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Author Topic: First RV trip in a rented 30' motor home  (Read 3426 times)

Dragginourbedaround

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First RV trip in a rented 30' motor home
« on: September 01, 2013, 10:06:13 PM »
We picked up a 30 foot rental yesterday. All went pretty well. The rental agency was closing by the time our flight into Tampa arrived, so we didn't get as much instruction as we would have liked. But all in all it worked out OK. We also had a car rental. My wife was driving and we each had a two- way radio. We rented the car because the cost for a cab both ways to the Cruise America rental was about half the cost of the car rental and we plan to do a lot of driving this week. As most people have advised we went to a large parking lot and practiced, practiced and practiced some more. I found a video on backing up on YouTube that was very helpful and we were confident when we left the parking lot. We had a few places to go before we stopped for the night. I found that keeping it between the lines was just like driving a car, but cornering was a challenge at first. I only took out one corner, my wife driving  behind me says it was two corners, but I didn't take out any signs, people or fire hydrants. Got in and out of a McDonald's Ok. When we got to the campground the host backed me in. My wife says she could have done a better job ha ha. One thing we found is a lack of 110 outlets in the rental. We usually bring an extension cord with several outlets on the end when we travel and we're glad we had it this time. We found the A/C to be loud, but no more annoying than the A/C in a motel room. We're not in a shaded lot so it struggles to keep up with the 90 degree FL heat.
Gene

2013 Winnebago Adventurer 37F
2011 Honda Fit

dverstra

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Re: First RV trip in a rented 30' motor home
« Reply #1 on: September 02, 2013, 02:52:24 PM »
Gene
You realize that you are on a very slippery slope now headed for a motorhome purchase 8). Our first trip was in a rented Winnibago Brave. 20 years later and 3 motorhomes, we are still enjoying it.
Above all, enjoy the adventure!
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scottydl

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Re: First RV trip in a rented 30' motor home
« Reply #2 on: September 02, 2013, 03:49:03 PM »
Thanks for the update, keep 'em coming! :)  RV trips , if you go on enough of them, undoubtedly bring you experiences that WILL turn into campfire stories later on.  That's half the fun, although it doesn't always seem like it at the time.  ;)
Scott, wife, 3 boys... and the dog
- 2008 Forest River Wildwood 32BHDS
- 1995 Chevrolet Suburban C2500 tow vehicle
- 1994 Thor Residency motorhome... owned 2007-2012

Dragginourbedaround

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Re: First RV trip in a rented 30' motor home
« Reply #3 on: September 02, 2013, 08:04:28 PM »
We've already slipped on that slope. Just trying figure out if we want to drive one or pull one. We're glad we rented a car, having to put everything away to  travel around Palm Harbor/Clearwater everyday would have been a chore. We're staying at the Bay Aire RV Park and the hosts have been great. They know we are newbies and help when ever they can. We are really glad we rented this MH. Not only is it answering questions we had, but making us think about things we hadn't thought of before. Like, we always thought we would like a shower separate from the commode and sink, but after using one we both would prefer the them together. Happy we rented before we bought, we'll make a better informed decision. Thanks for following along.
Gene

2013 Winnebago Adventurer 37F
2011 Honda Fit

Dragginourbedaround

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Re: First RV trip in a rented 30' motor home
« Reply #4 on: September 03, 2013, 10:08:24 PM »
We've been in this motor home since Saturday and have adjusted to the small space and settled into a routine. At least one slide out would be nice. We haven't unhooked since we got here, but plan on taking it out for a spin on Thursday. Want to see how long it takes to put everything away before leaving the site. (we have a check list)  Cooked a couple of meals (could use more counter space) and dumped the grey water twice. We dumped the black water tank along with grey the second time. The black water  tank didn't even register on the test lights, but since we were dumping the grey water a second time I thought we should dump the black also. We are not in the MH most of the day, so it's hard to understand why the grey tanks would fill so fast. Even now with the grey tank left open it's registering 2/3 full. I will close the grey tank in the morning.  Is it normal for the grey tank to fill in two days?
Gene

2013 Winnebago Adventurer 37F
2011 Honda Fit

scottydl

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Re: First RV trip in a rented 30' motor home
« Reply #5 on: September 03, 2013, 10:55:04 PM »
Is it normal for the grey tank to fill in two days?

