Tips and advice

Final inspections before you hit the road

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Final inspections before you hit the road

By Jean-Luc Théberge, author of the Guide du petit campeur québécois
At home

Before leaving on your camping adventure, there are a number of little things to check. All your appliances, like your dishwasher, clothes washer and oven, lights and so on must be turned off or have finished their cycle before you shut and lock the door.

Check every room a few minutes before you leave. A stuffed toy left behind can be a real tragedy for a young child.

This little ritual will certainly help you head off with complete confidence and avoid serious problems. Finding six inches of water in the house when you return is an unpleasant surprise!

Needless to say, you should also lock all your doors and, if possible, let the neighbours know if you’re going to be away for a long time.

These last-minute checks should be part of your departure routine. They are almost essential, and will save you all kinds of trouble.

Inspecting your RV

Quickly inspect inside and outside your RV and car, to make sure that everything is where it should be.

You can use good-quality bungee cords to hold things in place. Poor-quality ones will lose their elasticity after a few uses. Check the latches on cupboard doors and other storage spaces, too.

Then check the rear lights, turn signals, brake lights, the bike rack and the bikes themselves, and your tires. You should also examine the RV hitch, the trailer brakes, stabilizer bars, safety chains and the general appearance of your RV and automobile.

Take a quick walk around your RV and a brief look inside whenever you fill up, too.

A few drops of oil or grease on the ball before you hook it up to the car can help prevent very unpleasant squeaking from your RV on the road. But be careful, it’s also a great way to get your clothes dirty!

Quiz one other when you first start off to make doubly sure that nothing has been left behind, before it’s too late to go back.

Keep the radio low for the first few kilometres, so that you can hear any suspicious noises.

When you go to get something out of the RV, open cupboard and fridge doors carefully. Lots of things can shift around on the road and can topple out.

For long trips, one of the adults can go in back to play with the youngest travellers. It’s sure to be greatly appreciated – by everyone!