We’ve all been there. Imagine you’re headed down the road, it’s a beautiful late afternoon up in the mountains. You’re in between towns and you’ve got just enough time to make it to your campsite and get everything set up while it’s still daylight and then make it into town for margaritas at that place you both enjoyed so much last year. And then it happens. You get a flat. You slow down and start looking around for a place to pull over because the shoulders don’t look flat or wide enough. Once you find a wide spot, you pull over and the stream of cars behind you go whizzing by all headed into town to drink the margaritas you were so looking forward to. Doesn’t matter if you’re dragging a trailer or have a full size coach, it’s at times like these that you could use a helping hand.
That’s where a company like Coach Net comes in. They are a 24 hour roadside assistance service, so in the above scenario you would simply call the number on the back of your membership card and leave the rest up to them. They can even determine your location based on your cel phone, if you give them permission, otherwise you’d need to provide a location to the nearest mile marker or cross street. After that, simply describe your break down in as specific manner as possible so they can dispatch the corresponding equipment to your location. They are tied into a network of over 40,000 service providers nationwide, so if you need a tire, or if you need a tow they are standing by to help. Realistically, and hopefully, years will go by before you need to call them, but once you do they will quickly and efficiently respond to your call. And there’s no need to worry about paying for a service then submitting a receipt for reimbursement, Coach Net is pre-paid. So if you’re about to hit the road in a new RV, or one that is new-to-you, may I suggest getting this sort of coverage so that your next RV trip will be all the fun you hope it can be, and suggest that you hit our website for any parts or accessorires.
We’ve all had those tropical-style Texas summer days, and more of them are coming. Hot, humid, sweat-soaked days where all you want to do at the end of it is step into a hot relaxing shower. Of course water tanks being sized the way they are in the RV, those marathon showers aren’t too practical. So I’ve been on the hunt for ways to make the shower run more efficiently for quite a while. Then I stumbled on the Oxygenics shower head. Their advertising claims that the shower head reduces water consumption AS WELL AS increases water pressure. Oxygenics also state that the head won’t clog from mineral deposits, and the usual easy-to-install, carefully engineered use of specialized plastics bullet points you read in advertising.
Well I’m here to tell you, I got one and I’m not sure I want to RV without mine! The pressure is noticeably higher than the stock shower nozzle and a by-product of that higher pressure is the ability to knock the soap and shampoo off quicker, which of course would require less water. Nothing is worse than trying to rinse off under a trickle of soft water and feeling like you can never get the soap off your body and the shampoo out of your hair. Even if your water is soft, at the least the pressure will help blast the soap residue off of you. It also lived up to the easy to install claim, as well as the anti-clogging function, as well as being very very inexpensive. I paid around $30 for mine! Now we carry them at PPL Motorhomes.com and are happy to report that our customers are quite satisfied with theirs as well. So if you’d like to add some efficiency and luxury to your shower, click the link below and shower in comfort!
Now that spring has fully sprung here in Texas, as evidenced by the lakes of pollen coated water laying about state-wide, some of us look at the old RV we’re meant to be dusting off and getting ready for the 2015 touring season and our thoughts go something like this:
“The ol’ girl is well…and I mean WELL…over 100,000 miles now, the galley needs some upgrades, the propane system has that slow leak, the water tanks have that slow leak too. Time to upgrade to something a little more comfortable, a little more modern. But I just can’t say goodbye to my old baby!”
Granted, the above is a dramatization and probably not everybody is thinking those thoughts at all, BUT, that probably is the mindset behind one of motor-sports dare I say coolest ideas: RV RACING!
