Did you know that driving or towing an overloaded rig is a leading cause of RV accidents? Even a slight overload or unequal weight distribution can seriously restrict braking and steering, dramatically increase fuel consumption, and cause sudden blowouts or breakdowns. An overweight RV also creates the danger of early failure in your rig’s tires, brakes, wheels, drive train, and other components.This might be something you may not think about all of the time. Really, for many new and some seasoned RVer’s out there the “Gas and Go” approach to RVing can cause some problems down the road (pun intended).
So, how do you know if your RV needs to go on a diet? That’s actually an easy question. Your RV is overloaded if it exceeds any of the manufacturer’s established limitations for total load, axle load, or tire loading. The gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) is the maximum amount your RV can safely carry. It includes both the wet weight and the cargo weight. You can find the appropriate weight limits by checking your owner’s manual for weight limitations.
So how do you lighten the load? Well, that’s another easy question to answer. If your RV turns out to be a heavyweight, go through it with a fine toothed comb and really think about what’s necessary and what’s not. Just because your rig has a lot of shelves, drawers and other storage space doesn’t mean you have to fill them all up. A really good idea is to simply remove all your belongings, then put back only the items you really need. If you can’t do it, maybe you should call that “Hoarders” TV show.
Here is something that is also often overlooked: tire pressure. Always remember to check your tire pressure before each trip. Poorly maintained tires can become a very real and dangerous issue, especially when combined with an overweight rig. Maintaining control of an RV with improperly inflated tires is a recipe for disaster.
The bottom line is a properly balanced RV, well maintained equipment, properly inflated tires and good driving can tame almost any road.
Now, I’ll bet that you are scratching your head. Noodles? Pasta? No. Swimming noodles. If there is one thing that both RV Nana and PPL Motorhomes salutes, it’s the ingenuity of RVers. This past weekend while camping in central Texas, we saw an Alfa See Ya motorhome with their windshield wipers protected by noodles. What a great idea for the full timer to protect the rubber of the windshield wipers from the sun and weather with a simple swimming pool noodle. We all know how quickly the sun can destroy rubber and just about everything else on your RV, for that matter.
When I saw such a smart use of this inexpensive way to prolong the life of your wiper blades, I just had to share it with you. I’ll tell you one thing, I sure am having fun finding great ideas of things to do with an ordinary swimming noodle. Incidentally, I know a family in North Texas who uses pool noodles to protect their exposed outdoor pipes during winter.
There’s nothing like tubing down the Comal, or Guadalupe rivers in New Braunfels, Texas. If you are a Texan, you either know about floating the rivers, or have done it yourself. You’ll see all walks of life out there, from the very old to the young all enjoying the sun and uniquely relaxing experience of sprawling out on a tube or raft. We just got back from out river adventure and had a wonderful time!
There are multiple different areas to access the rivers, especially the Guadalupe. There are also tons of tubing facilities offering everything from “toob” rentals, to river necessities, to free shuttles which take you to designated put-in areas on the rivers.
Of course, the area offers numerous RV facilities, as well as quite a few places to rent cabins directly on the rivers themselves. There are great restaurants, as well as places to catch live music at places like the Whitewater Amphitheater. There are some really great times to be had in New Braunfels and around the area.
If you’ve never been on a river trip, I can highly recommend it. Of course, I suggest that you spend a day on the rivers, but honestly, it isn’t necessary, there really are a ton of activities to do and things to see. Of course, one of those things is swinging by PPL Motorhomes to say. “Hi”!
The Songs of Nature. When I RV, that’s what I hear. All of her beautiful compositions from Nature’s instruments flowing through the moonlit nights far from city lights. The winds whistling through the tress in chorus, while the chipping of the frogs filled the air with lonely yips as they patiently waited for a response from across the pond. That’s what I hear when I sit quietly outside of my RV on these cooler evenings.
RVing allows me to slow down: to put on the brakes and start using my senses to listen to nature more, rather than some of the unnatural chaos of daily life. I can picture it even now. I pull down the awning, turn on my patio lights, unfold my lawn chair, sit back and relax with the beverage of my choice and just listen. It’s quiet. The noises I hear aren’t telephones and zooming cars, it’s the soft chirp of a cricket of in the distance and hey, that might have been the hoot of an owl…then it’s silent.
