt.
The Commissioner of Public Lands has issued a statewide burn ban as of Aug. 17 that applies to Washington state forests, state parks and forestlands protected by DNR firefighters. All outdoor burning, including campfires in fire pits and the use of charcoal briquettes, are prohibited at all Washington state parks. Liquid or propane camp stoves that do not use solid briquettes and have on/off controls are permitted. The ban is in effect through Sept. 30, 2016.
A “stinky can of worms”? That’s what one council member fears is going to be opened as it’s suggested that the Havelock-Belmont-Methuen (Ontario, Canada) council look into residents’ views of parking RVs in the area. Under present bylaws, RV parking in waterfront areas is verboten unless in a “commercial trailer park” zone. One councilor confessed he himself has two trailers parked — evidently unlawfully — in that same waterfront area. At this point, the councilors want to hear from property owners about their feelings on the matter.
City fathers in Sprague, Conn., are gingerly exploring getting into the campground management business. Salt Rock State Campground, located in town, shut down last month because of state budget cuts. Now inquiries are being made asking to see the state park balance sheets, with the idea of the city taking over management of the park provided that the expenses it incurs would be covered from park fees. The earliest the park would open under city management would be 2017.
When a cougar snatched a 4-year-old girl from her family’s campsite, there was a quick — and lifesaving — response. On Friday, August 12, a family camping at Green Canyon Hot Springs near Rexburg, Idaho, watched as a cougar grabbed the girl. They immediately began yelling at the cat, which dropped the prize and ran off. The cat was later tracked down and shot by game officials. For the record, only three humans on the planet have reportedly been killed by cougars since 2000.
Folks in Beaver Dam, Wis., have made a warm spot in one RVing couple’s hearts. Bob and Cheryl Schwartz had stopped their motorhome in Beaver Dam to meet friends. When Cheryl got out of the rig to grab a cup of coffee, she was terrified to see it catch fire while Bob, a double-amputee, was stuck inside. Locals responded quickly, three of them risking their lives to get Bob out of the rig. Others volunteered to help them out in smaller ways. All of it caused Cheryl to write the local paper: “Our faith in the goodness of the people of this beautiful country is alive and well in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin.”
Locals weren’t too sure if they were happy about the opening of the Schoodic Woods Campground at Acadia National Park in Maine. Memorial Day marked the opening and, already, local business folks are seeing some direct benefits. Just one example: Since the campground has no showers available, the folks who own Winter Harbor Inn have opened a shower facility for visitors and, so far, 60 have taken advantage of it. Forget your quarters — a 45-minute session in the private shower facility for up to three folks costs $20.
RVers in the Seattle area looking for a place to store their RV when not using it now have another location option, the Port of Edmonds. Storage includes a 30-amp hookup. Learn more.
Kelowna, British Columbia’s, experiment with allowing farmers and agricultural providers to offer overnight RV camping appears to be heading toward its end. The Kelowna council will no longer sanction “agri-tourism accommodation,” and an area urban planning manager says the majority of the existing 15 sites could be in trouble. Of the 15, five are on the block for possible legal action, four “are of concern,” and only four are compliant with applicable law. The other two have yet to begin operating.
SnapPad – World’s only permanently attached jack pad for RVs
Install it just once, then leave it on — forever!
No more crawling under your RV to set up! SnapPad XTRA installs in seconds and will not retain any standing water. Widens your jack’s footprint on any terrain, yet dampens vibrations when you move inside your RV, giving a feel that’s solid, but soft. Compatible with LCI’s ‘Level Up & Ground Control 3.0’ leveling systems. Learn more here.
An RV park that bills itself as “an Adirondack Paradise” has suffered its own “Paradise Lost” scenario. Pine Lake RV Park and Campground in New York’s Fulton County was hit with a microburst Saturday, August 13, that caused at least a million dollars worth of property damage. At least 30 RVs and 50 other structures were destroyed. The storm came while an estimated 1,000 people were attending a music festival. Eight people were injured, two of them described as “seriously.”
