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Comments for RV Travel Newsletter Issue 811

  • Your perspective on leasing for 20 years is looking at it from an investment angle. It’s not an investment it’s a lifestyle. You could go on vacation for two weeks every year and spend $200,000 on flights and hotels and meals and tours and you’re not going to get that money back either. Besides in 20 years I’ll probably be dead so who cares what it’s worth then. 🙂

    • Of course it’s a lifestyle. It’s also how we spend our money. What I did not mention is all the people who buy an RV with 10% down, on a 20-year plan, and then they get sick three years later, and the RV is worth half what they paid, and they are upside down in their loan by $20,000, $30,000 or more, even far more. If I were writing about RVs as an investment, I would have figured how much it would cost if the RVer invested that $779 a month in a good mutual fund for 20 years. There are all kinds of ways to look at this. My point is that stretching out any large loan for 20 years, except for a home, which appreciates, is not always wise.

      • I say hold off on an RV purchase for a year or two. If as many new RVs are being sold as you report there will be an overabundance of new/used RVs available from those who jumped in without any fore thought and found out the lifestyle isn’t for them. And you can save big bucks too.

      • For some of us, that may be the only way we can do it. No way my motorhome is a good investment. But when my wife and I leave the “crisis center” that is the home we share with other family members, it becomes worth the expense for all the intangibles (too numerous to mention) the travel provides that ease our spirits and give us pleasure.

  • re: Test the RV park water before you drink it!
    How pure is the water at the RV park you just entered? Is it pure enough to drink or full of contaminants? This TDS meter provides an inexpensive and convenient way to instantly check your overall water quality. Don’t risk drinking bad water! Use this hand-held device to check the condition of your water filter, too. Every RVer should have one of these! Learn more or order.

    This is total BS. TDS is total dissolved solids. This has virtually no bearing on whether the water is safe to drink! It gives no indication of whether pathogens are present and no indication if organic chemicals are present.

    • John is true on his assessment. What are the solids ? Lead, arsenic, etc ?? Nasty organics will ruin your trip fast !!

      • This has some bearing on water quality, I also have always, run the water for a minute, and then smell it and taste it prior to hooking up.
        For bigly drinking water, I always carry several gallons of my own home water. ( which has never been checked for potability)

        • Our Zero Water Filter has a map that shows the high TDS areas. Arizona where we winter is very high in TDS, and the zero filter would last about 10 days. We now buy water at the local grocery store in gallon jugs and fill those again at the water machines for about 25 cents. We then filter that water through the zero water filter, which then can last up to 4 months or more.

  • I looked at it from a different angle. From an investment perspective, why would I remove money from my IRA that is earning 10% – 20% or more every year when the interest on the 20 year loan I have for my Monaco coach is only 4.5%? I put nothing down and financed the entire purchase. Yes, I am upside down with 6 more years to go but I also knew that this was the last coach I was going to own and will hopefully still have it when I pass on. Then it will be my kids problem as to what to do with it.

  • The cheapest way is to buy a used motorhome for cash and then drive it until it’s dust. But how many people do or would want to? The best things in life rarely “pencil out.”
    I’m 63 and none of the men in my family made it out of their 70s. I’m enjoying my new Winnebago. Sometimes you have to calculate in the “What the F***” factor and go for it!

    • Well said Eric. Same here, you’ve got it figured out. Life’s pretty short.

      Surprisingly, most financial planners tell you to have the longest mortgage possible because of the low interest loans available.

  • We recently spent four nights at the huge RV park in Sparks, Nevada. There’s so much new building going on in Sparks — including this RV park. It’s neat and clean but a bit cramped but they’re making a large addition to this well over 300 unit RV park. We noticed two motorhomes worth well over a million dollars … one towing a Lexus (of course). I can only wonder where these costly behemoths stay for their “vacations”.
    Also wanted to say how grateful I am for the stories about the aged RV travelers — inspires me to keep on as I’m only a mere 78.
    Thanks for a lot of great information. I don’t normally get the time to write to you.

  • I totally agree that it is necessary to leave extra space between your rig and the car in front of you to provide more opportunity to slow down safely. This, however, gives rude drivers the opportunity to nip and tuck into the extra space without any regard of the danger they create by you now not being able to slow down in time.

    I’ve had idiots coming onto the freeway as far as they can just to get around you.

