4 min read
Charge the fridge, grab some trail mix, and make great memories on your RV road trip.
You can’t get enough of new roads, new faces, and new places. Your RV gives you the room and comfort you need to enjoy your travels.
Do you use a checklist before you set out? To clarify, we’re not asking you to plan every second of your next trip (that wouldn't be fun).
Feel free to mix it up as you see fit, but follow these 12 tips to make your next RV road trip a success.
1. Have a Travel Bag Ready to Go
The things you forget could come back to bite you. Case in point: who wants to take a 30-minute detour to buy a cell phone charger?
No one would call that an adventure, so keep a travel bag packed with all the essentials.
Your travel bag should include:
- Cell phone chargers
- Soap or body wash
- Shampoo (little bottle)
- Three days’ worth of clothing
2. Put a Roadmap in Your Glovebox
Several companies sell RV-specific GPS units, but you should stash a printed roadmap in your glovebox. It could put your trip back on track when you take a wrong turn.
We sound like your parents right now, and we know what you’re thinking:
- “Well, I use Google Maps (or Apple Maps). What good will a roadmap do?”
You could lose reception or forget your cell phone charger (see tip #1) and find yourself without navigation.
If your reception and cell phone stay in working order, check out these 44 Google Maps Tricks You Need to Try (courtesy of PC Magazine).
3. Let the Fridge Charge
It could take your fridge hours to reach 40 degrees, the recommended temperature for keeping food safe. Let the fridge charge while you pack for the trip.
4. Pack Non-Perishable Food Items
Of course, the temperature doesn’t matter much when the fridge quits.
Prepare for this unfortunate situation by packing:
- Canned fruit
- Canned meat
- Canned soup
- Canned vegetables
- Packaged pasta
- Peanut butter
- Trail mix or trail mix bars
5. Stock the Kitchen With Essential Equipment
You’ll save more than a few bucks by preparing meals in your RV.
You’ll need most of these items to create basic dishes:
- Bread knife
- Cutting board
- Paring knife
- Sharp chef's knife
- Small pot
Bring more pots, pans, skillets, and knives if you have room and know you’ll use them. Don't forget utensils, plates, and napkins.
6. Bring a Good Sewer Hose
According to Camp Addict, a good sewer hose will cost anywhere from $40 to $150. Trust us, you don’t want to go cheap on this piece of equipment. Flimsy hoses could break and send waste everywhere when you empty the RV’s gray and black water holding tanks.
7. Inspect the Toilet
Here’s another mess worth avoiding. If water continuously runs or doesn't stay in the toilet bowl, you'll need to address the problem as soon as possible.
Make sure the rubber seals around the large valve are in good shape, and replace them if needed. Replace the water valve if it doesn’t close completely.
8. Don't Forget the Carbon Monoxide Detector
RVs have several vents and openings that could let carbon monoxide seep in. This shouldn't happen unless something breaks, but you don’t want to discover the issue when it’s too late.
Use a carbon monoxide detector in your RV. Check this devices before you head out on your next trip, and keep spare batteries with you on your travels.
9. Check Tire Pressures
Tires can't always handle an RV’s weight, especially when you travel over bumpy roads. Avoid blowouts by checking tire pressure before taking your RV out on the road.
10. Store Your RV Properly Through the Cold
Frigid winter temperatures could lead to burst water lines or broken water pumps. Empty your tanks regularly and store your RV in a garage when the cold season hits to avoid these problems.
11. Don't Let the Battery Fail
Regularly check the fluid levels in your battery and test the charge. Disconnect the battery cables when you put your RV in storage. This will prevent electrical devices from drawing from the battery.
12. Search for Good Sources
We have one more quick bit of advice. Talk to your local Pekin Insurance agent about RV insurance before you set out for your next adventure.