Thursday, December 8, 2022


RV Daily Tips. Monday, May 31, 2021


Issue 1611
Welcome to another edition of RV Travel’s Daily Tips newsletter. Here you’ll find helpful RV-related and living tips from the pros, travel advice, a handy website of the day, tips on our favorite RVing-related products and, of course, a good laugh. Thanks for joining us. We appreciate you. Please tell your friends about us.

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Today’s thought

“Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.” — Winston Churchill

Need an excuse to celebrate? Today is Memorial Day! It’s also National Smile Day.

On this day in history: 1790 – The United States enacts its first copyright statute, the Copyright Act of 1790.

Did you see the news? Click here to read the latest issue of the Sunday News for RVers.

Tip of the Day

Trailer loses tire; driver doesn’t know. Moral: Check those lug nuts!

Reader Wayne Caldwell wrote in with this story. It’s a good reminder for us all. 

Back in early April, I removed each wheel from our travel trailer, then the bearings so I could clean and repack them. I used my impact wrench (air gun) to shoot the lug nuts back on and went back over each one a second time to ensure each was tight, and then checked the air pressure in each tire.

Read the rest of this nail-biting story… and then go tighten your lug nuts!

Today’s RV review…

In today’s column, industry insider Tony Barthel reviews the new 2021 Surveyor Legend 203RKLE Travel Trailer. He writes, “I like the Surveyor Legend and I like this floor plan. I think Surveyor has done an outstanding job with the design and implementation of everything. In fact, I would prefer this model over the comparable Grand Design model for a number of reasons.” Read his review.

Tony’s reviews from this weekend you may have missed:
2021 Outdoors RV Back Country 20BD
Kompact Kamp Mini Mate Motorcycle Camper

For previous RV reviewsclick here.

Is this your “RV”?

If it’s yours and you can prove it to us (send a photo for comparison), tell us here by 9 p.m. Pacific time today, May 31, 2021. If it’s yours you’ll win a $25 Amazon gift certificate.

If this isn’t your RV, send us a photo of your RV here (if you haven’t already) for a chance to win in future issues.

We’ll have another photo in tomorrow’s RV Daily Tips Newsletter (sign up to receive an email alert so you don’t miss the issue or those that follow). Some of these photos are submitted by readers while others were taken by our editors and writers on their travels around the USA.

RV Electricity – This week’s J.A.M. (Just Ask Mike) Session

By Mike Sokol

Electric space heater tragedy in an RV

Time for another reminder about the dangers of portable electric space heaters and extension cords. Read this sad story from Sunday’s News for RVers newsletter, then let’s discuss what likely happened and how to avoid a similar tragedy. Read more.

• Join Mike’s Facebook group, RVelectricity.
• Read more of Mike’s articles here.

Monocular telescope connects to phone, wow!
This is one of the neatest gadgets we’ve seen in a while! This waterproof monocular telescope connects right to your phone, so you can take photos of that bird waaaaaaay over there. You can now photograph anything up to 10x closer than before. Great for birdwatching, concerts or any sporting event. We already bought one! Learn more or order.

On Memorial Day, how lucky I am to be alive publisher Chuck Woodbury ponders in his Roadside Journal: “How lucky we are to be alive – how lucky that we ever lived at all.” He reflects on his father’s life as a WWII B-24 pilot, and what might have happened had his plane been shot down. Read more and consider yourself one of the lucky ones.

Reader poll

Will you have a BBQ today?

Mmmm… BBQ…. Tell us here (and invite us over!).

Quick Tip

Avoid trouble in mountain passes

By Jim Twamley

For all RVs it’s important that your brakes and tires be in top-notch condition. Traveling through mountain passes you will often encounter high winds. So, if you’re pulling a travel trailer, I highly recommend a load-leveling system with anti-sway control. If you have a diesel truck or a diesel pusher motorhome, you absolutely must have a compression braking system. If you don’t have a compression braking system, you will burn up your brakes and have repeated white-knuckle experiences. Equipment aside, the biggest safety tip for RV mountain driving is: “Don’t be in a hurry.” Allowing your rig to gain excess speed on a downhill run is just asking for trouble. When you’re plummeting down a hill in your multi-ton RV, it is extremely difficult to stay in your lane when you encounter a sharp turn at the bottom. I’ve seen RV rollovers and collisions from this common mistake.

Be sure to stay in the right-hand lane as much as possible. Take your time and don’t overtax your engine. Gear down and enjoy the scenery. Give yourself plenty of room to slow down and stop when following other vehicles. During summer months you will encounter a lot of road construction on mountain roads. You will encounter many controlled stops where road construction is being conducted on mountain roads, so if you’re limited on time, be sure to check your route with the various state departments of transportation when you plan your trip.

O.M.G. You’d be the coolest person in the campground if you had one of these! The kids would love you, the dogs would love you. Heck, everyone would love you! Check it out.

Website of the day

Hottest Memorial Day Destinations in the U.S.
We’d sure like to be eating some Nashville hot chicken today, or some BBQ shrimp in New Orleans…

In honor of Memorial Day today, vets and active and reserve military members can enjoy free admission to California State Parks. Read more.

