Tips to Maximize Your RV’s AC

Hot day in the RV, air conditioner efficiency

Spring is here and summer is close on its heels. The weather is only going to get warmer around the country in the next few months, so no matter where you’re currently RVing or plan to go, you’ll be relying on your RV’s air conditioning unit to keep you cool.

While an RV’s AC does an admirable job, you can always squeeze out a little extra efficiency from your unit if you know how. Here are some of the top ways to make sure that your RV’s AC is running at the top of its game.

Make Sure Everything is Free from Obstructions

Your AC isn’t going to perform very well if it can’t deliver air. This is the first and  most straightforward step to take if you want to immediately boost your AC’s efficiency. Check your filters to make sure that they’re clean and don’t need to be replaced yet. You can prolong the life of a filter by cleaning them. Use lukewarm water with a mild detergent, rinse thoroughly, and dry overnight. You can also dust them with an air compressor or a can of air duster (they sell these at office supply stores for electronics). Also verify that the air return isn’t clogged with dirt or debris.

Place Your RV in the Shade

While parking under a tree may not always be an option, simply finding some shade can go a long way towards keeping your RV cool. Your AC unit won’t have to work as hard to keep your interior space cool. If you can find shade, make use of it. Additionally, keep your blinds and curtains closed if you’re not actively enjoying the view.

Reduce Heat Generation

Limit your use of appliances that generate heat, like ovens, burners, and toasters. If it’s especially hot outside, choose recipes that either involve no cooking or don’t take long to prepare.

Changing out your bulbs for LED lights is another way to reduce heat in your RV. Not only are they more energy efficient, but they run cooler too.

Visit Pan Pacific RV

If you’re traveling through Northern California this spring or summer, be sure to stop by Pan Pacific RV for any of your RV needs. From service to parts and accessories, Pan Pacific RV can help make your season of RVing easier.

Boondocking Essentials

If you’re like the majority of RV campers, you likely stick to well established campgrounds and RV parks when you’re looking for a place to moor your rig. Maybe you sometimes overnight in a parking lot, but that’s about it. There’s another way to camp, though: it’s called boondocking and it involves going off the grid with your RV in order to get more freedom and solitude and to get closer to nature. It’s a fun alternative, but it takes some preparation to pull off. Here are some indispensable items if you’re going to go camping off the grid in your RV.

An Energy Source

Above all else, you need to be able to power your RV and its systems, lest you downgrade to camping in a tent. You can manage this by installing some solar panels and/or bringing along a generator. A combination of the two often works best, but if you’re only planning to boondock for a short period of time, you can get by on a solar panel configuration alone. Generators are recommended if you plan to put down anchor for an extended period of time.

Bring several spare batteries. Your RV has a some installed, but the juice might run out while you’re off the grid. You can rotate fresh batteries in while using your solar panels/generator to recharge the empty batteries.

Lighting

If you want to continue to do things after the sun goes down, you’re going to want to have some lighting along. Remember, if you’re off the grid there won’t be streetlights nearby (unless your idea of boondocking is the backyard!). Bring solar lights, which offer one of the easiest lighting solutions for boondockers. They charge during the day and provide ample light for the evening. Just be sure to shell out enough money for quality lights.

Climate Control

Using your RV’s onboard A/C system hogs a lot of energy and drains batteries very quickly. While it’s not a problem with an electric hookup, out in the sticks you’re going to see that your power reserves drain at an alarming rate if you’ve got your cooling or heating on. Bring a low-volt fan along for cooling purposes. There are 12V fans available that will have minimal impact on your power supply. For heating, try a propane powered unit.

Save on Water

Your water supply is a commodity when boondocking. Conserve it as much as possible by installing water saving devices, such as a shower heads and faucets that aerate water or slow down the flow of water so that you’re using less water when you turn on the tap.

Visit Pan Pacific RV

If you’re ready to start your own RV adventures, on or off the grid, stop by Pan Pacific RV to tour motorhome and travel trailer floorplans and find the RV that’s right for your family. Take the comfort of the indoors with you wherever you go with your own RV from Pan Pacific RV! If you need supplies for boondocking, we’re just the place to pick those up.

Must-Have Accessories for Outdoor Comfort

If your RV is like your house when you’re traveling, then what’s your patio? Well, it’s whatever patch of grass is outside your RV’s door. Though you’ll notice that there’s not much else besides grass. You need some basic outdoor comforts if you’re going to enjoy spending time outside your RV on a nice day. If you don’t have one of these items yet, be sure to stop by Pan Pacific RV’s parts and accessories store to pick it up!