Planning a trip to Nevada’s Great Basin National Park? Check ahead before going. A wildfire broke out last week and as of press time the Strawberry Fire had closed down Wheeler Peak Campground and the Wheeler Peak Scenic Drive. “Burned over” by the fire was Strawberry Creek campground.
A Penticton, British Columbia, RV park owner is up in arms over competition from — what else? — the local Walmart. “During our off-season in May and June, sometimes Walmart has more customers [RVers] than we do,” complained Harvey Anweiler during an interview with The Daily Courier in Kelowna. Anweiler said local RV parks charge between $40 and $50 per night, then stated the obvious: “It’s hard to compete with free.” Penticton city officials note that overnight RV parking on store lots is a code violation.
Camping price hikes could be in the offing for some Bureau of Land Management (BLM) sites near Salem, Ore. The uptick could be as small as $4 to $6 for single campsites, while group sites could rocket up to as much as $70 per night. BLM officials say campgrounds in the area aren’t being kept up because the money isn’t coming in to support them. The fees will “improve services and add amenities desired by visitors,” says an agency media release. For full details, and to send feedback, click here.
A law banning overnight RV parking in Santa Cruz, Calif., has been shot down after the California Coastal Commission wouldn’t bless it. The decision so disappointed city councilwoman Richelle Noroyan that she shouted at the commission as she exited the meeting.
Do bears walk in the woods? Sure. Do bears drive cars? In Old Forge, N.Y., maybe they’re trying. A family reports that a black bear and her cubs showed up at the Old Forge Camping Resort and Mama started jumping up and down on the car hood. That set off the car alarm and somehow this triggered the door locks to open. Mama then climbed in the car — and as the car was parked on an incline, the door slammed shut, separating Mama and cubs. Mama went berserk, destroying the interior of the car. Police were called and extricated the bothered bruin.
Because Coco came home, a Canadian couple is going to Alaska. Stephan and Robyn Tschurthschenthaler are newlyweds from Vancouver, British Columbia. They scraped together enough money to buy a 40-year-old camper van they dubbed “Coco” and had plans to head out to Alaska. But alas! Someone kiped Coco! TV network CTV picked up the story and two days later two viewers spotted the misappropriated motorhome a few blocks from where it was purloined. Aside from a few pilfered property items, Coco is ready to go — and so are Stephan and Robyn.
Keep up with RV Industry news
throughout the week at RVbusiness.com.
Light up your RV with Boogey Lights!
RV accent lighting is all the rage! Just look around the RV park! Enter Boogey Lights®! These robust, super-bright, state-of-the-art LED lights with hi-tech controller technology represent the next generation in LED lighting for RVs. The AWNING & UNDER-GLOW LIGHT KITS are specifically designed to withstand harsh operating environments. Don’t waste your money on junk! Get Boogey Lights! You can even control them with your Smart Phone! Learn more or click the video for a demonstration.
RV Quick Tips
Simple, soothing sleep aid
Noisy campground and earplugs just don’t cut it for trying to sleep? Dan Bakke recommends turning on a fan — the soft droning can lull you right off to sleep. Thanks for the “sound” suggestion, Dan!
Corralling and organizing medicine cabinet contents
RVers Alan and Cheryl Day read an earlier suggestion on corralling your medicine cabinet shelves. They have a “transparent” approach for the “fence.” Use 1/8-inch Plexiglas instead of wood. A good Day suggestion! And reader Wendy W. says they also use clear Plexiglass and double-faced tape it in place. Wendy adds, “Most home improvement stores will cut the Plexiglass for you. Add a few small plastic baskets and it’s all organized.” Thanks, Wendy!
Use caution when using park’s sewer port
Don’t shove your sewer hose into the park’s sewer port more than just a few inches. Push too far and you may obstruct the flow in the system with horrific results.
RVs & Electric Bikes – the perfect match!
