Monthly Archives: March 2014

Tips for Living in an RV Year Round

RV’s are fun for hitting the road in the summer, parking where you want to, and moving on to the next spot once you are bored with your current one. Children and adults alike love to travel in an RV, and many wait all winter long to hop in the RV and ride. If this describes you, have you ever thought about living in your RV permanently? Believe it or not, many people live in their RV’s and enjoy the feeling of being able to pick up and move anytime they feel like it. How is this possible? Read on for some tips on how to live in your RV year round.

When You Own a Home

If you rent your home, all you have to do is tell your landlord you are moving; however, it’s a little harder when you own your home. You have a choice: You can sell the house and live in an RV, or you can keep the house so you will have a home base to come back to anytime you feel the need. You can also rent out your home while you are traveling the world. You will want to hire a professional tenant service to take care of things, though. After all, it would be hard for you to fix the hot water heater in GA when you are in CA.

Should you choose to sell or rent out your home, receiving your mail is an issue. If you have grown children, you can have your mail sent to their address. You can also list it as a permanent address, should the need arise. It is a smart idea to handle bill paying online, so you don’t end up with missed payments and late fees.

If You Need to Work

Some people who are Living in an RV still have to work to fund their trips. There are many options out there on the road from craft fairs to working for a campground. There are also options available online when you are traveling and still need to make a living.

When you Own a Car

It’s easy to sell the car when the house you live in is on wheels; however, that isn’t the best way to go. There are three reasons why you may want to keep your car, or at least store it somewhere that is easily reachable.

  • You must know an RV isn’t the most fuel efficient vehicle in the world. You might want to use your car for getting around town and running little errands that are required.
  • RV’s aren’t exactly easy to park, so for those areas with limited or awkward parking, you will want to take a car.
  • If your RV breaks down, you will need a way to get around while it is being fixed. Remember, you will have to have car insurance and RV insurance. They are not the same thing and come under different policies.

Life on the Road

Living on the road isn’t the same as living in one place. You need to be prepared for life on the road before you decide to start traveling. Issues like where you will stop to do your laundry and whether you have room for your pets are important considerations when you are making the decision to uproot and travel. You need a plan, and once you have one, your travels will be fun and easy.

You also need to consider the Internet situation, especially if you are going to be making your money by writing or doing other online work. Remember, not every campsite will be set up with Wi-Fi, so plan accordingly.

Make sure you park in only legal camping spots. It is illegal just to pull up on the side of the road and park; not to mention, it could be extremely dangerous.

Moving into an RV can be one of the best times of your life. It is very easy to do, and a growing number of people are doing it every day. You just need to be prepared, know what you are getting into, and have a plan for the future, in case you eventually decide you are tired of traveling and want to set down roots once again.

Save Yourself Money, Energy and Frustration by Upgrading to a 12v RV TV!

12v Flatscreen RV TVMany motor home owners, particularly those who like to dry camp, are frustrated by the amount of power it takes for them to watch their older model televisions when they’re not “plugged in”. The vast number of televisions in recreational vehicles today are pretty energy efficient, but many of us don’t have the luxury of upgrading our RV as frequently as we do our components, so there are plenty of older Motorhomes running tvs that are energy gluttons. Motor home owners must either run their RV to provide a continuous charge, use a noisy and smelly generator and an expensive power inverter, or else constantly manually change and charge batteries. Altogether it can be quite a frustrating endeavor to manage for the person who simply wants to watch the nightly news, the weather, and/or to keep up with a few favorite shows.

Most of the people who use power inverters to watch their older TVs are shocked to see the large amount of energy that this process wastes. Depending upon the type of inverter that is being used, the loss is sometimes as great as a whopping 80%! Instead of dealing with all of the mental contortions that are required to figure out the best way to power an older style television, one solution that is worthy of consideration is to simply upgrade your motor home’s current television to a newer model 12v RV TV. The newer televisions use what appears to be an ever decreasing amount of current, some less than half of that consumed by their predecessors. Many alternating current (AC) televisions use in the neighborhood of 30-35 watts not to mention the current employed to convert the power. By making a RV TV Upgrade to a 12 volt model you’ll ultimately require less energy and will avoid all the fuss and bother associated with trying to use a traditional AC television in your recreational vehicle.

It is now possible to purchase high definition 12 volt televisions in an array of sizes, from everything from 13″ all the way to 32″ that will plug directly into your direct current (DC) power source. Whether the television is a HD LCD with a flat screen or a CRT tube style, you can expect it to draw approximately 5 amps. Most 12 volt TVs come packaged with both a 12 volt power cord and a 110 volt cord. Having dual cords allows the user to employ the 110 volt cord when the motor home is docked at a campground or other location providing 110 volt power, because the 110 volt cord changes the 110 volt alternating current into 12 volt direct current. This permits the the owner to save the motor home’s power for use at such times as when there is no other source of power available.

