Monday, January 30, 2023


RV Daily Tips Newsletter 1020

Issue 1020 • December 18, 2018

Welcome to another fabulous edition of RV Travel’s Daily Tips newsletter. Here, you’ll find helpful RV-related, and small-space living, tips from the pros, travel advice, road trip stops, a handy website of the day, our favorite RVing-related products and, of course, a good laugh. Thanks for joining us. We appreciate your readership.

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You need a companion…

With electricity expert and veteran RVer Mike Sokol

One thing I’ve noticed about 2,000-watt class inverter generators is that the standard 20-amp outlet is not the best type of connector for your RV’s shore power plug. The Edison Plug (as it’s known in the industry) has a tendency to vibrate out, leaving you with a less-than-ideal connection. However, nearly all of these midsize inverter generators have a way to link (parallel) two of them together so, to get the full 3,600 watts from a 30-amp outlet, you would need one standard generator and one “companion” version hooked together.

If you can get by with a single EU2000i generator (for example), for around $50 extra you can buy only the “companion” generator with a twist-lock outlet. This is a much more robust connection that’s vibration proof and should never fail (as long as you keep the contacts clean). Champion (and others) have this same sort of dual-generator setup with a companion 30-amp outlet. Now, a single 2,000-watt generator is still only going to output around 16 amperes of current, but you won’t be losing any of it in a plug that’s falling out of an outlet. Happy generating!

Keep up with water heater maintenance

Keep your water heater sound: Change out the anode rod (if so equipped). Check ’em twice a year and flush out the tank to extend the life of your tank


Pizzaz up your RV with a new decal

Is the front end-cap of your RV looking about as blank as the look on the kid’s face who hasn’t prepared for an exam? You can get new, colorful decals to stick out there (or on your stone-guard) from stickerchef. They have a variety of stock stickers, or you can even have one customized with your name. Prices start at less than $20.

Social club parking

One way you can save money as you travel in your RV is to park for a day or two at a local clubhouse of a social club such as the Elks, the Moose, the American Legion, Rotary and others. If you are a member, you will have access to the telephone numbers of each local club in the USA. Most of these clubs will have at least one or more campsites that fellow club members can use for a day or two. You’ll just need to call a few days ahead, check if a site is open, and they will reserve one of their sites for you.

These sites can have full hookups, or they may just have electric and water, for instance. But, they are a nice, cheap stopover for a fellow member and usually they allow you into their clubhouse while you’re there and you can have a nice evening of food and drinks with the local members. Usually, they will just ask that you make a donation (typically $10 a night) for your stay.
–From The Ultimate RV Owners Reference.

Do you have a tip? Send it to Russ (at)

Last minute gifts for the one with a sense of humor:


Card Star

Traveling across the country means an ever-shifting landscape of grocery and drug store chains. Each chain has its own frequent shoppers card and those can sometimes be hard to keep track of. Card Star is an app (available in the Apple app store for iPhone users), that allows you to keep all your card/memberships in one place and easy to manage. Going to a CVS one day and a Walgreens the next? Open the app and scan the card. Piece of cake.

Check out the long list of great RVing-related websites from


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RV Daily Tips Staff

Editor and Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Managing editor: Diane McGovern. Staff writer: Emily Woodbury. Contributing writers: Russ De Maris, Bob Difley, Gary Bunzer, Roger Marble, Mike Sokol, Greg Illes, J.M. Montigel and Andrew Robinson. Advertising coordinator: Gail Meyring. Marketing director: Jessica Sarvis. IT wrangler: Kim Christiansen.

ADVERTISE on and/or in this newsletter. Contact Gail Meyring at Gail(at) . Regional and local advertising available. Show your banners only where your customers are, not all over the country (unless you want to).

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.

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Tommy Molnar
4 years ago

As an aside, I notice there are no “+” or “-” votes for any of the comments. This means I’m not being singled out. I can post comments, but I’m asked to “log in” to add a “+” or “-” vote. I don’t see any place for that to happen.

Eric Meslin
4 years ago

I love to travel internationally, especially to Europe. I’m not limited by the language. As long as you try to learn and use some words in the local language, people are happy to make the effort to speak some English. The “I’ll go anywhere” statement caused me to choose only English speaking countries. There is a pretty large part of the world that I’m not willing to travel to, mainly because of safety or security concerns. I’d also love to see Australia or New Zealand, but it’s just to far and too expensive.