Whether it’s on the drag strip, the oval, or even hauling a classic (read super tired and wore out) camper trailer around a figure eight track, motorhome racing adds a bit of comic drama and demolition derby style ethic to what can sometimes become a fairly routine and rule-soaked day. I read an article recently about a classic GMC Motorhome get together at a Florida drag strip. Not only was it a chance for the owners of a certain type to gather together and compare and contrast each other’s old-school RV’s. They also had a chance to talk about mods, parts, BBQ, beer, etc while awaiting their turn to go head-to-head down the drag strip! Apparently a new record was set for front-wheel drive GMC 1/4 mile speed: 22.514 seconds, which equates to 62 miles per hour, set by Bob Heller in a 1974 GMC with a 455 and 110,000 original miles! The article also noted that Mr Heller performed all his own maintenance.
So the long and short of it is, if you have an adventurous mindset and you’re feeling like maybe it’s time to pasture Ol’ Bessie, maybe give some thought to cleaning her up, painting her all NASCAR style (we’d be glad to supply some PPL Motorhome stickers as well as parts and accessories), and taking her out to perform before the public in hair-raising style!
As I mentioned in an earlier blog, we’re 105 years into this whole RV’ing thing, so, today I thought I’d write about how some of this stuff we enjoy now came to be. First there came the car, then the next logical step was a car owner thinking, “How can I make this thing suitable for camping?” Well, in 1910, the Pierce-Arrow Motor Car Company presented the first ever purpose-built RV they called the Touring Landau. Those early automobiles were named after differing styles of high-end horse drawn carriages; coupe, sedan, cabriolet, brougham, limousine, phaeton, etc might be words familiar to classic car enthusiasts as well as people with only a passing interest in automobiles. This was pre-Henry Ford “a car in every driveway” thinking, this was at the very beginning when owning an automobile was thought to be exclusively for the upper classes. Pierce-Arrow calling their RV a Touring Landau is a perfect example since a landau was a very high-end carriage. Think of the times you’ve seen the Queen of England riding in a horse-drawn carriage on TV, well she was riding in a landau. Better yet, a landau is what Cinderella’s fairy godmother turns the pumpkin into, pretty fancy eh?
But back to Pierce-Arrow for a moment, Pierce-Arrow was a top-of-the-line manufacturer based in Buffalo, New York, and they were highly enough thought of that when the White House switched from horse-drawn carriages to automobiles, President Taft ordered two Pierce-Arrow gas powered automobiles (McKinley had the first presidential car, a Stanley Steamer which was steam powered). So when a manufacturer with that sort of up-scale reputation decides to delve into the recreational vehicle/camping market the automotive world took notice!
That first 1910 Touring Landau featured such novelties/necessities as a water tank, chamber pot style toilet, wash basin, trunks, roof rack and side boxes for storage, hot and cold running water, a folding bed, AS WELL AS a telephone for communicating with the chauffeur! My how times have changed. Back in those days you would have needed to contact Pierce Arrow by telegraph to have them mail you a parts catalog, then order your parts by mail, and await rail delivery. Well today all you have to do is type www.pplmotorhomes.com into your browser and we’ll deliver those parts and accessories straight to your door!
A few days ago, I wrote about cleaning out your RV and removing all of the stuff you really don’t need. As we all know, when we let our RVs go, it’s very easy to start packing on top of old trip junk. If you haven’t totally cleared out your RV and decided on everything you do need, organizing isn’t going to do you any good. The idea is to get rid of useless stuff that is just taking up space and adding weight. Remember, every extra pound you have in your RV that you don’t need is just a waste of gas.
OK, let’s say you went through your entire RV and cleaned out everything you don’t need; now you just need to organize the stuff that “lives” in your RV. This is where a little ingenuity will come in handy. When we first bought our RVs, of course storage space was on out mind, but maybe we saw large open spaces and thought, “Wow, that’s a lot of storage,” only to find that stacking and balancing your items in your cabinets is just asking for trouble. What do you do now? Harness that space somehow. I’ve heard of RVers going as far as making brilliant use of space like in the video below.
