3 Fall Camping Tips to Make the Most of the Season

Fall camping trips are here – so make the most of them in your new or used RV! Fall is my family’s favorite time of year to go camping. Cool mornings, crisp evenings, gorgeous nature hikes, and a bowlful of chili around the fire are just a few of the perks you can enjoy when camping in the fall.

Take a look at some of our fall camping tips so that you can make the seasonal shift seamlessly both in what you pack and how you get your RV ready.

Fall Camping Tips

Prep & Check

You’ll want to check over your RV to make sure everything is in working order – especially those cool-weather amenities that you might not think about checking during the summer months.

Make sure to take a look at the following:

  • Propane tanks
  • Furnace
  • Electric fireplace, if you have one
  • Tank heaters, if you have them
  • Roof for cracks or other damage
  • Tires, hitch, and brakes
  • Smoke/CO detectors

If you’re not sure what to look for on some of these, or you find some damage that needs repair, give us a call! Our RV service department can get you back on the road in no time.

Fall Camping Tips

Packing List

Fall is an amazing time of year, but the daily weather can be more unpredictable than the dog days of summer. A rainy day can’t be ruled out, either. So, make sure to pack the following so that you can stay dry and comfortable no matter the weather!

  • Rain ponchos
  • Extra socks
  • Water resistant boots
  • Extra blankets
  • Waterproof matches

Layers Upon Layers

You’ll probably experience cool mornings and evenings with warm afternoons, so packing layers is a necessity.  Even though this means packing more, you won’t regret having what you need. Pack base layers that are thin, lightweight, and comfortably hug your body while wicking moisture and sweat away. Hoodies and fleece pullovers are ideal mid-layers, and you’ll want to pack a weather-resistant jacket for an outer layer.

Depending on your level of exertion, you might be able to get away with rewearing base layers at least once, but one item you won’t want to rewear are your socks. Clean and dry socks every day are an absolute must, so pack extras (and even extras on top of extras if you plan to go hiking and your feet might get wet).

Fall Camping Tips

With the right preparation, your fall camping trips can be among your family’s favorite vacation memories. Contact us today if we can get you get your new or used RV ready for cool weather camping!

RV Tips for Planning Your Camping Trip in Advance

As we get ready to turn the corner on the new year, you’re probably already dreaming of vacations in your new or used RV. And we don’t blame you! Now is the best time to get started on travel plans – so here are some RV tips for planning your camping trip.

Mind the Weather

Camping in the south is way different during the fall than it is during the summer – and camping up north is pretty different in the spring than it is the winter! Be mindful of how the seasons shift, especially when picking long distance destinations. You’ll likely enjoy a more consistent forecast during the summer than in the spring or fall, but one perk of traveling outside of summer is generally decreased tourist traffic.

Location is Everything

Great campgrounds don’t happen by accident – nor do you typically find them that way. Quality campgrounds absolutely earn their good reputation and the evidence is campers who make return trips. What does this mean for you? It means that the best campgrounds can fill up well in advance, so make your reservations early to guarantee your spot (and maybe even the specific campsite you want!).

Make a List

Keep a seasonally specific camping trip checklist so you don’t have to pack every single item or piece of camping gear! Mosquito nets will be a must-have list on your summer list, but you probably won’t need them in the fall. Camping blankets and cool weather layers can be left at home in the summer. When you plan your camping trip in advance, you can take stock of what you really need to bring with you and what can be safely left behind.

Enjoy More Opportunities

When you plan your camping trip in advance, you have a lot more opportunities and freedom to enjoy the activities and outings. Many attractions either require reservations in advance or sell only limited admission. If you plan in advance and purchase tickets in advance, it gives you more flexibility to enjoy spontaneous adventures in the “off” hours.

Scheduling RV Service

Finally, having vacation dates on the calendar can be a good reminder to get your routine RV maintenance squared away as well. Our RV service department is ready to help, so contact us today!

RV Tips for Camping with Pets

If you’re planning your camping trips with your family and can’t imagine leaving your fur baby behind, we don’t blame you! Follow our tips for traveling and camping with pets to make sure it’s be enjoyable for everyone, and gives you plenty of opportunities for successful camping trips in the future for years to come!

Pre-Trip Plans  

How does your pet feel about road trips? Does getting in the car create excitement, or anxiety? Now is the time to start preparing them for a road trip. If they’re not used to traveling, start acclimating them to short distances and gradually lengthening it. If they experience anxiety or motion sickness, ask your vet for recommended medications to help. This is also the right time to make sure your pet is microchipped, gets a preventative tick/flea treatment, and has all their shots up to date.