An Electric Bike is the perfect, simplest and most affordable way of sorting all the ‘challenges’ of RV’ing. Get around camp effortlessly, visit the sites or town nearby without unhooking or simply enjoy a fun ride with fellow campers! Click here to discover our electric bikes and get free shipping & returns, and 0% financing on any new EVELO.
Avoid yucky problems with this RV sewer dumping technique
Here is a very handy tip regarding when and how to empty your black and gray tanks when you have full hookups, and some possible consequences if you perform this chore some other way. Eww! Learn more.
Tiffin recalls more than 10,000 motorhomes
Tiffin Motorhomes is recalling certain model year 2007-2011 Allegro, Allegro Bus, Phaeton, and Zephyr motorhomes, 2007-2010 Allegro Bay motorhomes, and 2010-2011 Allegro Breeze motorhomes. The windshield wiper arms on the affected vehicles may break off. Approximately 10,300 vehicles are involved in the recall. Learn more.
An easy way to save up to 10 cents per gallon at the pump
RV tire expert Roger Marble explains a very easy way to save up to 10 cents a gallon every time you stop to fill up your car or RV’s fuel tank. You should be taking his advice for other reasons, too. Watch the video.
Even the simple maintenance — Tighten your appliance screws
Like most of us, Rich “The Wanderman” drives his RV lots of miles. It’s no wonder that the major appliances and their mounts in the RV are going to come loose or even break free from all the vibration, not to mention bumps and jolts. It really pays to check the mounts frequently. Here are some tips to keep the screws, and appliances, in place. Learn more.
Weigh your RV properly — axle by axle
Chris Dougherty, certified RV technician, received this question from a reader while he was serving as RVtravel.com’s technical editor: “I have read a lot about checking the weight of your RV. My question is: Where does one go to have your RV weighed one axle at the time?” Read Chris’ response.
Give Dyers a try on your next purchase of RV parts or accessories. Large selection, great service, low prices and fast shipping. Visit our website.
Some Winnebago Views and Itasca Navions recalled
Winnebago Industries is recalling certain model year 2017 Winnebago View and Itasca Navion motorhomes manufactured November 16, 2015, to June 23, 2016. In the affected vehicles, the grommet around the liquid propane (LP) line may not be properly sealed to prevent carbon monoxide and/or LP gas from entering the living quarters. Read more.
RV shopping? Think used
Thinking about buying a new RV? We don’t mean “new to you,” but rather fresh-from-the-factory new. There are advantages, sure enough, but there are also drawbacks — which we’ve heard a lot about lately. Here from Russ and Tiña De Maris are even more reasons to consider buying a used RV. Learn more.
A timely warning — trailer hitch breaks apart
Many RVers have a safety checklist they go over when pulling out on the road. For some, it’s a paper checklist; others just keep it all upstairs. Tail lights working? Antenna down? Sewer port cover in place? But how about that trailer hitch? Larry Lang thinks all travel trailer owners ought to add another little item to that safety checklist – and Larry is a man who speaks from experience – scary experience. Read more.
RV Industry Death Spiral, part 8:
RV media falls asleep
In this final installment of his often critical view of the RV industry, Greg Gerber discusses the RV media, and why it must take its share of the blame for the problems that plague the RV industry today. Read more.
Dish TV Discount Program
for Military and Veterans
DISHForMyRV.com is your partner for getting DISH HDTV in your RV. We offer the hardware solutions including a wide variety of portable satellite antenna solutions. Our specialized agents are experienced with RV setups and equipment and are knowledgeable in the DISH Pay As You Go programming options. This month we are honoring our Military Active Duty and Veterans with our new Military Discount program. Learn more.
This week in history
Week of Aug. 20-26
Compiled by Dell Bert
1904 — Patent for tire chains issued.
1939 — “The Wizard of Oz” debuts.
1939 — First televised Major League baseball game.
1944 — The liberation of Paris.
1959 — Hawaii becomes 50th state.
1974 — Charles Lindbergh dies.
1975 — Viking 1 launched to Mars.