If there ever was a time to visit a container store/organization store, it’s now. You can use glass dividers, plate holders, a lazy Susan for loose spices and condiments. You can pick up a few water tight tubs for large items and small items alike. The bottom line is, to simplify your RVing experience, try organizing your RV lifestyle.
A few years ago, Actor/Comedian/Songster, Jeff Daniels decide to champion the RV lifestyle and produce short webisodes on his experiences behind the wheel of his Class A Motorhome. The really interesting this is that he did it up north… in winter. Needless to say, this alone provides for some interesting situations and quips.
At one point Daniels says something to the effect of, “I don’t think you can call yourself a real American until you’ve been behind the wheel of a recreational vehicle.” Funny, but it does have truth in it.
Check out Jeff’s first episode as he realizes that his choice of time and place to RV isn’t the norm and what to expect from his further installments.
It was nice to see a high profile figure in Entertainment really throw their weight behind the RV industry and the RV Lifestyle itself. I think this just goes to show you that RVing’s popularity is at an all time high. So, when you get well know names expounding on the virtues of RVing, it only makes the industry more popular.
Up until recently, I though that Mr. Daniels was the only one in entertainment really into RVing and doing something to promote the lifestyle until I watched an episode of “Rock My RV With Bret Michaels” on The Travel Chanel. Now, while it’s not really RV Nana’s style of music, I can get into rocking some RVs. I enjoyed the show.
Of course there have been movice like “RV’ with Robin Williams whose center stage was a rented Class A Motorhome, even Lucy and Desi called “The Long, Long Trailer”.
Have any other good RV movie or video choices? Let PPL Motorhomes know and leave us a comment below!
The very first RV. Many of you may already know how the Recreational Vehicle came into existence, for those that don’t:
It appears the first motor touring vehicles were handmade out of necessity from existing vehicles, like the Model T and such. As the early pioneers traveled west, they tweaked their cars to fit their specific needs. Back then these vehicles were pretty unreliable and the country’s roads were barely developed, so it made travel very treacherous. So, you ‘could’ say it was Henry Ford and his consumers… (source: http://answers.yahoo.com)
For those of you who have an hour and want a great history lesson on the history of the RV, watch the video below. It give a very detailed history of America, Travel and the origination of the first RVs
The RV has a lush history in the United States and their popularity is only increasing. Even during some economic time, the RV industry has seemed to weather the down times and come out with just a few bumps and bruises. We see new RVers daily here at PPL Motorhomes and it makes me so happy to see new generations and younger families and couples stepping into the RV lifestyle. I think people are starting to catch on to the fact that RVing and getting outdoor and communing with nature and fellow RVers is one of the most enjoyable experiences ever. The best part is that you can go anywhere you want, anytime you want without leaving the comforts of your own home.
While I never think it is a bad thing to brag about the quality of customer service you give as a company, I have to admit, it’s nothing really. In fact, it’s really easy. That is just how we operate. Our entire crew here at PPL Motorhomes is naturally focused on helping others. You see this isn’t really a job for us. We are all RVers and this is our lifestyle. Our customer service attitude comes from being RVers ourselves and knowing what we demand for our personal motorhomes, travel trailers, fifth-wheels, and tent campers.
It’s important that we run our business the way we know other RVers want it to be run. Not just with great prices, but a real understanding of everything RV related including parts and accessories. That’s why it makes me swoon with pride every time someone sends us some nice correspondence. Like below. It tells me one thing; there’s a great chance that if a customer is happy, then I would have been happy. PPL Motorhomes is a Consignment RV Sales & Parts And Accessories Center owned by RVers, for RVers.
Hello Parts department.
I just wanted to say thank you for the excellent service and leadership that came with my two recent orders.
Speaking with a parts person that has some particle knowledge of how to install the parts they are selling is fantastic. Who would have thought a toilet can be in and out in 15 minutes or a hot water heater changed out in less than 30 minutes. When I shared my story about trying to fix my old hot water heater and it kicking my butt the salesman and I had a good laugh. I caught him just before closing Labor Day Saturday and there was no rush to get me off the phone. Now I have hot water, more importantly Momma has hot water.
