List of Essential RV Supplies for RV Newbies

List of Essential and Non-Essential RV Supplies for Newbies
 
ESSENTIAL SUPPLIES
 
 
  • New Bed for RV: If you purchased an older RV, no one really wants to sleep on another person’s mattress if they can help it or if you are not satisfied with the bed in your RV, many RVers have taken the bed from their homes. Also some of the beds RVers are buying include nectarcasper, etc. 
  • Hypervent Moisture Barrier: Get hypervent moisture barrier to prevent moisture under your bed in cool or damp weather. You should not have an issue in the summertime. 
  • Sick Pack: Make sure you have chicken soup, crackers, and other supplies in case you get sick, especially if you are a solo RVer. You probably won’t be in a position to go into town and get supplies so it’s important to have these supplies on hand as you take a few days to rest and get better. 
  • First Aid Kit: Just like in a home, it’s important to have a good first aid kit in your RV.
  •  Fire Extinguishers: Make sure they work well. Buy at least 3 and place throughout your RV. 
  • Spare Fuses: When your fuses go out and you are out there all alone, it’s important to have extra fuses to replace them with.   
  • Buy Items for Safety: Think about buying Guns, Tasers, Pepper Spray, and Bear Spray if you plan on venturing into bear country. The Bear Spray can even be used on people. Guns ARE ALLOWED on BLM land.
  • New Keys/Deadbolt Locks: Travel trailers and fifth wheels keys are very similar. Many of the baggage area keys, especially in older model RVs, use the SAME KEYS so it might be a good idea to have new keys made for your baggage area and front doors. Many RV doors today have a 4 digit code. To be on the safe side, you should get two deadbolt locks for your RV door, which locks on both sides.  
  • New Tires: According to most RVers, the first step to take after buying your RV, is to purchase new tires for it. Michelin and Good Year are the best brands and they will run anywhere from $1,200 to $2,000 depending on your RV. 
  • Mud Flaps for Tires: These front and back mud flaps can save the wear and tear on your RV. 
  • Tire Pressure Gauge: It’s important to have the right air pressure in your towed vehicle and RV so check out this item. You also want to get your RV weighed at a weigh station after it is fully-loaded, to make sure it’s not overweight.    
  • Automatic Tire Pressure Monitoring System: This $500 investment is well worth it according to many RVers, but for newbies, it might need to be added to the non-essential list.         
  • Tire Extenders: Cost is $350. Add a valve stem extension and stabilizer to your inside dual wheel to make checking your air pressure or adding a tire monitor sensor easy.          
  • Red Anderson Levelers and/or Level Mate Pro with the App (for 5th Wheels and Trailers): It’s important to level off your RV after parking so you don’t damage the refrigerator or feel uncomfortable inside when walking throughout the RV. It can be quick and efficient by using these items.   
  • Wheel Chalk: Make sure you check out this item for your tires.                  
  •  Wheel or Tire Covers: If you have a towed vehicle to travel back and forth in and your RV will be parked for a while, make sure you protect your tires with wheel covers.            
  • Side Mirrors: You might need upgrades if you don’t have electrical side mirrors. They need to be electrical more than manual because on bumps they can get out of shape and it might be too dangerous, especially at night, to exit the vehicle to fix them.
  • Backup Cameras: Many newer RVs should come with a backup camera. The best backup cameras are wireless cameras. Some cameras can be added to your rearview mirrors and others you can lay in the middle of two front seats. It’s usually too big to place on the dashboard.      
  • Emergency Orange Triangle Cones: In case of a breakdown, it’s imperative to have these orange emergency cones. They also have the collapsible cones for easy storage.    
  • Garmin 770 GPS: Before you venture too far if your RV does not come with a Garmin 770 GPS so you can put the height and length of your RV in it to make sure you avoid low-clearance bridges and narrow roads, then you need to buy it. You also need to add the length of the tow vehicle. Cost is around $300. However, many RVers choose to use the Rand McNally Trucker’s App or the Co-pilot app, so check out all of these.     
  • Auto Code Reader: It’s great to have one of these just in case your engine light comes on. We know that many auto supply stores like Auto Zones, will check your engine and give you a reading if your engine light comes on in your car, but for RVs, it’s important to carry this item with you.    
