10 Essentials For Your New RV

Before you know it spring will be upon us and thus begins RV and camping season. With the huge increase in popularity for RV’s it seems like a good time to put out an updated list of essential items, all of which we use.

We have some items that are standard must-haves and part of owning an RV. Then there are some items that are essential because they make life a little easier and traveling a little more efficient and safer. There is something to be said for practical use and being full-time on the road that has given us a lot of experience in necessities of RV life.

You can find our original list from 2019 here. It’s a good list and while we are including items that are essential, we also strive to include some items that are not typically included on the standard lists people post.

Tractor Supply

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Let’s get started:

Progressive EMS Surge Protector – This is a standard on every list and rightfully so. We have used and recommended this product for years and we put it first for a reason. We spend a lot of money on our RV’s and need to protect our investment. Electrical systems at campgrounds are not always good. Add bad weather to the equation and it can get even worse. You can buy a regular surge protector much cheaper than an EMS, but is giving up protection against voltage fluctuations which can destroy your RV and appliances worth it? Electrical management is the one thing to not be cheap. These product come as a plug in at the pedestal or there is a hardwire version that can be added directly to your RV. We recommend Progressive but the Hughes Power Watchdog is also a great product. Just make sure you get something better than a regular surge protector and get the correct one. The easiest way to tell which one you need is by looking at your RV power cord. If it has a three-prong connector, it is 30 AMP. If it has a four-prong connector, it is 50 AMP.

Renator Adjustable Water Pressure Regulator – This is another item we use and have recommended for years. I know some of you might be thinking I don’t need this because the RV dealer threw in a water pressure regulator free with the kit when we bought our RV. Well the only thing I can tell you is you got what you paid for. It is probably a Camco reducer that is preset for a fixed PSI. It’s only a matter of time until it fails. Ask how we know! The worst part is you will not know when it happens because there is no dial to give feedback on the pressure. Hopefully you are not at a high water pressure RV park when it does fail because you could have bigger problems. With the Renator you can adjust the pressure to your liking and can always see what your water pressure is at. We have had the same one since 2018 so it has longevity and reliability.

Rhino Flex Sewer Hose Kit – It’s a dirty job but a necessary one. We recommend this because it’s another product we have used for years without a single issue. Some RV parks are not well designed when it come to the placement of utilities so getting a good length is essential. We carry a 20′ hose and a 10′ extension that we have had to use many times. Plus Rhino has other cool add-on products like the Rhino Blaster for high pressure tank flushing and a hose support. Oh, don’t forget gloves when handling the stinky slinky! I use Mechanix leather gloves to handle ours and keep my hands doody-free.

On-The-Go Water Softener – If you plan on spending a significant amount of time traveling in your RV, this is something you will want. We started off traveling without a water softener and when we finally got one, our only regret was that we waited so long. Many RV parks have horribly hard water that wreaks havoc on sinks, countertops, faucets, shower heads, shower doors and refrigerators with ice makers. This is the best way to help prevent buildup in your water lines and on faucet aerators. It also helps prevent hard water spots on all of these surfaces. It comes with a test kit and all of the necessary items to back-flush and regenerate the unit. You only need about an hour and regular iodized salt. We use the double or you can get it in a standard size that is a little less expensive.

Klein Electrical Test Kit – Most RV’s now have complex electrical systems and with that complexity comes issues. Those issues always seem to occur while you are on the road with limited ability to communicate or get professional help. In our experience, most problems can be solved and repaired on your own if you have the right tools. We purchased this kit because we have experienced those problems and the price of the kit has paid for itself over time. DIY RV repairs are a part of life and you can save money and frustration in the long run too. If you have had to deal with an RV service department, you know what we are talking about! So if you have never used a multimeter, now is the time to learn. As an RV owner you will need it. Bonus Item: It’s a good idea to make sure you have extra fuses as blown fuses are a typical problem. We purchased a spare fuse kit to keep with our electrical repair kit and it has come in handy over the years.

RIDGID Portable Air Compressor – This was a purchase we held out on, and like the water softener, we wondered why we waited so long. We spent years airing up our tires at truck stops and other fuel stations. Sometimes it was easy, but too many times we got stuck waiting behind people and watched as the clock ticked away eating up valuable travel time. When we travel, safety is top priority. We check our tires to make sure they are properly inflated every time before we hit the road. Now that we have our own compressor, we use it to maintain our RV and Jeep. No more lines and no more waiting. Oh and don’t forget to get yourself a good tire pressure gauge. I like to have a separate gauge to double check tire pressure in addition to the one on the air line. We currently use a JACO Elitepro Plus as it can go up to 160 PSI. Also, if a pancake-style compressor is too big for your storage, try the VIAIR as it’s small and powerful, but that luxury comes at a price.

Luci Solar Bike Light Set

Telescoping Ladder – This is one product we couldn’t do without. We have used it for washing and waxing our RV, completing repairs, doing regular maintenance and stringing lights for the holidays. Best of all, it fits in our basement storage where it is safe while traveling. It might be a little heavier than a traditional step ladder but being able to store safely is worth it. No more dangerous ladder-on-ladder bungee cord action while traveling.

GCI Outdoor Kitchen – We have had this kitchen for awhile now and it has paid off. Cooking and RV life is like PB&J. They just go together. In the past I used a folding table. Once I got this outdoor kitchen, it made cooking easier and more fun. It can handle the weight of both our Weber Q2200 and Pit Boss Portable Pellet Smoker. It has four side counters so there is plenty of room for utensils or you can add hooks to hang them. It includes a paper towel holder which is very convenient when cooking and cleaning up. When it’s time to go, fold it up and store it away.

Snap Pads – We put Snap Pads on our RV when we purchased it. They expand the footprint of your leveling jacks which makes the RV more stable. This is especially nice if you stay at an RV park that has gravel or grass sites. They help prevent your jacks from sinking into those types of surfaces. The best part is that attaching them is a one-time setup. Once they are on, they are not coming off. Just make sure you get the right size and setup for your RV.

EZVIZ Camera – When we decided to go full-time, we wanted a way to monitor our RV and our dog while we were out exploring. We stumbled upon this camera and it checks off all the boxes for what we were looking for. It powers from a USB or plug-in, rotates 360 degrees, 1080 HD video and has two-way talk. Best of all, you can put in an SD card to record video so there is no need for a subscription cloud-based service. It comes with a mounting kit if that’s something you want to do. We set ours on the dashboard looking out the window. With a Wi-Fi connection you can live view on the app while you are away from your RV and simply rotate the camera to see what your pets are up to. It’s a great product for security and pet monitoring.

There you have it for our updated list of RV essentials. We hope all of our fellow RVers, new and experienced, find this list beneficial and guide you in your decision making. The hard part of starting out is not knowing what you need to improve your safety and enhance your RV experience.

If you would like to check out our previous blog posts for gadgets and essentials visit our RV Gadgets page.

See you on the road……………..

Joe

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Disclosure: This blog contains affiliate links. Meaning, if you click on any of the links and make a purchase we may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.

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