Folding Chairs

Folding chairs are your best friend around any campground or RV park. They make a great portable and impromptu sitting solution for your life on the go, whether you’re trying to eat a meal outside, watch the sunset over the lake, or simply taking it easy on a beautiful day, folding chairs are a must-have for anyone traveling in an RV.

A Collapsible Awning

If your RV doesn’t have an awning included, you’re going to want a collapsible awning on board. On a rainy day this spring when you want to use those aforementioned folding chairs while you grill some steaks outside, you’ll be glad you have an awning over your head to keep you nice and dry. And on hot summer days an awning is invaluable as a means to keep you cool and unburnt by the sun.

An Outdoor Grill

Speaking of grilling steaks outdoors while it rains, you need a good outdoor grill to do that. Find something that’s relatively lightweight and small so that it’s easy to pack when you need to hit the road again, but that’s also of a good quality from a trustworthy brand. While your RV’s kitchen is more than adequate for making meals, grilling outdoors at all of the beautiful places you visit in your RV is a real treat.

Visit Pan Pacific RV

If you’re traveling through Northern California this spring, be sure to stop by Pan Pacific RV for any of your RV needs. From service to parts and accessories, Pan Pacific RV can help make your season of RVing easier.

Top DIY Projects for Your RV This Spring

diy rv work desk

You’ll find many DIY projects to make your RV unique to your family and many of them will make camping or RVing more enjoyable. When you can make more room for storage or add some hand made decorations, your RV really becomes your second home. Try these DIY projects before you hit the road this spring to make your RV function better.

Shower Shelf Walls

Many built-in shelves in RV showers are open, which means that all of your bath products slide right off when the RV is in motion. This is an inconvenience you don’t have to live with. By simply taking some plexiglass (you can get some at any hardware or home improvement store) you can fashion retaining walls for your shelf. Use clear acrylic double-sided mounting tape and apply two 1/4-inch h-type clear shower door seals to each side of the shelf. You can then slot your plexiglass panel into the door seal.

Sliding Storage

Pass through storage is great, especially when you have a ton of stuff to pack in there, but reaching into the middle can be a chore sometimes. To make life easier, add a deep slide out cargo tray to the pass through storage. You’ll be able to pull the slide out so you can reach everything.

Office Space

If you have a bunk house but no longer use the bunk house because the kids are grown and gone, add a desk in the area. You’ll have a quiet space to use the computer for fun. Or if you work while you travel the country, you’ll have a quiet place to work.

Even if you don’t have a bunk house, but have extra bunks in the rear of the RV, you can convert the bottom bunk into an office space. Whether you leave the bunk in place and build a raised platform to fashion a desk or you remove the bottom bunk to make room for a desk, you’ll have a great place to work.

Decorations

If you can’t find any great decorations for your RV and you like the rustic look, make your own wood pictures, frames, or clocks. You can purchase clock workings from any craft store, or even complete clock kits with numbers. Use a couple pieces of scrap wood to add a saying or a picture to with Hodge Podge or wood burning. You could even make customized picture frames to make the RV more rustic.

Visit Pan Pacific RV

Stop by Pan Pacific RV to walk through our many floor plans to pick the right RV for your family. Accessorize it by stopping at our RV parts and accessories store to pick up anything you might need to make the RV yours. And if you already have an RV and are not ready for something new just yet, be sure to give our RV service department a call to schedule an appointment for maintenance.

The Bookstore Valentine’s Date

If you’re out on the road in your RV this Valentine’s Day, you might be trying to think up a fun date idea with your spouse or significant other. Assuming you’re close to a town, all you need for this date is to find a bookstore or library. Not only is it fun and free, but it will allow you to get to know your Valentine even better than you already do.

Start by taking your Valentine out for lunch at a nice spot (or you can make a meal in your RV before heading to town). At the meal’s conclusion, hand them a card that you’ve made. You can decorate it anyway you like and write what you want, but make sure that it invites them to join you at the bookstore/library and includes the following tasks:

  1. Visit the cooking section and choose a recipe that you would like to make for your Valentine in your RV’s kitchen.
  2. Visit the magazine section and fine a quiz in a magazine that you and your spouse can do together.
  3. Visit the children’s section and find your favorite childhood book or one that holds a special place in your heart.
  4. Find a book of jokes and pick one you think will tickle your Valentine’s funny bone.
  5. Visit the travel section and find the place you’d like to visit together in your RV the next time you hit the road.
  6. Find a book of poems and choose one that expresses how you feel about your Valentine.