Know the Policies

Also before you leave, you’ll want to check on the campground policies ahead of time for rules regarding pets are, such as cleaning up after your pet and any noise ordinances. Knowing ahead of time what the rules and expectations are will spare everyone involved frustration and hassle.

Pack Their Bags!   

You’ll want to pack for your pet, and more than just their food and feeding dishes. Make sure you bring any medications they are currently taking, and a pet first aid kid (ask your vet for suggestions on what to include). You’ll also want to remember to pack a leash, favorite pet toys, and pet waste removal bags.

Say Cheese

Now’s the time to really make sure you have the photos of your fur baby on your phone that you really need – just in the event your pet goes missing. Include front and side photos of your pet to include all visible markings, and make sure the photos are clear and well-lit.

Increase Your Travel Time

Plan to add in extra travel time to allow your doggo to run and play, stretch their legs, and do their business outside. Your pets need time to stretch their legs at stops along the way just like you do, and if you make sure to make time for it in advance, the road trip will be more comfortable for everyone!

RVs for Pet Owners

We have a great inventory of new and used RVs for sale, and many RVs today are being designed with pet owners in mind – such as including exterior leash hookups or pet feeding stations inside. Contact us today to ask about the RVs we have that will accommodate your fur baby so you can enjoy camping with pets like never before!

RV Tip: Meals Made Easy!

As you get ready for your vacation in your new or used RV, you probably have a huge check list of things of things to pack and plan. You have your campground reservation, your list of sight seeing stops, and activities you plan on enjoying with your family. You’ve budgeted for each of those. But meals are in a league of their own, because it’s easy to plan one thing and end up doing another. It’s really easy to overspend your food budget by eating out more than you intended. But here are some great RV tips to help save your time and money on your meals, while making the most of your new or used RV’s kitchen features.

Make a Meal Plan – And Stick to It

This might sound like a pain, but it’s pretty easy! An example meal plan for a week long vacation may include 3 meals made in your RV, eat out 2 meals, leftovers for 2 meals:

  • Monday: eat in RV
  • Tuesday: eat out
  • Wednesday: leftovers
  • Thursday: eat in RV
  • Friday: eat out
  • Saturday: leftovers
  • Sunday: eat in RV

Make a list of easy meals to prepare that you already enjoy at home. Shared ingredients between recipes can also help you save money because you’re purchasing items more efficiently. If several meals all need ground beef, diced tomatoes, or chopped onion, for example, you can purchase a larger amount and divide it in advance at home.

Fill the Pantry

Many of our new and used RVs for sale include a great pantry! Make this space work for you. Stock it with the dry goods, soup mixes, seasonings, and other pantry staples that you’ll need to pair with your planned meals. Breakfast and lunch are made easy if you choose canned soups, instant oatmeal, and other “heat and serve” items.

Preassemble Like a Boss

The more you can pre-make, the easier it will be for you to stick with that meal plan! Once you’ve bought and divided up your bulk ingredients at home, mix up the meals that you can and store them in gallon size storage bags. Freeze them flat to save on freezer space. When you preassemble, all you have to do while on vacation is pull a meal from the freezer and throw it on the grill or in the oven.

Just a little bit of planning can save you a lot of headache on meals when you’re traveling, and make life in your new or used RV more enjoyable. Contact us today – we can help you shop for the perfect RV that has the kitchen features you need!

4 Key Benefits of 5th Wheel Style RVs

With so many different types of trailers and RVs to choose from, it can be hard to understand the difference between them and what style will be the most beneficial for your needs. 5th wheel style RVs are a popular style for several reasons. After some comparison, it is obvious that 5th wheels offer some exclusive benefits that you will come to enjoy!

Maneuverability

Because 5th wheels are hitched to the truck bed right above the rear tires, the traction and handling are dramatically increased. This also allows the trailer to tow easily and be travel friendly. In addition, it can be unhitched easily allowing you to travel freely with your vehicle if you need to leave the campsite.

Luxury

5th wheels are known for offering a wide number of benefits that are often reserved for the most luxurious of recreational vehicles. Some 5th wheels even have full washer and dryers as well as generators on board. The spacious layout of the 5th wheel RV allows for multiple opportunities to add luxurious accommodations in order to make your camping experience comfortable and adventurous at the same time. Many 5th wheels offer a spacious master bedroom equipped with a walk-in closet!

