Avoid Getting Your RV Stuck In The Mud

This is more of a cautionary blog topic than anything else. Getting your RV stuck in the mud can be a costly mistake that was probably easily avoidable. Remember, your RV isn’t necessarily like your car in the sense that you might be able to free yourself. More often than not, you are going to have to need some assistance if you are stuck in the mud.  The best thing is to avoid getting your RV stuck in the first place. We are getting lots of rain this time of year and a dirt road can quickly become a muddy road without you knowing.

Our first hint is to simple walk the path. If you are going to go down a dirt road and you know there has been rain in the area recently (there may have been rain you are unaware of too) take a few minutes to check down the path to see if there are any mudholes, or worse, a washed out road. Use a stick to poke at any suspect dirt road ways, if the stick sinks more than an inch, or two, don’t bother taking your RV down there. You are better of taking a little extra time and finding a different route.

If you’ve been traveling down a dirt road for a while and do come up to an impassable mud hole, be REALLY careful trying to turn around. The ditches and roadsides will likely be muddy too. Vegetation and forest growth may cover any signs of mud, so be extra cautious.

You can also run into mud even at your at your own campsite as is evidenced in the video below. Rain can cause havoc on any dirt surface.

The bottom line is that if you get your RV stuck in the mud, you are probably going to need a tow. You might be able to save yourself if you happen to have planned ahead and purchased a powerful hand winch with tow straps and snatchblocks, sand ladders and bridges to drive over the mud, or a high-lift jack to lift a stuck wheel clear of mud. If you do have to call a for a tow (it’s okay to call for help… guys, I’m looking at you) make sure to tell the tow truck operator that you have an RV and ask them if they have any experience with RVs. Trust me, someone who doesn’t know what they are doing are at risk of damaging your RV.

The name of the game here is: “It’s better to be safe than sorry” and avoid getting stuck in the first place.


Houston, Stay In Shape While Enjoying Your New RV

Keeping up with healthy habits while traveling in your PPL Motorhome can be difficult.  Being on the road doesn’t mean you have to abandon your healthy eating habits and fitness routines. In fact, keeping fit during travels can be relatively simple with a little planning.  A few compact and convenient pieces of equipment can do wonders. No excuses though if you don’t want to add clutter to your already tight quarters, body-weight exercises can be done at anytime and anywhere. They are not time consuming, and above all, are effective.

Now, before you even do a single push up, you have to set a goal. Not a lofty goal like losing 100 lbs by summer, but something attainable, like fitting into last year’s pants by May. It’s important that you set short-term, attainable goals prior to starting any exercise routine. Oh, and check with your doctor too before starting any exercise program or diet plan, you could probably use a check-up anyway.

So,  is one tried and true way of staying in shape? Cardio. Jumping rope,  jumping jacks, jogging or brisk walks, swimming, hiking, bike riding, Yoga or Tai Chi, perhaps even renting a pedal boat are just a few ways to raise the heart rate and keep the energy flowing when you’re not traveling in your RV. Be adventurous and creative in your search for the right exercises. Moving around is much better than not doing anything, and you’d be surprised at how many calories you can burn while enjoying yourself.

Also, strengthening your core abdominal muscles can have a very positive effect on the rest of your body. Abdominal exercises can be done almost anywhere without any equipment at all. Rather than doing traditional and reverse crunches which can strain your neck and back, instead, try doing bicycle crunches or vertical leg raises. These options have been proven to be more effective without risking injury.

There is no shortage of lower body exercises that require no equipment whatsoever. To keep your blood pumping and muscles toned try squats and lunges. This also increases leg strength and stamina. Tuck jumps, squat jumps, and side jumps can be done with or without props and use  many muscles of the body to get your heart rate going. These are great ways to gain power and keep stubborn fat away.

Just be creative in your fitness endeavors. You don’t have to do the same workout day in and day out to be healthy. Find unique and fun ways to get your heart rate up. Of course, any fitness you do will be in vain if you do not pair it with healthy eating and sleeping habits. Don’t deprive yourself of the local fare, but do not overindulge yourself either. Keep your new or used RV in Houston stocked with quick, healthy snacks in single servings so that you are not tempted to buy fast food while on the road. And make sure you are getting adequate sleep. Remember to make sure you stop every couple hours to give yourself some fresh air, stretch sore muscles, and get your blood pumping on those days dedicated strictly to traveling.

What exercises do you do on the road?

Frostbite While RVing, Know What To Look For

You may think that having a case of frostbite is relegated for those in extreme cold, or those climbing mountains. That is not necessarily the case. Anyone who’s skin is exposed to freezing temperatures, or temperatures below freezing can get frostbite. Frostbite is a pretty dangerous situation to the human condition where skin tissues freeze and ultimately die. Extremities, like fingers, toes, ears and your nose are the most susceptible to frostbite.

Winter’s in the Houston area aren’t especially harsh, but we do have that very rare snowfall that is very exciting for kids and adults alike. Making a few slushy snowballs can result in the potential for frostbitten fingers. Even further, if you plan on RVing this winter and plan on visiting colder climates, remember that your chances for frostbite while RVing will increase. Keep in mind that it doesn’t take very long for the skin to react to cold weather.

So what does frostbite look like and how do you treat it? Check out the video below for an example of what frostbite looks like and how you should go about treating it.

Again, it doesn’t take much for your skin to start to react to freezing temperatures. If you are starting to feel any numbness or tingling in any of your extremities, it’s time to get out of the cold and warm up. We all know how hard it is when you are having fun in the snow while RVing. In fact, that’s one of the best things about RVing, is being able to go places that aren’t anything like where you live. In our case,  PPL Motorhomes being in Houston and New Braunfels, we mostly get rain during our winter season, but keep in mind, should we get any snow or sleet this year, be extra careful out in the cold. Frostbite can sneak up on you very quickly, so know what you need to do if you think you may have it.

