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10 RV Tips and Tricks Every RVer Will Love!

10 RV Tips and Tricks Every RVer Will Love!

When we set out in our first motorhome, there were many RV tips and tricks that other travelers knew and implemented regularly, but that we had yet to discover. Now, after nearly two decades of full-time RV living, we’ve got LOTS of tips and tricks up our sleeves, and we still learn a few new things from time to time.

10 RV Tips and Tricks Every RVer Will Love!

In today’s post, we’re sharing ten of our favorite RV tips and tricks not only for the benefit of newer RVers just learning the ropes but also for seasoned RVers who might find a new helpful idea as well. Keep reading… or skip to the end to watch the video!

Use Cloth Napkins to Reduce Noise

Pots, pans, plates, and bowls are among the noisiest items in an RV when traveling down the road. We’ve eliminated this irritating noise by using cloth napkins set between these items. In addition to dampening noise, the napkins also eliminate any scraping and scratching that can occur when dishes and bowls are constantly bumping together as we drive over rough terrain – or any terrain, really.

cloth napkins stop rattling pots and pans - RV tips and tricks

Cloth napkins can serve many purposes, including reducing noise from rattling pots and pans while traveling.

We like using napkins for this job because they’re a great size, form-fitting, multi-purpose (you CAN actually use them as napkins, too), washable, and inexpensive. You can use cloth napkins that you’ve got on hand, or you can pick some up very inexpensively on Amazon:

Ruvanti Cloth Napkins Set of 12, 18x18 Inches Napkins Cloth Washable, Soft, Durable, Absorbent, Cotton Blend. Table Dinner Napkins Cloth for Hotel, Lunch, Restaurant, Weddings, Parties - Navy Blue
  • Durable and Long Lasting: Our Cloth Napkins are made with Cotton Enrich Fabric which is Soft, Absorbent, Durable, Wrinkle, and Fade Resistant. These...
  • Economy Pack: These are Carefully cut and sewn with perfect Secure Stitched Corners and a generous hem. Our Napkins came in a Value Pack of 12 Pieces...

Install a Brass Y (or “Wye”) Valve on Your City Water Connection

This gives you two connections – one for the city water connection, and the other free to use for additional water needs while you’re hooked up.

RV tips and tricks extra hose outlet at city water hookup using brass "Y" valve

This extra hose connection can be a convenience and a time saver.

This might seem unnecessary, until the first time you have to disconnect from your city water hookup because you need to access your water for another reason (washing the car/RV, flushing your tanks, etc). At that point, it becomes a game-changer for a very small investment.

It can even help you to be a good neighbor when staying at sites with shared connections.

Camco Solid Brass Water Wye Valve- Easy Grip Valve Handles and Simple Water Hose Connection CSA Low Lead Certified - (20123)
  • Stainless steel quarter-turn pressure seated shut-off valves
  • Features easy-grip valve handles and hose connection

Carry a Hose Exclusively for Flushing Your Black Tank

Carrying a 10’-20’ length of hose for the sole purpose of flushing your black tank (and nothing else ever) is a great way to make sure you’ll never accidentally contaminate a hose that will be used for other purposes.

RV tips and tricks = a special hose exclusively for dumping the black tank

An RV hose intended exclusively for flushing your black tank is a great thing to carry. Make sure it’s a unique color to distinguish it clearly from any other hoses you’re carrying.

We suggest buying this hose in a different color, to help remind you and your traveling companions that it’s specifically for black tank flushing and nothing else. Like this one:

Solution4Patio Garden Short Hose 3/4 in. x 10 ft. Male/Female Lead-in Hose, No Leaking, High Water Pressure Solid Brass Fitting for Water Softener,Dehumidifier,Vehicle Water Filter 12 Year Warranty
  • 👍 NO KINK OR NO TANGLE - New upgarde 5-layers high technology PVC material prevents hose from tangling and kinking. Extremely durable hose for...
  • 👍 BRASS COUPLINGS, NO LEAKING - Industrial male and female connectors leak proof. Solid brass fittings are reinforced with high-grade industrial...

Carry a 1-Gallon Plastic Pitcher

A plastic pitcher can be useful for many reasons, including mixing a bleach and water solution for sanitizing your fresh water tank. But one of our favorite uses of our one-gallon pitcher is to run up our hot water before a shower while boondocking, bringing the shower water up to a comfortable temperature.

RV tips and tricks using a plastic one-gallon pitcher

A plastic one-gallon pitcher is a very inexpensive but useful item to have on hand in your RV.

We run the water into the pitcher instead of running it into the drain. This serves two purposes. First, it avoids filling our gray tank up too fast when we’re boondocking. And second, it allows us to use the water rather than wasting it, which is a very important consideration when you’re boondocking.

We leave our pitcher in the bathroom, add water every time we run the shower water to temperature, and then use the water to flush the toilet. Perfect temperature shower, no wasted water, and no unnecessary filling of the gray tank.

PRO TIP: Couples should take showers back-to-back, one right after the other, to avoid running water up into the pitcher twice in one day.

Rubbermaid Clear Pitcher, 1 Gallon, Red
  • Capacity: 1 Gallon
  • Three-position lid that turns for free pouring, pouring with ice guard or closed

Use a Swinging Door as a Level

When we’re leveling our motorhome, our bathroom door is like a canary in a coalmine warning us if we’re off-level by swinging one way or the other until we level things out.

