PPL Motorhomes: The Importance Of Independence

“You don’t know what you’ve got, ’til it’s gone.” Truer words, I challenge you  to find more of. Translated into RV terms it’s freedom to go anywhere we want, anytime we want. RVing will be a timeless form of travel because to wander is in the blood of every American. The curiosity. The whole notion of, “what is out there?”, while never leaving terra firma has intrigued Americans from our most humbled beginnings. Independence from the British Colonies, then the urge to roam west. The American Spirit can be seen from coast to coast, it’s in the things we do, lie RVing. It’s that unnamed urge to roam.It seems to be human nature to demand Independence and break away to follow the base desire of: More. American’s want more, as RVers do. Our urge to travel and explore has never been stronger, nor has our American Spirit.

RVers, this is your chance to hit the road and see all of those places you’ve been promising yourself you’d see. Jump in your motorhomes, travel trailers and fifth-wheels and thank your good fortune you were born in one of the greatest countries on Earth.  And don’t consider this bragging either, it’s pride. A perpetual and un-fettered Pride for this country and our founding principles. The freedom to “get up and go”, the freedom be ourselves, the freedom to just be…American.

If you have been in the RV lifestyle you know what I mean. If you’re new to the lifestyle, then you’ll son learn what I mean. If you’re thinking about joining the lifestyle well, come and see me, I have the perfect consignment RV for you right here at PPL Motorhomes.

PPL Motorhomes: Stinging Insects Can Ruin A Trip

Your consignment RV center, PPL Motorhomes has had our fair share of outdoor adventures, but nothing messes up a nice weekend of RVing than being stung by a wasp, bee or other undesirable insect. I went searching the net for a good list of Texas Insects that I could write about and hit a jackpot of information. http://www.texasbassfishing.com/bass-tips/basstips-stinging-bugs.asp

Take your time to familiarize yourself with some of the insects contained on the page. You will certainly see them at almost every RV Park and campground in Texas. For the most part, most of these insects will pretty much leave you alone if you don’t mess around with them. However there are a few species out there that can be fairly aggressive. Especially if you get too close to a new nest that is being constructed. If you have the misfortune of disturbing one, you will be pounced upon as a threat and most likely stung. If you are lucky it will only be once or twice. As if that isn’t painful enough, let’s hope that you aren’t allergic to the venom released into your system. A serious attack will all but shut down the great relaxing weekend you had planned.

Get Stung and having an allergic reaction? Check out this video:

Being stung and being allergic to that insect can cause a lot of problems, so if you know you are allergic, it’s better to avoid areas that you know you will encounter wasps, bees or any number of various of stinging insects in Texas. It’s always a good idea to keep some hornet spray in your RV…all of us here at PPL Motorhomes do.

PPL Motorhomes: Rv Carbon Monoxide Detectors, You need one

Your consignment RV center, PPL Motorhomes wants to remind you about the silent killer that could be present in your RV and not even know it. Carbon monoxide, for the most part, is a colorless, odorless gas which can go virtually undetected without the proper warning system. Every year there are deaths attributed to even small leaks of carbon monoxide seeping into the cabin of your RV.

The best and easiest thing you can do is to be prepared and take a preemptive stance by putting the appropriate monitoring devices in your rig. The Safe T Alert Carbon Monoxide Detector also alerts you to LP gas/Propane and Natural Gas leaks to Protect your loved ones in your motorhome, trailer or 5th wheel camper.

It includes all the same great features as our Classic LP Gas and CO Alarms, but all in one, space-saving package! Dual alarm detects both carbon monoxide and propane gas inside your RV, as well as Natural Gas. These units are flush mounted and directly wired into your RV’s 12V system. They have “No-false-alarm” sensor technology.

Features:

  1. Interconnect up to 2 alarms. When one unit sounds an alarm all connected units sound the alarm.
  2. Test/Reset Button – Tests all detector functions with one touch.
  3. Resets and Mutes alarm while safety and corrective actions are taken.
  4. Alarm is fully operational during mute cycle and will re-alarm if hazardous conditions reoccur.
  5. RV 12 Volt Hard Wired Model. Prevents accidental disconnection during alarm.
  6. Built for the extreme RV environment. One Year Limited Warranty.

The Manufacturer actually recommends that CO and LP detectors be replaced every 5 years. This way you know you have a fresh sensor that is always ready to detect and warn you and your family of the presence of dangerous gases in the cabin of your RV.

If you have any questions or comments about the Safe-T-Alert carbon monoxide, please don’t hesitate to contact your consignment RV center, PPL Motorhomes.

PPL Motorhomes: Early Warning Systems For Your RV: Fire Alarms

Your Consignment RV Center, PPL Motorhomes wants to remind you of the importance of having functional and responsive smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in your rig. The very scary fact is that, in regards to fire, it can spread though your RV in minutes. There really is no “fire-retardant” materials used in the build of your RV. It’s mostly wood, fiberglass and steel. It doesn’t take much for fire to spread as there is more than enough fuel sources through out your RV.

