RVs have been around for decades and, like most things, misinformation has spread on the topic between word of mouth and the internet. Unfortunately, these myths are often accepted as facts, causing many people to shy away from trying the RV life for themselves. In our list, we’ll bust 15 of the most common RV myths!
You Need a Commercial License to Drive an RV or Motorhome
This is probably one of most common RV myths, although there is some truth to it. It all comes down to vehicle weight, not size as many people think. You can legally drive any vehicle under 26,000 pounds and tow anything under 10,000 pounds with a normal driver’s license in all 50 states. Most Class B and Class C motorhomes, as well as a multitude of towable RVs fall within this weight limit. If you plan on rolling heavier than that or unsure, check with a DMV in the state your license is issued. In Canada, anyone with a regular driver’s license can drive a motorhome up to 11,000 kgs.
Any Truck or SUV Can Tow Any Trailer
Each vehicle has a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) which is the maximum weight your truck or SUV can pull. The GVWR is set by the manufacturer and exceeding this limit puts your RV, your vehicle, and you at risk. In addition, stock models may not come with sufficient towing packages. Adding accessories like a proper hitch or airbags can add both safety and comfort when traveling.
Only Retired People Buy RVs
Another extremely common RV myth is that RVs are for grandparents. More than half of all RVers in America are 55-years or younger, and 22% are between the ages of 18 and 34 years old. In recent years, the COVID-19 pandemic has driven a huge spike in interest in RV living. From millennials going on extended road trips to families hitting the road full time, RVs are for everyone!
RV Name Includes Length
Numbers in RV model names don’t usually represent the length, though it may happen by coincidence. Rarely, some manufacturers may include length in the naming convention, or this may happen by chance. Most RVs are built around standard sizes and not model-specific lengths.
Your RV Can Handle Year-Round, All-Season Use
This common RV myth is tied to the idea that RVs are insulated like traditional homes, which isn’t true. Most RV designs can’t cope with long periods in sub-zero temperatures. Even those designed for cold weather can only stay in freezing conditions for a few days. By the way, if you need your RV winterized here in Pennsylvania, give us a call!
Motorhomes Have Terrible Gas Mileage
For being a home on wheels, RVs are not as bad on fuel as some would think. Although they’re admittedly large vehicles, RV manufacturers have worked hard over the years to increase fuel efficiency. On average, Class B motorhomes run at about 18-25 MPG which about the same gas mileage as a 6-cylinder Ford Mustang. Class C motorhomes are not too far behind in fuel performance, running between 18-25 MPG.
RVs are Too Expensive
Just like buying cars, RV pricing really comes down to model and features. And like automobiles, there’s an RV for every budget. The key difference is you have more versatility than an automobile, especially when traveling. Your kitchen can save on eating out, you always have your own bathroom, and there’s no need to pay the high cost of staying at a hotel. These benefits alone could be huge return on investments for those who travel or camp often, especially larger families. Buying used RVs also opens up more possibilities for making high-end models more affordable! Click here to view pricing for new and used RV models!
Generators Should Be Used Sparingly
This common RV myth is not only false, but could cost you! Generators need to be used for short periods of time and often to keep them in best working condition. Idle generators let moisture build up inside, which leads to damage when it’s next turned on. Keep using your generators if you want them to last!
An RV Doesn’t Need Sway Control
Sway controls that come with your truck may prevent the truck from rolling, but they’re probably not enough to keep the trailer from tilting. The larger the load, the more important it is to have the proper accessories to balance weight when towing.
You Have to Park in Overcrowded RV Campgrounds
Although some RV campgrounds can be very crowded, it depends on the time of year. There are also many other options outside of campgrounds. You can stay everywhere from high-end luxury RV resorts to remote boondocking in the middle of the wilderness. If you just need a place to sleep right off the highway between destinations, you can even park your RV or motorhome in a mall or Walmart parking lot.
You Can’t Park RVs in the City
RV parking is available everywhere. Even hotels are offering RV spots as options within larger cities to attract more guests to their resorts. You may not be able to just parallel park on a busy side main street, but you can set up camp within or near the city limits. This common RV myth is busted!
RVs Are for Minimalists Only
Even celebrities live in their RV when on the go and often prefer it compared to dealing with other lodging. There is no limit to the features and modern comforts you can have added to your RV model. For most, full-time living in an RV will mean having to be more intentional with space. However, like any life change, you get used to it and make more work with less!
RVs Don’t Need Winter Storage
If a RV is going to be idle for during the winter months, it needs to be in a covered storage space. Prolonged exposure to cold or extreme weather could cause extensive damage and consequential repairs. If you cannot afford or find indoor storage, you should consider buying a RV cover. These common RV myths develop from thinking RVs have the durability and construction of traditional homes. RVs are also vehicles which require care like automobiles when being stored outside.
RVs Are “Too Complicated”
As mentioned earlier, people of ALL ages are becoming owners of RVs and mastering RV life. With the endless number of resources online, there is no shortage on information to help you convert to RV life. From manufacturer resources on how to work your RV to blogs on where you can vacation and live with your RV, you just need a little time and determination to be a pro!
RVs Can’t Be Luxurious
Some may think of RVs as tiny popups too small to have any room to do anything comfortably. They may also have images of RVs parked in a dirty campground covered in bugs with the fire as the only source of warmth. For some boondockers, this may be the reality. However, most RVs and motorhomes come standard with many modern conveniences like TVs, beds, bathrooms, kitchens and even washer and dryers in the larger models.
As you can see, owning an RV can suit people of all ages and interests. It can empower you to live a freer travel life while staying in the own comfort of your home. Despite RVs and motorhomes having some limitations compared to traditional homes, they can be a great investment and can even become your permanent home.
Was there a common RV myth we didn’t bust on our list? Contact us at Juniata Valley RV, and we’ll be happy to answer your questions.