ROSIE ON THE HOUSE

Here’s how to keep life rolling smoothly and enjoyably with RV living

May 23, 2024, 3:00 PM

Read our guide on traveling RV living, from utility connections to site selection, reservations, an...

Read our guide on traveling RV living, from utility connections to site selection, reservations, and repair prep. (Pexels File Photo)

(Pexels File Photo)

Our friends just left on a 4,000-mile road trip. With 30 reservations for RV parks in hand, their trip got us wondering what life on wheels is like and what we should know about RV living before pulling out of the driveway.

There are several different ways to look at RV life. There’s RV living in a permanent RV park, periodic travel, like our friends, and enjoying full-time RV living and traveling. We will focus on traveling RV life, full-time or part-time, though the advice we received can apply to both.

To connect, or not to connect, the utilities, that is!

Traveling offers the opportunity to see the country in the wild and from developed RV parks. The wild offers a level of freedom and greater solitude. Known as “dry camping,” this is where there are no hookups for water, power, and waste. They are contained in your RV.

Many camping facilities offer partial utilities. They can vary from site to site, so check the availability when making reservations.

If you want electricity, water, sewer, and WiFi, look for a developed RV park. The convenience of full hookups gives you the ability to stay in one place longer.

If internet access is a requirement, install a satellite connection in your RV and have a hotspot as a backup.

Site Selection

RVs come in many shapes and sizes. When you research potential places to visit, make sure the spot, be it dry, partial, or full-hookup, can accommodate your RV. Larger RV’s may not easily turn around on a narrow dirt road, and not all parks can accommodate all sizes.

If you are looking for a park with utilities, make sure the water pressure is compatible with your rig. Ask about the type of connections that are needed. Specialty connectors may be required. You don’t want to find that out when you pull in at 10:00 at night.

Ask about nearby shopping for food and other necessities that may arise.

Booking Reservations

Our friends made all their reservations before leaving on their trip. That was smart on many levels. Different parts of our state and the country are in more demand than others throughout the year, such as warmer climates during the colder winter months and cooler climates in the heat of summer. For example, check out Quartzite in January and July. The difference in occupants is in the tens of thousands.

Most RV parks typically require a three-to-four-month lead time. Popular locations may need up to a year to reserve a spot. Be proactive and reserve early. Check the park’s cancellation policy before committing.

Occupancy Controls

If you are traveling with children, verify that the park you are looking at does not have age restrictions. Many RV parks require occupants to be at least 55 years old.

There may be pet restrictions as well. While many places not only allow pets, they may also have amenities to accommodate them.

Damage and Repairs

There are plenty of hazards that might plague an extended road trip. Flat tires, mechanical issues, and damage due to encountering extreme weather conditions all mean your home away from home may need to spend some time in a repair shop. Some shops will allow you to stay in your RV when they are not actively engaged in repairs (waiting on parts). Others might not have that ability. If you can’t remain in the RV, where can you stay? Consider and prepare for an alternative living space contingency.

Life on wheels is a wonderful experience. That kind of travel allows for new experiences, beautiful places, and cherished memories. Preparation and a diligent maintenance program go hand-in-hand with assuring “laissez le bon temps rouler!”

Before you head out, read our article about what you should do to your home before you leave for the summer.

Join Rosie on the House every Saturday from 8 a.m.-11 a.m. on KTAR News 92.3 FM. If you’d like to send us questions or comments, email info@rosieonthehouse.com. Follow us on X and “Like” us on Facebook. For more do-it-yourself tips, go to rosieonthehouse.com. An Arizona home building and remodeling industry expert since 1988, Rosie Romero is the host of the syndicated Saturday morning Rosie on the House radio program. Call 888-767-4348 with questions and comments.

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Here’s how to keep life rolling smoothly and enjoyably with RV living