Friday, January 19, 2018

Free Yourself for RV Travel

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Campground designers are adapting to the slide-out craze but sites can be very tight.  



How Free is RV Freedom?

by Janet Groene

    You’re in the RV showroom, going ga-ga over today’s motorhomes. Press a button and the step slides out, your seat adjusts, the awning unfolds, the RV expands with one or more slide-outs and leveling jacks build a solid foundation under your parked rig.


    Hold on!

    One of my readers sent me a three-page, single-spaced letter listing all the glitches, failures and break-downs in a fancy motorhome in the first few months. They were covered by warranty but she couldn’t travel because the rig was always in the shop. No fun!


    Here are things to consider when shopping for a new or used RV. 
  Remember the KISS rule, "Keep It Simple, Stupid".


    * After the recent scare when some RV refrigerators caught fire, many manufacturers started providing only household-type refrigerators. They are not designed for off-again, on-again power supply.  Do you want to be dependent on a 110V power source 24/7? 


 




* Small is beautiful. Campground designers are trying to adapt for the slide-out craze but some sites are very tight when your slides, fold-outs and/or and awning are deployed, especially if your neighbors also have slides. Adding width will also restrict where you can boondock. 




 





    * Can you back up and maneuver this RV or will you be forever required to find large, pull-through campsites? 

* Look at the length of the overhang behind the rear axle. How steep an incline can she handle? 

    * In the showroom insist on seeing the RV in highway mode, with slides in. When you take a break at a rest stop, can you get to the bathroom, make a meal, take a nap? 

    * Cosmetics count. You might find a whale of a deal on a fixer-upper or a converted school bus but some campgrounds won’t accept RV’s that aren’t up to snuff.

    * What is the payload including fuel and water? Some RV’s are so heavily equipped there is little margin left for you and your gear. 





Janet Groene's book Living Aboard Your RV, 4th Edition, is based on 10 years of full-timing, earning a living along the way.
   

 

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