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Old 03-05-2012, 03:15 PM   #1
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Going to my first RV Campground next month!

And I am a bit nervous.
So far we have used our RV for day trips and single overnight boondock trips. It was quite easy, everything we took...we came home with.

Now we are looking at a 2 night trip to VA Beach.

Anyway, just so I don't look like Cousin Eddie in front of everyone what are some pointers? I don't want to appear to be a rookie.

I will be using electric and water hookups. (I know, I'm not REALLY roughing it)

Here goes: Back in to my spot, plug in to the panel and flip the breaker on. Hook the hose up, turn the spigot on. Open the slide, open the canopy, adjust the heat to where the girls want it, switch the fridge from propane to electric...done.

I have 40 gallon grey and black tanks. We will have 4 adults and 3 kids on the trip. Will we be able to take a shower and use the restroom for 2 days without emptying?

This leads to the next question, if I need to empty during or definitely upon leaving...how does this work? I have never used a commercial septic system. And this is the LAST place I want to make a mistake.
I assume there is a cap I open and attach the hose to. I know how to empty the tanks. Do most sites have a hose to attach to the RV for flushing the tanks? And if so, do I continue to wear my gloves when handling this hose? I would imagine I wear my gloves during the entire disposal process.

I mostly do not want to do anything that causes one to start a post on irv2.com about.
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Old 03-05-2012, 03:31 PM   #2
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There should be a cap at the drain location on the rv. Yes have your gloves on when in contact with any sewage process. Connect the drain hose and run it over to the drain in the ground at your site if it is provided there. If your at the rv dump site do the same procedure. Open the Black tank valve first and let it drain. Once it stops close the valve and then open the Grey water valve and let it drain. Once it's finished draining close the valve and store the sewage hose. If you stay at sites longer you'll find it easier to leave the sewer hose hooked up all the time and leave the Grey valve open. That way the grey water is in constant drain and you don't have to worry about something backing up inside the rv. Hope this helps. One thing though DONOT ever leave the Black tank valve open all the time. Once it drains close the valve and put your chemicals in the toilet and wait for the next time to drain it. Leaving it open all the time? Well that's another topic and we don't want to go there right now for sure. Good Luck.

You didn't mention putting the jacks down. Should be done before the slides go out. Also don't forget to turn on the hot water heater.
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Old 03-05-2012, 04:42 PM   #3
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You'll be able to go 2 days without dumping if you use the water wisely. No extended showers. You must conserve, don't waste water...hop in the shower, wet down, turn off the water, soap up/shampoo, turn on the water & rinse. Your grey tank can fill fast, even faster than your black. So, keep a bucket in the bathroom to catch the cold water coming out of the shower head while you wait for the water to get hot. Use that water to flush the toilet.

Avoid having to wash dishes. Use paper plates, cups, plastic silverware...all stuff you can throw out. Cook over the campfire as much as possible to avoid having to use pots/pans/skillets to cook on. A bottle of hand sanitizer will suffice to keep hand washing to a minimum.

If you need to dump before leaving, just pack up everything & head to the dump station. Yes, use disposable latex gloves while handling anything sewer related. Even if you're not opposed to getting your own "stuff" on you, you don't know how careful the last person to use the dump station was when they dumped their tanks. Believe me, there are tales we all could tell you about what we've witnessed while watching others use the CG dumpstation.

Most of all, enjoy your trip. Don't sweat the small stuff & always remember, we've all messed up at one time or another. You'll live through it & laugh about it later.

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Old 03-05-2012, 05:09 PM   #4
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I always like to let my gray tank fill up. More water to rinse the hose after the black tank flush and you are less apt to have "stuff" sticking inside your gray tank.
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Old 03-05-2012, 05:09 PM   #5
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Good pointers so far. Be sure to level before putting slides out.

Some dump stations have hoses most don't. Use your own but do NOT use your potable water hose. Take another hose for this purpose.

It is your first time. No matter what you try to remember to do, you will look like a rookie to others. Don't worry about it. And, don't hesitate to ask for help if you need it. RV'ers are a helpful bunch.

Backing in and hooking up for the first time provides much the same entertainment for onlookers as the rookie boat launch people trying to put in the water or take out. There always seems to be plenty of "observers" near the boat launch and some occasional giggles.

RV parks can be the same way. Don't deprive these people of their right to this entertainment!! It might ruin their evening if they know you are a rookie but you don't provide entertainment.

Some day you will be the onlooker.

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Old 03-05-2012, 05:15 PM   #6
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One other thought. Hang your ignition key on your TV crank to remind you to lower your antenna. I also walk around my MH at least once to double check everything before I drive off. I guess that's really two other thoughts.
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Old 03-05-2012, 05:21 PM   #7
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Thanks guys! Great input.
I am really excited for this trip and have read great things about First Landing.
It sounds as if it will be a great place for our first trip.

One question. There was mention of turning on the hot water heater. When plugged in, do you guys leave your water heater on? That way hot water is always available?
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Old 03-05-2012, 05:25 PM   #8
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Yep! Be sure to turn on the water heater! Have fun and don't worry about looking like a rookie. Other RVers are very willing to help. You'll be amazed at how friendly others will be when they know you are new.
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Old 03-05-2012, 05:39 PM   #9
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The first time we went to a campground the first thing I told the host was it was my maiden trip and the owner escorted me to the site and supervised my parking and set up. I thought it was a nice thing for him to do. I have learned very quickly that is how the RV world works and that almost all RVers will go out of their way to help you out so have no fears--just ask for help. Someday it will be you helping a new guy.
Enjoy the RV expearance.
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Old 03-05-2012, 05:53 PM   #10
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have fun,dont drink the water.
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Old 03-05-2012, 06:20 PM   #11
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Have a great time - I always let my husband do all the fun hooking up stuff. Don't watch the movie RV for pointers.
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Old 03-05-2012, 06:48 PM   #12
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Have a great time - I always let my husband do all the fun hooking up stuff. Don't watch the movie RV for pointers.
Actually I am planning on watching that for the first time tonight at 8!
We DVR'd it this past weekend on TBSHD.
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Old 03-05-2012, 06:57 PM   #13
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Actually I am planning on watching that for the first time tonight at 8!
We DVR'd it this past weekend on TBSHD.
When it gets to the dumping part, please notice the audience in lawn chairs watching the rookies. This scene is pretty gross.

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Old 03-05-2012, 07:20 PM   #14
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On our first trip 12 years ago to an RV park the slideout was over the RV park grass. Looked OK to me until 2 AM when the park lawn sprinklers came on. It was a impact type lawn sprinkler. We both woke up wondering what the noise was. Sounded like a broken pipe shooting water all over. Had to get dressed to go outside & look.
It's all fun. I know you'll have a great time.

Hal
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