Thursday, March 21, 2013

RV Inverter. Water Heater. Alaska Highway. Fresh Water. Nice Meals. Oleander. Pop Rivets. RV Fridge. Special License? Storage Tray. Tires. "Dr. Livingstone, I presume?"


For “tRaVersing Thursday”, or RV Day:

Inverter problems can ruin your day by Steve Savage, Mobility RV Service

“If you own a diesel pusher, odds are that you have an on-board power inverter. Not only does the thing charge your batteries, it also converts battery power to shore power for appliance use when you're away from the grid and don't want to use your generator.

Since the inverter doubles as a battery charger when tied to shore power or running the generator, a frequent question is this: What happens if the inverter stops working? Happily, you can keep your batteries charged by running your coach engine. Trouble is, if the transfer switch inside the inverter fails, you may no longer have "shore power" to run stuff like your microwave oven or entertainment center. This is because some power outlets may be fed through the inverter, regardless of whether you're on battery power, on generator, or plugged into an outside source of shore power.

One work-around: Use extension cords inside the coach to temporarily plug into outlets that are still "hot." Can't find any? You may be plain out of luck until you can get your inverter repaired. Like so many things in high-end RVs with lots of high tech, inverters are great when they work, and a bust when they don't.”


Best to run electric RV water heater all the time or only when hot water needed?

“Gary Bunzer, the RV Doctor, answers a question from a viewer of a recent live webcast about whether it is best to leave an electric water heater on all the time or just turn it on when hot water is needed.



Driving the Alaska Highway? Is much of it gravel with many potholes?

“Filmmaker John Holod, who has produced several DVDs about traveling to and from Alaska with an RV, talks about the road conditions on the Alaska Highway. RVers who plan to head to our far north state should watch this.”


In a Squeeze for Fresh Water?

"On a recent boondocking adventure, we were without our usual portable fresh water tank and ran low on fresh water. To get more water into our rig, we took a bunch of gallon plastic jugs and filled them up. Back at the rig, we took a short length of water hose, fitted out with a 'female' hose fitting. Sticking the 'raw' end of the hose into our RV's water inlet port, we then stuck the hose fitting over the mouth of a water jug. We then inverted the water jug, and nearly all the water drained into the RV with very little spillage. After a couple of trips to the nearest faucet, we were 'back in business' for another few days of boondocking without having to move the RV — and much faster than using a funnel!"  By Russ and Tina De Maris.


Boondocking? Don't give up nice meals

“If you'll be boondocking for a few days away from home, there's no need to give up nice meals nor spend a lot of time in the kitchen. Precook some of your favorite dishes, then pack them up in aluminum foil containers or aluminum pouches. Popped in the freezer, they'll be ready for you to re-heat in your range or even outside on the gas grill. The beauty is, you won't have a lot of washing up to do afterwards — just toss the containers in the trash. Surprisingly, pasta dishes work quite well on the re-heat cycle. To determine appropriate amounts, when you cook up your meals, use a standard serving plate. Place the amount you'd serve at a meal on the plate, then transfer to your freezing containers.” Russ and Tina De Maris


Meat Pies Make the RV Meal

Janet Groene's Piquant Piroshki
    “This shortcut version of a Polish classic meat pie is easy to make and it bakes to toasty perfection in your RV oven.
12-ounce can corned beef
Small onion, very finely chopped
½ cup shredded cheese such as sharp cheddar
16 “grand” biscuits
Bottled chili sauce
    In a bowl, break up corned beef and stir in onion and shredded cheese. Spray a cookie sheet or baking pan(s). Set the oven to 425 degrees.
    With your hands, flatten biscuits to as large and thin a circle as possible. Place a mound of corned beef in the center (do not over-fill). Bring up edges and pinch to seal.  Repeat with additional biscuits and filling. Place on baking sheet(s) 2 inches apart. Bake about 10 minutes or until golden. Serve with chili sauce. Makes 6 to 8 servings.
Cook’s note: To assure a good seal, moisten edges of dough with a wet finger before pressing together.”
See more of Janet Groene’s RV-ready recipes at

From me:  Or bake in the spaces in an upside down muffin tin. You can heat tortillas that way, too, to make taco salad bowls.