4 years ago

Re: needing a companion… a redhead, please?

OK, more seriously, the need for a “Companion” generator appears to be mostly a Honda thing in order to make the patch cable simpler (not cheaper?). Most less absurdly priced gennies like Champion and Predator use identical twin generators and move the RV plug to a “Y” cable between them. I kinda like hotswap replacement of either unit, and I definitely like spending 1/4-1/3 for 4KW instead of $2K+ for 3.6KW… I’m told there are longevity issues with the cheapies, but I haven’t seen any, and at 1/4 the price I won’t cry as much if I did.

RV Staff
4 years ago
Reply to  Wolfe

I knew someone would comment on that headline. (I think Mike was purposely asking for “trouble.”) Shoulda’ known it would be you, Wolfe. 😀 —Diane at

4 years ago
Reply to  Wolfe

I agree,unless one is using the generator a lot,one does not need to spend an arm and leg for a “brand name” gen-set. I carry an older champion for emergency and have had to use it a time or two in the last years and as long as I keep fresh gas in it with seafoam and change the oil once a year it has never failed. Leave the expensive generators to the ultra rich who can best afford them.

4 years ago

My wife and I have traveled in 39 different countries on 3 continents on a GoldWing motorcycle towing a tent trailer over the last dozen years. Only 4 have English as an official language. It is amazing how many average citizens in other countries speak some to fluent English. We had a serious breakdown in a mountain town in Bulgaria. No one there spoke English but we managed to get repairs done and back on the road again anyway. Getting away from tourist areas is a great way to meet some nice people, find new foods and see great sights. English is not required to have fun.

George C
4 years ago

“The Ultimate RV Owners Reference” may need an update. I can’t speak for all the organizations, but for the Moose and Elks specifically, not all Lodges allow RV parking. In fact, there is a cottage industry out there building lists of those that do. And most are “first come, first served”, although that is changing as usage increases. And the majority of those that do allow parking have no hookups. Last, the advice on “donations” is seriously outdated. Last summer, we paid anywhere from $20 to $35 per night in Oregon and California, and many fees are likely to increase again for 2019. Other than that, it’s spot-on advice! ?

4 years ago
Reply to  George C

We stay at Elks Clubs occasionally and the average donation that we see is about $20 a night. Although, in Santa Barbara, CA which is a very pricey area the nightly fee was $30 with water and electric, but they do have a separate dump station. Eagles Club wasn’t mentioned, but some of them also have rv parking with hookups or large parking lots that allow dry camping for a night or two also.

Doug Schwebach
4 years ago

How long will the crayon burn if there is no emergency?

4 years ago
Reply to  Doug Schwebach

Good question Doug. It’s the type of question I’d ask. LOL.

Bob p
4 years ago
Reply to  Doug Schwebach

It says up to 30 minutes!

RV Staff
4 years ago
Reply to  Doug Schwebach

Probably much longer, Doug. 😉 —Diane at

4 years ago

“Any Country that speaks English”, Wow, that sounds kind of “Ugly American” to me. How about trying a new language if your planning on visiting …………..

4 years ago
Reply to  Dave

I don’t think it’s “ugly American” to know your limitation. It’s just pragmatic to know that you’ll enjoy traveling less if you struggle with the native language.

It IS “ugly” if you EXPECT a foreign country to speak your language for your benefit (kinda like Hispanics here in the US demanding Spanish when Canadians don’t demand French, eh?).

When I travel abroad, I “attempt” their language as best I can, and they are usually honored that I’m trying. Google Translate helps a LOT these days. Most countries I go to DO speak English enough to oblige me when my efforts fail, but again — always try to speak their language first. You’ll score courtesy “points” for NOT being “ugly.”

Bob p
4 years ago
Reply to  Dave

In this day and age I wouldn’t trust any foreign country to be safe, there’s to many loose nuts running around here. I sure wouldn’t trust another country for my security, at least here with the proper permit you can halfway defend you and your family, you can’t do that anywhere else.

4 years ago
Reply to  Bob p

Try Canada VERY SAFE HERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Charles Andrews
4 years ago

Asa Canadian we prefer to travel inside Canada for the time being…

Rory Roberts
4 years ago

I answered stay within the country for the poll, but I have visited Canada and Mexico. But I prefer staying within the U. S.