I could stare at the stars without the light from the city drowning them out. Go out far and dark enough until you’re amazed at the amount of stars that actually fill the night sky. This is what RVing gives me. The ability to recall that memory anytime I want, yes even amid that chaos I was previously referring to above.
All of that weekly stress can melt away with just one great weekend RVing. If you’ve never been, you should try. Talk to any RVer and ask them about their uncertainties, and they’ll quickly dismiss any of your fears as well. Swing by PPL Motorhome and take a look at a few of Houston’s consignment RVs. Plus we can answer any questions you may have about joining the RV lifestyle.
As a Mother and Grandmother, believe me when I tell you, I’ve seen almost every injury out there while camping. It’s easy to twist an ankle, get a cut, break a bone, and of course, get a burn. Let me tell you, burns are the worst, whether it’s from grease, electricity, fire, or chemical, a severe burn is not only painful, but it is debilitating and can be disfiguring. So, what do you know about burns? Do you know what to do if you have to treat a burn?
As many of you are well aware of, there are 3 types of burns:
1st degree burns which burn the first layer of skin. An example of this is a sunburn, or possible burn from scalding water. These burns are mild.
2nd degree burns are deeper and affect the second layer of skin. This can result in discomfort, pain and blistering. Grease burns usually result in this type of burn. These burns can be severe and may require medical attention.
3rd degree burns penetrate through the layers of skin and into the tissues under. Having a 3rd degree burn will most certainly result in a emergency room visit and possible hospital confinement.
4th degree burns are the worst on the burn scale. The burn penetrates the skin, the tissues under the skin and into the muscle material nerves, ligaments, tendons. blood vessels and bones. These burns are serious, dangerous, easily infected and always require medical treatment.
As stated above, infection is a serious consideration when it comes to the treatment of burns. Deep burns and open blisters are the most likely to become infected. Do your best to keep the would as clean as possible and protect the area with fresh gauze. A minor burn is less likely to become infected as the skin is rarely broken, thus allowing bacteria to enter in the wound.
You should call 911 if:
the burned area is charred, or white
electric shock, or chemicals caused the burn
the burn is on the face, hands, feet, genitals or a joint
the burn covers 10% or more of the body
What do you do if you have to care for yourself or someone else who is burned:
Soak the burn. put the burned area in cool, not cold water. Keep it there for 5 to 15 minutes. Don’t use ice, or butter to cool the spot down.
Removed burned clothing. If it is stuck to the skin, don’t pull it away, rather cut around the spot that is stuck. IF you have a burn this bad, you will need to seek medical attention immediately.
Cover the burn. Use non stick gauze, or a clean cloth. If it is a mild burn, you can use antibiotic ointment. Also, don’t pop the blisters. That is a sure fire way to get an infection.
One of the most common types of burns while RVing are grease burns. It doesn’t take but a little splash of bacon grease to ruin your trip. I can guarantee that you will get at least a 2nd degree burn if that grease hits exposed skin. Follow the steps above for treating a grease burn, but be smart about it. There is a chance that you may want to visit an emergency room. Men get burned more and they are also the most stubborn about seeking proper medical attention. So, ladies, make sure your boys do the right thing.
I want you guys to be safe out there, especially around fire and grease. If you have any questions, comments or advice about how to treat burns, I know that all of us at PPL Motorhomes would love to hear from you. Just leave a comment in the section below.
Every year, all across America families plan reunions in hopes of staying in touch with those who can sometimes be on the other side of the US. Summer is prime season for reunions too. The weather is generally nice, kids are out of school and people have been saving up their vacation time. I know all of us here at PPL Motorhomes look forward to reuniting with our family members ever summer.
What better place to hold a family reunion that at an RV Park? Generally the amenities that are provided will more than suffice for even larger reunions. Many parks across the United States have pools, activities, eating halls, picnic areas, covered pavilions and more. Not only do you have all of this at your disposal, but many RV Parks also offer packages to help you organize your family reunion. Even if you have family members who don’t own an RV, some RV Parks also have permanent lodging facilities for rent.
