It doesn’t matter if you’re renting or buying, driving an RV for the first time is exciting, and maybe a little nerve wracking. That’s okay, everyone has to start somewhere! Don’t try to wing it, learn as much as you can about what it takes to operate and maintain a camper. Most importantly, make sure you know what to expect once you get on the road. Driving a car and driving a camper are very different situations!
When you’re riding in a jeep or a truck, you can still go through overpasses without the fear of losing the top of your vehicle. When you’re driving a camper though, you do have to be careful about the direction you take on the highways and narrow roadways.
Before you head out figure out the height of your camper, write it down, and keep it somewhere that’s easily accessible. Most RV’s are about twelve to fourteen feet in height, where overpasses generally accept up to sixteen feet in height. However, you likely won’t make it through many to-go food stops, and you’ll probably have to go inside.
The wind already has a profound impact on how well you’re able to steer your vehicle in the right direction. As it is, you can already feel the force of another car passing you up, but when the top of your car reaches fourteen feet in the air, this terrifying sense of motion is magnified greatly.
Drive in the slow lane, and if you’re ever at a point where you feel it’s too dangerous to carry on, pull over! The road isn’t going anywhere, but if you continue to drive in risky conditions your camper could tip over.
Obviously, finding a place to park and get gas might require a little more planning and strategy for your trip. Give yourself a week before traveling to find the appropriate places to stop off and take a break. If you hit the road and have no idea where the nearest gas station is, or whether or not you’ll even be able to stop there, you might find yourself stuck in a bad situation.
Map your journey carefully, and make sure there are RV-friendly locations along the way.
If you’re planning to get an RV, you’re probably going somewhere with it. Rather than making it halfway out of your state and realizing you have no idea what you’re doing, take some practice drives. Head to a city or state park that’s far enough away to give you a realistic idea of how much you can handle, but not so far that you’ll be stuck in the middle of nowhere when and if something happens.
More than anything else, people struggle with plumbing and septic issues the most. Keep in mind, you have to buy specialized toilet paper to keep your plumbing from clogging. To prevent your camper from acquiring the same scent of your septic tank, you can also purchase environmentally friendly deodorizers.