Category Archives for "RV’ing Tips"

Dark Door No More

Solar spot lights illuminate our RV entrance door.

For some time I have been using a solar spot light to illuminate the area around the entry door, using a bungee loop to secure it to the passenger side rear view mirror. Although this worked well, it didn’t provide light in the right areas when the door was open.  At times the motor home was facing a direction that didn’t allow the solar panel enough exposure to the sun.

Full Time RV Living When the Wind Blows

A palm tree sways in high winds - Full Time RV Living.
"The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails." ~ William Arthur Ward

In a sticks and bricks home when the wind blows you may feel a draft and hear it howling past a corner. You'll likely close the windows on the windward side to keep the dust from blowing in and papers from blowing off your desk. But in an RV when the wind blows, you rock side-to-side while your slide toppers flap loudly above your head. You might say it's a moving experience -one to move away from - and we agree if truly foul weather is on the way. Otherwise, some common sense preparation goes a long way. When you're full time RV living, you may as well count on having to endure some high winds and severe weather now and then.

Blind Spots – Motorhome

Regardless of the type of RV you drive or tow there are inherent blind spots that prevent you from seeing objects in your path or other motorist sharing the road.

One of the blind spots that I have had to deal with in our motorhome is the space right next to our front door. Even the rearview convex mirrors on the passenger side don’t provide sufficient coverage of the area. So if a small car or motorcycle is in the lane to our right, right next to the entry door it can’t be seen without my copilot looking to see if anything or anyone is there.

Improving Your Field Of View

Improving your field of view.

Whether you’re driving a motorhome or towing a trailer, blind spots happen, especially when driving and backing. You have a huge responsibility when driving an RV to be sure that your driving field of view is as clear and distraction free as possible. Although cameras can help with visibility, there are a few simple things that you as a Class A Motorhome owner can do to improve your visibility before hitting the road.

Roadside Emergency-First Steps

So you’re enjoying your trip when suddenly something happens that forces you to pull onto the shoulder…a flat tire, engine overheating or anything that requires you to stop along the roadway. Turn on your EMERGENCY FLASHERS! If you’re towing a car turn on its Emergency Flashers too to increase your visibility! Assess the situation and then if you’re going to be stopped upon the traveled portion or the shoulder of a highway for any cause other than necessary traffic stops, you the driver should, as soon as possible, but in any event within ten (10) minutes, place the warning devices in the following manner:

A. One on the traffic side of and 4 paces (approximately 3 meters or 10 feet) from the stopped motor vehicle in the direction of approaching traffic;

B. One at 40 paces (approximately 30 meters or 100 feet) from the stopped motor vehicle in the center of the traffic lane or shoulder occupied by the commercial motor vehicle and in the direction of approaching traffic; and

C. One at 40 paces (approximately 60 meters or 200 feet) from the stopped motor vehicle in the center of the traffic lane or shoulder occupied by the motor vehicle and in the direction of approaching traffic.

D. Call for assistance.

triangleplacement

Why would you want to do this? To make your disabled rig as visible to approaching drivers as possible so they have time to react and merge safely away from you and your vehicle. All you have to do is watch some of the dash cam videos recorded by police and DOT of vehicles scrapping or slamming into a disabled vehicle along the road because they weren’t paying attention or weren’t in control of their vehicle.

If you don’t have a set of DOT Safety Triangles get a set. They’re not that expensive (you can find them at Walmart, automotive supply store, truck stop or online) and they may just save your life and a ticket. Even though you’re not driving a commercial vehicle, you are driving one that is much larger than a typical passenger vehicle. Error on the side of safety and good sense…get the triangles, deploy them properly and be SAFE!

Additional information as it applies to commercial vehicles can be found at the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration website:

FMCSA Part 392

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