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Old 10-26-2013, 02:32 PM   #1
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Monthly drives?

I know it's best for motorhomes to be driven and used. Due to financial issues right now any camping trips is unfortunately out of the question. Due that decided to take the Jayco out shopping and running errands yesterday. Got some strange looks at every place we went.. mall, doctors office, Sam's, Walmart and Lowe's. Picked up a 4x8 of plywood perfect! Sure didn't run out of room. About 40 miles worth.

Anyone else do this? I know it cost more in gas etc and parking is interesting. Seemed like fun and the boys enjoyed it.

And no RV trip isn't complete without stopping for lunch/dinner at.. (at least to my grandparents!)
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Old 10-26-2013, 02:45 PM   #2
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Not sure you're doing a lot of good by running short trips. A longer run to get everything up to operating temperature would probably be better. A bunch of stop and go trips doesn't eliminate condensation from the crankcase, and repeated starting and short trips can actually make it worse.
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Old 10-26-2013, 02:55 PM   #3
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Before doing your monthly "jaunt", it would be wise to check / adjust tire pressure and, check the oil / tranny dipsticks (you'll need to check the tranny dipstick again once the tranny has warmed up to operating temperature). A careful walk around would also be prudent. As long as you get the engine up to "normal" operating temperature for a while, that should do it. You want the oil to get hot enough to allow whatever water / condensation that has collected, a chance to be "cooked off". The various engine, transmission, chassis seals also get to flex / lubricate; the tires get to roll etc. You DO check the tire pressure at least monthly, don't you? Having tire covers installed will lessen the sun's damage to the tires. You mention boys. From about 8 ~ 10 years and older, get them involved in the routine chores around the RV. Teach them how to check tire pressure, fluid levels, clean the windshield / glass etc (and have them properly log, the services they perform). Responsibility in measured amounts is good for child development. These simple steps will help keep your rig in good running condition. Happy motoring!
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Old 10-26-2013, 03:45 PM   #4
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Yes on checking the air pressure, before every trip at least. The same with all the other levels. And yes on the tire covers. Short trips I consider under a 2 miles, it was was 15 miles to the first stop. The 5 year old does help a little he'll get there.
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Old 10-26-2013, 03:54 PM   #5
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Yes we also take the rv out once in a while on short trips,,, to HD, Wally world, etc... It excersises (sp?) all the brakes, fluids, etc... Sure it's better to run a few hundred miles, but these trips get things up to operating temps, circulates fluids, etc.... Also lets our "kids" (dogs) go with us to remember how to go camping... Also a good time to run the genny sitting in the parking lot....
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Old 10-26-2013, 03:56 PM   #6
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If your C has a generator, it is just as important to run it also under 1/2 load during your mini-trips when out and about. Keep it running even during your stops where you may go inside somewhere.
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Old 10-26-2013, 04:15 PM   #7
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Rather than curtail camping trips, how about minimizing costs? Maybe near
by campgrounds that provide Passport America discount.
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Old 10-26-2013, 06:39 PM   #8
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I think you did good; both for the Jayco to get out and get things moving again, and for you and the boys, to keep the interest in using it. As fas as not camping due to finances, I have met some people this summer, who use their motorhomes for 2 or 3 day getaways, staying at one of the state parks within 10 miles of their homes. State parks are generally very inexpensive, offer only electric (maybe water at the site), and a dump station on the way out. Still, a good time with family, maybe a little fishing on the lake, campfire for the hot dogs or marshmellows.

If you have any city, county or state parks near you, check'em out. A very inexpensive and enjoyable camping trip, that the family will remember for a very long time.
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Old 10-26-2013, 07:16 PM   #9
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You might try looking here:
USA - Freecampsites.net

We were just planning our Black Friday shopping strategy today, and it involved the MH, generator, hot beverages and taking shifts in lines. Who says it's just for camping?
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Old 10-26-2013, 07:21 PM   #10
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Everyday driving is much better than setting around in storage for mounts at a time....
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Old 10-26-2013, 07:21 PM   #11
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Are there corps of engineer parks or BLM properties with in a reasonable distance? If so those are places that seem not to expensive - along with passport America parks mentioned above. Lots of RV's overnight in Walmart , flying J or other parking areas at no cost - so for a Walmart, Flying J the cost to you is your fuel to get there and food, etc. Not recommended to stay days on end but it is a location you might be able to get to and enjoy the RV.
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Old 10-27-2013, 02:11 AM   #12
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we use wallmarts extensively for overnight parking.
we use this free allstays website. it is kept up to date by users of the site.

Walmart Locations Store Details & Parking | Walmart Store Locator

Overnight RV parking etiquette
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Old 10-27-2013, 07:18 AM   #13
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Money is tight for us too so we use local camp grounds. 15 bucks a night with electric and water hook ups. Right on the river so we can get some fishing done.
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Old 10-27-2013, 11:28 AM   #14
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One of the forums is RVing on a budget - you might want to cruise on over and check it out. I think everyone goes through spells were money is tight. People on that forum have great ideas.

Happy camping!
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