2004 — Michael Phelps wins eighth medal (he now has 28 total, including 23 gold).
RV Consignment Dealer
Buy or sell your used motorhome, diesel pusher, fifth wheel or travel trailer hassle free at PPL Motor Homes. And check our huge selection of parts! PPL is the largest RV consignment dealer in the USA, selling more than 24,000 consigned RVs since 1972. Visit the PPL website.
Here are some RV clubs from our extensive directory which you may be interested in:
Born Free Leap’n Lions RV Club.
The Born Free Leap’n Lions RV Club, a chapter of FMCA, is a brand-specific RV Club open to Born Free Motorcoach owners only, with members in six regions of the United States.
The purpose of the Alfa Owners Club and the Roadrunners chapter is the promotion of good fellowship, fun, and companionship along with the exchange of information and ideas to enhance the enjoyment of RVing in your Alfa. There are several chapters of the Alfa Owners Club. Most are regionally based. The Roadrunner chapter is for those Alfa owners who don’t identify with a specific region. They may be full-timers, part-timers, or anyone else. All are welcome.
An international club (blog and forum) for VW Westfalia (Westy) owners since 1996.
Dogs love camping too!
We love pets who camp, and welcome well-behaved dogs, cats and their responsible owners. Enjoy year-round camping at Thousand Trails’ network of family campgrounds where you’ll find spacious campsites, hiking trails, fishing amenities and lots of family fun. So grab your furry friend and get out and camp! Click here to receive 10% off your next stay!
Bumper sticker of the week
Seen on Budget Blinds vans in California and Pennsylvania: “Caution: Blind man driving.” —Thanks to Mike H., from Oley, Pa.
Funny/clever business slogan
“Nobody knows the truffles we’ve seen.” — Truffle Shop, Nevada City, Calif.
Have you seen a funny bumper sticker or business slogan? Send it to Diane(at)RVtravel.com
The New TireTraker™ TT-500 with a Lifetime Warranty
The new TireTraker™ TT-500 is the most innovative & user friendly TPMS on the market with an unprecedented “Lifetime Warranty”, the only TPMS company in the industry to do so. The TT-500 features a larger, easier to read display, continuous pressure & temperature monitoring, automatic update, & monitoring up to 22 tires on your motorhome, trailer & tow vehicle from 0-232 psi ! Seven day per week sales & technical support & over 12 years of experience. List price (4 tires) $389. Our price only $289. SAVE $100! (Additional Sensors $35 each). Learn more or order. Read testimonials.
Upcoming RV Shows
See the list of upcoming RV shows for 2016 and 2017.
Websites of the Week
We like these websites. Check ’em out. More next week.
Here’s a sample: Watch out for these tourist traps in all 50 states. Plus summertime stuff.
NEW: Current wildfire information
Up-to-the-minute wildfire updates in one U.S. interagency website. Select by incident or state.
No overnight parking at these Walmarts
See which Walmarts in the USA do NOT allow overnight RV stays.
‘Best club for motorhome owners!’
The Family Motor Coach Association (FMCA) is THE “best club, hands down, for motorhome owners.” That’s the word from RVtravel.com editor Chuck Woodbury, who has been a member for 25 years! The group has many local and special interest clubs, national rallies, valuable member-only web content, and a wonderful monthly magazine. A normal first-year membership is $50 per family, but FMCA is offering a special rate of $40 to RV Travel readers who click this link to join.
Good reading from RV123.com
• Walt Disney World is the perfect family getaway filled with magic around every corner.
• Who says you can’t cook great food while camping?
• Watch this video for 12 clever ideas to use on your next camping trip.
Handy jewelry box
Just $1.91 plus free shipping
This highly rated, plastic jewelry box organizer will really come in handy when you’re on the road. Use it to store other small items, too, including pills, fly fishing lures or other mini supplies. And for $1.91 plus free shipping — what a deal! Learn more or order.
