Five Tips for Camper Newbies
1. Know What You’re Buying
It is important to know what you are buying. First you need to ask yourself, what camper BEST FITS MY NEEDS. What do I mean by this? You need a camper that best fits YOUR needs. Campers can contain bunk beds, additional living space, washer and dryer hookups, outside grill, outside shower, and more additional options. If you are living in your camper, you probably want a washer and dryer option. If you have children you might want to consider having bunk beds. Some camper brands are made to live in, while others are meant for weekend trips.
Here are some questions you might want to ask the RV dealer:
- Does this camper have an artic package?
- How much does this camper weight? Will my vehicle pull this camper?
- What type of material is the camper built from (metal frame, wood frame, etc)?
- What type of warranty does this camper come with?
2. Be Prepared to Pay
Be prepared in your budget to buy necessary supplies. Here is a list of what you need to purchase (each camper model varies; contact your local dealer and buy it online).
- Sewer Hose
- Drinking Water Hose
- Black Tank Water Hose
- Wheel Chocks
- Water Filter (if camper doesn’t come with one internally)
- Accessories (pans for stove, bathroom accessories, 1-ply toilet paper, drain mesh filters)
- Black Tank Cleaner (Here is one that I recommend)
- Heated water hose (if in camping in cold conditions)
- Leveling Blocks
- RV Power Cable (if RV doesn’t come with one)
- RV Surge Protector
- Sewer Hose Support
- Water Pressure Regulator
3. Slideouts are Wonderful
Slideouts create more space inside your camper. Some campgrounds will charge more based on how many slideouts you have. Some campground spots are larger than others.
4. Not all Campers are Created Equally
You will find during your camper travels that not all camper spots are the same. Some camper spots are going to be more accommodating than others. Spots can differ between space, power hookups, septic tank availability, cable hookups, and more. Some campgrounds are full and are booked months in advance.
5. Be Prepared for Maintenance
You will need to do maintenance on your camper. Campers are very similar to house, as far as maintenance is concerned. You will need to caulk the interior and exterior. Be prepared to flush the black tank before it reaches full capacity. The exterior should be routinely checked for caulk repair. Keep a close eye on components around the top of the roof. If you take your camper to a dealership for repair be prepared for the repair to take weeks/months. Sometimes when I call the dealership for repair, it can take months to get in. If you are having warranty work on your camper, some locations and companies the manufacture does not approve/support. This will leave you with a big bill or void your warranty on your camper.