If you’re new to “RV life” you may have a few questions about RVing, buying an RV, or RVs in general. Have no fear, RV Newbie, the experts here at Blue Dog RV are here to answer any questions you have about RVs! From RV types and accessories to planning a trip and servicing your RV, we have all the answers and information you need to know!
What is an RV?
RV is an abbreviation for “recreational vehicle.” So, the new question is, “what is a recreational vehicle?” A recreational vehicle is a motor vehicle or trailer that includes living quarters designed for accommodation. These accommodations often include kitchen, bedrooms, bathrooms, dining areas, and more. As time goes on there are more and more amenities being added to RVs such as flat screen TVs, gaming systems, king sized beds, granite countertops, full size bathrooms, and much more! While these features are typically found in luxury motorhomes, there are many different types of RVs that can be used for full-time living or just on the weekend.
Types of RVsThere are 4 main types of RVs, which are commonly used for a variety of reasons from RV camping and hunting to tailgating, road-tripping, transporting other vehicles, and even living. Each type of RV is equipped with features that make these things possible and easier for their owner. The main RV types include travel trailers, motorhomes, fifth wheels, and toy haulers.
What is a travel trailer? A travel trailer is a type of towable RV that is towed behind a car or truck that provides a place to sleep, eat, and use the bathroom that is more comfortable and protective than a tent. There are several types of travel trailers, and sometimes they can be called different names such as caravans, campers, tourers, or camper trailers. There are also smaller versions of these like truck campers and pop up campers that don't need to be towed; they go straight on the bed of the truck.
That being said, most people who buy travel trailers are weekend warriors who use them for long road trips or for camping. Some people use them when they go hunting as well! Although these vehicles are capable of being lived in full time, most people who choose to live solely out of an RV choose to do so from a motorhome.
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MotorhomesWhat is a motorhome? A motorhome is a motorized RV that offers living accommodations. The difference between other RVs and motorhomes is that they are, well, motorized. Motorhomes run off of gas and don’t require a vehicle to pull them along, which is the reason most people who “live the RV life” prefer to live out of them. They often boast many sleeping spaces and large living areas, which is much more suitable for large families that are traveling together. There are a few different classes of motorhomes, including Class A, Class B, and Class C, which is based on a few different qualifications.
While they are all motorized, the differences in the classes are mainly due to size, space, and the amount of features in the RV. Class A RVs are the largest with the most living space, while Class C RVs are more like "camper vans." Motorhomes are typically the most “luxurious” type of RV one could, but they are also often the most expensive
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What is a fifth wheel? A fifth wheel RV is a larger version of the travel trailer that includes a “fifth-wheel coupling,” which provides a link between a semi-trailer and the towing truck or other type of vehicle. It is a horseshoe-shaped part that is often called a “fifth wheel” since it provides such towing stability.
Because of this and the size of the RV, many hunters choose to utilize these vehicles on their hunting trips. It’s large enough to hold all of their supplies and gear, and the additional towing stability of the “fifth wheel” helps balance out the weight of everything in the RV.
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What is a toy hauler? A toy hauler, also known as a “sport utility recreational vehicle” is typically a type of travel trailer or fifth wheel RV that features a “garage” at its rear. The garage has a large door with a ramp attached to it, which allows easy access to store vehicles for transportation. Toy Haulers can be used to transport anything, but people mainly use it to transport things like motorcycles, ATVs, and golf carts. Snowmobiles, jet skis, and even smaller car models are often transported using toy haulers as well.
Toy Hauler RVs are so popular because they offer both living accommodations and an impressive amount of storage space.
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There are so many RV accessories that you will need before you hit the road, we could put together a never-ending list. However, there are some accessories that are essential to any and every RV owner! A few of these include a surge protector, a water pressure regulator, a fresh water hose, an RV water filter, an RV power cord, an RV drain hose, and of course, toilet paper. Check out more details about essential RV accessories!
Popular RV Brands
Here at Blue Dog RV, we carry RVs from some of the best, most reliable RV brands out there.
Here are some of our favorite recreational vehicle brands that come highly recommended from our past clients who have trusted us to help them on their RV journey for years.
RV Basics FAQs
What type of RV do I need?
The type of RV you need depends on what you’re planning to use your RV for, such as camping, hunting, transportation, or even living. You also need to consider your budget! No matter if you’re buying a new RV or a used RV, having a dollar amount in mind when you go to purchase will make the process much easier. If you’re going to use your RV for road tripping or camping, a travel trailer is your best best, but if you plan to use it for hunting trips as well, we recommend buying a fifth wheel, which will not only have enough room to hold all of your supplies, but that “fifth wheel” attachment will also give you better towing stability! If you’re involved in motorsport and need something to transport your motorcycle, four wheeler, or ATV, a toy hauler is definitely for you! However, if you want a luxury RV for travel or you want to retire and live in an RV full time, we recommend a motorhome, specifically a Class A!
Can you live in an RV?
Yes! It’s 100% legal to live in an RV; you just have to be careful about local zoning laws when you’re choosing where to park. If you decide to live in an RV full time, a Class A or Class C motorhome will be perfect for you!
What's the difference between a bunkhouse and a bunkbed?
A bunkhouse is a private, or semi-private, sleeping area that often has its own entertainment area and bathroom, while bunk beds are typically located in multi-functional areas that can be converted into sleeping space.
Do you need a special license to drive an RV?
Typically, the answer is no. In most states, you just need a standard driver’s license to own and operate a recreational vehicle. However, if your motorhome, RV, or towing vehicles are longer than the maximum length or weigh in above 26,000lbs, you may need a special license to purchase, own, and operate it. This varies by state!