Categories
Tips & Tricks

Free RV Camping In California: Top 8 Locations

Free RV camping in California is abundant, if you know where to look. Learn about the best spots, book them, and get out into nature.

Looking for a fun, exciting, and cost-effective way to go on vacation this year? Then taking an RV camping in the US is just the way to go. 

You have your pick of unique and beautiful places to explore in the state of California, and the best part is you can even camp in your RV for free. Also known as boondocking, you can easily find lots of areas that allow for free RV camping so that you can make the most of your trip. 

Here are some of the best free camping sites in California, so start planning out that trip now. 

1. Black Rock Campground – Lassen National Forest

There are six first-come, first-served campsites here that are perfect if you’re coming with a few friends. They come fully equipped with grills and tables, perfect for eating and hanging out late into the night. If you’re an angler, you can fish in the Deer and Mill Creeks, and hikers have their pick of low or high mileage trails to explore. As for facilities, there are vault toilets here if needed. 

In the national forest itself, you can check out horse riding, mineral prospecting, and water activities on Lake Almanor. There’s so much to do here, and you’re going to want to try it all. 

2. American Girl Mine

This location is right on the border of California, Mexico, and Arizona, so you have many options as to what to check out here. American Girl Mine used to be a gold mine and was discovered in 1776. 

As you’re in the desert, you can easily enjoy the warm weather available to you here. There’s also lots of room where you can drive off-road vehicles if that’s your thing. As you’re in the middle of the desert, it’s one of the best places to see the night sky, too. 

Surprisingly, there is good cell service from all major carriers, so you aren’t cut off. You’ll also most likely have some neighbors when you’re camping, but there’s lots of room, so you’ll be able to spread out. 

3. Furnace Creek Road

This is located 7 miles outside of Shoshone, CA, and is in a great location if you visit Death Valley National Park. This national park is home to natural hot springs, old mines, and off-roading trails. 

In the summer, it’s going to get scorching hot, so be aware of that when you’re driving your RV down those dirt roads. The roads are well kept though, so you shouldn’t have any problems. 

4. Scott Flat Campground

Located in Northern California, this is the best place to be if you want to switch off truly. There’s no cell service here, so if you need to get away from it all, you’ll want to come here. It’s a good spot for anglers and hikers in particular. 

There’s also lots here for nature lovers. The campground itself features lots of trees and a river, so you can live in nature, even if just for a little while. There are some creature comforts, too, such as vaulted toilets, tables, and fire pits. 

5. Needles Point Dispersed Camping

This is another excellent spot to switch off your phone and get off social media for a little bit. There’s no cell service here, just lots of shade under the trees. It’s a wonderfully quiet place to relax. 

As a hiker, you’ll love that the site is only ¼ mile from the Needles Lookout trail, which has fantastic views that you’ll want to see. Be aware that the spot can only be accessed by high clearance vehicles during the warmer season, so keep that in mind when planning your journey. 

6. Yaqui Well Camp

This is located in the Anza-Borrego Desert, and in the spring, it’s alive with wildflowers. Of course, you’ll also have the chance to indulge in stargazing here too. There’s a vast range of off-roading and hiking options here too, so there’s something for pretty much anyone. 

There are lots of quiet spots to camp here, and there are some excellent amenities too. There’s a playground, a vaulted toilet, and some limited AT&T cell service. 

Be aware that the site says they can accommodate rigs up to 35′, but the road is loose sand, so it may be challenging to get a big rig up there. 

7. Whiskey Falls Campground

If you’re looking to visit the Sierra Nevada mountains, then you’ve got to try out this campsite. The site here is located by some gorgeous pine trees and a waterfall. It’s undoubtedly picturesque if you want to take some pictures. 

There are nine spots available, and they’re reached via a rough dirt road. There’s no cell service here, but there some vaulted toilets, fire pits, and tables. 

Be aware that the site is only available in warmer weather. Spots fill up during weekends, too, so you’ll need to plan ahead. 

8. Willow Creek Road Dispersed

Finally, there’s this campsite, located in Big Sur. If you want to camp somewhere with an ocean view, then you’ll want to check out this spot. As a bonus, in the spring there are lots of wildflowers too. 

There are no amenities and minimal cell service, so this is one camp spot where you’ll have to rough it. It’s well worth it though, thanks to the fantastic views. Of course, if you need cell service, you can always pick up a cell booster for your RV.

Free RV Camping In California: Final Thoughts

There you have it, the top sites for free RV camping in California. It’s always a good idea to start planning your trips in advance, as these are popular spots and they can fill up fast. However, if you get ahead, you can take advantage of some fantastic free locations. Book your trips now, and get out in nature. There’s so much that California has to offer, and you can see it all. 

