July 27, 2018

6 Tips to Take the Stress Out of Driving Your RV For the First Time

Driving a motorhome for the first time can be a thrilling experience. But it can also be intimidating. Chances are, your motorhome is one of the largest vehicles you’ve ever driven, so it’s perfectly natural Senior man on vacation driving his motor feel a bit nervous. Make safety a priority and keep reading for six things to keep in mind when driving a motorhome for the very first time.

  1. Get comfortable

One of the first things you’ll want to do is get comfortable with the driver’s seat and controls. Move your seat so you can comfortably reach the pedals, familiarize yourself with the location of all the controls, and adjust the side mirrors so you can see properly.

  1. Know your size

Underestimating the dimensions of your vehicle is one of the most common causes of accidents involving motorhomes. It’s incredibly important to be aware of your size at all times. Know your height so you can avoid routes with low-hanging bridges and know your width so you can properly calculate turns and avoid collisions with other vehicles.

  1. Distribute your weight

Another important safety consideration is the weight of your vehicle and cargo. Overloading your RV is not only incredibly unsafe but it can also lead to heavy fines if you get stopped at a highway weigh scale. Overweight motorhomes are more difficult to steer, slow down and bring to a stop, and could even result in a blown tire. Distribute weight evenly to maximize safety and avoid putting strain on the tires.

  1. Practice makes perfect

Practice turning and backing up your motorhome in a safe location before you head off on your first adventure. Choose an empty parking lot or a quiet city street to practice on.  

  1. Get out and look

In an RV, you have only your side mirrors to guide you if you want to back up, which can be difficult, even for experienced drivers. If you have to backup, remember the acronym G.O.A.L., Get Out And Look. Follow this directive to know what you’re backing into.

  1. Take it slow

Not only will slowing down help you enjoy the journey more, but it’ll also make your trip much safer.  Drive slower than you normally would, especially when going around a corner or through mountainous areas.

For more tips on how to get the most out of your RV this summer, visit Happy Trails RV today. With over 25 years of industry experience, we’re your trusted source for the sale and service of motorhomes, trailers and RVs in Grande Prairie, and throughout Alberta. Contact us today to learn more!