Ask the RV Shrink
RV kitchen storage a real headache
Dear RV Shrink:
We are now in our third week of the RV lifestyle. The excitement is starting to wear off, especially when we stop and I start opening cupboards and the refrigerator. Bouncing down the road seems to make our food items jumpy. I opened the cupboard above the dinette today and put an ugly looking dent in my husband’s head, not to mention the table.
I know I am not the only first-timer that has experienced this problem. I know you can’t fix my husband’s head (it’s way too late for that), but how about some storage advice, tips, hints, ideas? —A bit road jumpy in Joplin
Locate services at Interstate exits
The 2016 Next Exit is the most complete USA Interstate highway exit directory ever published for every exit of major and most minor routes. Find what’s located at upcoming exits on your route — gas, food, lodging, camping, shopping, hospitals, Walmarts and much more. A best-seller year after year. Learn more or order.
RV Tech Tips
from Mark Polk
How to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning
The on-board generator makes your RV fully self-contained. It allows you access to 120-volts when there is no shore power available, but keep in mind that carbon monoxide is deadly! Test the carbon monoxide detector every time you use the RV. Know what the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning are: dizziness, vomiting, nausea, muscular twitching, intense headache, throbbing in the temples, weakness and sleepiness, and inability to think coherently. If you or anyone else experiences any of these symptoms get to fresh air immediately. If the symptoms persist seek medical attention. Shut the generator down and do not operate it until it has been inspected and repaired by a professional.
Mark Polk is the owner of RV Education 101, the premiere source of educational DVDs about buying, maintaining and using an RV. Learn more.
Latest fuel prices
Here are the latest U.S. average prices per gallon of gasoline and diesel fuel:
Regular unleaded gasoline: $2.15 (on Aug. 15). Change from week before: None; Change from year before: Down 57 cents.
Diesel: $2.31 (on Aug. 15). Change from week before: Down 1 cent; Change from year before: Down 31 cents.
Easily brew a single cup of coffee
This is great for RVers! Brew a single cup of coffee without the high cost of an expensive coffee maker with the MyJo Single Cup Coffee Maker! Just fill reservoir with hot water from tea kettle, or heat water in a microwave. Assemble, place K-Cup pack in base, attach the water reservoir and pump. Watch the video for a short demonstration or learn more or order at a big discount.
RV Travel Reader Pets
Do you travel with a pet? We’d love to introduce your pet(s) to fellow readers. Send a photo or two of Fido or Boots and a 150-200 word description of your furry friend(s), along with your name(s) and hometown to Diane(at)RVtravel.com .
Click here to see the current issue of RV Travel Reader Pets.
Airtight food containers
are perfect for the RV kitchen
These Snapware Airtight plastic food containers are 100% airtight and leak-proof — perfect for your RV cupboards. Their stackable design is convenient and space-saving over typical round containers. Microwave, dishwasher and freezer safe, too. Comes in two pack. Learn more or order.
The RV Kitchen
with Janet Groene
Heavenly biscuits, devilishly easy.
This classic recipe deserves to be revived often, especially for RV cooks who love to serve great meals while taking shortcuts. Make one batch of dough, then bring out pillowy, homemade biscuits every morning. The secret is a hybrid recipe that uses both baking powder and yeast. Get the recipe.
JUST PUBLISHED! Essential for big RVs!
2017 Rand McNally Motor Carriers’ Road Atlas
If you drive a big RV — extra long or extra tall — then this truck driver’s road atlas will be a huge help in knowing where you can drive without encountering a low bridge or getting stuck hanging over a cliff. This is an essential aid even if you have a GPS! Coverage: United States, Canada, and Mexico. Learn more or order.
App of the Week
How to reset your cellular connection for a better signal
If you believe your phone is not getting the best signal possible, you can “kick it” and force it to reacquire its cell signal. This is like hanging up from a phone call with a bad connection, then calling back and most likely getting a better connection. Not always, but often. Watch this quick-tip video from Geeks on Tour for “rebooting” your cell phone.