Here, watch the video below and see how quickly a fire can spread through your RV.

This is actual footage of a motorhome diesel pusher that I was driving, The fire started less than 5 minutes before I started shooting this video.

Don’t mess with fire people. If you have a fire in your RV, GET OUT! Stuff is just stuff, there is nothing worth being injured over. I guarantee you that 99% of the things you brought with you can be replaced, so don’t stay in harm’s way by trying to save your belongings.

Make sure you check your smoke alarm before every trip. Don’t just assume that it is working. You may only have just a few seconds to get out of your burning RV, without a functional smoke alarm, you may not get out at all. If you think it’s time to change out your smoke alarm, PPL Motorhomes has a selection for your to choose from, You can check them out on line, or swing by your consignment RV center, PPL Motorhomes and pick one up.

PPL Motorhomes: Checklist For Checking Out Of The Park

Your consignment RV center, PPL Motorhomes was wondering if you have a checklist for checking out of your RV park? We all know that RVers are consummate list makers. There’s checklists for everything. From pre-trip and bathroom inventory checklists, to cockpit supplies, gadgets, food and basic travel checklists, you can bet an RVer has made one.

But what about a departure checklist? Here is a great one I found at changinggears.com.

 

Departure
check box Lower roof-mounted TV antenna
check box Lower roof-mounted satellite dish (TV & Internet)
check box Collect and store all items from outside the RV (chairs, mats, satellite dishes on tripods, grills, etc.)
check box Secure items inside cabinets and storage compartments
check box Secure items on kitchen sink and counter
check box Secure items on bathroom sink
check box Secure items in shower
check box Secure all other loose items
check box Latch shower and closet doors
check box Latch all cabinet doors (use heavy Velcro strips, rope, or elastic cords for doors likely to open during adverse driving conditions)
check box Latch refrigerator doors
check box Close and latch stove top and oven door
check box Lock tabs on external range hood vent
check box Secure TV’s and sliding TV trays
check box Secure other entertainment electronics (stereo, DVD, VCR, etc.)
check box Secure computer and accessories (laptop, monitor, printer)
check box Secure all other items in and near driving compartment which may fall on or otherwise injure passengers during an emergency
check box Close roof vents and windows (except those left open for ventilation)
check box Remove decorative and other items from awnings and store (lights, bird feeders, etc.)
check box Stowe and secure awnings
check box Check slide tops for debris and water
check box Move items out of the slides’ way inside the RV
check box Move in slides and lock slide mechanism, if available
check box Lay down and pad large items which may fall or shift (chairs, tables, cabinets, etc.)
check box Confirm that all sliding trays are latched and secure (external storage compartment trays, propane bottle trays, battery trays)
check box Empty black tanks (do this first so sewer hose gets flushed with contents of gray tanks)
check box Close black tank valves
check box Empty gray tanks
check box Close gray tank valves
check box Add treatment chemicals and a small amount of water to black tanks
check box If traveling with pets, make arrangements for their needs (put food, water, bed, leash, etc. into accessible area of motor home)
check box Disconnect cable TV and telephone line, and store cables
check box Disconnect electricity, and store cable and adapters
check box Disconnect sewer hose, and store hose and relating accessories
check box Disconnect water hose, and store hose and relating accessories
check box Confirm that refrigerator is running on 12 volt DC or is turned off (if 120 volt AC is available in the motor home, then it may stay on AC)
check box Turn off all other propane appliances (water heater, furnace)
check box Shut off all propane bottle valves (unless propane is necessary for the operation of motor home)
check box Discard all trash
check box Stowe all remaining external RV features such as hand rails, steps, decks, etc.
check box Secure all items carried on outside or roof of RV (chairs, bicycles, coolers, etc.)
check box Raise or remove all stabilizing jacks
check box Raise leveling jacks
check box Collect and store leveling blocks from under jacks
check box Remove wheel chocks
check box Confirm that all is clear under the RV (all jacks are raised or removed)
check box Confirm that all slides are moved in completely and check overall exterior of RV for protruding items
check box If RV wheels are resting on leveling blocks, move RV off blocks, collect and store blocks
check box If carrying items on hitch platform, load and secure (bicycles, motorcycles, etc.)
check box If towing, hitch trailer or toad to motor home
check box Close all internal doors (bathroom, bedroom, living room)
check box Lock all external RV doors and panels
check box Check motor home lights (including signal and brake lights)
check box If towing, check trailer or toad brakes
check box If towing, double check that trailer or toad is hitched securely to motor home. Confirm that all safety devices have been correctly applied.
check box Perform a final walk around. Look under and around RV. Confirm all jacks are up and nothing is protruding from sides or roof.
check box Check motor home mirrors, and adjust if necessary
check box Leave marker in RV slot, if returning (common markers are tables, chairs, or a vehicle)
check box Fuel up the motor home
check box If you are not certain how much your RV weighs, drive to a truck scale and confirm that all weights are within motor home ratings

Now that’s a pretty detailed list! For the most part is should look just like your pre-trip list. Keep in mind that there are lots of things you can forget before you hit the road again, so go over them twice and preferably with your travel companion. Two sets of eyes will really help you see that you left your black water lines dropped, or something equally as bad. A misstep in your packing and departure really can ruin a trip.