Depends completely on your tank size and water usage.  Showers fill it up fast, so 2 days on a smaller tank is not unrealistic.  Don't worry about dumping the black tank until it's at least 3/4 full, or right before you leave.  The longer those contents sit, the more they liquify and ensure a complete "dump" so to speak.  ;)
Scott, wife, 3 boys... and the dog
- 2008 Forest River Wildwood 32BHDS
- 1995 Chevrolet Suburban C2500 tow vehicle
- 1994 Thor Residency motorhome... owned 2007-2012

Dragginourbedaround

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Re: First RV trip in a rented 30' motor home
« Reply #6 on: September 04, 2013, 06:14:08 AM »
Thanks Scott. Our grey water tank is 35 gal. A "complete dump" is something I look forward to ha ha.
Gene

2013 Winnebago Adventurer 37F
2011 Honda Fit

SeilerBird

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Re: First RV trip in a rented 30' motor home
« Reply #7 on: September 04, 2013, 06:39:20 AM »
The tank gauges are notoriously wrong on most RVs.
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edjunior

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Re: First RV trip in a rented 30' motor home
« Reply #8 on: September 04, 2013, 06:55:34 AM »
And 35 gallons is small for a grey tank.  It will fill up fast with just showers (even short ones) and handwashing and doing dishes a time or two.  You find out in a RV just how much water you use, that's for sure.
Ed.....KF5INW
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2010 Forest River Wildcat 28RKBS
"I thought I was wrong once, but I was wrong!"

scottydl

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Re: First RV trip in a rented 30' motor home
« Reply #9 on: September 04, 2013, 08:30:01 AM »
The tank gauges are notoriously wrong on most RVs.

Good point here too.  Black tanks especially.  Toilet paper and other "gunk" gets caught on the sensors inside the tank and often causes false readings... there are various methods to clear the sensors off, but it will almost always recur.  After awhile in your RV you will get an idea of how long you can go before dumping the black (with or without sensors).  Make sure you use plenty of water when flushing solids (I always used an extra bowlful, or 1 gallon).  You'll see the water level rise to just below your toilet level when it's full.  With average use I'd say you'll dump your gray 2-3x more often than black.  My family of five could go 5-6 days without filling up the black tank on our Class A (50 or 60 gallon tank I believe).

Gray tank sensors are usually more accurate since it's mostly just soapy water inside the tank.
Scott, wife, 3 boys... and the dog
- 2008 Forest River Wildwood 32BHDS
- 1995 Chevrolet Suburban C2500 tow vehicle
- 1994 Thor Residency motorhome... owned 2007-2012

ArdraF

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Re: First RV trip in a rented 30' motor home
« Reply #10 on: September 04, 2013, 02:43:49 PM »
Another big water waster is running the water while doing dishes.  Fill one sink with soapy water and the second with fresh for rinsing.  When finished, empty the soapy sink first and the fresh second to rinse the drain.  Also don't run the water while brushing your teeth or washing your hands.  There's a neat gadget you can get at Home Depot called a water saver.  You screw it onto your bathroom faucet, turn on the water, but nothing happens until you move the little vertical bar to the right or left.  This saves a ton of bathroom sink water.

By the way, because you're new to RVing, I'll also mention that you want to be careful about allowing food down the sink drain.  Have a strainer to reduce particles going down because they can make a gray tank smell worse than the black tank.

ArdraF
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Dragginourbedaround

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Re: First RV trip in a rented 30' motor home
« Reply #11 on: September 04, 2013, 10:03:04 PM »
Thanks everybody. We have taken noticed of how much water we use. We use a lot less here than at home, but we could still cut back some. We only have one sink but use a pot to catch rinse water and I've been taking military showers. I didn't realize that the food in the grey tank could smell worse than the black tank. Thanks for that tip. There is a strainer in the sink that catches food. We are enjoying this first trip and plan another closer to home. A three day trip to the Skyline Drive in the Blue Ridge Mountains in the fall. We haven't driven the MH very much since we got here, been using the car for everything. We have driven over 400 miles (rental company charges .34 a mile and $3.50 ph for generator use) since we got here. But we don't have anything planned for tomorrow so we're going to take the her out and drive her around. Should be interesting!
Gene

2013 Winnebago Adventurer 37F
2011 Honda Fit

Dragginourbedaround

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Re: First RV trip in a rented 30' motor home
« Reply #12 on: September 08, 2013, 07:15:15 PM »
We took the MH to Honeymoon Island on Friday I asked the attendant if there was a discount for seniors and she said "no we're all seniors here."  That was funny. It was nice having the MH with us at the beach, being able to take a break from the sun and have lunch. Loved Honeymoon Island. I have to say something about the RV Park we stayed at. Bay Aire RV Park in Palm Harbor, FL. Our camp hosts Larry & Cheryl were great, they knew we were new to RVing and went out of their way to make our stay a happy one. From helping us setup to recomending places to eat and visit. Not that we needed them but the bath rooms and showers were very clean as was the pool and rec room. Next time we go back to Bay Aire we will be in our own MH. We finished up our trip yesterday. Returned the 30 footer to Cruise American in Tampa. We did everything we were supposed to do; fill the LP tank, bring it back with as much gas as we left with, clean the unit and empty the grey and black water tanks. We got our deposit back plus we saved money on mileage. They charge .34 a mile and since we had a car rental we saved about $68. Between that $68 and the saved $60 in cab fare to and from the airport the car rental only cost about $25! Reflecting on our trip we enjoyed ourselves, learned a lot and came away with better questions than when we started. In the Spring of 2014 we hope to have our own RV.
Gene

2013 Winnebago Adventurer 37F
2011 Honda Fit

 

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