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14 Must-Have Items for the New RVer 

By  Luann Street

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When you first buy your RV, you are excited and can't wait to go camping!  But, WAIT….you don't have this for your water tank or this for your jacks…What?  Can't I just drive it off the lot and go camping?  Nope…you need stuff.  These are the 14 must-have items for the new RVer.  Buy them, pack them and go camping!

14 Must-Have Items for the NEW RVer | RV's don't come with everything you need to start camping. Find out what you need! | www.streetswander.com

 

14 Must-Have Items for the New RVer

 

Make sure you have these must-have items for your new (or new to you) RV before your first camping trip.  These items are things that once you buy them, you won't have to do it again unless they break or you leave them at a campsite! 🙂  (Yes, Bryan has left our jack pads twice!)

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Leveling Essentials

 

Jack Pads

You will often need jack pads at most campsites unless you camp often at RV parks that have level concrete pads.  Even some of those RV parks require you to put down pads if they have provided you with a nicely finished surface to camp on. These pads will help you on gravel and unstable parking surfaces and can add an additional layer to your leveling block system if you have to use them.

 

Leveling Blocks

A good set of leveling blocks can make your camping set up easier and more level.  If you camp on a site that is uneven you need them to help support your rig and stabilize your camper to a level position.  An RV best practice is to always try to have support under your tires when leveling your rig and not have them off the ground, if at all possible.  Some people like to carry wooden blocks for leveling but we chose not too because wood can add up to a lot of extra weight.

 

 

Water Essentials

 

Freshwater Hose

You need a clean, new freshwater hose that is for potable water and use it exclusively for that.  If you are buying a used RV and they have left the hoses in the rig, start fresh with a new set of hoses that you know how they were used and that the hose is drinking water safe. A best practice is to have two 25 ft. hoses that you can connect together if you need more length to hook up.

 

 

Water Filter

You will need a water filter to filter the water that enters your RV.  This helps reduce sediment from entering your plumbing system and cause potential problems. If you want to filter your water for drinking you may consider an additional filtering system that you install or get a Berkey Water Filtering System for yourcountertopp.

 

 

Water Pressure Regulator

When you hook up your RV to the water hook up at the campsite, you have no idea how much pressure the water will enter your RV at.  Your RV has plumbing that needs TLC and high water pressure could damage your RV plumbing.  Installing a water pressure regulator at your campsite spigot can control the flow of water into your RV and prevent damage.

 

 

Elbow Hose Connection

Putting a 90-degree hose elbow on your RV water intake can eliminate wear and tear on your hose.  The elbow helps with ease of use as well as keeps the hose from bending and thus keeping it newer longer.

 

 

Quick Release Hose Connectors

These quick release hose connectors for your water hookups are important in case of emergency.  If you ever have to unhook in a hurry because of fire or weather, using these will save precious time in the event of an emergency.  RV Fire Safety and RV Weather Safety can influence your life at any time.  Better to be prepared instead of sorry!  

 

 

Sewer Essentials

 

Sewer Hose & Support

You will need a new sewer hose for your RV.  Buying a quality sewer hose is paramount.  A broken sewer hose….is just….well you know….poopy 🙂  You don't want that to happen to you!  Spend your money on a good one.  You won't be sorry. A sewer hose support is an expandable rack that your sewer hose can rest on while you are hooked up.  It is a valuable asset to draining your black tank properly.  Setting it up to drain in the proper direction will help avoid backups and spills.  Buy a minimum of twenty-foot long sewer support rack to enable better support of your sewer hose.

 

 

Happy Camper

Happy Camper Is an organic an RV holding (black) tank additive that is enzyme based and will help eliminate odors.  It eliminates the odors instead of just masking them.  I hate lavender-scented poop, don't you?  I just want a clean-smelling environment and Happy Camper does just that by using live aerobic bacteria that break down waste and crowd out odor-producing bacteria.  We add this to our tank after every dump.  We have also used it in our grey tank when things start becoming unpleasant in there 🙂

 

 

 

Electrical Essentials

 

CATV cable

Many campsites have cable tv for you to use while visiting.  In order to access this amenity, you will need a CATV cable that you can hook up between your RV and the cable connection at the campsite.  Even if you have a satellite system installed, having a CATV cable will be handy when you have access to cable but your satellite isn't working well in that area.

 

 

50/30 Amp Power Cord Extension

Sometimes the ideal place (level spot, no branches) to park is a little too far from the RV hookups at the campsite. That is when a 50/30 amp power cord extension is important.  You will need to get power and this extension cord allows for more flexibility in your RV parking arrangement.

 

 

30/50 Amp Reducer Plug

This 30/50 amp reducer plug will be necessary when you have a 50 amp rig and a 30 amp electrical post at a campsite.  This plug gives you more flexibility to camp in a variety of campgrounds.  Just remember to watch your energy consumption when you have to do this.  Your available power is greatly reduced.

 

 

Surge Protector

If your RV doesn't have a built-in surge protector, you will need one to use at the electrical post.  This heavy-duty surge protector will control energy spikes coming into your rig and prevent costly damage.  We strongly feel this is a non-negotiable thing to buy.

 

 

Must-have items for the New RVer

These 14 must-have items for your new (or new to you) RV are necessary for you to be able to hook up at a campsite without worry and go have fun.  Be sure to put these items in your budget when counting the cost of this RVing adventure.  Sometimes, depending on your dealer, you may be able to get some of these essentials negotiated into your RV purchase.  It never hurts to ask!!!

For more RV advice that will help you make the most of your RV life, get one our Get Started Roadmaps below. 

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Luann Street


I have a passion to help people who want to travel, design an RV life they love! I was a full-timer along with my husband, Bryan for 5 years. I am now learning to RV solo.

I have created many products that enhance and improve the RV lifestyle:
-The Complete RV Travel Planner
-Your Next RV Destination Membership
-The Full-time RV Framework
-Trading Stuff for Memories Downsizing System
-The RV Buying Method

Luann Street

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  1. Hi! I just found your blog and I really appreciate all of the info that you’ve packed into each post.
    As far as the sewer hose, is the one that you’ve linked to on Amazon the one that you actually use? I’ve seen different recommendations and have been looking at this one, but it’s much more expensive:
    Lippert 359724 Waste Master 20’ Extended RV Sewer Hose Management System

    My husband and I have just bought our first RV (new) and are gathering our necessities. The cost is adding up but I don’t want to cut corners on the important supplies.

    Thanks!

    1. Congrats on the new RV! Yes, we use that hose and rack and have had it for two years. We have the 15′ and said in the article to buy a 20′ because of experience! We have been very happy with our choice. Hope this helps….the must-have accessories do add up! Happy Travels!

  2. my RV is my home. I live where i cannot access the sewer system and instead use a maceator pump, long hose, and that drains into the sewer system of the house. it’s uphill slightly and so far the pump and big hose seems to be working. I am wondering if anyone has added thoughts? the best maceator pumps? the best products or system for keeping the tanks clean, breaking down the solid wastes, etc. Thanks!

    1. We use a macerator pump when we visit our daughter and have to pump it 100 ft. So far so good! The best thing you can do to make sure the tank evacuates well is to use a lot of water. We usually close our grey tank (when we are hooked up to sewer all the time) for a day to fill the grey with a lot of water and use it to flush out the black tank. Water is key.

  3. thanks for the great info. I am permanently living in my RV. and am about 75 feet from the water source to the water valve on the RV. is there a good quality heated water hose or heat tape that you would recommend adding to the hose so that i can stay hooked up to fresh water year round?

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