When undertaking the task of replacing an old TV in RV, most people find the job to be a fairly straightforward one. CRT TVs generally install directly into the motor home’s television cupboard and flat screen LCDs have a base upon which they sit but which is removable if the television is to be mounted on the wall. If yours is one of the 12V upgrades that uses an extension arm, then the television should be properly secured prior to putting the vehicle into motion. For the television to swing about at every turn in the road is definitely not desirable! Don’t forget to check to see if your motor home came with a built in antenna. Many recreational vehicles come with such antennas installed as a matter of course, but if your RV lacks one, they are available as an aftermarket add on. You will likely desire an amplifier to boost the signal, as well, and there are are a several on the market that work in conjunction with12 volt televisions. DO make certain that such a signal booster isn’t already present, as two will conflict with one another and interfere with, as opposed to enhancing, the television’s reception.

Most RV owners find that once they have upgraded their motor home’s television to 12 volt that their enjoyment of their RV is considerably increased. In general their television usage becomes lower maintenance, as they get equal or better service for less money, and best of all, expend less effort to watch television, which is, after all, more in line with how television watching is supposed to be!

Winter RV Travel: Stay Cozy In Your RV Next Winter

Many of us are seeing the signs of Spring confirming that Winter is on it’s way out for the year. Did you put the RV away for the Winter or Hit the Roads to avoid the cold weather?

Here are some tips for next Winter if you want to keep warm while enjoying the snow.

Typically, the people who spend a lot of time in their RV go south for the winter, and during the summer months they head out to any and everywhere else where cooler temperatures beckon. This plan is the norm, and generally speaking, it requires travelers to be on their toes when getting campground reservations, since practically everyone else with an RV on the road is doing the same thing. However there are some intrepid souls who enjoy thinking outside of the box, and who might actually enjoy RV travel in the winter! If you have never had enough snow to suit you and would like to spend a winter where the snow drifts form, or if you simply enjoy the cold and love the look of a winter landscape, Winter RVing might be right up your alley! Below are a few important winter RV tips that will make all the difference between your experience being a cozy and enjoyable success or a dire disaster. Remember the Boy Scout motto: Be prepared! This applies particularly to RV camping during the winter months. Below are the primary issues you should consider.

Warmth

If you’re not a snowbird, and this will be your first winter spent in the cold, remember one thing: unprepared people can actually freeze to death in the cold! So be equipped to deal with the cold. The most essential thing you’ll want to have is warm bedding. Investing in sleeping bags that are rated for sub zero temperatures is an excellent idea. Not only can they be unzipped and used on your bed as a blanket but in a “worst case scenario” they can keep you from freezing. If you’re staying in a campground (recommended, they’re never full during the winter months) you’ll save money by using their electricity and electric quartz or oil filled “radiators” for warmth. Save your propane furnace in case the power goes out. A heated mattress pad will go a long way towards keeping you cozy at night. When choosing places to park your RV take into consideration hedges that might provide a wind break, and position yourself so that you get direct sunlight every day.

RV Supplies

Ice storms and snow are common in many parts of the country during winter and people who live in such areas will all tell you to stock up on the things you need in case a storm blows in. Make a list of the things you absolutely, positively can’t do without: medicines, coffee, food, extra propane, candles, matches, etc.

Water

Water lines often freeze during the winter and if the well at the campground where you’re staying is powered by electricity, its pump could stop working during power outages. It’s always a good idea to have a few gallons of drinking water stashed away for “just in case.”

Insulation

Wrap all of your pipes with foam pipe insulation. Fill the empty space around your pipes with insulation. Wrap your water hose with foil, then electrical heat tape, and top that with foam insulation. Purchase a sewer hose rated for sub zero temperatures. Wrap this in heat tape and foam insulation as well. In extremely cold weather you might consider using insulated skirting to shield the underside of your RV from the cold and wind. A small dehumidifier will keep ice from forming on interior walls and condensation from forming beneath mattresses.

Safety

Don’t drive your RV on snowy or icy roads. Make sure that someone knows where you are at all times and arrange for a regular check in time each day so that they can sound the alarm should you not call in. It doesn’t have to be fancy, just a message left on a machine will do.

Entertainment

You came to enjoy the snow, so enjoy the snow! Bring skis, snowshoes and something that can be used as a sled. For cozy winter nights inside, bring cards, games and movies for your RV TV. Don’t forget your camera or the hot chocolate!

Winter RVing can be magnificent. Many places you’ll have to yourself and nothing beats the coziness of being warm inside when it’s cold and snowy out. Take the recommended precautions and you can’t go wrong. Have fun!

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