In the past four months, we have learned some tips about living in our RV that might be useful for others. I started writing this blogpost about all of the different systems (water, sewer, batteries, etc) that you have to deal with in an RV that you never have to think about in “bricks and mortar” house.and what we have learned about them, but that was a really long and boring post. Other bloggers have written about the same things in other places and you can go there to read about them – just like we did. What I decided to do instead, was write about the tricks we have learned to make life more comfortable for us on the road. Some we learned on our own (geniuses that we are) and others we got from other RVers over cocktails during happy hour or on Pinterest, which has more great ideas than I could ever figure out on my own. The following are a few of these tricks:
Use a pizza stone inside the oven
All of the heat in an RV oven comes from the bottom, making for very uneven heat. When the oven heats up, it comes to temp and then it cools down some until the thermostat tells it to come back up to the desired temp. To even out the heat, the stone heats up and keeps the heat at a more even temp throughout rather than cooling down. It works like a champ! Our pizza stone is round without handles. By being round, it allows the heat to rise and surround the food rather than being all below. There are also rectangular stones, but be sure you get one that fits your oven. Those ovens are pretty small so not all stones will fit.
RV-sized Ice Cube Trays
Regular ice cube trays take up too much space in the teeny freezer of an RV. They have to sit from side to side in the freezer, taking up valuable food space. You can buy small ice cube trays built to sit from the door to the back of the freezer, but be warned, there is only about enough ice in one of those trays for one drink. I got four of them and they stack nicely. To be totally honest, however, I picked up a free regular sized tray from the free box in the RV park so I could have some regular sized cubes, too. Kind of defeats the purpose of the small trays, but I mostly use the small ones for back-up ice.
We use Command Hooks all over in the RV. Those are the hooks that you can stick up with Command strips and take them down without damaging your walls. They come small enough to hold a key or large enough to hold a heavy framed picture. We use them to hold our towels in the bathroom since it is a curved wall, a small hook next to my side of the bed, and for hanging the awesome watercolor of Steamboat I got when I retired. If you haven’t tried these before, you should. We even used them to hang our Christmas stockings without damaging our walls.
While we haven’t had a need for this stuff yet, I can see where it would come in handy. This is a kind of putty that you stick to the bottom of something you don’t want to wobble off of a table or off a wall when you are rolling down the road. I used to use something like this to hold up posters in my college dorm room without putting nails in the wall. With a name like QuakeHOLD, it sounds like it would keep items in place even when driving down a rutted dirt road to some fabulous campsite.
Our one closet for clothes is way too small to hang everything we want to hang, despite having winnowed our clothes down to the basics. (Well, I have, but Cooper has some work to do.) I like to fold my knit tops rather than hanging them, so I got one of those sweater stackers you can hang from a closet rod. I can stack WAYYY more things in this stacker space than I could ever hang on hangers. Cooper doesn’t have knit shirts so it won’t work for him. I got this picture off of Pinterest. Works like a charm.
Drawer for the small stuff
I am always looking for a pen or paper clips or scissors and was having a terrible time trying to find them. When we had our other camper, we found these drawers that will fit under the table in an RV (we are always looking for hidden “extra” spaces). We bought one and magically I was able to put things like pens away and be able to find them again. In our new RV, it won’t fit under the table because there is a drop leaf that slides out, so Cooper painted it black and installed it under a shelf in the entertainment center. I can always find pens, highlighters, batteries, paper clips and the list of TV channels we can get on our DISH satellite. We got ours a Camping World.
Solar Picnic Table lights
Rather than spend money on batteries or fuel for lanterns, capture the power of the sun to use for your picnic table and out door dining, even at home. Get a package of the solar yard lightslike the ones you stick in the ground along your driveway (or wherever), and stick them through the top of an upside-down flower pot. They are inexpensive, decorative, and easy to store when moving. Here at the RV park, several people have painted the pots as a craft project.
Metered data use
One day I was complaining to our RV neighbor, Dave Hanley, about how our internet is just gobbling up data. He asked me if we had let our computers know we don’t have unlimited data and that there is a setting to keep all those videos and ads on Facebook and elsewhere from automatically starting and running in the background. WHAAAAT??? I immediately went back to our computers and changed the settings to reflect that our data is metered. Big difference in data usage. Thanks, Dave.
Do you want to know how to limit your data on a Windows 10 machine like us? Check out this article: Manage Windows 10 Data Usage
We are learning new tips all the time. After all, it has only been four months. If I get any new, cool tips, I will pass them on somewhere down the line.