If you know where you will be staying it’s a good idea to make campground reservations in advance. With a reservation there will always be a site waiting for you when you arrive.
Plan to stop traveling while there is still plenty of daylight to set-up and get settled in at the campground.
When you arrive at the campground ask the registration desk any questions you have about the site, like if it is a pull-thru site. If you are not proficient at backing the RV this can help ease the stress prior to taking the site.
Make sure the electrical source is compatible with your RV’s electrical system.
If it’s hot outside request a site that is in the shade, if possible. This will help the refrigerator and air conditioner work more efficiently.
Check the site for any overhead obstacles that might interfere with setting the RV up, and when you position the unit on the site make sure there is enough clearance for slide-outs and the patio awning.
Test the polarity and voltage prior to plugging the RV into any electrical source. After you test the electrical source turn the breaker off, plug the RV in and turn the breaker back on. Campground voltage can fluctuate depending on the demand. I recommend using a quality surge protector to help protect your RV’s electrical equipment and appliances in the event AC voltage drops below 105-volts or goes above 130-volts.
Keep a variety of electrical adapters on hand in case you need them. You should also have an extension cord that is compatible with the electrical system on your RV. The gauges of wire used in standard household type extension cords are not suitable for RV electrical connections.
Use a water pressure regulator at the campground to prevent damage to your plumbing system from high water pressure. Always connect the pressure regulator at the water source, and then connect the drinking hose to it.
Use a drinking safe hose to connect from the water source to the RV. It’s a good idea to have a 4-foot, 10-foot and 25-foot hose on hand so you can always reach the campground water hook-up. Take a green or black garden hose for all other uses, like flushing out holding tanks or cleaning the RV.
It’s a good idea to have a 10-foot and 20-foot sewer hose available so you can always reach the campground sewer connection. Spend a little extra and get heavy-duty sewer hoses. Keep an assortment of sewer hose adapters and connectors on hand too.
If you’re going to be leaving the campground for more than few minutes it’s a good idea to turn the water supply off until you return. Better safe than sorry.
Always stow the awning when you’re not going to be at the campsite, and leave it in the stowed position at night when you are sleeping. It only takes one strong gust of wind to damage your awning.
Lock your RV and secure valuables when you are not physically at the campsite. Keep a spare set of keys for the RV and other vehicles in case you get locked out.
Practice good campground etiquette and always leave the campsite in the same condition, or better, than you found.
If you travel with pets, respect other campers as it pertains to your pets. Always use a leash, control any barking and always clean up after your pets.
Well there you have it, some simple tips to make all your campground experiences the best they can be.
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Mark J. Polk
RV Education 101
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