The special offer for RV Travel readers is back!
Become a member of Geeks on Tour and get a 20% discount. Click here.
Guide to RV Camping in State Parks
Learn about more than 1,730 state parks, forests & recreation areas for RVers. Book includes maps, locator charts, reservation & fee info, plus contact details & website. Plus park location, directions, GPS coordinates, contact info, type of hookups, season, RV length limit & availability of showers, dump station, Wi-Fi, etc. Learn more or order.
Ask the RV Doctor
The RV Doctor, Gary Bunzer, answers your questions
RV slideout wants to keep sliding in
Dear RV Doctor:
I have a 1998 5th wheel RV with a slideout living room. My problem is that there must be a relay somewhere that is sticking when I attempt to close the slideout. I have talked to numerous RV repair shops, even the factory itself, and no one can help me.
When it is coming in, it does not want to stop when I release the switch. The in-and-out switch is okay. It has a DeWalt hydraulic pump that operates the slideout. It is one that you can electrically bring the slide in or you can manually pump it in. Could the pump itself have the relay inside of it? Your help will be most appreciated. —J.R.M, USAF Retired
Find stores for shopping and overnight stays
This is an invaluable aid for RVers who occasionally spend a night in a Walmart parking lot. State maps identify where the stores are located in the USA. Detailed information includes city or town where each store is located, type of store (Walmart or Supercenter), availability of gas and diesel fuel, distance from Interstate if within 10 miles, and more. Published 2016. Learn more or order.
with Bob Difley
How to stay cool this summer
When the heat gets too oppressive, head up — in elevation that is. The higher you go, the cooler it gets — one degree for every 100 meters of elevation. Also park your rig so that the breeze , if any, will hit the side with the most windows. Open all your windows so that circulation is at the maximum. Select a campsite that has afternoon shade when the sun is hottest. Buy a roll of insulation (reflective silver on both sides, core of spun glass) from a hardware store and cut to fit windows on the sunny side during the hottest part of day. It stores away flat under the mattress.
You can find Bob Difley’s e-books on Amazon Kindle.
HALF-PRICE CAMPING at 1,900 RV parks across the USA. Learn more.
Gadgets and Gizmos
Collapsible, easily assembled kayak fits into RV locker
If paddling a kayak has you intrigued but you weren’t sure you wanted to heft a kayak up and down off your tow vehicle, and the idea of blowing up an inflatable kayak didn’t appeal to you, the Pakayak may be your answer to going paddling — the easy way. Pakayak is a high-performance hard-shell kayak that just happens to come apart and pack down to 3.5 feet. Read more.
Easily clean those
stubborn bugs off your RV
The Microfiber Mesh Bug and Tar Sponge has millions of tiny fibers embedded in the microfiber cloth that grabs and holds the dust and dirt. It is so effective it even cleans without chemicals, saving both time and money. The secret of this sponge lies in its unique, double-layer microfiber mesh. Older nylon bug sponges can harm your clear coat, but this one is completely paint safe. Learn more or order.
Upcoming RV Shows
• No. Carolina RV Dealers Association RV Show, Aug. 26-28, Raleigh, NC
• Utah RV Supershow, Sept. 8-11, Sandy, UT
• Fall RV Show & Sale, Sept. 9-11, St. Louis, MO
• Ohio Outdoor RV Bargain Expo, Sept. 9-11, Cleveland, Ohio
• Vermont State Fall RV Show, Sept. 10-11, Essex Junction, VT
• America’s Largest RV Show, Sept. 14-18, Hershey, PA
• Fall Maryland RV Show, Sept. 15-18, Timonium, MD
• Portland Fall RV & Van Show, Sept. 15-18, Portland, OR
• Southwest RV SuperShow, Sept. 15-18, Dallas, TX
• Greater Iowa RV Show, Sept. 16-18, Des Moines, Iowa
• Springfield RV Mega Show, Sept. 16-18, Springfield, MO
See the list of all upcoming RV shows.