I assure you that PPL Motor Homes will be my vendor of choice in future purchases and I will recommend them to all my friends.
Thank you, Michael, for taking your time to share your experience with us. I’m proud that you have trusted us with your business. If there is anything you need in the future, you already know we are entirely at your service.
After 12 years, my memory of September 11th, 2001 is no less vivid what it was moments after the attack. It doesn’t matter what I was doing, or where I might have been going: those moments froze time for me. Nothing in my life, or business seemed important. We all watched helplessly. Many of us like myself were almost completely unable to grasp what we were witnessing and how it would affect our nation and our people for the rest of our lives.
I do my best to take the time to reflect on everything that happened that day, and how it has changed us in the years that followed. In my mind, my anger is still fresh. I still find myself reliving some of the shock I felt even when I look at pictures today. To me, it’s still senseless. I sometimes catch myself thinking about the “what ifs.” Like what if I was in one of the towers? What if someone I loved was? What if I was a first responder? What if I wasn’t near ground zero, but the dust from the collapse came to rest on my tables and counter tops in my downtown apartment. Every New Yorker was affected as every American was affected, with the deepest sadness, monumental confusion and unbridled anger.
Here we are 12 years later. Can you say you feel better? Do you feel vindicated with the certain key players now out of the picture? If your answer is “no,” join the countless number of Americans who still feel the heartache from that day. I was going to get up on my soap box and rant and rave about how we, the people of this country, must never forget what happened and why it may have happened, but then I realize that it is impossible to forget. No matter how hard we try, we will never forget the day we lost a lot of our innocence. Violence came to our soil. The most evil, despicable and vile violence was brought to us. How can you forget that?
I’m writing this on the 12th Anniversary of September 11th. If you read it, it may be next year, it may be in the middle of the year, it might not be necessarily today, but it shouldn’t matter. You should never get over the shock and the sadness of that day. It might get a little easier as time passes, sure, but with the way things are in Syria and Iran at this very moment, it’s not that easy to forget.
For me, my memory is of the common folk and first responders who lost their lives, or were injured. The legacy of their memory that their family has to carry on is forever linked with an atrocity that no one should have to experience. Pray for the families of those who fell. Pray that that day is never repeated anywhere on Earth.
It’s football season once again and nothing goes hand in hand with football quite like RVing. Tailgating in your RV at the game is the ultimate adventure and the ultimate in comfort. How great is it that you can have all of the luxuries of home right there in the parking lot of the stadium? Pretty fantastic. It’s the ONLY way to tailgate, if you ask me. I mean think about it for a second. You can cook inside or out. You have access to air conditioning and privacy if you need it. You can pull the awning out, set up a table, fire up the grill, pull the TV outside, hike you heels back and relax. Of course the absolute best part about tailgating in your RV? You won’t have to wait in line for the port-a-potty…if you even have access to one.
Tailgating in your RV also means you can get to the stadium extra early and won’t have to run out immediately after the game. You have some time to let the rowdy crowds and reckless drivers exit the stadium parking lot before you start to disembark.
Check out the video below for a quick little taste of tailgating and RVing
Plus, if you are a college football fan, PPL Motorhomes has everything to fly your colors, from camping lights, to logo awning covers, to folding chairs and coolers. We have tons of great stuff to make your tailgating time and your RV both unique and memorable.
One more thing before you decide to head out to your next tailgating adventure: make sure you are properly prepared with a full fresh water tank, enough propane, and a nice generator like a Yamaha. Trust me. The more prepared you are, the less you’ll have to think about all of the things you didn’t do and the more time you’ll have to enjoy nice and relaxing pre and post-game activities.
Do you have any tips, or hints on better RV tailgating? What are your rituals when you are out in that parking lot getting ready to cheer on your favorite team?
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!