Popular articles you may have missed at

 →  The future of RVing as many know it is doomed
• Hot, hotter, too hot… The snowbird migration is changing
• You never know who you’ll meet at the campground…
• Have an electric fireplace? Here’s a simple trick to get more heat

The most patriotic RVing shirt of all time! 
If you’re going to be patriotic, why not do so with an American flag made out of motorhomes? How cool is this shirt? It comes in men’s, women’s and children’s sizes, so you can match with the whole family. And it’s 100% cotton so you know it will be soft! This is so neat! Get one for yourself here.

Recipe of the Day

Apricot Barbecue Sauce for Grilling
by Amy Jajliardo from Mt. Vernon, ME
The sweet taste of this BBQ sauce will be a great addition to your next barbecue. We tried it on a Cornish hen and it was delish. Try it with pork too.

We want to put this on everything! Get the recipe and make up a batch.

Recipes from this weekend:
Crock Pot BBQ Chicken
Bacon BBQ Grilled Cheese Sandwich


Special Memorial Day Weekend Giveaway!

You could win this SoftStartRV!
With this installed on your RV (an easy process you can do yourself), you’ll stay cool this summer in your RV by being able to run your air conditioner with only household current or a small generator. This is a “game changer,” according to publisher Chuck Woodbury. The retail price is $329. If you don’t win the contest, you can save $30 by ordering a SoftStartRV with a special discount.

How to win
We’ll select a winner at random out of all entries we receive by today, Monday, May 31, 2021, by 7 p.m. Pacific time. You may enter the contest once per day (but no more than that or you will be disqualified). If you win, we will notify you by email via and you will have 24 hours to respond or we’ll award the prize to someone else.

Click here to enter


On a clear, moonless night, with no other lights around, the human eye can detect a match being struck 50 miles away.

Coffee, tea, water, or other beverage will taste better in this!
Isn’t this the coolest mug/thermos you’ve ever seen? We can’t imagine a more perfect vessel for your drinks if you’re an RVer, car or truck lover! The stainless steel liner will keep your hot drinks hot and cold drinks cold for two hours – no more cold coffee! If you buy this as a gift, make sure to get one for yourself too!

Readers’ Pet of the Day

“Chloe the Doberman, Trini the Labradoodle, Sam the Schnauzer mix and Missy the Pomchi. All of our dogs are rescues that came from my local animal rescue that I couldn’t part with. They are known as foster failures. Our pack went from living on a horse ranch to an RV and have become amazing travelers. 9 trips from coast to coast since June of 2016. The pack gets along great and loves to go bye-bye in their truck. We work camp a lot of the time. Some folks are skeptical of a Doberman until they meet Chloe, who steals their heart.” —Marianne Parker-Hudson

Send us a photo of your pet with a short description. We publish one each weekday in RV Daily Tips and in our Saturday RV Travel newsletter. No blurry photos, please! Please do not submit your photo more than once. Thanks!

Leave here with a laugh

Did you miss the latest RV Travel Newsletter? If so, read it here.
Oh, and if you missed the latest Sunday News for RVers, make sure to catch up here.

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RV Daily Tips Staff

Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Editor: Emily Woodbury. Senior editor: Diane McGovern. Social media and special projects director: Jessica Sarvis. Financial affairs director: Gail Meyring. IT wrangler: Kim Christiansen.

This website utilizes some advertising services. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases. Regardless of this potential revenue, unless stated otherwise, we only recommend products or services we believe provide value to our readers.

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

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1 year ago

Are you sure about that trivia answer. Just seems a little tough to believe

Richard DeAgazio
1 year ago

IDEA! i was driving behind a truck today and it had one of those signs “How is my Driving? Call 800-555-1212 ”

And I thought of a great sign for the back-end of my RV.
“See Something? Say me at 561-222-3333”.

Rather than have someone come along side and signal that something is amiss on your rig, they can call you and maybe save a disaster from happening.

RV Staff(@rvstaff)
1 year ago

Hi, Richard. That sounds like a good idea, but can you imagine how many crank calls you would get? Probably wouldn’t be worth it because I’m sure they would way outnumber the one-in-a-million legit call about spotting a problem with your RV. Have a good night. 🙂 —Diane

Gary Reed
1 year ago

If you need a good reminder of Chuck Woodbury’s “lucky to be alive” watch the Netflix series World War 2 in color. What those US troops and Ali’s went thru will strike a nerve with you.
They were true hero’s.
It is amazing how Hitler could cause such destruction and death to so many. Amazing film footage.

tom wesrerfield
1 year ago

It would be great if the interstate hiways posted uphill information like they do for the downhill with grade and duration, so the appropriate gear could be selected and be prepared for upcoming downhill. Just sayln’.

1 year ago

Laugh of the day….

Mom: “Well, we told you not to jump up on the bed in the morning….didn’t we?!”

Brian Burry
1 year ago

Chloe the Doberman, Trini the Labradoodle, Sam the Schnauzer mix and Missy the Pomchi are all so precious, and so are the nice couple who adopted them into their family! RVers are some of the nicest people we know, along with their loving furry family members!