  • Weather Radio: You need a good, quality radio with a weather band. The good thing about RVing is you can move around to avoid bad weather so it will be extremely important to keep up with the weather, especially during hurricane season.       
  • RV Power Adapters: Always use these to protect your electrical system in your RV. They are also called “dog bones.” You will need at least 3 (20, 30 and 50 amp).                       
  • Surge Protector: This plug into your electrical outlet before you plug in at RV parks so you won’t fry your RV circuit.     
  • weBoost Drive 4G-X 470510 Cell Phone Signal Booster, Cell Signal Booster for Car & Truck: Boosts 4G LTE Cell Signal. If you don’t plan on being at libraries, coffee shops, and other places with wi-fi, then you want to invest in these. A 17 ft. antenna will go as far as 300 miles away. They also have the weBoost for home and office. However, before buying this expensive item, check out the section on Cell Phone and Internet in Phase 3.               
  • MiMo Antenna: This antenna is by Netgear and it can be better than the weBoost package to help with your data when hooking up with hotspots.
  • Mr. Buddy Prophane Heater: This is a popular heater with RVers and Van Dwellers. Many RVers uses Mr. Buddy Prophane Heaters, especially if they are constantly in cold weather. It comes in 3 sizes. Sometimes RVers rather run these portable heaters than their inside heat, which sometimes goes out and can be quite expensive to fix. These heat up pretty quick, but make sure the RV is vented if you use this heater.       
  • Olympian Heater: This heater will save money on propane. Some say they are better than the Mr. Buddy heaters because they space out your heat better and you can run them all the time. They also will shut off if they tip over.      
  • Gas Leak Sniffer Detector: This is a methane propane combustible natural gas leak sniffer detector. This detector allows the detection of leaks in hard-to-reach and confined spaces. You need a carbon dioxide and a propane detector in your RV. This is a must. Many RVs might come with these detectors.     
  • Rubber Gloves: You need these along with shoe covers and protective glasses for emptying your gray or black tank.     
  • Bleach/Sanitation Spray: Use these also for black tank dumping. Sanitize the faucet with beach spray when dumping the gray and black tank. 
  • Camco Sewer Extension: This extends the attachment height of your 4-in-1 adapter 3″ for recessed dump stations.  It comes with one pre-attached lug and bayonet fitting with locking rings. 
  • Drain Hose: Many times this comes in a kit with hose support.       
  • Camco 20ft Sidewinder RV Sewer Hose Support: They are made with sturdy lightweight plastic that won’t creep closed. It holds hoses in place.    
  • Rhino Blaster: Camco RhinoFLEX 20ft RV Sewer Hose Kit, Includes Swivel Fitting and Translucent Elbow with 4-In-1 Dump Station Fitting, Storage Caps Included, Frustration-Free Packaging (39742). This shoots water up to the black hose. Make sure you keep tanks closed until you are ready to dump because you can get a fly manifestation in there. Cost is $18.    
  • Fresh Water Hose: Get the Zero-G 25 feet. Buy two of them — long and short in length. You should not use the popular green water hoses for gardening. Camco has a 50 ft. drinking water hose. It’s 20 percent thicker than standard water hoses.     
  • Water Filters: Camco TastePURE Water Filter with Flexible Hose Protector greatly reduces bad taste, odors, chlorine and sediment in drinking water (40043). The water coming from city water has hard water so even if you buy your own drinking water, you really don’t want this water in your sinks or showers.           
  • Pressure Regulator with Gauge: This connects to water pressure. Use a water filter and turn on water and flush it out.      
  • RV Toilet Paper: You can’t use household toilet paper for RVs. You need one that will breakdown quicker such as Scott (Rapid-Dissolving) for RVs and Boats. Many RVers even chooses not to put their toilet paper in toilets after use in fear of having some type of septic issue.     
  • Porta Pak: Get this dissolvent for your toilet to help everything break down quicker. It goes down your kitchen sink at least a day before dumping gray and black tanks.   
  • Garmin inReach Explorer +: You can use this hand-held GPS when you travel off the beaten path when hiking. Cost is $449.             
  • ResQLink: This is a ONE-TIME personal locator beacon. Some have a monthly fee, but you might not need all that. It’s made for ONE TIME USE only. They can see through the satellite and send out help. Only use in case of emergency (injury on trail, danger from an animal or human, etc.) Cost is $279.99.

