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Be Prepared For Any RV Campsite!

Video: 10 RV Accessories We Carry Just In Case

As you travel around with your RV, you will find that not all campsite setups are created equal and it pays to be prepared for different situations. Here is our list of ten RV accessories that we have learned to carry to make setting up easier. You won't always need all of these items, but when you do, it's sure nice to have them!
Surge Protectors
Stacie's family learned about this one the hard way when their RV's electrical system was fried by a power surge on their way to Disney World one year. We never plug our power cord directly into a campground or RV power supply. We always plug in through a surge protector. This practice has paid off for us. One of our surge protectors was partially melted by an electrical issue at a park, but we had no damage to our RV. We'd much rather replace a surge protector than repair the electrical system of our RV! As Tom mentions in the video, we carry two surge protectors: one for 50 amp service (our RV runs on 50 amp) and one for 30 amp connections when that is all that is available. There are several brands of RV surge protectors on the market. Here are the ones we currently own: Technology Research 50 Amp Surge Guard with LCD Display | Technology Research 30 Amp Surge Guard. We also hear good things about: Technology Research 30 Amp Surge Guard with LCD Display | Progressive Industries 30 Amp Surge Protector | Progressive Industries 50 Amp Surge Protector
Electrical Extension Cord
Usually our stock electrical cord is long enough to connect our RV to the power supply. However, we have camped in a few locations where we needed our extension cord to reach safely. Electrical extension cords are available in 30 amp and 50 amp. Here are a couple of options you might consider: 30 Amp Extension Cord with Handle | 50 Amp Extension Cord with PowerGrip Handle
Power Converters
This tool (also called a "dogbone") is particularly important for folks who own 50 amp RVs and like to camp in public campgrounds like state parks. Often we will visit a campground that only offers 30 amp service. With our converter, we are able to connect our 50 amp rig to a 30 amp connection. We also own a converter which allows us to plug into a 15 amp connection to trickle charge our batteries while our RV is in storage. As with electrical cords, handles make these easier to separate. Here a few ideas to get you started: 30 Amp Male / 50 Amp Female Adapter | 50 Amp Male / 30 Amp Female Adapter | 15 Amp Male / 30 Amp Female Adapter | 15 Amp Male / 50 Amp Female Adapter
Leveling Blocks
Even though our motorhome has automatic leveling jacks, we still carry leveling blocks. They come in handy when we are camping in a site that is very unlevel. At times, one or two of our tires will be lifted off of the ground when we are leveled. In those cases, we put these blocks under those tires to provide more support. Before we had automatic leveling, we used these blocks to level our RVs on every trip. Heavy Duty Leveling Blocks
Water Pressure Regulator
We never connect our RV to a water connection without a water pressure regulator. The water pressure at some campgrounds is so powerful that it can damage your RV's plumbing. Some RV parks or campgrounds will alert you to issues they are aware of, but in our minds it is always better to be safe than sorry, so we use our water pressure regulator every time. Here is the one we use: Lead-Free Water Regulator
Extra Water Hose
Like electrical cords, many times one water hose is enough to safely reach to connect your RV to the water connection. However, we have camped in several places where the water connection is further away from our RV's connection than we would be able to reach with one hose. Of course, for your drinking hoses, you want to make sure that you have hoses rated for drinking water. We actually carry three hoses with us: our main hose, a secondary hose for when we need to reach further, and a third hose which we use ONLY for our black tank flush. Here's one to get you started: Drinking Water Hose
Bungee Cords
Bungee Cords are helpful for so many purposes. We use them to keep our cords and hoses organized and to keep our table cloth on our picnic table. We've used them to help hang our bird feeder and we even used bungee cords to hold our surge protector in place when an RV park power connection was mounted upside down. We use both the traditional bungee cords and bungee cords with balls attached. Here are a few suggestions we like: 6" Ball Bungees | 9" Ball Bungees | 11" Ball Bungees | Traditional Bungee Cord Assortment
Extra Sewer Hose
Campsites with sewer connections (full-hookups) are super convenient, but the location of the sewer connection is not always located right next to your dump connection. We've stayed in some campgrounds where the sewer connection is fairly far behind the parking pad (perhaps they are trying to keep the sewer connection a distance from the camping area?). Whatever the reason, we always carry at least three lengths of sewer hose (aka "stinky slinkies"). We really like the type of hose that collapses and holds into a smaller length for storage. Here are some suggestions to get you started: 2' Sewer Hose | 10' Collapsible Sewer Hose | 15' Collapsible Sewer Hose
Sewer Donut
Required by some RV parks and campgrounds, a sewer donut is a simple rubber donut-shaped ring that works to form a tight seal between your sewer hose and the park dump station or sewer connection. Since this piece is required by some parks, you probably want to add it to your collection. Sewer Hose Seal
Blue Boy
A portable holding tank (also known as a "blue boy" or a "tote") is a very handy tool to have when you are camping more than just a few days at a campsite that does not have a sewer connection. As part-time RVers, we don't always carry our blue boy with us, but we always carry it when we know we will be camping for more than just a few days without full hook-ups. Some folks use their blue boy to dump both their grey and black tanks. We choose only to use it for our grey tank (which fills up a lot faster than our black tank anyway since it is all of the water from the sinks and shower). It's nice to not have to worry about taking the whole RV to the dump station in the middle of a stay. These totes come in different sizes and styles. Here's the one we have: Portable Waste Tote Tank with 4 Wheels

Bonus Tip!

Checkbook
We have happened upon a few RV parks that do not accept credit cards, and we've also had experience with one whose credit card machine was broken. So it's good to be prepared with your checkbook so you won't have to find an ATM machine to pay for your stay when you come across some of these parks.

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Safe Travels and Happy Camping!