1 year ago

That picture of the dog with the head in the door reminds me of when we moved into our home years ago. We repainted the bathroom a mauve color. Needless to say our dog Tarah, who is now no longer with us, entered the bathroom and unbeknowst to us her feet stepped on some wet paint. She exited the bathroom on blue carpet and pink paw prints followed her to the living room. Needless to say we left it the way it was. The footprints faded with time, we ended up pulling the carpet up and refinished the floors. Tarah passed away in June 2007. Her pawprints is what we miss on our hearts. RIP

1 year ago

Towing in the mountains…if the signs warn “trucks use lower gear” remember that really does apply to RVers also. We just transited Fourth of July pass on the Idaho Montana border a few days ago. Several Motorhomes and vehicles towing passed us on the way down. When we got to the bottom there were three rigs on the side of the road. Two has smoke coming from the wheels. We stopped to help and shortly a trooper and the local fire department responded. Trooper said that this is way to common. The tip is to slow down a lot and save those brakes!

Bob P
1 year ago

Additional info in the quick tip, don’t ride your brakes going downhill, “stab” your brakes hard enough to slow the vehicle to a controllable speed then get off the brake to let them cool then “stab” them again, continue this process until you can gear down to control your speed. You should always start your downhill decent in the gear you would’ve climbed the grade which on a automatic transmission would probably be at least two gears below cruising gear, i.e. if your transmission is a 6 speed it probably would’ve climbed the grade in 4th or maybe 3rd gear. If you select a gear that’s too low you can always upshift, but if you select a gear that’s too high you can’t downshift until your speed reduces enough to get into the lower gear. That’s what stabbing the brakes does, it allows you to slow enough to downshift into the proper gear without overheating the brakes and losing them.

RV Staff(@rvstaff)
1 year ago
Reply to  Bob P

Great information, Bob. Thanks! Take care. 😀 —Diane

1 year ago
Reply to  Bob P

Thanks. I saw this described in the Mountain Directory and it has really helped me stay safe in the mountains where I had not been too comfortable driving. Never had any issues; well, except learning to ignore the tailgating speeders who don’t ‘get it’.

1 year ago
Reply to  Bob P

I remember taking one road, big mistake thru the mountains to Yellowstone. Talk about hills. We had to stop every 10 miles to give the brakes a rest. Cool down. It was not fun but it was great to take in the sites and glad to be at the bottom of that mountain. Then there was Wolf Pass in Colordo. Up hill all the way. How we find them is beyond me. But loved the sites.

Montgomery Bonner
1 year ago

Brakes – ALL – if you have hydraulic brakes on RV, you should drain and flush the system every three years, why, water. Brake fluid, all types have affinity for water, it absorbs it. Going down hill using brakes, the fluid heats up hot enough to turn suspended water to steam, no brakes then for sure. If air brakes, make sure you drain water from air storage tanks or at least check them about twice a year based on use. Always use lower gears or engine brake. Good rule of thumb, never go down hill faster than you went up the hill.

1 year ago

You can lock them out of your room, but not out of your heart.

1 year ago

50 miles away is over the horizon. Nothing near the ground would be visible.

Dan Fabian
1 year ago
Reply to  matski

But if it is visible, that is the proof that earth is flat.

1 year ago
Reply to  Dan Fabian

The horizon is about 5 km / 3 miles for the average 6 foot person… so the information re that match needs to be seriously qualified…

Sink Jaxon
1 year ago
Reply to  matski

Depends on the terrain, what about mountains? In Colorado I can see Pike’s Peak from 75 miles away.

Tony Grigg
1 year ago
Reply to  matski

Come on, guys. There was no assumption that “the match” and viewer are on a flat plane. The issue is sensitivity of the human eye, not the terrain.

1 year ago
Reply to  Tony Grigg

Some folks just like to argue.

1 year ago
Reply to  matski

If you were on a hill or mountain it would . Can see for 200 miles from some mountains

Richard Clay
1 year ago

I love that so many RVers give rescue animals a second chance. As I have found out the rescue pets have a lot of love to give back.

1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Clay

We are on number 7 on the rescue scale. Put one to sleep due to health issues 3 weeks ago. We do nothing but rescue. Adopt not shop. And we adopted mostly seniors. O.M.G. they are worse then puppies. IMO

Donald N Wright
1 year ago

Trivia, yea, lot’s of smokers learned about that in combat. They learned how to smoke without being seen.

Bob P
1 year ago

Yes we learned in boot camp the glow of a cigarette can be seen for several miles on a dark night and can result in a bullet to the head from a sniper.

Ian Anderson
1 year ago

Trivia: How can you see a lighted match at 50 miles when you have to take in the curvature of the earth? Something does not add up here!

1 year ago
Reply to  Ian Anderson

They are just talking about the distance. Now, if the sniper was on a hill 1700 ft higher than the target, and the atmospheric conditions were ideal, and the bullet could travel that far AND the sniper was Canadian… it would be a perfect shot. 🙂

Diane Fox
1 year ago

Mike’s article is certainly timely as I have recently seen many articles suggesting using portable heaters rather than the propane fueled furnace to save on heating costs. The thinking is that you are already paying for the electric service at your campsite.