Categories
Tips & Tricks

RV Care: Keeping Your Rig in Tip-Top Condition During Summer & Beyond

RV care includes the exterior, interior, and mechanical upkeep with your RV. Use these tips to maintain all aspects of your home away from home.

Summer is always the time when you want to take your RV out and get exploring. If you’re going to hit the road, though, you need to ensure you’re taking good care of it. Good RV maintenance during the summer and winter months is essential. Here’s what you need to do to keep your rig in top condition all year long.

Exterior RV Care

The exterior of your RV will take some wear and tear, whether you’re on the move or not. Here’s how to take care of the exterior and keep it in good condition. 

Check the tires: The tires will take the most wear as they sit between the RV and the ground. Before you take your RV out, check the tires for wear or imperfections that could cause you problems. If you see anything you don’t think is safe, don’t hesitate to get the tire taken care of. 

Tire pressure is essential, so keep checking it to ensure it’s at the right level. This is often printed right on the tire, so look for that if you aren’t sure. Keep them inflated to the recommended specifications, and you shouldn’t have any problems. 

Protect the roof: Your RV roof is what comes between you and the elements, so you will want to take good care of it. When you’re not driving it, keep it parked under an RV carport or cover. These will help protect it from sun damage and are much less costly than you’d think. 

Every season, take a good look at your roof for leaks. If you keep up with this, you’ll be able to catch leaks before they can cause any real issues. Patch these up with a sealant that’s compatible with your roof, and you should be able to avoid any serious problems. 

Keep the roof clean, by both installing that carport and scrubbing it down regularly. This will help it stay in top condition year-round. 

Maintain slide-out rails: If you have slide-out rails on your RV, then they’re going to need some maintenance now and again. Once or twice a year, make sure you lubricate them with an appropriate lubricant. Lubricant helps avoid corrosion and rust. 

Clean and maintain the awning: As well as the rails, check the fabric of your awning. Look for any tears, and repair them as soon as you find them. Keep the material clean, too, to avoid mold and mildew or even nests forming. 

Keep it clean: Make sure you’re regularly scrubbing down your RV. This keeps it clean, keeps debris off it when it’s parked up, and helps it look better year-round. Don’t forget to clean down the roof and polish up the headlights. 

Interior RV Care

The inside requires RV care, just as the outside does. Follow these tips to ensure you can have a comfortable and safe trip every time you take the rig out:

Clean after every trip: This is something you’re probably already doing, but make sure you keep it up. Vacuum and mop the floors, clean down the kitchen, strip down the beds, and be ready for fresh linen when you next go out. When you do this, it’s just so much more pleasant to spend time in your RV. 

Maintain safety features: There should be several different safety features in your RV, including fire extinguishers and carbon monoxide detectors. Just as you would in your home, check your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors twice a year. It’s easy to remember if you do it when the clocks change. Replace the batteries, too, to ensure they’re fully working if you should ever need them. 

Keep extra light bulbs: The one thing you should have in your RV is a stash of light bulbs. Eventually, they’ll burn out in your RV, and you don’t want to be stuck in the dark if you’re miles away from the nearest store. Keep a box in the RV somewhere so that you can change them out quickly. Put more in when you come home from a trip, so you’ll never run low. 

RV Mechanical Maintenance

Your RV is a vehicle, after all, so there’s plenty of mechanical maintenance you need to consider here. Here are some things you can do to keep the RV in top shape. 

Check the batteries: If you’re out on the road, a dead battery can spell disaster for your trip. Know what battery your RV uses and how to maintain it. Some have water levels that need to be topped up, so be aware of that. Batteries last around 3-5 years, so ensure that you know when the battery is nearing the end of its life cycle. 

Maintain the brakes: It’s hard to overstate how important this is for your safety. Every spring, check out the brakes and ensure there’s enough material left on them and that they’re working correctly. Be prepared to replace them if they’re looking like they’re on their way out. 

Change the oil: Your car is on the road a lot, but your RV may sit for a few months at a time. Because of this, it’s best to change out the oil every season. That keeps everything adequately lubricated. If you don’t do this, you run the risk of excessive wear and tear on the engine, which will cost you more in repairs in the long run.

Change out the filters: There will be filters for the air, coolant, and hydraulics in your RV. You’ll want to change these out every season, just as you would with the oil. These are something else that can cause damage to your RV’s engine if you’re not checking them regularly. 

For more technical maintenance help and tips, reach out to your local RV service center.