Have any other lists you’d like to share? Feel free to leave some of your tips in the comments section below! Your consignment RV center, PPL Motorhomes and all of our customers may find them useful!

PPL Motorhomes: Happy Father’s Day

Happy Father’s Day from your RV consignment center, PPL Motorhomes!

It was Dad who picked us up when we fell. It was Dad who taught us how to ride a bike and bait a hook. It was Dad who taught us how swim in the deep end, paddle a canoe and shoot a bow and arrow. He’s the same guy that would take you either to a ball game or a dance recital, it didn’t matter to him, as long as he could see you succeed at the stuff you liked to do. When you didn’t, it didn’t matter, he was always quick with a “Good Job”, or “You’ll get ’em next time, sport”.

I found a great little video that I wanted to share. I think it captures the essence of  Father’s Day pretty well.

Remember how much Dad used to like to go camping? Well not much has changed, he may be a little older, but I’m sure his love for the outdoors hasn’t changed. If you are here, reading this now, was it Dad who got you into your first tent? Was it Dad who took you on your first RV trip? Probably. Return the favor, plan a RV trip with dear old Dad, I’m sure he’d love it. Be sure to bring him by PPL Motorhomes first and take a look at some great RVs…just like you did when you were a kid.

PPL Motorhomes: Are You Prepared For Hurricane Season

It’s that time of year again, folks: Hurricane Season. Your RV consignment center, PPL Motorhomes wants to remind you that the hurricane season began on June 1st and runs through November 30th. Living on the Gulf Coast this time of year can wreak havoc on the area in regards to storm damage and evacuation processes. If you haven’t already, you and your family should not only develop an emergency hurricane plan, but also put together an emergency preparedness kit.

Your plan should include:

  • Understanding your home’s vulnerability to flooding and wind damage.
  • Agreeing on the safest room in the house for your family to seek shelter if there is no mandatory evacuation.
  • Develop an escape route and designate a place for your family to meet in case you are separated. (not everyone may be in the same structure at the time the full force of the storm hits).
  • Have an out of state contact. It might be another family member, or friend you can stay with ahead of the storm making landfall.
  • Post emergency telephone numbers in your house and teach your children how to use the 911 emergency phone system.
  • Better check your insurance to understand your coverage. Flood insurance is usually an add on to most insurance policies. It might be a good time to look into getting it. Oh, and keep your insurance policy in a waterproof container, or bag. You may need it.
  • Stock up on non-perishable food items and water. If there is a severe storm, you may not be able to just jump in your car and go to the grocery store. Prepare as if you are going to be holed up for a few days without electricity, or running water.

Your Emergency Kit should include:

  • Flashlights, extra batteries, candles, lanterns, matches and kerosene. Light is going to be the one thing you wish you had more of in case of a loss of power.
  • Portable radios and extra batteries that fit them.
  • A well stocked first aid kit. You can buy a complete kit almost anywhere these days.
  • If you have a baby, they are going to need a ton of supplies: a surplus of diapers and formula, especially.
  • If you have any family members with special needs, you’ll need to prepare for them as well. This includes medications, or supplies them may need to keep them comfortable.
  • Non-perishable food items and water in non-glass containers. Next to an abundance of light, you are going to need food and water. Prepare for disaster conditions.
  • Fresh changes of clothes.
  • Important documents in water tight containers: birth and wedding certificates, insurance documents, home ownership documentation etc.
  • Any prescription medication
  • A fully charged cell phone
  • Don’t forget about Fido and Fifi…your pets are going to need extra food and water as well.

Living where we do, we can’t be too prepared for a devastating hurricane. We’ve seen them in the past and we’ll certainly see them again. Make sure you are ready when the time comes and know what to do in the event of a evacuation. PPL Motorhomes takes this stuff seriously, so should you.

PPL Motorhomes: Fire Up That Grill Safely

Your Consignment RV center, PPL Motorhomes know that when it comes to RVing and camping, that firing up the grill is going to be one of the first things you do after getting settled. Now while most grills are designed with your safety in mind, accidents can still happen due to human error. Those accidents, more often than not, are fully preventable. So while you are preparing the food you are going to do a quick assessment of your grill, checking for any leaking fuel lines if you are using a propane grill. In fact a leaking gas line is the leading cause of a majority of grilling related injuries.

