Your Home on the Road

In our many years of travelling and Mike working in the RV industry, we have come across RV owners who are unhappy with their vehicles and accessories because of unrealistic expectations.

We have heard complaining about china plates breaking when taken in their home on wheels, off-road, four wheel driving.

Many comments come from travellers who have just purchased a vehicle, or who haven’t done much travelling. Therefore, to those thinking of starting an adventure on the road…

It all sounds so obvious, but sometimes it’s easy to forget simple things in our enthusiasm to get away on the road. Your home is on wheels. It is not built like your home on land. It will travel over bumpy roads and through wide-ranging climates. Items in cupboards will move. Unless packed properly, breakables will break, items will fall out of overhead cupboards. The fridge isn’t like the fridge at home. Etc., etc., etc.

We ourselves have learnt a lot by experience. Going over some bumps in the road can bring down anything hanging up in our wardrobe to result in a tangled mess of coat hangers and clothes on the floor – especially if like us, you have used cool drink can openers to hang three or four wire coat hangers in a line from the rail!

We have had the overhead cupboards empty their contents over our heads. And we continue, despite all our past travelling, to learn more.  More recently, about towing our Suzuki on a caddy behind the motorhome. We phoned “an expert” to come and view our set-up and sell us the correct strapping for around the Suzuki’s wheels on the caddy. Much to our dismay, when we first set off, the straps fell away and the Suzuki nearly came off the caddy. Back to the drawing board. (Our thanks to the service people of Sydney RV Group for assisting us in the second attempt which was successful.)

It cannot be overstated – how important it is to assess the capabilities of your RV, contents and accessories so that travel is less problematic, and everything used to maximum advantage.

The fridge seems to be the most common issue: It’s temperature capabilities in all weather conditions and which power source to use. There are many different model fridges on the market, so do your research and do not just listen to what the people on the site next to you say – they are not always right.

We discovered that the reverse cycle air-conditioner in our motor home doesn’t operate as a heater (on power) if the temperature is below about 7.degrees. Lee is still not used to the fact that she has a heater in the motor home that won’t operate because it is too cold!

Maintenance of your Home on Wheels

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It goes without saying that keeping your vehicle well maintained, prolongs its life, not to mention re-sale value.

Just like your residential home, your home on wheels will need maintenance and not just the motor, if you have one.

Like anything worth keeping, the old saying, “A stitch in time saves nine” is true.

Mike has cleaned, sanded and re-sealed wooden edgings to bench tops before the age, wear and tear damage was too great and they look like new again.  He has re-sealed around joins on the top of the motor home as a precaution to prevent water seeping in.

Previous owners of our motor home have kept it immaculate and well looked after, but age sucks.  We recently replaced our hot water system, reversing camera, hatch coverings, and some minor fittings.

The faded decorative striping and some old, yellowed and cracked covers on the outside of the motor home have now all been replaced.

Luckily, some of the work Mike could do himself.  Other work we have had done by Sydney RV Group or their associated sub-contractors.

And now we feel like we are in a new motor home! A far cry from our first home on wheels….

Our first caravan – 1977.  We were living in it at a caravan park south of Adelaide, and each of us were holding down a full time job, plus three part time jobs between us. This was our first attempt at a working holiday in Australia.  Looked after the old caravan, which came with a ‘cool box’ instead of a fridge, changing a few things and sold for a good price when we upgraded.  Augh! “The good ole days!”

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09.04.2018 – ROAD TRIP!

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After a lot of preparation to make sure everything is up to scratch, we are ready to leave Sydney RV Group in Penrith for our first expedition ever in a motorhome towing something.

We have done plenty of motorhome holidays over the years and never had any thought of towing a vehicle.  We have always been able to manage without and find parking spots for the motorhome at shops etc.  Mike even found parking in the city of Sydney on the street – paying for parking in two parking bays!  Okay, admittedly that was about 20 years ago.

Now we are planning to live indefinitely ‘on the road’ on a working holiday, Lee needs an office to continue her Monday-Friday legal typing and with enough area and comfort to also live.  The Suzuki gives us the freedom to go down tracks where Mike can go fossicking or drive to any work he may do.

Sydney RV Group do not specialise in caddies on which we were to tow the Suzuki, so Mike sought out assistance from an expert who came to view our equipment and sold us the tyre covering straps, and so we were ready to go.  Or so we thought.

As most people do, you learn a lot from experience.

Mike drove the motorhome out into the culdesac, started to reverse, and the strapping fell off the Suzuki’s wheels and luckily, Mike stopped driving in time before Suzi fell off the caddy.   Our thanks to Sydney RV Group service personnel who assisted us at this time.   Mike used some other new straps in the end, but our departure was stalled.

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