Thursday, June 1, 2023


RV Daily Tips Newsletter 1040

Issue 1040 • January 28, 2019

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, 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.

If you shop at Amazon, would you use one of the links below to do your shopping? The link in the blue bar above also works. Thanks.

U.S. shoppers: Shop at
Canadian shoppers: Shop at

Popular articles over the weekend:

Good Sam Club: Rest in peace.
Is this the longest fifth wheel trailer?
RV has rooftop swimming pool.
Another RV Horror Story.
RV Electricity Newsletter #15
RV Travel Newsletter #881


More RV campsite “Lookout!” advice

Doing a “walk around” inspection before pulling your rig into an RV site is always a good idea. Joe Bulger adds a pointer as to something else to look out for: “Before backing or pulling into an RV site, I always walk around to check for low branches, obstructions, power, water pedestal, etc. However, I never looked down until after my wife saw a few pieces of metal on the ground. The picture shows what we found. I plan on buying a long magnet on a stick at a lumber box store and crawling under the rig before pulling out. From now on I will use it to check the area before backing in. It won’t pick up aluminum or glass; however, it’s better than nothing. This was at a private, very expensive campground in Key Largo.” Thanks, Joe, for the “attractive” idea!

Control board service tips – 1 of 3

Haragayato on wikimedia commons

Reader Dan Kooienga is a service manager with 40+ years experience. Responding to an earlier post on testing “smart boards” on refrigerators and other RV appliances, he adds a bit of advice from the field. “People tend to pull fuses for ‘checking’ far too often. Testing with a volt/ohm meter while plugged in is better for the board’s life. Fuses plug into female spade terminals on the board and these terminals can loosen if tampered with too often. Pulling fuses with your fingers can push them to the side slightly, stressing the terminals. Use a fuse puller or long nose pliers when removing them and pull straight out.

“The terminals rely on a tight connection to handle the amperage flow through them. A slightly loose terminal will heat up as amperage flows through, causing it to loosen even more and cause a voltage drop under a load condition. If the terminal heats up too much, it will cause the solder on the PC board to fail. Also, when installing the fuse back in, make sure both fuse terminals are IN the female board terminals. It is very possible to have one in and one alongside of the other. That will cause heat and voltage drops for sure. Note: When checking fuses with an ohm meter while installing on the board, disconnect all power first. Also, confirming voltage on both sides of a fuse does not necessarily mean it is fine – power can feed back through a component and come up the fused circuit.” We’ll share more of Dan’s tips in our next edition.

Camp for free at wineries, farms. . . and now golf courses. Save 15% on a membership to Harvest Hosts for readers. Use code HHFRIENDS15 at checkout. Click to learn more.


Forget spending tons of money to clean your deck, driveway or RV! If you attach a hose to a broom using velcro ties, you have your own “power washer”! Thanks to DIY Home Sweet Home for this tip. You can find more great tips like this one here.


Do you know how old Siri, the voice of your iPhone, is? Chuck Woodbury’s Roadside Journal introduces us to Susan Bennett, the woman behind the voice of your “virtual assistant.” You’ll want to read the article and watch the video here.


Two-sided motorhome fueling tip

Got a fuel port on each side of your motorhome? You could hit the truck stop that has “satellite” pumps or if the pumps are close enough, do what Bobby Young does: “I find that I can fuel up faster by starting one pump on one side then going to the other side and starting fueling on the second side. I can use the same credit card on each side. Cuts my time at the pump significantly.” Thanks, Bobby!

Towing capacity and axle ratios

Whenever you are determining the towing capacity of a vehicle make sure you know the rear axle ratio. It is quite possible to have the same type and size of the vehicle with the same engine and tow ratings vary by several thousand pounds. The axle ratio is a comparison of how many times the drive shaft rotates versus the rear wheels. A 4.10:1 axle ratio means the drive shaft rotates 4.10 times for each rotation of the rear wheels. The higher the numeric value the better the vehicle will tow. Tip from Mark Polk, RV Education 101.

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



RouteXL is one of the neater road-trip planners out there. You’ll put in your starting destination, your ending destination, and everywhere you’d like to stop in between. Once you’ve done that, the program generates a map with the best road trip route for you, hitting all your stops along the way.

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


C Flat and B Flat walk into a bar.
The bartender says, “Sorry, we don’t serve minors here.”

Today’s Daily Deals at
Best-selling RV products and Accessories at

Did you miss the latest RV Travel Newsletter? If so, read it here.

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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) .

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.

Mail us at 9792 Edmonds Way, #265, Edmonds, WA 98020.