Check for:

  • Leaking or cracked gas lines if using propane, or natural gas
  • Misaligned or poorly connected gas lines
  • Follow ALL of the manufacturers instructions…no shortcuts here
  • Be sure to maintain your grill through out the year.

If you Have an out of control fire on the grill top, simply close the lid and turn all burners off. If it is under the grill and you can reach the propane tank valve, shut that down. If it isn’t accessible, call your local Fire Department as even a small fire can escalate into an inferno. Also always know where your fire extinguisher is. Every RV should be equipped with 2 if you can afford the space.

If you are using a charcoal grill, make sure you set the grill up in a well ventilated area, as charcoal can emit Carbon Monoxide which is generally undetectable and can cause serious injury and death if continuously inhaled. In fact, both grills should be set up in well ventilated areas away from structures that can ignite. I don’t know if any of you have see how fast fire can travel through your RV, but it is a incredible speed, you will not have time to save anything from inside as your rig will be consumed in minutes by flame.

Of course, with an out of control grill, the chances to sustain a sever burn is a serious one. In fact, never pour lighter fluid on to hot coals, as the heat will cause the fluid to vaporize and linger which can cause an explosion. Further, after grilling with charcoal, let the coals cool down and extinguish the fuel over night before you discard them. Remember, grilling season and fire season go hand in had. Let’s not have another Bastrop, TX incident this year.

If you’d like more information on fire prevention, visit www.nfpa.com.

Grilling is mandatory when RVing, but don’t let your haste to cook up that BBQ cause a lapse in judgement. A burn injury will undoubtedly ruin your trip.

Does anyone else have any tips or hints you can share with PPL Motorhomes about grill safety this Summer RV season? be sure to check out all of the built-in and portable grills PPL Motorhomes has to offer.

PPL Motorhomes: GPS Systems Means No More Asking For Directions

If there is one thing that we need to know as travelers and RVers, it’s where the heck we are going! No doubt all of you, at one time or another have thought about investing in a GPS Navigational system for your RVs. For example, your Houston RV consignment center, PPL Motorhomes carries a great system, the Lowrance iWAY 500c. The Lowrance iWAY 500c features complete, portable, in-vehicle GPS Navigation precision coupled with MP3 player capability. This system shows the motorist the way to any destination across town, or across the nation. Once the destination is selected, the system automatically displays the best route in a colorful pathway, and provides turn-by-turn directions with visual and voice prompts. If a turn is missed, it automatically replots the route to quickly get the motorist back on course.

So, do you look for in a good GPS System? There are a few things that will really make your navigation much easier. I listed and described a few functions below with the help of a great article I saw about the best GPS navigation features on Consumer Reports’ blog.

  • Spoken street names: Often listed as “text to speech,” this feature means the device can read the street names from its database, enabling it to speak “Turn left on Main Street,” rather than simply “Turn left.” Spoken street names is especially helpful in busy, urban areas where knowing the street name without looking at the screen can be a real convenience.
  • Reality view: On major intersections, such as a highway exit, reality view can graphically represent the roads and signage, making it easy to relate the map guidance to the real world. Reality view is often combined with lane assistance, which points to the proper lane to be in for exiting or remaining on the right path when the road forks. It used to be considered a premium feature, but reality view is now available in many affordable devices.
  • Predictive data entry and dynamic search: Given that you are by definition using a GPS device when you’re on the go, speed and convenience are important. Predictive data entry will highlight only letters on the touchscreen keyboard that make possible combinations. When routing in Pennsylvania, for instance, if you type “Pitt”, the system will then highlight “S” as the next letter for Pittsburgh.
  • Detour: The ability to detour around traffic or another trouble spot is important for drivers who plan to routinely use GPS, though devices vary widely in ease of detouring and the options available. Some models allow the user to select a specific distance to route around a problem. Traffic-capable devices integrate their traffic information with detouring functions, prompting a user to choose an alternative route when traffic conditions are unfavorable.
  • Bluetooth compatibility: This allows you to make and receive telephone calls using the unit’s internal speaker, microphone, and screen. A real hands-free convenience, a Bluetooth-equipped GPS device automatically quiets directions while call is being made. Such devices can display the user’s telephone book and show caller ID on-screen. A nice tie-in, this feature allows for dialing point-of-interest locations found in the GPS device. Of course, this functionality requires a Bluetooth-compatible telephone.

What features are you looking for in your next GPS?  If you don’t have one and want to get one for yourself or as a gift for a loved one, just swing by your consignment RV center, PPL Motorhomes and buy one. Oh, and guys, what’s the best thing about having a GPS in your RV? Not hearing the dreaded, “Honey, maybe you should stop and ask for directions.”