Go RVing and Give Your Kids a Camera

In today’s world getting kids away from video games, iPads, smartphones and a whole host of other things designed to essentially keep them sedentary is a very difficult thing to do. When we were kids if you wanted entertainment, you had to make it up yourself. You had to go outside and explore. You had to create your own adventure and that was usually done outdoors. We went outside when it was sunny, when it was cold and even when it was raining. Today there simply is no “app” that will substitute for actually going outdoors.

When I try to light a fire under my grandchildren and get them off of the computer or away from the TV, it’s usually met with disgruntled moans and groans. “Aw, Nana, can’t we just finish this game?” My answer is usually “No”. I want them to get outside and explore the things that a virtual world could never replicate. So that got me thinking. If we are in a battle with our kids to leave the technology behind, we might lose that battle. Why not bring a little technology outside with them in the form of a digital camera and win the war!

A camera is, essentially a gateway between technology and environment. I’ve heard the term “hybrid learning”, which is where technology and nature work together to create a new way of thinking. By using the digital camera, or even the camera of their phones it allows your kids to both engage with nature and “play” with the electronics and technology at the same time.

Next time you go RVing with the kids, or grandkids try getting them to explore the outdoors more by challenging them to a photo scavenger hunt. For example, make a list of things that are commonly found in a campsite, or RV park, like flowers, insects, rocks, colors, shapes, people, animals, etc…and have them take a photo of each of the “hunted” items. The the photo possibilities are endless.

Now the camera doesn’t have to be a $2,000 SLR, or anything professional. That’s obvious. A simple point and shoot with automatic focus is good enough. They can still get great pictures without having to be concerned about anything else other than taking the picture. Children will spend a good amount of time composing their pictures in order to get “just the right shot”. The time the spend looking through the viewfinder and the concentration it requires are the special moments that allow kids to experience the minute details of nature in an up-close and personal way.

After they take their pictures, you can sit down with them and help them make a scrapbook of their photos that they can then share with friends and family. Before you they know it, they will have all of their trips and adventures documented and can always revisit those memories by looking at their pictures. Don’t forget to have them put captions of “when, where and what” on them so they can always remember.

Digital photography is a great tool to get our increasingly technologically oriented kids outside to not only discover nature, but also preserve and share those discoveries with their family and friends. If your kids have taken any pictures your like to share, just head over to PPL Motorhomes Facebook page and post them! I know all of our fans would love to see the outdoors through a child’s eyes.

Are You Ready To Sell That RV?

Spring is almost here and there’s not a better time to unload that RV you’ve been trying to sell and put the proceeds towards a new one! Stop looking out the window at your RV, wondering when someone will drive by and notice the “For Sale” sign in the window. Let us sell it for you! Between March 19th – 24th, we’re having our Spring RV sale. We won’t charge you anything until your RV is sold, and we’ll even give you a FREE Ultimate RV Cleanup (worth $450).

RV Consignment has been the specialty of PPL Motor Homes since 1972 with the experience of selling over 28,200 consigned RVs. We are the largest consignment dealer in the USA! Take a look at this video that goes into details about out consignment process:

We know that selling your RV is a pain in the neck, and that’s why you should let us do it for you! We have over 15,000 buyers actively receiving information via mail on our inventory of pre-owned RVs, plus over 30,000 buyers receive updates via email. That doesn’t include the over 750,000 visitors per month on our website. If your RV is in front of that many potential buyers, your chance of selling goes up tremendously.

  • Every week, hundreds of prospective buyers will receive detailed information on your vehicle by mail.
  • This information will include the price, a detailed description, floor plan, and condition rating or your vehicle.
  • Buyers have learned to trust PPL’s information and ratings. In fact, many will look only at vehicles listed with PPL.
  • Buyers rely on PPL to save them time and the frustration of “unqualified shopping” which increases the probability of selling your RV at a fair price!


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Great Deals on Back-Up Sensor & Camera Systems

Hitching your RV up is a pain, especially if it’s just you doing the hitching, having to get out of the car multiple times just to gauge how much further you need to back up. With two people, you have confusing hand signals and lots of screaming and yelling, “TURN THE WHEEL LEFT, NO!!! I MEAN YOUR OTHER LEFT!”

This is where technology makes our lives easier. There are a couple of back-up sensor and camera systems that I recommend, and right now, until March 10th, they’re on sale! The Smart Hitch & the Swift Hitch are both great solutions to help you hitch up your RV and get outta town. Be sure and sign up for our email updates and be informed of all of our sales and deals.

