Preparing for a camping trip in your RV can be an overwhelming task for any RVer, but especially when it’s your very first RV adventure.
What essentials for RV camping do you need for your first RV trip?
Your camping gear checklist is growing longer by the day and not you’re not sure what is actually essential to bring in your home on wheels.
To help make your first RV camping trip a happy memory, we’ve compiled a list of 13 RV camping necessities experienced RVers recommend including in your RV packing checklist.
These items will help make your trip more comfortable, safe, enjoyable, and memorable. So, before your next camping trip, be sure to pack these RV camping essentials.
The Essentials for RV Camping
1. RV Sewer Hose to Dump Your Grey & Black Tanks
Let’s get the smelly out of the way first. Depending on the type of recreational vehicle you’ll be camping in, if you have a wet bath or a toilet that feeds into a blank water tank, a sewer hose is an absolute must.
An RV sewer hose is used to dump (pun intended) your black and grey water tanks. You’re black and grey water tanks hold the solid and liquid waste water from all the toilets, showers, and sinks in your RV.
2. Fresh Water Drinking Hose and Water Filter
In order to avoid harmful chemicals leeching from a standard hose into your drinking water, you must use a hose that has been specifically rated for drinking water. You’ll know it has been by the labeling on the hose.
There are several brands and types out there but the fresh drinking water hose most recommended when you’re camping is the Zero-G water hose. It’s a flexible, no-kink, water hose that is very light weight and perfect for any RV lifestyle.
Additionally, you’ll want to grab a water filter, you never know what you’ll get coming through those pipes!
3. Water Pressure Regulator is Another Essential for RV Camping
Be sure to check with your specific RV’s manufacturer recommendations but most RVs require water pressure rated between 40-60 PSI. And, just in case you were wondering (like I was when I was a new RV owner), PSI stands for “pounds per square inch.”
If the water pressure at your campsite is higher than what is recommended you risk water leaks and damage to your RV’s plumbing system if you don’t use a water pressure regulator.
A water pressure regulator is needed to ensure that your water pressure is kept at an optimal level.
4. Leveling Blocks to Level Your RV and Wheel Chocks to Keep From Rolling Away
RV campgrounds are somewhat known for not having perfectly level campsites.
Fortunately, leveling blocks help to level your RV so you won’t be camping on a lean. Leveling blocks are primarily used for placing under your RV’s leveling jacks but they can also be used to under the wheels of your RV if needed.
These are such a funny thing to say but wheel chocks are one of the most important essentials for RV camping as they prevent your RV from rolling away. Just be sure to remove them before you try to tow away.
5. Having the Right RV Tires & Tire Pressure Gauge
RV tire blow outs are a real thing and can be pretty scary. One of the most important essentials for RV camping and to reduce camper tire blow outs is to make sure that your tires are the right tires for your tow vehicle and RV camper.
A basic tire pressure gauge is sufficient to check your tire pressure before towing or driving your camper.
6. Lug Nut Wrench to Change a Tire
In the event that you need to replace a tire, it is important to have bring along a 4-way lug nut wrench.
Keep in mind that the lug nuts on your trailer may not be the same as those on your vehicle, so be sure to carry the correct size for your vehicles tires.
7. Surge Protector for Your Camper’s Electrical System
To protect the electrical system and appliances in your RV from an electrical surge. RV surge protectors prevent irreparable damage to your RV’s electrical system.
Many RVers recommend purchasing a surge protector that will shut your RV’s power off in the event that a surge happens as it will protect your RV from electrical damage. Your RV’s electrical system will determine if a 30 Amp Surge Protector or a 50 Amp Surge Protector.
8. Don’t Forget to Check Your Fire Extinguisher!
Check that the fire extinguisher in your RV is working! Going to use the fire extinguisher to put out a fire is not the time you want to realize your fire extinguisher is no longer working.
As a back-up, there are fire extinguisher cans available as well that are always good to keep on hand.
9. Emergency Road Side Kit
In the event of a road side emergency, it’s a great idea to bring along a roadside emergency kit.
A kit that includes things such as jumper cables, a tow rope, reflectors or flares, etc. is more than sufficient.
10. First Aid Kit for Happy Camping
Bringing a first aid kit almost goes without saying. A first aid kit is essential to address those minor scrapes, burns, and bruises that you may experience while camping.
11. RV Toilet Paper and Black Holding Tank Treatment
Make sure that you are using RV safe toilet paper. Regular residential toilet paper, even toilet paper that is rated as septic safe, is more likely to clog your black water tank system or interfere with the blank tank fill sensors.
Also, you will need holding tank treatment for the black tank. This holding tank treatment will help to break down solid waste and reduce smells in your black holding tank. This treatment is available in both liquid and tablet forms.
12. Bringing Spare Fuses for Your Camper is Essential
Just like at your sticks-and-bricks home never know when a fuse may blow in your RV and need to be replaced. This essential for RV camping is commonly forgotten about.
The last thing you want is to be in a remote area in the middle of the night and find yourself stuck without replacement fuses.
Fortunately, these fuses are inexpensive and do not take up much space!
13. RV Mobile GPS App
Nothing ruins a camping trip faster than ripping off your AC unit or damaging the roof of your camper because there wasn’t enough vertical clearance between your RV and the bridge above you.
The regular GPS that’s just fine for you to use for your car or truck might lead you down a road that could rip the roof right off your camper with no where to turn around.
To avoid such a horrifying situation, you can use an RV mobile app or pre-map your travel plans and make sure the roads you take will accommodate the height of your rig.
The Best Camping Newbie RV Essentials
These essentials for RV camping should set you on the right track for preparing for your first RV camping trip regardless of what type of RV you camp in.
If you are wondering how to pay for all of the items you need for the items you’ll need to RV without breaking the bank, check out our post that outlines where to sell your unused items for some extra RV cash.
Where is the Best Place to Buy Essential Items for Your RV?
There is no definitive answer to this question as everyone has different preferences for where they like to buy essentials for RV camping.
Online retailers that specialize in selling RV supplies, visiting local RV dealerships, or searching for RV-specific items at major retailers such as Walmart or Target, or even Amazon, are great places to buy RV essentials. Fortunately, there are many stores to buy RV essentials!
Whichever option you choose, be sure to compare prices and reviews to ensure you are getting the best possible deal on the items you need as prices on essentials for RV camping change almost daily!
Which Essential RV Supplies Are Most Forgotten?
What essentials for RV camping did you forget on your first RV camping adventure? Comment Below!
Thanks for explaining the necessity of having a surge protector in order to prevent electrical damage. My husband and I just bought an old RV a few weeks ago and we want to start remodeling it. We’re hoping to get a satellite and some other nice technology to make it feel a bit more modern.
Thank you Eve for your comment! Yes, not having a surge protector when camping is quite the gamble. We hear that the cost to replace your RV’s entire electrical system/appliances after an electrical surge often totals your camper. A surge protector also allows you to test the electric at campsites before spending all the time setting up camp just to find out that the electric doesn’t work. Been there before, never again, haha