RV Care: Final Thoughts

Keep up with this checklist, and you’ll be able to keep your RV rig in top condition year-round. Use these tips to maintain all aspects of your home away from home. You’ll see that RV care makes heading out on trips just that much easier when you know everything’s in good condition. 

Categories
Repair

Everything You Need to Know About RV Mobile Repair Services

One of the worst things that can happen when you’re on the road is your RV developing an issue. In the past, you would need to tow the entire rig to the nearest shop, and that’s a huge hassle in several different ways. However, that doesn’t need to be the case anymore. If you’re having trouble, you can call an RV mobile repair service near you. Here’s how it works.

How Mobile RV Service Works

So, how does RV mobile repair work? It’s super simple. Rather than taking your RV to the shop, you call the technician, and they come to you. They will come to you whether you’re on the road, at a campsite, or even at home.

One of the main reasons people like to use RV mobile techs is that they don’t have to go to a repair shop and then leave their RV there. Instead, they’ll be able to have the RV fixed right then and there. Then, once it’s done, you’re ready to get on the road again.

Finding RV Mobile Repair Services Near You

If you find your RV in need of repairs, how do you find an RV mobile repair tech? There are a few ways you can get hold of them:

  • Search online: This is often the fastest option. All you have to do is search for “RV mobile repair near me,” and you’ll be given a list of techs in your area. This has some benefits, as you’ll be able to see reviews of these services too before you even pick up the phone. That helps you find someone who can give you what you need.
  • Ask your campsite: If you’re currently at a campsite, then it’s a good idea to ask the management staff here for recommendations. They may know who the best repair shops are around here, and so you’ll be able to find the right tech to help you. It’s worth asking your neighbors at the site, too. They may be regulars and have some recommendations for you.
  • Ask your regular repair shop: This is a good option if you’re at home and you’ve discovered the RV has a fault. Give them a call and ask whether they offer RV mobile repair. You’ll be surprised at how many of them do. If you see a listing for a repair shop online and you’re unsure if they offer mobile repair, it never hurts to ask.

Types of RV Mobile Repair Services

There are actually a few different options when it comes to mobile repair technicians. Here’s the difference between them, so you can be sure you’re calling the right one.

RV Repair Shops

This is the best option if you’re in a bind and need help quickly. However, when you call on them, they will usually charge you the regular hourly rate and the extra mileage. This can get costly, so it’s best only used in an emergency.

For example, if you’re stuck on the side of the road, then you may want to call on your regular repair shop to help you. Before you do, though, make sure you’re checking with your RV insurance or roadside assistance provider first. They may have coverage for instances such as these, and it may well work out cheaper than calling the RV shop in this instance.

RV Repair Specialists

These repair techs will offer specific repairs for your RV, including (but limited to):

  • Flat tires
  • Oil changes
  • Filter changes
  • Appliance repairs
  • Windshield replacements
  • Electrical fixes
  • Carpet replacement
  • Tank cleaning
  • And so on

This is going to be a good option for you if you know what needs to be repaired. After all, it’s easy to see if you have a flat tire. These techs usually work for themselves and are happy to meet you where you are. They will charge you per job, so it’ll often work out cheaper than other services, too.

They should be able to give you an estimate on the price before they get there, so you can have an idea of how much you’ll pay before you hire them. Another benefit is that because they specialize in the jobs they do, you know that they’ll offer high-quality work.

Mobile-Only RV Repair Techs

Finally, you have the option of calling a mobile-only RV tech. As they’re based on the road, they’re ready to meet you where you are. Many feel they’re the best option when you need help with your RV, as they’ll always come to you. If you use these services, you need to be aware that they may charge you extra if you’re outside of their geographical area.

There’s also the issue of parts. They don’t have a physical shop behind them, so they may not have all the parts on hand. However, an RV tech may let you know what needs to be ordered and may even offer a discount if you order them through them.

When to Consider RV Mobile Repair Services

There are lots of good reasons why you should use RV mobile repair services. The first one is that you don’t have to get the RV to the shop yourself. Rather than driving or towing it, the tech will just come to you. You’ll also save a lot of time, as you won’t be taking time off work to get the RV fixed, and you won’t have to wait for it to come out of the shop.

Many people like using mobile techs as they have more control over the repairs done. You know exactly what you’re paying for, and you can see everything that is happening to your rig. It’s good to know there are other options when it comes to repairing your RV. If you’re stuck in a bind or don’t want to go through the hassle of going to the shop, then you can call on mobile tech to help you out. They offer a lot of benefits, so consider them when you need repairs.