The Smart Hitch Camera & Sensor System

  • Easily align hitch ball to the trailer coupler every time – Made for Towing
  • Makes it easy for one person to hitch up to the trailer by themselves – Plug-In Simple!®
  • Camera mounts behind the license plate
  • No Splicing! Plugs in behind the tow package connector, retaining electrical functions at the rear of the vehicle
  • Crystal Clear Monitor
  • Large, 3.5″ color monitor with static free image – Great for Everyday Use
  • Camera comes with SmartZone™ Sensors
  • 3 detection zones alert the driver to distance and direction of objects with audible alerts
  • Switch between Hitch Mode and Everyday Mode at the push of a button

The Swift Hitch Back-Up Camera

With this Trailer Hitch Camera you can easily hitch up your trailer, camper or snow blower during the day or night! Simply mount the magnetic camera on the tailgate, view the hitch while backing up to align and hitch it up. The fully automatic night vision camera has a magnetic base and transmits up to 300 ft. The easy to use full color 2.5″ LCD display (960×240) allows single-hand operation, normal or reverse imaging and has a 4 hour rechargeable li-battery. Complete system includes camera and display, 12V charger cable, display battery (22-1399 (SH02) also includes storage case and suction cup mount).


More that just a Trailer Hitch Camera!! Check out other uses:

  • Look into tight spaces on remodeling or construction jobs.
  • Inspect a chimney. The night vision is the key.
  • Inspect plumbing and find leaks in tight spaces.
  • Locate dropped parts in tight places (boat bilges, for example)
  • RV Owners Use Swift Hitch while adjusting the satellite dish for best reception. Simply point the camera at the TV and hold the display to fine tune the dish position.
  • On a stop-over or while camping to monitor sleeping child while you’re sitting just outside the vehicle.
  • Perform inspection tasks where space is limited. Attach camera to a pole.
  • Monitoring horses or other cargo inside trailers.
  • Temporary security camera – see who’s at the front door.

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Newsletter January 2014

ppl motorhomes, motorhome newsletter, camping newsletter, rv newsletter

Thanksgiving in an RV

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, I’m sure the question has popped into your head: “How am I gonna cook Thanksgiving dinner in my RV?”. Knowing that your RV has smaller appliances and counter space than your kitchen probably scares you a little bit, too. But not to worry, there are plenty of things you can do to make your turkey day go off without a hitch.

I’ve heard of many RVers who have cooked a turkey in their crock-pot! This will free up your stove and allow you to cook side dishes while your turkey is being cooked. One that I recommend is the Roasted Yams and Apples recipe. Since you’re not using your stove-top just yet, there are a couple of great recipes out there for green beans and a curried butternut squash and apple soup that would be a cinch to make in your RV. Minimal ingredients and a small amount of space taken up.

Some people like to deep fry their turkeys, which is great, because you can do that outside! That just leaves more space inside for you to cook side dishes and desserts. Be sure to bring enough fryer oil to cook with!

If baked turkey is your thing, then I recommend buying turkey breasts at the supermarket. They are more compact than a whole turkey and you can buy a few packages worth and stick them in your freezer.

If you carry a grill with you when you go traveling, you can always grill a turkey on it! You may have to take the top warmer shelf out to get the whole turkey in there, but a 4-burner grill should accommodate a smaller turkey.

Always think ahead when preparing a big meal in your RV, take all the ingredients you can, then stop by the grocery store for the additional items.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving and Happy RVing!

How to Make A Family Fun Night a Success While RVing

When you take a family camping, it can be hard to get everyone together for a few hours and spend time with them. Kids will bring their iPads or play on their phones, if there’s a TV in the RV, sometimes we’ll lose a few hours flipping channels. We encourage putting down the electronic devices and spending some quality time with everyone, that’s what RVing is all about. Here’s a few things that crossed my mind on how to make a Family Fun Night a success!

1. Bring board games!

Starting a rousing game of Monopoly or dominoes is a sure fire way to spend some quality time with your family. Be sure to bring a few different games, you want as many people as possible taking part in it. Playing cards are great to keep in the RV, simply because of their versatility. You can play “Go Fish” if your group is younger, or “Spades” if you’re with an older crowd. The possibilities are endless. Here are just some that you can order from PPL Motorhomes!

Travel Board Games                  $14.95
Road Trip Game                        $19.95
Texas Trivia                               $19.95
Rally Ho RV Travel Game           $19.95
Mexican Train Domino Game     $25.95
Dominos to Go                         $9.95

2. Pick a family friendly movie for Movie Night!

You might even consider projecting your movie onto the side of your RV and getting everyone outside to enjoy nature! You can even go as far as implementing a “No Cell Phone” rule during the movie to keep everyone from multitasking (checking Facebook or texting with friends) and into the movie.