Air Out Your RV With A Maxxair Maxxfan Deluxe

Nobody likes having a stuffy RV. You know what I’m talking about, that stale air you smell when you haven’t used your rig in a while? Or, maybe you use your rig all of the time and you just can’t get that musty smell out. Well now you don’t have to worry about that any longer with Maxxair’s fantastic MaxxFan Deluxe. This is by far one of the best RV vents on the market. Why? Well, it operates rain or shine because it has a rain shroud that keeps water from entering your motorhome, travel trailer or fifth-wheel. It really is a great piece of equipment and fits in your standard 14″ vent opening. The unit can operate with the RV in motion, or stationary.  That’s a big plus, since there is no doubt that your rig will be stationary for long periods of time. It is the only all-in-one unit that includes a fan, vent and rain cover.

To make circulating the air in your motorhome, travel trailer or fifth-wheel even more convenient, the Maxxair Maxxfan Deluxe has a hand-held remote control that is optional. If you are looking to remove the stale, musty air, rain or shine, then the only fan you should look at is the Maxxair Maxxfan Deluxeand your consignment RV center, PPL Motorhomes not only has them, but we can show you how easy it is to install them!

December 7, 1941; Remembering Those Lost Then And Now

December 7th, 1941, as stated by FDR was and always will be a day that lives in infamy. In fact, we were at peace with Japan and in talks on stabilizing the European conflicts hours before the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor. This unbridled act of aggression gave the United States no alternative but to immediately and unequivocally enter into armed conflict to protect our interests and way of life.

What was not foreseen was, by this single act, hundreds of thousands of patriotic young men would lay down their lives to fight for the freedom they held so dearly in their hearts and on their sleeves. Suffering through horrific engagements on the beaches of Normandy, in Tripoli, Guam and Bataan, the latter of which claimed the lives of over 10,000 prisoners of war through barbarism and war crimes. The war involving our “greatest generation” began with the bombing of Pearl Harbor and ended with the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The loss of life on both sides was astronomical.

War is never pretty. It’s a grisly and ghastly, almost unimaginable horror that brave young men and women selflessly volunteer for when the need arises. All the while not knowing that they may never return from their mission to protect our freedom. To die in another land in order to secure order out of chaos.

WWI, WWII, Korea, Vietnam, Kuwait, Afghanistan, Iraq…there will be more, and we must never forget the values that inspire us and call us to action when needed. Further, we must never forget those who have given selflessly of themselves for our rights, freedom and liberty. They served with honor and many we left on the battlefield defending this country’s honor with their blood. Never forget; never take for granted; never underestimate the American soldier.

Thanks to all who serve, PPL Motorhomes.

Texas Travel For The Holidays And After

I’m constantly amazed at how much the great state of Texas has to offer travelers of all types. You can literally find nearly every type of land formation and climate from the Gulf Coast the the tip of the Panhandle. That’s why I’m shocked when I hear people sometimes saying things like, “I wish Texas wasn’t soooo big”, or “There’s not much to do in Texas”. Are you kidding me? There are thousands of miles of things to do in Texas. If you are having trouble making a trip plan for this holiday season, or after, one of the best sites you can visit is http://www.traveltex.com/.

This site literally has every event that is happening across the state. If you are thinking about planning a statewide trip, take a look at Traveltex first. It is chock full of things to do and to see. In fact, if you plan right, you can tour Texas in it’s entirety and see everything from mountains to coastal plains. You can take part in small town events and big city activities.

If you plan on traveling during the holidays, there are drive though forest Christmas light displays in East Texas that will know your socks off. There are flea markets, antique showcases and craft shows galore. Here are a few videos to show you what you are missing.

A trip across Texas this holiday season might be exactly what you need to decompress after a long year of hard work. It’s time to take a look around you, around your city and around your state, jump into your Houston RV and see what you’ve been missing. There is so much to see and do, I don’t expect to ever hear, “What is there really to do in Texas, anyway”?

Getting Your RV Ready For Your First Christmas

There’s nothing quite like spending the holidays on the road in your RV, especially when it’s your first! There’s something to be said when you can spend your holidays away from home in “your Home Away From Home“. If you are a seasoned RVer, you understand that the holiday season can be some of the best times to travel. When you RV, you are never really away from home. Sure, you may live on an acre of land and own a 2,400 sq. ft. home, but for many RVers across the country, spending the holidays visiting family, or just traveling in their RV is just as nice (if not better) than staying at home for the season.

That being said, if this is your first RV and you are considering spending the holidays in it, you may feel a little apprehensive that the holidays won’t feel the same…don’t! You can decorate and jazz up your RV according to the holiday season with a small tree and decorations galore. Even just a little bit of decoration can really bring the spirit of the season into your RV. Take a look at this simple set up and tell me it doesn’t look just like home.

See just a little bit of decoration and you are ready for an RV Christmas.

Of course, that’s not all you can do! If you plan on spending time at the RV park, there’s even more way to bring in the holiday cheer. Why not decorate the outside of your RV just like you would your home? Not only will you feel more at home, but all of the other RVers you are sharing the park with will too. Trust me, you won’t be the only one with outside decorations up.

Your consignment RV store, PPL Motorhomes loves this time of year and we stock lights for all types of occasions and times of year, Check out some of the decorations we have to offer. Of course, if you are like us, you probably already have strings and strings of holiday lighting and decorations. Of course, space is limited in your RV or camper, so plan accordingly, but don’t let that stop you from experiencing your first Christmas in your first RV…you’ll never forget it.

Newsletter December 2012

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