Categories
Maintenance

RV Maintenance Checklist: Monthly, Seasonal, Annual

Your RV is your home away from home. Just like your regular home, you’ll need to do maintenance on it to ensure it’s in top shape. This is especially important if you’re not taking it out regularly. Here’s your RV maintenance checklist, so you can keep it in top running order and prevent any issues before they arise. There are some things you’ll need to do regularly, while some things only need to be done annually. Here’s what you need to do to take good care of your RV.

Monthly RV Maintenance

Every month, you need to do some things to ensure that the RV is in top shape. This is especially important if the RV is in storage, as you don’t want to take it out and then find that something is wrong. Follow our fool-proof monthly RV maintenance checklist for exactly what you need to do:

  • Clean out your AC: You want to get the most from your AC when you’re on the road. So you’ll clean it much like you do your home AC by vacuuming the vents and giving them a good clean.
  • Check for rodent and pest damage: Just like your home, pests love to get into RVs. So make sure you’re checking under the rig for signs they’re in there, such as cracked insulation and abrading.
  • Run the generator: If you’re not taking the RV out regularly, this is something you’ll need to do. Gasoline goes bad when sitting stagnant for about a month, so run it through the generator to keep it moving.
  • Check the seals: Inspect the RV for any cracks or splits in the sealants. If there are any, you’ll need to reseal them.
  • Top off battery water levels: When doing this, ensure you’re using distilled water. Tap water contains minerals that could damage your battery over time.
  • Maintain slide-out features: If your RV has slide-out features, these need to be maintained. Lubricate the mechanisms, so they can easily move in and out as needed.
  • Check the engine: Pop the hood, and look for any hoses and clamps that have come loose and any signs of leakage.
  • Check safety equipment: Just as you would in your home, you must check your safety equipment regularly. This includes your smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, and other equipment every month.

Seasonal RV Maintenance

These are the tasks that need to be done less often. It’s best to do them around the change in seasons, so you remember to do them. Plus, it makes your RV ready for any trips you want to go on as the weather gets warmer. Use our handy seasonal RV maintenance checklist below to help you seamlessly navigate the transition from season to season:

  • Full clean: A good seasonal clean is important. Thoroughly clean the RV inside (and outside if needed) to catch any issues before they arise.
  • Wax the exterior: Once you’ve cleaned the RV, you can give it good waxing. It makes it shiny and new, and it’s something you can achieve yourself.
  • Weigh your RV: The weight of your RV can tell you a lot, and now is a good time to weigh it. RV clubs often offer opportunities to weigh your RV, so head along and check the weight.
  • Filter the water: Clean water is something you must have in your RV. To clean the water in the system, use a  half cup of bleach in the freshwater tank. Let it sit for 24 hours, and then run it through.
  • Look for damage: Even if your RV has been stored away, there could be potential damage that you don’t know about. Again, this is a danger from pests, so look for any entry points that they may have found.
  • Check the tires: You want your RV to be safe as soon as you get on the road. So check the tires, looking for proper tire pressure and any wear and tear.
  • Lubricate metals: Look for any spot on your RV where metal rubs on metal. Lubricate these parts to ensure proper movement and less wear.
  • Check seals: Just as you would every month, look for any damage to the seals. If moisture gets in, it causes a lot of damage, so you want to avoid that.

Annual RV Maintenance

Finally, some jobs need to be done every year. While they don’t need to be done as often, they are still important. Keep your RV healthy and in tip-top shape all year long by following our annual RV maintenance checklist below:

  • Keep a log: There’s so much to do when taking care of your RV. Some RVs will have a log in the back of the manual, so you can keep track of when everything is done. However, if you don’t, create a log and mark off every job as you do it.
  • Test and replace safety equipment: This is a good time to replace safety equipment, such as smoke and carbon dioxide detectors. Replace the batteries if they don’t need to be changed out entirely, and clean them off with a slightly damp cloth.
  • Service the brakes: The brakes are an essential part of the RV safety system. Have them serviced by a professional every year to keep them in good condition.
  • Service the AC: Just like your brakes, the AC system needs to be serviced by a professional once a year. This avoids any breakdowns when you need them the least.
  • Inspect the propane: Over the year, you should be checking the tank for any dings, leaks, and other issues regularly. Once a year, though, have that tank professionally inspected. This is so important to keep you safe as you use your RV.
  • Check the seals: Again, check your seals to ensure there’s no damage. Once a year, it’s a good idea to reseal the exterior to minimize damage.

Your RV is your escape and your home when you’re away from home. As such, you want it to be in the best possible condition. As you’ve seen, it’s quite easy to take care of it when you keep up with some basic maintenance throughout the year. So keep up with this checklist, and you’ll be ready to go whenever you want.