Casino Camping: Guide to RV-Friendly Casinos
Discover hundreds of RV-friendly casinos throughout America. Learn which casinos have an RV park and which ones allow free overnight parking. RV parks at casinos are popular because they offer modern, upscale facilities at reasonable rates (and often free!). Boondockers seek casinos for a quiet, safe place to park. Learn more or order.
Videos you’ll like
Wow! RVing has changed lot since 1937
See what it was like in this newsreel. Watch the video
Choosing the right sealant for your RV
RV sealants are essential for keeping out moisture and maintaining a firm bond between the components of your RV. Which is right for y0u? Watch the video.
Don’t buy the wrong truck for your towable RV
RV Safety and Education Director Walter Cannon offers a formula for buying a truck to tow a fifth wheel or travel trailer. Buying the truck or the RV the wrong way can significantly reduce your options on getting the RV that’s right for you. Watch the video.
HOW TO WATCH YOUTUBE VIDEOS USING VERY LITTLE BANDWIDTH.
Lightweight vacuum perfect for RVs
This Dirt Devil Simpli-Stick Lightweight Bagless Stick Vacuum is compact and it works great. Plus it converts to a hand vacuum in a snap! It’s the vacuum of choice in the RV Travel motorhome. Weighs less than 4 pounds. Learn more or order for about $20.
Brad Pitt and President Barack Obama are actually ninth cousins, linked back to 1769 by Edwin Hickman of Virginia.
Stupid statements of yesteryear
“We don’t like their sound, and guitar music is on the way out.” —Decca Recording Co. rejecting the Beatles, 1962.
Random RV Thought
Never park so close to another RV that its generator exhaust has even a remote chance of blowing into your RV. That’s a potentially dangerous, even deadly situation from carbon monoxide poisoning. Equally important, never park so close to another RV that your generator exhaust may enter its living space.
Add an outdoor water faucet to your RV!
This lead-free outdoor faucet is really handy. If you don’t have one, here’s a super inexpensive way to add one. No tools required and it installs in a minute (just screw it on). Brass T included with the plastic faucet, just as it’s shown in the product photo. Learn more or order.
“The finest literature in the world is the unwritten stories told around the campfire.” — Raymond Carlson in “Arizona Highways”
Effective against Zika virus
Best protection from mosquitoes
The Repel 100 uses a 98.1-percent DEET formula to provide complete protection from mosquitoes, ticks, gnats, chiggers, no-see-ums & biting flies. Use in areas of high infestation or prolonged periods of up to 10 hours. Repels mosquitoes that may transmit Zika and other viruses. Learn more or order.
Readers’ Birthday and Anniversary Greetings
• August 26: To Jack from Schmotzer. Happy 49th!
Send your special someone a birthday or anniversary greeting. (25-word maximum) (Be sure to send it to us prior to the Saturday before the event.)
RV Travel staff
Editor and Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Assistant editor: Diane McGovern. Contributing editor: Russ De Maris. Contributing writers: Greg Illes, Bob Difley, Richard Miller, Richard Mallery, Janet Groene, Roger Marble and Julianne Crane.
ADVERTISE on RVtravel.com and/or in this newsletter. Contact Chuck Woodbury at Chuck(at)RVtravel.com.
About the RVtravel.com editor Chuck Woodbury has explored America by RV for nearly three decades. In the ’90s he published the quirky travel newspaper Out West, and was an “on the road” writer for the New York Times Syndicate. His book, “The Best from Out West” is available at Amazon.com. Woodbury’s RVing adventures have been profiled on ABC News, CNN, NBC’s Today Show, and in People Magazine, USA Today and in hundreds of newspapers. Nowadays, he lives near Seattle, where he drinks massive amounts of coffee and travels often in his motorhome and sometimes by plane when vast expanses of saltwater would turn his RV into a leaky submarine. He is the host of the Better Business Bureau DVD “Buying a Recreational Vehicle,” the definitive guide to purchasing an RV the right way.
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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