Thursday, June 8, 2023


12 easy RV mods under $50!

By Cheri Sicard
Is your RV ready for an upgrade but you don’t want to spend a lot of time or money? YouTuber and RVer Jim Thomas has compiled 12 easy RV mods that won’t break the bank. (Yes, the video graphic says 10, but there are actually 12.)

Jim says none of these RV modifications should set you back more than around fifty bucks. When I checked, some of the items were slightly higher. I think inflation has kicked in since this video was made. Nonetheless, they are all in that range, give or take a few dollars.

Jim and his wife, Lynn, have been RVing for 41 years, ever since their honeymoon. You learn a few things over the years, like these 12 RV mods. Six for the exterior, six for the interior.

Some of these are pretty darn clever. I am going to have to order a few myself.

Jim stresses these items are not made by sponsors. He does not even use affiliate links (he should). But these are just the items that he and Lynn use and like.

Let’s take a look at the easy and inexpensive RV mods covered (be sure to watch the video for details).

Exterior RV mods

  • Insect guards: These screen insect guards protect the water heater and furnace. These keep insects, some of which can cause substantial damage, from getting inside vents. Held on by springs, installation takes less than a minute. Brilliant!
  • Screen Defender: Make your RV screen door impervious to pets! This metal mesh guard goes over the lower half of your screen door to protect from scratching dogs or cats who can easily tear through a standard RV screen door.
  • Extended door handle: This will be important to those of you who have tall RVs and who need the assistance of the foldout door handle, as you will be able to easily reach it from the ground.
  • LP quick disconnect fitting for propane grill: This lets you quickly disconnect one of your propane bottles so you can connect it to your grill. Jim also has some good propane tips.
  • D hooks and eyelets: These are mounted in storage areas and allow you to strap in standing items.
  • 12-volt outlet: Jim installed this to run his grill off the 12-volt system when boondocking.

Interior RV modifications

  • Battery-operated motion sensor lights: These inexpensive lights turn lights on at night where and when you need them, for instance, to illuminate a trip to the bathroom, or to the kitchen for a glass of water.
  • Backsplash: This is one of the easiest yet most dramatic RV mods you can do. Who knew that simple peel-and-stick tiles could so dramatically change an area?
  • Pantry light: This lets you see everything tucked away in your RV’s pantry. This is activated when you open the door, much like a refrigerator light.
  • Dining light: Jim wanted to upgrade the functional light in his kitchen and dining area for something more stylish.
  • Push button lights: This personalized the rig’s bedroom lighting to make it more practical and functional.
  • Fire extinguishers: No doubt, this piece of RV equipment needs to be in EVERY RV! But there are good reasons to have several, as Jim explains.



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2 months ago

I’ve made numerous modifications to our 34′ Class A. So many that I have designated it as a “Vectra Limited Edition” model. Items from lighting to air compressors to a supplemental instrument panel, padded entry door, custom overhead where Tv was…. and on and on. Fun/hobby projects and it is an exclusive “LE“. (Even chrome Vectra LE name plates!

Diane McGovern
2 months ago

And it’s even the same Jim Thomas! Woo hoo! Thanks for letting us share your video, Jim. And thanks for reading! Have a great day! 😀 –Diane at

2 months ago

Some great ideas, even for small RVs like ours.

Wayne Caldwell
2 months ago

I added 110v wall lamps (sconces) to our travel trailer by tapping into electric outlets. I put one on each side of the dinette and one on each side of the head of the bed. Obviously, useful only when plugged into shore power

Bob M
2 months ago
Reply to  Wayne Caldwell

I wish RV manufacturers would install one 110 volt light over the dining table or living room kitchen area.

Roger B
2 months ago
Reply to  Bob M

They used to. Our ’06 Montana has a mix of both 110 and 12 volt lighting. We’ve added led ribbon lights along the ceiling to wall mouldings and a few usb charging outlets.

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