Split up and complete your tasks, then reconvene and share what you’ve found. By the time you’re done, you’ll have spent a fun afternoon together in a mellow spot, shared some laughs, and learned more about one another. It’s a great way to have a thoughtful Valentine’s Day date and is so much better than buying the cursory rose bouquet and box of chocolates.

Visit Pan Pacific RV

Stop by Pan Pacific RV this winter to shop for a new RV. Tour any RV in the inventory and learn more about the models that interest you. If you’re not on the market for an RV, Pan Pacific RV can still help you with RV service before you hit the road.

Keeping Pests Out of Your RV

Whether you’re a snowbird traveler or will be storing your RV for the winter, there’s no doubt you’ll encounter some pests attempting to invade your motorhome, travel trailer or fifth wheel. However, keeping these pests at bay is easier than it may seem. Follow these simple tricks to keep your RV pest-free this winter season.

Keep Food Contained

Pests often invade RVs in search of food. If you’ll be parking your RV for the winter, be sure to remove any food items from your RV until you’re ready to use it again. If you’re currently on the road, always check to make sure your foods are properly stored and that you don’t leave any food on the counter or throughout your RV to lure small creatures inside.

Seal Your RV

In addition to keeping your food sealed, your RV also needs to be sealed. Rodents and other pests can squeeze through the smallest cracks in your RV, which means it’s time to seal and repair. Use spray insulation to seal areas of your firewalls, where rodents typically like to slip inside. If spray insulation doesn’t work, use scrap metal to create barriers over any gaps.

Water line holes are also common places for rodents to sneak inside. Check the areas where your water lines connect to the inside of your RV and use spray insulation or a piece of wood (or both) to cover those holes.

Keep Moth Balls On Hand

There’s no 100-percent fool-proof way to ensure pests don’t get inside your RV. However, once they are inside, you can do your best to get them out. Keep mothballs on hand to deter rodents and insects. Place handfuls of mothballs in disposable bowls and place them in your RV’s trouble areas.

Let Our RV Technicians Help

Our Pan Pacific RV technicians are here to help you keep pests out of your home on wheels. Stop in and see us to find out how we can seal your RV and provide other solutions today.

Creative Uses for Pool Noodles on Your RV

Creative uses for pool noodles around your RV? Sounds a bit crazy. You’d probably be hard-pressed, off the top of your head, to come up with even one use of pool noodles around your RV.

Well, get ready, because we’ve got four creative ways to use your basic pool noodle during your RV travels.

Cover Your Handles

Whether in the heat of summer or the cold of winter, you can use a small section of a pool noodle to create, essentially, an oven mitt (or in cold weather, a bit of insulation).

As anyone who RVs can attest, metal RV door handles can get very hot or very cold depending on the ambient temperature. Protect your hands with a bit of easy insulation.

Make Bumpers to Protect Your RV (and Yourself)

You can use sections of pool noodles to wrap the edges, corners, and protruding bits of your RV when you’re setup at the campground or RV park.

Used strategically, this accomplishes two things: (1) your RV is cushioned to protect its paint job and to avoid dents and (2) you and any kids (especially kids) are protected from nasty bumps and bruises caused by walking into slideouts and such.

Make Your Windshield Wipers Last Longer

RV windshield wipers are more expensive than standard wipers and harder to find outside of specialty retailers. When not in use, slice a pool noodle in half and cover the wipers up. This protects them against the elements and can slow down wear and tear, making your wipers last just a bit longer than they would have.

Insulate Pipes and Hoses

Insulation can benefit your RV’s hoses and pipes in any weather. When it’s hot outside, insulation can help keep water at a cooler temperature and protect hoses that are stretched out across hot concrete. When it’s cold, they help to keep water from freezing.

Just slice a pool noodle open and wrap it around the hose or pipe, securing it in place with some quality tape.

Visit Pan Pacific RV

If you’re traveling through Northern California this winter, be sure to stop by Pan Pacific RV for any of your RV needs. From service to parts and accessories, Pan Pacific RV can help make your season of RVing easier.

Celebrating the Holidays in Your RV

Family.

There’s no need to feel homesick when you’re traveling in your RV for the holidays. In fact, your RV can be one of the best places to enjoy this season’s festivities. These simple but effective tips will help you make the most of your small space this holiday season.