Privacy

The bi-level floor plan of many 5th wheels increases the opportunity for privacy. Many RVs can sleep a lot of people, but bi-level 5th wheels give special consideration to private sleeping quarters. Additionally, the maneuverability allows you to place the trailer in smaller or uniquely angled sites that may be more private at busy campgrounds.

Price and Size

The 5th wheel RV is quite affordable considering the number of people it can sleep, the living space it provides, and the luxury options that can be included. 5th wheels can generally sleep over 6 people comfortably, which makes them well worth the price.

 So, the next time you visit your RV dealer, ask to tour a few of their 5th wheels. You may find the perfect fit for your next RVing adventure!

 

Winterizing: Why It’s Important & What It Includes

Who doesn’t love the smell of burning leaves or the beautiful colors that fall brings to our lives? Autumn is a wonderful time of year for family fun and games! However, with every good thing that comes about, there is always something else that must end. In this case, it is the closing of RV season. For most, now is the time that we are taking our last few trips and get a ways as the weather starts to cool and weather keeps us from taking extensive vacations. With RV and camping season coming to an end, it is important to understand the importance of winterizing your RV.

Winterizing your RV properly is extremely important in order for it to retain its original quality and appearance. Failing to take the necessary precautions can cause costly damages to your RV. Once the temperatures begin to fall below 32 degrees on a regular basis, it is time to winterize. Cold and freezing temperatures can cause extensive damage as your pipes and water lines freeze and expand if not taken care of properly. Cold air isn’t just responsible for damaging pipes and waterlines, it also can damage tires, sealing, windows, and other crucial parts to your RV.

Fortunately, there are RV experts available to winterize your RV for you. Having someone that can inspect your tires, clean and anti-freeze your pipes, and prepare your RV for winter not only benefit your RV, buy also your wallet. By having a professional properly winterize your RV, you avoid the risk of damage and costly repairs when camping season starts again in the spring. Contact your local RV experts for more information about properly winterizing your prized possession.

 

Your RV Fall/Winter Maintenance Checklist

 

Fall is here and winter is just around the corner! It’s time to start thinking about your seasonal maintenance checklist for your RV. While you may still have a few trips left before it’s time to winterize your RV, it is smart to keep in mind this brief fall checklist:

 

The Electrical System

Be sure to check the battery charge each fall before putting your RV away for storage. You can completely take out the battery and store in a safe place at room temperature or there are plenty devices that keep electricity periodically flowing through the battery in order to prevent complete discharge. Occasionally, check all breakers, fuses, and voltage of outlets to avoid any potential damage while storing in extreme weather. Remember to completely turn of and unplug all appliances in your RV when you do finally decide to store your RV for the winter.

 

The Exterior

While it is still moderately warm, wash your RV while checking for cracks, leaks, or the peeling of caulking in order to catch it before it is too late this winter. Inspect the awning and fabric and remember to get it completely dry to prevent mold and mildew. Next, it is important to inflate your tires to the proper winter pressure and check weekly until you store your RV for tires that dry rot. This ensures that your tires will be safe all winter and ready to go for the spring season!

 

Miscellaneous

Lastly, there are a few other main things to check this fall before you store your RV for the winter. Lubricate hinges and locks while replacing all appliance batteries in order to minimize your spring checklist. Be sure to clean air conditioning filters and air your unit out one last time to get any odors or wetness out. Lastly, before you close the windows for the winter, be sure to inspect each one for air leaks or malfunctions to be sure that melting snow won’t enter your RV if stores in unfavorable conditions.

 

All of these tasks can be included in a professional RV winterization. Check with your RV Maintenance Professionals to find out what they offer.

 

RVs and Glamping

There are a lot of different ways to interpret glamping, or glamorous camping.  Hardcore campers may ask, “What’s the point…. Why not just stay at home?”, but glamping is really for anyone who wants to get away for a while and enjoy the outdoors without giving up comfortable living.

RVing, on the other hand, is more than just comfort: it means freedom.  You can take longer trips, include more people and pets, and do more when you arrive because you don’t have to constantly maintain a tent-camp site.  It allows small children or people with health concerns to enjoy camping without having to sleep on the ground or worry about extreme temperatures and weather conditions.  It is also an easy option for outdoorsy-types to compromise with spouses who prefer comfort.

