Folks new to RV’ing are pleasantly surprised at the many comfort features these units have. They are truly a home away from home and quite easy to operate. Here are 12 things you may not know about purchasing an RV and the RVing lifestyle.
1. The relationship you have with your local RV dealer can be just as important to your future RV’ing success as the particular RV you are looking at.
2. Putting off purchasing your RV the day before you need it is not advisable. In most cases our dealership can, and will, pull out all the stops to make it happen but spring/summer is a busy time for our industry so try to plan ahead. Even a few days lead-time helps and makes sure our team has the time needed to make everything right. It is also nice to have your RV a few days before the ‘big trip’ just to try things out and get things properly packed.
3. Except for my mother-in-law, most people don’t use their oven for its intended purpose. In many cases, the oven is used to store bread, shoes, or frying pans (which is fine too!). Hopefully all your camping days are spend cooking over an open fire or grilling on the BBQ. If, on the other hand, you plan on cooking pies and baking bread I know a lady you can talk too.
4. You will find fellow RVers to some of the most friendly and helpful folks. Don’t be afraid to introduce yourself or ask for a little advice while out on the road. Who knows you might just meet you newest BFF!
5. The expense of an RV is not easy to quantify, RV’ing is a ‘lifestyle’ choice. Consider it as an investment in yours and your families overall wellbeing and future. It can be hard to put a price on that.
6. Model number does not necessary reflect the overall length. Sometimes it is right; other times it is way off. If you are concerned and/or have certain length restriction bring a measuring tape while shopping or check the brochure/website of the manufacturer.
7. 18% of Albertan’s own an RV.
8. No RV will ever be perfect and you can shop forever looking for ‘the one’. Decide on a few ‘must haves’ that fit within your budget and stick with those.
9. Amazingly, almost everything in an RV can be run off of 12 volt batteries. Be mindful that if you plan to ‘dry camp’ without power you’ll need to curtail your power use. Running out of power is inconvenient and usually happens at night while the furnace is running to keep you warm. With our long summer days solar panels work great and they can extend a camping trip. Another option is investing in a generator.
10. RV’s have a limited water tank and while dry camping you’ll have to be mindful of that. No 20-minute showers.
11. You don’t need to run a fridge while you travel. So long as the fridge and the contents are down to the temperature when you head out you should be fine when you arrive at your destination a few hours later.
12. Just because Autumn arrives it doesn’t mean an end to the camping season. Some of the best days are in the fall with crisp evenings and comfortable sunny days… minus the mosquitoes. But be mindful that you don’t get caught without winterizing your RV before the ‘big freeze’ hits.
Scott Graham is a Sales Consultant at Bucars RV Centre in Balzac, Alberta, just north of Calgary.