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RV Daily Tips Newsletter Issue 914

Issue 914 • June 7, 2018
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Keeping bugs out of your RV 
While RVing, our RV got inundated with large black ants. Upon inspecting just HOW they were getting in, I found I was the culprit! I made it easy for them by creating “highways” to the RV. The water hose, TV cable, and power cable all became expressways to the RV by allowing these crawly guys a direct path to us. I got some dry chemical, Triazicide, and buried the hose and cables in it. I also got some Ortho Home Defense spray for the cables. This kills them on contact. Great for ant nests. So, FYI, do not help them get in. Be prepared! —Thanks to Mike Palmer!
[Editor’s note:  Ortho Home Defense spray and Triazicide are available at]

Don’t overload your extension cord! 
If you’re temporarily hooked up to an electrical supply with a lightweight, low-current-capacity extension cord, you surely don’t want to overload it. Here’s a tip from Wolfe Rose to keep you safe: Switch off the breakers to high-current consumers like the air conditioning or electric water heater elements.

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

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Waterless trap for your RV plumbing system
Make foul smelling odors a thing of the past!
Already used by major RV manufacturers, the revolutionary HepvO waterless trap is a fantastic alternative to a conventional ‘P’ trap and it won’t fail due to evaporation, movement, freezing or leakage. Its unique membrane prevents foul air from the grey water tank entering your RV and its in-line design helps create extra storage space! Learn more


Safe-following-distance driving tip


Reader Myron Bird comments on a reader suggestion about gauging safe following distance by using a vehicle length for every 10 miles-per-hour of speed. Like some readers, Myron finds it hard to gauge a vehicle length, “Tractor trailer or Smart car?” He uses a landmark the vehicle ahead is passing, then counting the seconds until he reaches the same spot. “The usual count is four seconds,” writes Myron. “When I drive my motorhome, I increase that time to six or seven seconds because of the extra weight I’m carrying and the distance I want between me and the next guy.” Thanks, Myron!

Cure for “runaway” towels 
Towels fall off towel bars in transit? Get some sticky-back Velcro tape and stick the prickly side up on the towel bar. Towels don’t run away

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

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RV Trip Wizard
It really is like magic! RV trip planning made simple with this handy website. The site gives you the most RV-friendly routes and includes information like where to stop for propane and dump stations along the way. 

33 best burger recipes
What says summer better than a juicy, charred burger? Food & Wine features 33 of their best burger recipes. You won’t want to pass these up! 

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Propane running low? This will tell you!
With this Dometic LPGC10 LP Gas Checker you can instantly monitor your LP tank’s level. It uses ultrasonic technology to tell you in just a few seconds how full – or empty – a propane tank is. It’s about the size of a writing pen and weighs less than an ounce, so it’s easy to store. For use on steel and aluminum liquid propane tanks. Learn more or order

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RV Daily Tips Staff
Editor and Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Associate editor: Deanna Tolliver. Staff writer: Emily Woodbury. Contributing writers: Russ De Maris, Bob Difley, Gary Bunzer, Roger Marble, Mike Sokol, J.M. Montigel and Andrew Robinson. Advertising coordinator: Gail Meyring.

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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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Bill Downey
4 years ago

Re Following distance and judging vehicle length:
Disregard the vehicle length a good rule of thumb is at least 2 seconds between your vehicle and one you’re behind for passenger cars and increase that as vehicle weight increases.

Donald Schneider
4 years ago

To measure the distance on the highway – the distance between 2 center stripes should be 1 car length….the way they used to tell us to keep 1 for every 10 mpy…..7 stripes = 6 spaces = 60 mph.

Tommy Molnar
4 years ago

Regarding the extension cord thing, I bought an extension cord that is a big buck 30 amper just like the one in our trailer. It’s a huge thick thing that matches the one attached to our rig. But, when I use it to plug our trailer in while it’s parked at home I get a lesser voltage reading than I get at the plug. So I guess AC voltage can drop just like 12 volt voltage only not as much?

Mike Sokol
4 years ago
Reply to  Tommy Molnar

Actually, ALL wiring exhibits a certain amount of voltage drop under load. The latest code allows for up to a 5% voltage drop on a branch circuit under full load. So a 20-amp outlet in your garage (or campsite pedestal) could drop from 120 volts down to 114 volts under load and still meet code. Now if you add 50 feet of 12-gauge extension cord there can be an additional 3 or 4 volts of drop under load. So your original 120 volts at the outlet can easily turn into 110 volts (or less) at the RV. Using a really long (100 ft) and skinny (16 gauge) extension cord would probably create around 10 volts of drop, so your original 120 volts at the outlet is now down to 100 volts or less. But using a 25 ft 10-gauge/30-amp extension cord will reduce the additional drop to maybe 2 volts or so. That suggests your original 120 volts will drop to 114 volts at the outlet, and maybe 2 more volts by the time it hits your RV’s shore power plug. While they’re more expensive and a pain to drag around, a heavier extension cord is ALWAYS better in terms of less voltage drop.

Tommy Molnar
4 years ago
Reply to  Mike Sokol

Thanks Mike. Explains the ‘problem’.

David & Linda
4 years ago

We’ve had the same issues as Ron and Sherry, but the worst is when vehicles are entering the interstate and you can’t move over to the next lane due to traffic. We have had a couple of instances where the other driver does not move on down the road (not realizing this big vehicle can’t slow down very fast) and have had to beep the horn. Let me tell you, when they hear this big bus horn they put the pedal to the metal!

Howard Schiller
4 years ago

I’ve seen the ads for the Dometic LPGC10 LP Gas Checker in the newsletters. A friend got one to check the levels in the tanks for his TT. I tried it on the tank in my motorhome and it doesn’t work. My guess is that there is no flat surface that will allow the device to look thru the tank at the fluid level.

Gene Bjerke
4 years ago

Another tip for keeping towels on the towel bar: spring-type clothes pins, quick and effective.

Sally Gilbert
4 years ago

Diatomaceos earth (Not sure of the spelling) is a good deterrent for creepy crawled, and is completely harmless to the environment and pets. Personally, I hate using poisons or chemicals, and found this to work well when we were overrun with ants on a campground. I just sprinkled it liberally around every spot that allowed insects access to the RV (electrical cables, hoses, jacks, etc) as well as inside where I could see the ants entering. I didn’t need to worry about the cats coming into contact with it. You can get it I the garden dept of homr depot etc

4 years ago

I try to leave a healthy distance between me and the vehicle in front of me and especially when driving my motorhome. The problem with that is when you leave a large gap, someone will always try to fill it and there goes your gap. The faster you go, the more apt this is to happen. So, with the motorhome, I find I can maintain this distance better when I’m traveling pretty much the same speed as the big rig tractor trailers and the higher speed vehicles will pass up my gap.

4 years ago
Reply to  Ron

I have the same problem, so I just slow down and drop back some more. But that may anger the driver behind me if they can’t get around! And they will already be tailgating. Sometimes I feel I’m the only person on the road leaving an adequate safety gap, but I still keep my distance.