That said, here are some easy ways for RVers to amp up their camping experience and do a little more ‘glamping’ this summer.

  • Stock your RV with new matching linens, including bedding, towels, and even throw pillows.  Clean, crisp colors like pure white or vibrant turquoise may give your RV a fresh new feel for summer time.  Make an even bigger impact with new curtains.
  • Set up a mini-patio or porch under your RV awning.  Lots of people do this and you can see the wide range from simple to elaborate porch set-ups in any RV park.  If it’s new to you, try starting with outdoor lighting, comfortable chairs, and a big outdoor rug.  Add a couple potted plants to frame the space.
  • Substitute the paper and plastic for metal silverware and real dishes.  Often you can find an inexpensive matching set at a discount store or even Goodwill.  Your RV has the storage space and sink, so why not?
  • Try new recipes.  Hot dogs may be the camping standard, but there are a plethora of other meals that are just as easy to make in an RV as they are at home.  Add a simple garnish like parsley, grated cheese, or a slice of orange to make it feel fancier.

How do you make your RV experience more glamorous?  Share your ideas in a comment below!

 

5 Summertime Camping Tips for RVers

Schools are out and summer vacation is here!  For many of us, that means unlimited family time, unforgettable summer evenings, and memorable family vacations.  For this reason, many people save their longest and most adventurous RV camping trips for summertime.

Here are a few tips to beat the summer heat and entertain the kids.

1. Shade Takes Priority
The first thing you should do (after accounting for all of your children of course) when you arrive at your campsite is to set up your RV awning. Awnings are perfect for instant shade and a cool area to eat, play, and visit while enjoying the great outdoors on your RV road trip.

2. Keep It Cool
Always remember to check your RV’s air conditioning system before you head out on that big trip!  Bring along a portable icemaker and small fans for each RV bed too. This way you can ease up on the AC at night and still be comfortable and rested for your next day of activities.  Don’t forget to pack water guns, baby pools for kids and pets, and water balloons for fun ways to cool off.

3. Set Up Near Water
Choose an RV park that offers a lake, river, or pool and set up your RV nearby.  Being near a body of water will be a little bit cooler for you and give you something to do! Most parks that offer swimming areas also have lifeguards on duty during select hours.  Find out when and plan your swim-time to take advantage of them!

4. Let Them Participate
Allowing your kids to help you unpack set up the RV site is a great way to share your passion for RVing with them.  The satisfaction kids feel from learning the ins and outs of RVing stays with them for the rest of their lives and they will never forget who taught them to do it.

5. Back To the Basics
Sometimes we forget the excitement of cooking over an open fire or sleeping in the great outdoors. Try bringing the outside in by lighting the inside of the RV with small lanterns that will give kids the moonlight feel while allowing them to stay cool and enjoy themselves.  Don’t forget to let them roast smore’s outside for a fun family memory!

 

Get Ready to Go!

Spring RV Maintenance & Cleaning

Before hitting the road this spring, be sure to perform some maintenance on your RV.  It will take more than merely swiping away the cobwebs and washing the exterior.  Let’s take a look at some specific ways that you can prepare your RV for a warm weather adventure.

Inspect
Before cleaning the RV, perform a thorough inspection. Take a look at both the interior and exterior and note any damage and potential problems. Look for holes, deterioration and anything else that stands out. Have repairs performed as soon as possible so that you can hit the road sooner rather than later. While you are getting the RV ready, make sure your tow vehicle is ready.  Have the engine tuned up, the tires rotated, and the fuel injector system (and all other systems) checked.

Don’t forget to take a look at the roof. You don’t want any leaks that drip onto you while you are trying to drive or sleep. Your RV Maintenance Team can perform a roof check and look for any holes/ gaps at the seams and fix them with sealant. Be sure to have the water system flushed out and cleaned so that you have safe and clean drinking water.

Clean
Begin cleaning the interior.  Wipe and dust all surfaces including tables, cabinets, seats and the steering wheel.  Shampoo and vacuum the rugs.  A hand-held vacuum is great for cleaning the drapes and soft seating.  Air it out by keeping the doors open during the daylight hours.  If there is still an odor after the cleaning, you may need to replace the vehicle’s moisture absorbing system. Test out all of the appliances and anything that is electricity operated. Make sure each works along with all of the light bulbs in the vehicle.

Finally, wash your RV.  Once you’ve completed these tasks it will be time to hit the road!