 

NON-ESSENTIAL SUPPLIES

  • Webetop Portable Power Rechargeable Inverter Battery Generator: This is 155Wh, 42000mAh, 100W. If when starting out you are not in the position to get solar, a house battery or generators, you can charge this rechargeable inverter while you drive and it will stay charged for several days for use with your computers, phones, and other household gadgets.     
  • Solar Panels on Roof: Most Van Dwellers have 200 watts and most RVers have at least 400 watts. Remember these can go out and they have to be cleaned so it’s better to have different sets along with attachments. They are even starting to make solar panels that are 325 watts. Check out Wind & Sun in Arizona, which has some of the cheapest solar rates.         
  • Portable or Mobile Solar Panels: You can place solar panels outside while placing your RV in the shade. Then plug it into your battery. It charges all day long in the sun.           
  • Rechargeable Lithium Batteries: You can use it to run C-pack. It has regular ports so you can plug in regular items. Plug it right into the cigarette lighter while you drive. When it gets down to 8% an alarm goes off. It will recharge everything for a week before you have to recharge it again. It’s cheaper than having solar put on roof. It’s $299.99.    
  • Motion Detector Solar Power Security Camera: This will focus on your front door and the surrounding areas of the RV and be connected to your cell phone.             
  • Walkie Talkies: You need these if one person (a spouse or children) wander away from the RV so you can stay in touch with them. Or if you are traveling around with a caravan and you don’t have cell service.        
  • Drone: These are great if you want to take shots of the area to use in your pictures and videos. Many RVers have the Phantom 3 Standard Drone. Try to use in an open field so they don’t crack on trees or fall in the water.    
  • Camcorder with Screen by Canon: It has an SD card and scrap. You recharge on 110 plug and get 200 hours. You can purchase a wide angle len. It will zoom in and zoom out.       
  • Peak Design Capture Camera Clip V3 (Black with Plate): This clip will make it easier to carry your camera.         
  • Binoculars: It’s imperative not to miss a minute of the sites so buy a good set of binoculars. 
  • Flojet Portable Waste Pump: If you can’t call the “Honey Wagon” or a “Blue Boy” and pay $25 at RV parks without full hookups to have them come and empty your gray and black tanks. You can use this portable gadget if you have room to store it in your RV. It has a pump that can pump uphill. You can put a clear 45-degree elbow on it and aim it to go down then check seals. You can hook up your garden hose and connect 12 volts to get everything working. Many RVers who stay in driveways or who do #RVDrivewaySurfing, also call “Driveway Mooching,” use this. It holds 27 gallons.   
  • Instant Pot: Many RVers use these to prepare meals.        
  • Air Fryer: Many RVers also like this item to prepare meals.      
  • Blackout Curtains: You can use these to keep out light in the area that separates the front of your vehicle and/or just put on your windows.   
  • Bottle of Rechillable Gel Ice Cubes: When you want to have a cold drink, you can just get it out. It’s only $4.99 for 12 cubes.     
  • U.S. Sticker Map: It’s 11 inches by 17. You can track your travels. It’s 14.99.    
  • A Cup Cozy: You can use it like a little pillow or hold your cup. You can put behind your neck. It’s $26.99.  
  • Solar or LED Lights: These lights can be used for reading. They are also called a “globe light”. There are different patterns available. It has a solar panel. It gives you the prettiest ambient lights at night so make sure they are in sunlight during the day recharging. It can last up to a year and half for $18.99.   
  • Ferry Light (Rechargeable): This is a long string of blue lights. You can put in driver side window during the day to receive sunlight and charge up. They are only $12.99 and can last a year and half.      
  • Neck Light: It has a battery. It goes around your neck and lights up if you have to go out at night or read a book. It has different speeds. It’s good for stealth camping. Cost is $13.99.    
  • Luci Light: These are solar lights. 
  • Plastic Bark Lighter: You charge it on a USB port and it stays charged for weeks. You can light the stove, campfire, etc. with it. It’s $16.95.      
  • Rechargeable Hot Water Bottle: It’s full of a gel. If you have a sore knee or back or want to put something behind your neck, it stays warm for 8 hours so it’s good in cold weather. It has a little plug on it. After 15 minutes, it stays warm until it builds up memory. You can put it in bed at night. It’s $29.99.     
  • Blowout Adapters to Winterize RV: If you don’t become a Snowbird, know what you need to winterize your vehicle with these adapters.   
  • Reflectors: Camco SunShield Reflective Door Window Cover. This helps protect your RV from harmful UV Rays and regulates RV temperature 16 x 25 ” (45167). Cost is $40 at Lowe’s.   
  • RV Mat:  Mat to go in front of RV ($34 Amazon) ($48 Walmart).   
  • Chairs: Get the chairs that have cup holders and placement on the sides.       
  • Flag for RV: This flag can help you identify the location of your RV when you are in crowded RV park or campground or out hiking or boondocking.   
  • Box Fan: Many RVers said these box blow fans work great for blowing away bugs when sitting outside the RV or inside for cross breezes when windows are opened.          
  • RV Oil Based Paint:  If you have an older RV and would like to paint it, try to use an oil-based paint.    
  • Oxigenic Flower Head Shower:  This will help you conserve water because it will give your shower slower water flow.          
  • Rechargeable Desk Fan: This is the Opolar Battery Operated Rechargeable Desk Fan for Home Camping Hurricane, 9 Inch Battery Powered USB Fan with Metal Frame, Quiet Portable Fan with 5200 mAh Capacity & Strong Airflow.
  • Command Hooks: These are popular with all RVers to hang stuff.   
  • Canvass Shoe Pockets: These can hold your shoes. 
  • $8 Homemade Air Conditioner: If you do van life or even in an RV until you can afford more solar, another air conditioner or willing to chase 70-degree weather, this is a great cheap idea to keep cool. 

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