Are you a proud new owner of an RV? Congrats! Driving an RV is a great way to explore the world and see places you’ve never been before. But before you hit the open road, there are some basics of driving an RV that you should know. In this guide, you’ll find out the essential tips and tricks you need to get comfortable behind the wheel and make the most of your RV experience.
What You’ll Need
Before you hit the road in your RV, it’s important to make sure you have everything you need. Here are a few essential items you’ll need before you go:
1. A valid driver’s license – Check that your license is up to date before you get behind the wheel of your RV.
2. An RV driver’s guide – If this is your first time driving an RV, it’s a good idea to brush up on the basics by reading an RV driver’s guide. It will help you become familiar with the specific features of your RV.
3. Insurance – Make sure you have all the necessary insurance coverage for your RV. Your RV insurance should include liability, collision, and comprehensive coverage.
4. Road maps – Plan out your route ahead of time and make sure to bring road maps along with you on your trip. This will help you stay on track and avoid any confusion or detours along the way.
5. Basic tools – Before heading out on the road, make sure you have basic tools in case of any unexpected repairs. This can include wrenches, screwdrivers, pliers, etc.
6. Safety equipment – It’s important to have safety equipment available in case of an emergency while driving your RV. This includes flares, fire extinguishers, first aid kits, etc.
7. Extra supplies – You’ll also want to make sure you have extra supplies such as water, food, flashlights, and blankets on hand in case of any unforeseen delays or emergencies.
By making sure you have all of these items on hand, you can be sure that your RV trip will be as safe and enjoyable as possible.
The Pre-Trip Checklist
When you’re about to drive your RV away from home, it is important to complete a pre-trip checklist to make sure your vehicle is safe and ready for your adventure. Here is a comprehensive list of items you should check prior to departing:
1. Exterior Check: Inspect the exterior of your RV for any signs of damage or wear, such as dents, scratches, and rust. Additionally, check the tires for proper inflation, tread wear, and any visible damage.
2. Battery Check: Make sure all batteries are charged and ready to go. Test the house battery and engine battery for voltage and amperage levels.
3. Fluids Check: Check the oil, coolant, transmission fluid, power steering fluid, brake fluid, and other essential fluids to ensure they are at the proper levels.
4. Lights Check: Check that all interior and exterior lights are in working order and not burnt out. Replace any burnt-out bulbs as necessary.
5. Electrical Systems Check: Check that all electrical systems are functioning properly. This includes the AC/DC power inverter, converter, and 12V charging system.
6. Propane System Check: Ensure that the propane system is working correctly and all connections are secure. Also, check that the tanks are full and properly secured.
7. Hose Connections Check: Make sure all water hose connections are securely connected and free of leaks. Inspect all water lines and drain lines for any signs of damage or wear.
8. Gas System Check: Make sure all gas-powered appliances are running properly. This includes the water heater, furnace, refrigerator, stovetop, oven, and generator.
9. Generator Check: If you have an onboard generator, start it up and let it run for a few minutes to make sure it is functioning properly.
10. Fire Extinguisher Check: Inspect your fire extinguisher for any signs of damage or expiration. If necessary, replace the fire extinguisher with a new one prior to departure.
By following these steps in the pre-trip checklist, you can ensure that your RV is safe and ready for your next adventure.
Before heading out in your RV, it is important to familiarize yourself with some key driving tips. Driving an RV can be different than driving a car, so being aware of the following guidelines will help ensure a safe and enjoyable journey.
When driving, always be mindful of your speed and other traffic. Make sure to check your speedometer often and obey posted speed limits. Pay extra attention when changing lanes and at intersections; large RVs can be harder to maneuver. Make sure to leave plenty of space between you and other vehicles on the road.
Be aware of the height and weight restrictions of the roads you are travelling on. Oversized RVs may require permits to travel certain routes. Before making any large turns or entering parking lots, double check your mirrors and blind spots for any potential obstacles.
RVs have large turning radiuses, so make sure to plan ahead for any turns or lane changes. It may be necessary to move into another lane or pull over before making the turn. When pulling onto a highway from an entrance ramp, make sure to accelerate quickly enough so that you merge with the flow of traffic safely.
Finally, make sure to plan for rest stops during long trips. Driving an RV can be tiring, and taking frequent breaks will help keep you alert and safe on the road.
Parking and Camping
One of the best parts of having an RV is being able to go camping or park your RV in a variety of places. Here are some tips and tricks for parking and camping with an RV:
– When choosing a campsite, make sure that it has the amenities you need (water, electric, etc.) and the proper space for your RV.
– Make sure you are familiar with local laws and regulations regarding where you can park or camp.
– Make sure your RV is properly leveled before settling in. This will help with water drainage and provide a more comfortable stay.
– Check your location for any potential hazards or dangers before setting up camp, such as downed trees, electrical wires, etc.
– Use proper anchoring methods when camping in an area with strong winds or potential for strong winds.
– Secure your RV from potential theft by locking all entry points and storing valuables in a safe place.
– If you plan to be at a campsite for a while, always leave your campsite in better condition than when you arrived. This will help other campers who may come after you.
By following these tips, you’ll be able to enjoy your time away from home without worrying about anything going wrong. Have fun and safe travels!