RV Gear You Don't Need: 5 Things You Shouldn't Waste Your Money On
When outfitting your RV, it’s important to know what RV gear is essential and what you don’t need. We’re going to go over what items we think are not must-have RV camping gear. You’ll have everything you need without taking up valuable space with non-essentials.
So instead of telling you what RV gear to spend money on, we're going to tell you what not to spend money on.
1. Washer and dryer
Do you need to have a washer and dryer in your rig? We had one for 20 months in the travel trailer and it was very helpful and useful with the kids when they were younger and still potty training.
But we were running that washer-dryer combo unit all the time. If we were hooked up to a sewer, we would run it from the beginning of the day until late at night, sometimes just to get through because the loads were so tiny.
If we wanted to wash the sheets, we were going to the laundromat anyway, because trying to do them in a small washer and dryer would just add so much to the amount of time we were taking washing clothes. Most campgrounds have laundry rooms. When we would go to the laundromat, we could wash our family of five’s clothes plus all our sheets and linens, and towels in an hour and a half.
2. Slide toppers
The next thing we wanted to talk about was slide toppers. Our first RV did not have them, and I had to get up on the roof maybe a handful of times to sweep off pine needles or a branch would fall or there'd be acorns. Anytime you're under trees, it's just like stuff gets in your gutters at a house, the same stuff can fall on the slides, and you don't want to squish that up into the seal.
We never had trouble with water, even if it was actively raining. When bringing the slides in, the top would get squeegeed off. It was never like, we can't bring the slides in because it's raining. However, now that we have slide toppers, we've been replacing these things and dealing with them being broken. When we bought them, they looked like they were in good condition. Then, very quickly the seams ripped, and we had to replace them.
When it rains, they can hold water, and then you can't just run the slide in all the way because the water will press the topper down and it'll get pinched, and it's a whole production. We wait for all the buckets of water to drain off and then stop. If you don't have slide toppers on your RV, I would not recommend putting them on there. It's just another system that can go bad.
3. RV toilet paper
We have a couple of things to talk about when it comes to sewage. You do not need marine-safe toilet paper. You're paying double for half the amount of regular toilet paper and it's awful. It's awful toilet paper.
Do your body a favor. Buy the toilet paper that you like that is septic-safe. If it is septic-safe, it is fine for your RV. The key to making it safe is to use a lot of water. We don't have any issues with clogging. A caveat is that we always have sewer. Full hookup campers don’t need to waste their money on all that fancy toilet paper.
4. Tank sensors
While we're on the topic of toilets and sewer and black tanks, please do yourself a favor. Don't waste money and time on tank sensor cleaners or trying to do all of this stuff to get your sensors to read right so you can walk up and hit the button and it goes to E right after you dumped it. It's such a waste of time. You can put all the chemicals in the world down there. The next time someone uses the toilet, there's a little bit of sludge on the sensor.
If you ask anybody who has been camping for more than three or six months, they don't even look at their sensors anymore. One thing I like to tell people is your toilet will burp. If your black tank is full or getting close to full, and you flush one of the foot flush toilets, instead of just immediately going down, it'll kind of go up and then go down. It's hard to explain, but it'll do that. Then you're going to know. Always leave the black tank closed unless you are dumping gray.
5. Slide stabilizers
The final little thing we want to talk about today is slide stabilizers. What's the slide stabilizer? A slide stabilizer looks like a little jack stand that you slide up underneath your slide to keep it from going up and down if the rig moves. Why wouldn't you need that? On older rigs, it was okay to use them. That's why they still sell them.
I know that in the newer RVs that we've had, and a lot of RVs from 2010 and up, the slide mechanisms are not made to be isolated like that. So if the rig is moving, the slide needs to move, too. What can happen is if the rig has a slide stabilizer underneath it keeping it from moving, you can knock the slide off of its track. You can put pressure on the motor. You can bend rails.
When you're looking through all the stabilizer stuff, don't get slide stabilizers if you have a newer rig, they will damage your slides. It's just a matter of time.
RV gear you don't need
So that's it for our quick little list here. I'm happy that we didn't spend any more of your money today. Choose your RV camping gear wisely and you’ll save a lot of money and headaches from things breaking. What do you consider to be your must-have RV camping gear? Share in the comments, we love hearing from you!