Decorate It Like Home

Decorations play a big part about making you and your family feel more festive during the holidays. Consider parking at one campground for a week or two over the holidays, so you can decorate the interior and exterior of your RV without having to pack it all away before moving locations. Use holiday lights and natural decorations (like wreaths or garlands) on the exterior of your RV and a small table-top tree on the interior.

If you enjoy natural trees, consider purchasing a potted natural tree, so you can plant it somewhere and leave a positive impact on the environment when the holidays are over.

Shop for RV-Related Gifts

Traveling in your RV probably means you don’t want bulky presents that will take up a lot of space. Consider shopping for supplies and accessories that will make the RV lifestyle more comfortable for you and your fellow campers. Card games, books, and camping supplies are great for kids, while adults may be more interested in some of the latest and greatest RV electronics and space-saving devices.

Think Outside

If you’re traveling in your RV this time of year, it may mean you’re someplace warm. Consider throwing your holiday festivities outside at the campsite to keep the interior of your RV clutter free. Invite fellow campers over for a potluck or cook Christmas dinner over the open fire.

Visit Pan Pacific RV Center

Don’t forget to stop and see us here at Pan Pacific RV Center for all of your holiday RV travel needs.

Make Your RV More Cozy by Redecorating

Winter is coming, which means that you’ll want to make your RV a cozier place. But redecorating your recreational vehicle doesn’t mean you have to spend hours laboring on the construction of your motorhome, travel trailer or fifth wheel. In fact, just a few simple steps can change the entire look and feel of a drab RV interior.

Update Your RV’s Accents

You probably just step on those old RV rugs without even noticing them anymore, but changing a few of your RV’s soft goods can make a big change in the way your RV looks and feels. Ditch those towels, blankets, throw pillows and rugs you’ve been using year after year, and renew your RV’s look with a new color scheme. Washable cloth covers can even be used to change the look of your old dinette chairs without having to purchase all new furniture.

Add House Plants

House plants are the perfect addition to any RV’s interior. They add moisture to the air, give a fresh feeling to your decor, and they grow very well in the bright RV environment. The only trick to helping your house plants survive in your RV is to store them in the bathtub or a container when you drive, so they don’t tip over when you’re stopping or turning.

Ditch the Plastic

Plastic cups and plates may seem convenient for the RV lifestyle (and necessary if you have kids), but using real glass and china can be an inexpensive and easy way to add a more sophisticated look to your home on wheels. Store your glasses in a cardboard wine box when you hit the road, and use sticky shelf liners to keep your plates, bowls and other dishes from sliding.

Upgrade Your RV at Pan Pacific RV

Stop by Pan Pacific RV this fall to shop for a new RV. Tour any RV in the inventory and learn more about the models that interest you. If you’re not on the market for an RV, Pan Pacific RV can still help you with RV service before you hit the road.

Tips for RV Brake Safety

As any veteran RVer will tell you, driving an RV isn’t as hard as it might look. Despite their larger size, they’re not difficult to operate. That said, they are larger, so driving and braking an RV is different than what you’re used to in a car, truck, or SUV. Keep these tips in mind for safer driving in your RV on your next road trip.

Know Your Weight Limits

While you probably internalized the height of your RV at purchase, you may not have done the same with its weight or the towing limits of your towing vehicle. For the purposes of safe driving and braking, it’s critical that your towing vehicle is up for the task of towing your specific trailer. If you have doubts about your current setup, visit an expert, like one at Pan Pacific RV, to have your setup inspected and evaluated.

Don’t Speed

While it’s tempting to push yourself on the road in order to reach your destination faster, for the purposes of safety it’s best if you stay at or under the posted speed limit. The slower you go the better your brakes will perform if suddenly called upon. The simple fact of the matter is that your RV, regardless of size, weighs much more than nearly any car, truck, or SUV, and that means that time to stop is significantly increased.

Get Your Brakes Checked Before a Long Drive

Before you embark on any long trip, it pays to stop by your local Oklahoma RV dealership and get your brakes checked out. By keeping a close eye on the wear and tear of your brakes, you can catch potential problems before they develop into an emergency during the upcoming drive.

Visit Pan Pacific RV

Stop by Pan Pacific RV this fall to tour a new or used motorhome or travel trailer. Find one that’s perfect for you and your full-time aspirations. If you’re not on the market for an RV, you can still stop in at Pan Pacific RV to schedule service, to learn more about RVing, or to shop for parts and accessories.