A swinging door in an RV can act as a level.

Got a level handy inside the RV? If you’ve got a swinging door you sure do!

You can fine-tune your jacks until a swinging door in your RV will stay right where you put it, both front to rear, and side to side. Of course, our LevelMatePRO+ allows us to get perfectly level, too. ???? 

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Carry Baking Soda for Multiple Uses

Many people keep a box of baking soda in the refrigerator to absorb odors. That’s a good idea, but baking soda is good for other uses as well.

Put a little baking soda on a wet sponge and mix it a bit until it forms a paste. This makes a great non-toxic cleaner that won’t scratch hard surfaces like your RV’s sinks/countertops.

It also makes a great non-scratch cleaner for your stovetop. The baking soda works wonders on grease and grime that’s built up from lots of cooking.

And finally, pouring a little baking soda down your sink drains helps absorb odors there as well.

Keep Your Grill Clean With Aluminum Foil

Our grill has remained in nearly new condition for years. That’s because we line the inside of the lid with aluminum foil to keep grease from accumulating on it. We replace the aluminum foil liner every few months.

grill lid lined with aluminum foil

We lined our grill cover with aluminum foil, and this picture shows how effective this is at keeping grease and food from accumulating on the lid.

Carry an Infrared Thermometer for Tire Testing

Whenever we make a stop on long travel days, we point our infrared thermometer at each of our tires.

Using an infrared gun to check the temperature of our RV tires.

We check the temperature of our tires at every rest stop during long days of travel. If there’s a potential issue brewing, we’ll be alerted in time to avert disaster.

This quick but important tire check can alert us to a tire that’s heating up more than the others, an early sign of a potential problem. This is cheap insurance and well worth the investment. And you’ll surely find other uses for the infrared thermometer as well.

Etekcity Infrared Thermometer Laser Temperature Gun 774, Digital IR Meat Thermometer for Cooking, Candy, Food, Pizza Oven Grill Accessories, Heat Gun for Outdoor Indoor Pool Surface Temp
  • Better Accuracy: The Lasergrip’s 12:1 distance-to-spot ratio enables you to accurately measure targets from a comfortable distance. For best...
  • Adjustable Emissivity: The upgraded Lasergrip let you quickly change the emissivity from 0.1–1.0 by holding the Up and Down buttons. Whether working...

Monitoring tire condition is so important, we recommend monitoring not only the temperature, but the pressures as well. (We love our EEZ Tire TPMS system, which is now available with a color monitor.)

Tie Your Doormat to Your RV Steps

About 15 years ago we lost a doormat in a windstorm, but it has never happened again because we learned to tie our doormat to our RV steps.

Poking a small hole in a corner of the mat using a small Phillips head screwdriver, and threading a length of twine through the hole allows us to tie the mat to the steps.

RV tips and tricks include attaching our doormat to our RV step.

See that small length of twine to the left of our RV step? That’s attached to our doormat so that even high winds won’t blow it away.

No matter the weather, we won’t lose our doormat now. And, speaking of doormats, the GrassWorx Clean Machine is our absolute favorite! It’s reasonably priced, durable, and actually cleans your shoes before entering the RV!

And speaking of steps, there are no better RV step covers than our Prest-O-Fit Ruggids.

Avoid Water Spots on Your RV with a Silicone Squeegee

When we wash our RV we avoid water spots by using a silicone California water blade to squeegee excess water off of the RV.

Using a silicone squeegee to pull water off the side of the RV to avoid water spots.

We use a California water blade to squeegee water off the side of our RV when washing, which keeps water spots from forming.

This method of removing water from large clean surfaces is a quick and easy way to avoid the annoying spotting that water can leave behind.

A good silicone water blade (with pole adapter) on the end of an extension pole should do nicely.

One Pass Classic 12" Waterblade Silicone T-Bar Squeegee Purple (WBL-OP2012CTY)
  • Made in China
  • Flexible silicone blade molds to the shape of the surface

Watch Our RV Tips & Tricks Video

More of a visual learner? Here’s the video we made on these RV tips and tricks several years ago:


We hope there might be a nugget or two within this list of RV tips and tricks that might be of use to you as you travel in your RV. Be sure to pass along any of these helpful tips to your fellow RVers, and feel free to share any of your favorite RV tips and tricks in the comments section below. Safe travels!

Geek Out with Us Every Week

Join our newsletter to learn about all things RV-related. Every week we offer free tips, tricks, product reviews, and more to our online community of RVers. So, whether this is your first time on the road or you’re a seasoned expert, we’d love for you to geek out with us!

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Larry Fuchs

Sunday 3rd of October 2021

On that Y-adapter I would instal vacuum adapters to prevent water from being sucked back into the main water line.


Monday 4th of October 2021

Excellent advice, Larry!

Archie Phlegar

Sunday 3rd of October 2021

Baking soda also works wonders on a bug covered front cap. It gently rubs the bugs off while liquefying the guts. Works much better than tar and bug removers.


Sunday 3rd of October 2021

Good to know, Archie. Thanks for the tip!

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PLEASE NOTE: We're handy RVers, not professional technicians. We're happy with the techniques and products we use, but be sure to confirm that all methods and materials you use are compatible with your equipment and abilities. Regardless of what we recommend, consult a professional if you're unsure about working on your RV. Any task you perform or product you purchase based on any information we provide is strictly at your own risk.

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