This newsletter is copyright 2019 by


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4 years ago

I admit I didn’t play with it for a long time but i’m not at all impressed with routeXL… precise locations, no memory, its a website to be printed or unusable offline, etc.

I use one of the many “optimize route” planners available on my phone which accepts vague places, automatically saves all of its route data to my Google Drive (shared across any other machines), can save multiple trip routes including my own large database of bucket list places that I can throw into other trips (for 50 extra miles, I’ll hit that!) or to just use alone. Best of all, once stops and routes are decided, it passes off to Google Navigation, which is live for traffic or voluntary detours, and continues to work offline. A static website is so 1970s AAA triptych… 🙂

4 years ago

RouteXL…I just looked at the site and it seemed to me somewhat difficult to use. For us older folks who are not that computer savvy it tends to be way to much for me to grasp and use.
It would have been a bit less confusing if they had the website set up where you could put in a dummy trip with a base location to your ending location and then place in all of your stops.
I tend to agree with those folks who posted before me on the issues that they had or that might come up after you committed to your trip and departed your base location.
Nice idea but a bit to much for this old guy. I guess I’ll use my GPSVR unit , a map / truck atlas cause at my age and being retired I’m not in any hurry to go anyplace and that is now my way of life. We get there when me, the bride and our Bernese Mountain Dog gets there. If we are not going to be there as promised we will resort to calling ahed on the cell phone!

< FISH <

Gene Bjerke
4 years ago

C-flat is the same as B (natural).

4 years ago

We also look on the ground for types of nuts! A hickory nut tree dropped nuts that can damage your rig as well as traumatized our dogs due to the loud sounds they make on impact. If the nuts are where you will park, it will hit you,. We were lucky enough to just move forward away from the target range and were fine. Acorns and pine cones were not as bad.

4 years ago

Under “towing capacities”, the statement that “The higher the numeric value the better the vehicle will tow” is misleading. You also need to consider other factors such as horsepower. Using too high a gear ratio will increase your fuel consumption as you’ll be running higher RPMs which may not be good for your motor. If you’re running in the mountains or into a head wind you can always shift down if you need the extra torque but on a clear and sunny day drop your RPMs for better fuel mileage, don’t let your transmission hunt (constantly shifting up and down) for the right gear and watch your transmission temperature.

Don Ramsey
4 years ago

Am I missing something here? I can’t imagine the damage, using a push broom, as shown the “Bonus Tip” blurb section would do to the paint or decals on a RV. Might work great on a drive or deck but not on a RV that you spent thousands of dollars on.

Tommy Molnar
4 years ago

I have to chime in on the RouteXL thing too. First, it bugs me that it wants an exact street address when you start. I guess if you’re looking for precise addresses everywhere you go, that would be helpful. But I’m looking for a town once I leave home. So for grins, I wanted a route from Carson City, NV to Quartzsite, AZ. It showed me two routes, neither of which I have EVER taken. And besides, I still think the good old paper map or Gazatteer is the only way to go, only slightly depending on a GPS program for something to talk about and laugh at as we go down the road. So, RouteXL (Route Extra Length?) is a no-go for me.

4 years ago
Reply to  Tommy Molnar

Agreed..too many have been “duped” by a GPS and led into a dead end road.Sometimes technology hurts.

4 years ago
Reply to  Booneyrat

Or a really low overpass with very little room to turn around. Been there, done that! Not. Fun.

4 years ago
Reply to  Booneyrat

Booneyrat….welcome home Brother or Sister and I thank you for your service.
your Brother in Arms…< FISH K9 USAF <

Danny Wells
4 years ago
Reply to  Tommy Molnar

Same here, as soon as “this is not a presise address” popped up, I exited.

Barbara J McClung
4 years ago

Cute “Leave Here with a Laugh” however there is C flat Major and B flat Major…..

4 years ago

True comment. But, it’s not even close to being Funny!

4 years ago
Reply to  Jeff

It might be funny if they walked into a non-com bar on base, lol.

4 years ago

I believe Larry is very right. I used it to check my route to Branson from home, and it took me on a county road that’s very hilly and curvy. It might be shorter by five miles, however, you can lose time by driving it. I will give it a try, though.

4 years ago

Route XL. I wouldn’t rely on it if you are in a motorhome. I just routed it to Long Island NY and it took me on the Cross Island Parkway where you are not permitted and low overpasses are a real problem.

4 years ago
Reply to  Larry

Buy a gps unit for rv’s. You can add you weight, height and width specs so it only directs you to those roads you can travel. Stop using your car gps for your rv.

4 years ago
Reply to  Larry

As long as you plan a route where you know commercial trucks ie: semis go, you’ll be okay.

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