3. Explore walking trails!

Most campground and RV sites have walking trails and nature walks within the site. Make it a point to get everyone out for a walk and explore the grounds around you. Give the kids a list of 5 different flowers to find, or see who can spot the most different insects while out for a walk.

What do you guys and gals do for family time on your trips? Find us on Facebook and let us know!

Make Jacking Up Your Trailer Easier With A BAL Scissor Jack Motor Kit

Everyone who loves hand cranking their scissor jacks on their trailers, raise your hand.

Oh, wait, you probably are still sore from the last time you had to hand crank your jack.

Well, our consignment RV dealership is going to come to your rescue with a great product from BAL Scissor Jacks. This power leveling jack is an optional 12 volt motor kit. It’s easy to use and easy to install. Add one of these to your trailer’s scissor jacks and you’ll get nearly automatic stabilizing at the push of a button. No more getting down in the dirt, no more sore muscle and no more thrown backs. As I said, this lightweight, high RPM motor kit is easily installed, this sealed motor has easy access to manual override. This product is to be used with BAL Deluxe Scissor Jacks (94-1211, BAL model 24002D) or Standard Scissor Jacks (94-1361, BAL model 24002C). Includes motor control. 2 per box.

This scissor jack motor kit is designed to quickly lower the jack to the ground, or raise it back to the closed position. Using the motor to lift a vehicle may damage the motor. Jacks not included.

Here’s how to install your BAL Scissor Jack Power Pack Motor Kit

If you would like to make jacking up your trailer easier, you really do need to look into getting a scissor jack motor kit. Trust me, you will really be glad that your did. If you have any questions about this product, or any other product we may carry, don’t hesitate to contact your consignment RV center and RV parts store, PPL Motorhomes. We’ll gladly help you find exactly what you are looking for.

Keep Your RV Organized

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.

Coach-net Roadside Assistance

Let me be the first say, if you are a RVer without roadside assistance… well, congratulations on being an expert RV mechanic too. You must have gone though years of training to be so confident in your roadside mechanic skills.

In all seriousness, if you don’t have some type of roadside assistance on call for your RV, then you are potentially gambling with your trip. I use Coach-net Roadside assistance, and no, I never leave home without it, much like I should my American Express card on some trips.

Anyway, PPL Motorhomes offers this great product designed with the RVer in mind.  Complete with everything you need from roadside assistance to concierge service,  24 hour tech support, all-inclusive for entire family coverage, coverage in any vehicle you are in, in-campground service, pays to tow to nearest qualified repair facility, Assist America coverage included,  PPL offers coverage for towable and motorized for just $119.50: that’s a bargain people. Buying through PPL Motorhomes will save you as much as $39.50 off retail.

The bottom line is that this is an outstanding service, one which we highly recommend! I’d never travel without the protection of road-side assistance. That’s not to mention all of the other amenities. Just having the comfort knowing that I have an emergency resource able to provide assistance 24/7 is worth the cost alone.

Listen to RVNana and get Coach-Net Roadside assistance before you actually need it.

…and don’t run with scissors!

Less Is More In Your RV

When it comes to your RV, less is more. The RV is an easy place to get overloaded very quickly. I’ll bet if you were to look in your RV right now, you probably need half of the stuff you have packed away in there. Just think about the stuff that are packed continuously and go on every trip. Do you really need to fill every available space in you RV? Of course not! You just have to make the effort to clean out all of the stuff that, for the most part, is just along for the ride.

I finally made the decision to go through my RV  and I realized I had tons of stuff I never needed to take with us.  There were even items that I had never used the entire time I owned RVs.  Ever do that before? If so, it’s time to scale back considerably.  I mean, really, I did not need 2 sets of silverware, 14 serving bowls or 48 red solo cups.  Nor did I need to have 4 water filters, 2 hoses, 6 packages of toilet chemical drop ins and 6 cans of bug spray.  Enough was enough. Even when I started through the clothing, there was no way I needed all of those swimsuits, shoes and 16 pairs of socks. No wonder our gas mileage was low.  I had been carrying my entire house with me.

I had to stop the madness and took the action I had been saying I’d take four trips ago. I got water tight storage containers and went to town. When all was said and done, I took 3 expedition sized loads out of the RV and have everything I really need packed in 6 tubs. I improved my living space, I improved my gas mileage and I took a lot of stress out of packing for my next trip. Try scaling back a little and you’ll find a lot of the same benefits that I did.

When was the last time you really cleaned out your RV?