To start you off on the right path and get you properly outfitted, we’ve compiled a 22-item checklist of your bear necessities as follows:
1. Emergency Kit
It pays to be prepared. As much as we wouldn’t wish any mishap on anyone, you just never know.
Be sure to keep a well-equipped emergency kit on hand. You can include a number of practical tools for the road such as extra tires, road flares, warning triangles and first-aid supplies.
2. RV Generator
Your RV will definitely need a remote generator to charge the batteries and keep them charged.
Chances are, yours is an early model and you are likely following some RV/travel industry tips to keep it silent.
Otherwise, be sure to invest in the later models that are produced to be quiet.
At your local outfitter store or online on such retailer websites as Amazon, you are spoiled for choice with a Champion, Honda, Yamaha and other brands.
3. Gas Can
You may need a new gas can for filling up your tow vehicle or generator.
A can may take up five gallons of gas, which may help your generator run for more than a day and last you for a week of camping.
More likely than not, your generator expends two gallons for every eight hours of use.
And you might only need to use the air conditioner for a few hours.
4. Sturdy Sewer Hose
To empty your RV’s tanks, you will require the right tools to perform the task. You should buy a strong sewer hose and hose hookups especially if you are camping.
To choose the right one at your local store or outfitter, you must consider three key criteria.
Your ideal hose should be a 15-footer, just the right length to suit any sewer hookup.
It ought also have a right angle bracket to enable you to see what refuse is coursing through it when the bathroom is being used.
Your hose must have just the right size of connectors so that it can fit in a travel trailer or RV bumper.
Otherwise, you’ll have to store it in an RV compartment — with all of its unmentionable contents, which you really don’t need.
Lastly, be sure to get a hose that is sturdy.
Simply put, it must last. You can’t find a hole in it when dumping the tank and it can’t crack if you step on it. You need bang for your buck.
5. Water Pressure Regulator
It’s worth your while to shell out a couple of dollars on a regulator to keep from blowing out your water system in your RV or trailer.
Some RV campgrounds aren’t very accommodating to your RV. The grounds can have too high water pressure to stress and strain your system and cause leakage.
When you invest in a regulator, be sure to get one that runs between your hose and the RV. Aside from your local outfitter, Amazon sells a wide array of regulators.
6. Water Tank Filler Valve
Filler valves apply to just about every RV. Without one, you cannot fill your water tank in your trailer and it takes too long to fill it because of “bubble back.”
Installation is easy. You simply attach your water tank filler hose to end of your RV hose and place the valve at the other end.
7. Water Supply
You would do well to keep an extra water supply available in your RV even if you habitually use resorts with hookups.
This extends your stay outdoors and it helps in case of emergency.
8. Leveling Blocks or Bubble Levels
Leveling blocks or bubble levels are important to keep you from sleeping or walking through your RV on a uneven surface or operating your refrigerator.
Without the blocks or levels, your refrigerator may have mechanical problems.
9. Collapsible Ladder
From time to time, you will need to climb to the top of your RV or trailer to check for debris, furry or cuddly, little animals or other unwanted guests or items.
A collapsible ladder allows you to do this without taking much storage space in your vehicle.
10. Outdoor Essentials
Simply put, you may need gear for camping and other outdoor activity.
Bug spray, citronella candles, folding chairs, ground covering, LED lights and outdoor games and activities counts as your typical equipment.
11. Toilet Chemicals
You will need to purchase a line of liquid cleaners such as “porta packs” from your local RV dealer or your great outdoors outfitter.
The cleaners cut back on odors and dissolve solid waste, including toilet paper, in your RV’s blackwater tank: needless to say, an essential task.
You just drop a cleaner or pack in the toilet and you’re done.
It’s best that you flush the toilet 45 seconds or so when you set your RV or trailer right back up from your last trip.
This should be done before you allow anyone to use the washroom so you can get water flowing in the black tank. This keeps waste material from sticking to it.
12. Customized Toilet Paper
By RV toilet paper, we don’t mean the ordinary variety you buy for your bathroom at home.
We’re referring to RV-customized toilet paper you buy from your local outfitter.
Regular household toilet paper actually gums up your RV’s sensitive sewer system and creates a mess that you don’t want us to describe here on this family-friendly website.
In fact, while you’re at it, make sure that you stock up on RV bathroom basics such as shampoo, conditioner, body wash and facial lotion.
13. Toilet Bowl Brush
As a seasoned RV owner, you know that RV toilets contain a shallow bowl with little water in it. That’s not good news when you need to powder your nose.
The results of your visit to the toilet can stick to the sides of the bowl even if you flush it.
This is where an toilet bowl brush comes. With the brush, you can clean it up immediately and then later dump your tank.
At your local store, you can choose from a variety of brushes with nice covers and handle holes that make storage easy in the bathroom.
14. Daily Living Essentials
This means furnishings and accessories for the bathroom such as bath, beach, dish, facial and hand towels, cleaning supplies and medication; DVDs, books or other forms of entertainment; personal electronics like laptops and cell phones or their chargers, and; window coverings.
To operate the same electronics you have at home, you will need to purchase electrical cords, auxiliary TV cables and mobile hotspots for WiFi Internet connection.
16. Bed Sheets
Some RVs and trailers come with quilts, comforters and some pillows but not all have goosedown or linen bedsheets.
If not, your visit to your local outfitter or ordering online on Amazon may cover that.
Most sheets are affordable, come in attractive colors and patterns and are made of high-quality fabric.
17. Clothes Hampers
To simplify things, you could visit any department store like Target or Walmart to buy a net bag hamper that college students use to bring laundry to the laundromat. You can place it in one of your storage compartments in your RV.
18. Foam Mattress Topper
Nine times out of ten, the mattress that came with your RV may not be suited for sleeping. It may not be soft and cushion-y enough.
You may want to get a foam mattress topper or replace the original one. The next one you buy should be large, long-lasting and attractive. You want value for your money.
19. Door Mat
A large, clean and neat mat will do nicely for the front steps of your RV.
If not, you will end up sweeping the dirt and sand entering the RV from the outdoors.
20. Hand-Held Vacuum
Odds are that the interior of your RV is small and the flooring is mixed with carpeting here and flooring there.
So a broom won’t do to clean out all of the dirt and dust from bare feet and shoes going in and out of your vehicle.
A portable, cordless vac may come in handy. Your most obvious brand may be the Black & Decker.
21. Kitchen Essentials
You are going to need everything you would in your kitchen at home: bottle openers, can openers, coffee pots, cookware, cups, cutting boards, dishes, mugs, napkins, pans and pots, paper towels and silverware.
22. RV Insurance
It makes sense to get coverage for your RV. If you buy a policy, not only will you get covered in an accident but you can also cover someone who’s injured while visiting you in your vehicle.
A Jumping-Off Point
Hopefully, your RV will come equipped with some of these amenities so you won’t have to buy them all.
Or at the very least, you may not have to purchase them all in one swoop.
Whatever your circumstance, with our list and a bit of elbow grease, you will at least come away with some ideas of how to outfit and accessorize your new home on wheels.