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We are well into the summer travel season, and although my family and I enjoy RV travel year-round, summer is arguably the most enjoyable. Many RVers that are not fulltimers likely do most or all of their camping in the spring and summer months. Here are some tips and ideas for summer weather RVing.
Maintain A Comfortable Environment
The summer months in North America generally vary between very warm and extremely hot, so the first tip, and probably the most obvious, is to maintain a comfortable environment. This is especially important if you are visiting a hot location and are not particularly acclimatized to the heat.
- The best way to do this is to make sure your air-conditioners are functioning properly. This will be taken care of during your annual RV inspection and shakedown. It is fundamentally important to have your RV fully and professionally inspected and serviced prior to each camping season. This will ensure that all your RV systems, including the propane appliances, are working properly and safely.
- If it is not unbearably hot, you can save energy by simply opening the doors and windows in your RV and let the fresh air flow through. This works especially well if there is a cool breeze, and/or you are parked near the ocean. Some RV parks actually limit or prohibit air conditioner operation due to the excessive power consumption.
- Consider opening roof vents, closing day shades, extending window awnings, and using ceiling and vent fans to help circulate the air. This works better than you might imagine. Although my coach has two air conditioners, I prefer letting nature blow through my RV whenever possible.
- If there are nasty flying insects about, simply keep your screen windows and doors closed.
- With all this said, the best way to avoid a hot RV in the summer is to GO OUTSIDE! After all, the reason most of us camp in the summer is to enjoy the great outdoors in the great weather. Spend the day exploring your surroundings with a walk in nature or a visit to local sightseeing destination.
If you use the above methods to cool down your RV during the day while you are out, you should find that it is reasonably cool in the evening when you return.
Use Your Awnings
You may also choose to spend the day outside, but stay close to your rig. Main awnings do a very good job of creating shade on a sunny day. Roll out the awning and create a nice patio environment underneath. Position the picnic table and camp chairs, pour the iced tea and enjoy some family time.
Hot Weather RVing with Pets
One of the most important hot weather advice for RV owners is to NEVER leave your four-legged furry, feathered, or other family members in a hot vehicle or direct sunlight without access to shade and fresh water! If you must leave your pet behind in your rig, I always recommend leaving the air conditioner on. Make sure there is a cool place for them to retreat in case of an air-conditioner failure. The bathroom area is often a good place to put food, water, toys, and a blanket (in the case of a dog).
Finally, always remember that when you travel by RV, the entire country is your backyard!
About the Author:
Steve Froese, an avid RV owner, traveler, and Coach-Net member since 2013, is the principal of “A Word to the Wise Technical Communications”, a published RV author, certified RV technician, and licensed Professional Engineer. He frequently collaborates with the “RV Doctor”, Gary Bunzer, and has worked with the RVIA/RVDA as a technical and training writer and consultant. Professionally, he works as a quality engineer and musician. Watch for more of Steve’s work in upcoming Coach-Net publications.
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Good tips! I always keep the AC on for my pets. Plenty of water and food. Thanks!