Owning an RV is one of the most rewarding experiences you can have. RVing isn’t just an activity but is a lifestyle that brings us closer to nature and each other with the freedom of taking your home throughout the United States. Not many things are more American than a good old fashioned road trip and to do so safely is imperative. There are a variety of risks that occur every time we step behind the wheel of a vehicle and with an RV, this amplifies further due to its size, weight, and capacity for damage. But there are many steps that RV owners can take for a common-sense approach on keeping you, your loved ones, and other motorists safe all while protecting your RV as well. Take a look at some of these safety tips all RV owners should follow.
Keep Yourself Covered With the Right RV Insurance
A great start to keeping you and your loved ones safe is by enrolling in RV insurance. Car insurance is great and mandatory, but using RV insurance together with your auto policy will help you stay protected against damage, it can help pay for medical costs, and even off put the costs associated with theft. Accidents do happen and some may be well out of your control. Several coverages help RV owners such as Companion Auto, Fulltimer’s Personal Liability, Personal Attachments Coverage, Total Loss Replacement, and Secured Storage.
Know Your Height, Know Your Route
Do you know the exact height of your RV offhand? Did you remember to include things such as your AC unit, satellites, and antennas? It can be really easy to misjudge an overpass and then, boom, a tragedy. Knowing the height of your RV and everything attached to it will help you avoid a costly, dangerous situation. Never pass under an overpass unless you are 100% sure that your RV meets the height requirements necessary for safe travel.
Routine Maintenance is Critical
RVs have a lot of different styles and can come with their own unique sets of repairs and necessary steps of maintenance. Having a busted light or a leaky faucet might be a minor problem but even small repairs and maintenance can lead to dire consequences. Be sure to check your fluid levels, connections, and to ensure that all emergency measures such as fire alarms, carbon monoxide detectors, and all forms of your brakes are in working fashion. Losing a wheel on an RV is a recipe to make the news going 70 mph down the interstate, never take a trip without making sure your tires have adequate pressure. Remember, you are in charge of a vehicle and a home all-in-one. The maintenance that is required for each will be required for your RV and keeping up with these activities will keep you and others safe. Always consult with an expert if action is needed and never drive an RV that is capable of performing at its highest level.
Check the Weather and Adjust
Knowing the weather you will have to face can help you prepare whether you are driving or not. Driving such a large vehicle can create a dangerous situation should you face unpleasant weather such as thunderstorms or sandstorms. Always pull over or delay a trip should the weather create unsafe conditions for driving but also remember that just because you are parked doesn’t mean you are free from the wrath of nature. Things such as antennas should be grounded and awnings should always be rolled up when the wind is an issue. Fastening down anything that could be moved and picking up outdoor furniture can help minimize damage, prevent injury, and save you the struggle of needing to replace your personal belongings.
Understand Your RV and How to Drive It
RV is a pretty broad term. They come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and functions, and understanding all of the nuances that come with maintaining your RV and driving it, will go a long way in keeping you and others safe on the road. As we mentioned there are plenty of different RV types, here are 5 of the most popular according to Business Insider:
- Travel Trailers- campers pulled behind your vehicle.
- Fifth Wheels– larger trailers with a section featuring a raised floor that requires a “fifth-wheel” attachment to be pulled by a truck.
- Class A Motorhomes– the biggest of the RV family; think your favorite musician’s traveling tour bus.
- Class B Motorhomes– campervans that are the smallest motorhomes on the road.
- Class C Motorhomes– motorhomes that meet in the middle combining features of both Class A and Class B motorhomes into a hybrid type RV.
Pulling a trailer is going to be much different than driving a giant bus. The weight of each RV will be different and knowing how to operate each will help you stay safe. Don’t forget about the extra factors that can go into pulling a vehicle or a boat. It should also be noted that most states have license requirements that dictate who can qualify to legally drive RVs after passing the appropriate driving tests associated with your state.