  • On-demand water heater issues:
    For those that have the Atwood On-demand hot water heater and have had t he same issues I have had, that being no hot water or water so hot you scald your skin, the solution offered (free) is to replace your on-demand system with the standard 6-10 gal hot water system.
    I elected to pay for a new Truma system. It works like they say. I get hot water and I can temper it to suit my every need (shower, doing dishes, or washing my hands). I have no worry of scalding and I have not lost hot water because of low water pressure at a campsite.
    You may wish to ask those that have the Atwood system their issues and even how many have the system. Maybe start a survey?

    • On-demand water issues:
      It seems that the Atwood system is not the only system with problems. We have a Girard Model GSWH-1M Tankless water heater, with the same problems, I couldn’t have written it better. If you don’t mind adding the Girard to your survey. Unit in for water heater repairs now.

    • I totally agree & I think I know why they operate like that. It said it there manual that the unit requires .5 gallon of water flow to make hot water. Thats fine when your washing dishes you’ll use at least that. However my shower mixing valve is a single handle & when you try to throttle down to the right temperature, you actually are using less that the required .5 gallons of water & now your getting a COLD shower the same goes the other way when your asking for more hot water , you get a lot of it. WOW its even worse when we boondocking & try to save water. I think those engineers need to re-think how we need to use our showers. So where do get a FREE solution to replace your on demand Atwood system?

  • Why is that Spectrum Rv website in Latin? Only the home page and the contact page are in english, the rest is in latin? While I appreciated the chance to practice my dead language skills I really did want to read about possible dealers in my area.

    • Staff contacted Spectrum RV regarding their website — last week there wasn’t any “Latin” however, the links to product information often led nowhere. We tried to give them a “heads up” that they’d likely be getting a big hit from readers wanting more information. Sad to say, it appears they didn’t take the warning to heart. Hopefully they’ll get their web site together in a hurry.
      Russ De Maris
      Senior Editor,

    • Well, that’s very interesting, SqueakyTiki! The About and Dealers tabs are in a foreign language — strange. But the links on the Home page, Fifth Wheels page and Contact page are mostly in English. No clue what’s going on. I think I’ll send them an email and see if they’re even aware of this. Maybe they’re using one of those templates where they have Greek or Latin or Martian filling in and you replace it with your own text. But who knows. If I find out, I’ll post it here. Thanks for writing! —Diane at

    • Because they have not finished their web site. The nonsense characters are used by the web design folks to construct templates that the user replaces with their own text. Obviously Chuck jumped the gun with the link because they “are not ready for prime time.”

      • Thanks, Jerry. I responded to SqueakyTiki before I found your reply to her (in our long list of Comments). And we posted this item as an interesting news story (we thought) and included the link in case anyone wanted further information (or brushing up on whatever language it is). At least some of the info is in English — they just have a little more work to do on their website. But I’m glad to see that my “wild guess” about the template was close — never having seen a website template before. 😀 Have a good night. —Diane at

  • Why “own” depreciating assets once you are retired? No, we will not payoff our new 20 year RV loan. We will sell it in 5, 8 10 years. If we have to come up with more money to pay it off, we will still have been making interest money on that money we did not have to put out.
    Being retired, living off your retirement income and SS, you know what you can afford to spend each month so GO SPEND IT. You saved for it,now enjoy it. For God sake don’t spend your life sitting at home so you can pass it on to your kids. If they want money, let them earn it like you did.

  • Every issue you deplore the state of rv sites in the US. We are in a cycle where it is almost criminal to spend money on structure for our citizens. How about giving a shout-out for more funding for our Parks Service, our Forest Service our Land Management, our Bureau of reclamation, our Dept of Agriculture. The citizens of USA have a perfect right to share in the taxes that they pay. Pass the word…

  • When are going to talk about how us diesel drivers are being ripped off at the pump when we have to pay more when using a credit card. Who travels with that much cash. This is one big ripoff. There needs to be a class action lawsuit. You need to get the ball rolling

  • Chuck, I know you’re not a fan of the smoke-filled campground. Have you seen the “smokeless” fire pit now being advertised on Hop over there and search for BioLite FirePit.

  • Off subject, just a question from a newer Class A person. At truck stops, do they sell gas or just diesel in the truckers area? thanks all