However, PPL Motorhomes recommends looking into renting an RV and experiencing how comfortable the lifestyle can be first hand. Who knows, maybe one of your family member will love it so much they will want to get an RV for themselves! Not to do any shameless self-promotion here, but I know a great little consignment RV center in Houston that you can recommend.
I guess, being RVNana and all, I feel obligated to give you youngins’ a good talking to from time to time. This is one of those times. The lesson for today is: How To Prevent Driving Your RV Sleep Deprived.
People, I’ll tell you right now. If you are tired, stop and rest. You are creating a hazardous situation for you and those you share the road with. You may not even know you are tired until you start feeling the effects of road-hypnosis. That’s when you know you’ve driven for a while, but can’t remember the last landmark you passed. That’s tired, people. You need sleep.
You can really avoid sleep-related problems while RVing by setting a comfortable schedule of driving and resting. Take the time and pace yourselves. Set aside enough time to make the trip there and back easily, otherwise save that trip for another occasion. As much as the seasoned RVers understand this, there are times when our experience can become dangerous by instilling a false sense of control. At the end of the day there aren’t any magic tricks that will keep you awake while driving. Sure, go ahead and open a window, drink a cup of coffee, or try blasting the music, but the experts will tell you that the only thing that will help a sleepy driver is sleep. Go figure.
I’ll make this simple. Plan your trip with the goal of covering 250 miles per day at the most. 100 to 150 miles per day is better. If you must drive farther to reach your destination, plan on having at least two qualified drivers taking turns. If both drivers are exhausted, it’s time to stop and sleep. You are bringing your bed with you! What kind of fool falls asleep at the wheel with a bed in the same vehicle?
So, there you go. You’ve been scolded by RVNana. If you need to pull over, just pull over. RVing is a lot more fun when you are actually traveling and not towing your rig out of a ditch, or worse, because you fell asleep at the wheel.
One of the things that always seemed to be a hassle when we went on our summer RV trips was dealing with wet bathing suits and towels. I don’t know how many times, after a pleasant day on the beach, river or at the park pool, that I had to shout at the grandkids (and my husband) to NOT throw their wet towels and bathing suits on the floor in our RV. But sometimes, finding an appropriate place to hang them to dry isn’t that easy and I’d rather they not use the dryer all of the time for conservation reasons.
Then I found: Smart Dryer. It was the answer to all of my water soaked prayers. The Smart Dryer is perfect for drying towels, swimsuits and more. It’s practicable, function, lightweight and easy to install on your ladder. Equipping your RV with a Smart Dryer means you will no longer have your towels and swim gear hanging form lawn chairs, truck tailgates or ladders. The Smart Dryer is made of stainless steel, so that means it’s both strong and rust resistant. I also folds into itself, so it won’t take much space in your RV, which we all know is extremely valuable.
I was looking online and found this great video.
I wish I had known about this years ago. It will come in handy for our annual Fathers Day river outing on the San Marcos river. You can get your own Smart Dryer online at PPL Motorhomes. Trust me, if you send any amount of time in the water this summer, this drying rack is goring to help stop a lot of headaches and keep a lot of carpets in your RV dry.
I have been with PPL Motor Homes since 1980 and have been fortunate enough to grow up with the company. A native Houstonian, I have been blessed with years of wonderful experiences and memories of RVing with family and friends. With 3 children, 8 grandchildren and a ton of friends who I refer to as my adopted family, I was a Nana long before I became RV Nana. I was blessed to have shared this lifestyle with my late husband, a Cajun from Lafayette, and his spirit will live on in all of us as we continue down the road of life.
My life with PPL has given me so many wonderful chapters, from sharing my RV experiences as RV Nana to working with the Texas Campground Owners Association and holding the position of President of the Texas RV Association from 2011-2013, so it’s easy to see that the RV lifestyle is my style. Watch for me on the road …I’m the one with the RV Nana license plates on my car and RV, and share your RV experiences with me. See you soon!