Plan in pencil.
“If you like to plan your days and weeks ahead, write your schedule in pencil so it can be easily changed. RVing is about freedom. Don't become a slave to an artificial timetable.”


Be careful around these poisonous plants found in some campgrounds

“Chuck Woodbury warns you about a poisonous plant, oleander, found in the American West, including some campgrounds in dry climates or deserts. The plants can be deadly under certain circumstances.”

More at:


Hang Things on RV Walls using Pop Rivets

“We demonstrate how to hang things on the interior walls of an RV. Just about all motorhome, travel trailer and fifth wheel walls are the same thin material that isn't strong enough to hold wood screws. And without access behind the wall panels, there's no way to use bolts, since you can't tighten down the nuts. And Velcro only works for really lightweight items.
3M Command hooks are good for items up to a certain weight, but what about when you want to attach something heavy... or permanently?”


No 1 Reason Why your RV Fridge will not get cold

“Every RV fridge has to run relatively level; this video will tell you everything you need to know on how to do this.”


A built-in feature of your RV fridge you probably don't know about

“Rene Agredano of has a tip about a handy built-in device in an RV refrigerator that many (if not most) RVers do not known is there. But it can come in handy, as Rene explains:”


Is a special license required for driving a big RV?

“Shopping for a new RV? There are plenty of things to take into consideration, not just how livable the rig, nor how much it costs, but here's one frequently missed: Will you need a special endorsement on your driver license to operate it? Read more.

Check out the driver license requirement page for more information.”


Build your own slide out storage tray

“From blogger Jim Twamley comes this advice about how to add a slide out storage tray to your RV. "I absolutely love RV slide-out storage," he writes. "It makes RVing much easier and helps you stay organized. Commercial grade slide-out trays can be expensive but you can build them yourself for a fraction of the cost." Jim shows you step by step how it's done.”


Be prepared, says RV tire expert

“Our RV tire expert Roger Marble writes, "I am pretty sure the Boy Scouts were not thinking about RV tires when they selected the motto of "Be Prepared." However that motto does provide good guidance for RV owners when it comes to their tires and being prepared in the event of a failure or even better yet being prepared for travel in a way that can decrease the chance of having a failure. Read more.


RV jargon. Do you know what these terms mean?

“When you work in the RV Industry and are exposed to RVs almost everyday, you take some things for granted. One of those things is RV terminology. When I hear these terms I just assume everybody understands them. Here are some common RV terms that will help enhance your RV jargon.”


One of the very best things about traveling in a motorhome is that a restroom is always just a few steps away.


On This Day:


Stanley begins search for Livingstone, Mar 21, 1871:

“On this day in 1871, journalist Henry Morton Stanley begins his famous search through Africa for the missing British explorer Dr. David Livingstone.

images[8] After setting out from Zanzibar in March 1871, Stanley led his caravan of nearly 2,000 men into the interior of Africa. Nearly eight months passed--during which Stanley contracted dysentery, cerebral malaria and smallpox--before the expedition approached the village of Ujiji, on the shore of Lake Tanganyika. Sick and poverty-stricken, Livingstone had come to Ujiji that July after living for some time at the mercy of Arab slave traders. When Stanley's caravan entered the village on October 27, flying the American flag, villagers crowded toward the new arrivals. Spotting a white man with a gray beard in the crowd, Stanley stepped toward him and stretched out his hand: "Dr. Livingstone, I presume?"”



The house and garage were still in disarray from all the problems we have had with the electrical installation of the Heat/Air units.   Ray had to drive up to Huntsville, so he couldn’t help me until later.  I had to return some dishes to Claudia, so Misty and I had our walk down there.  Jay wanted to work, so we brought him back here.

He routered a slot in the back of the apron that goes under the window where the new Heat/AC is, to hide the conduit and cord, and screwed it in place.  So we were able to put the blind, three-corner chest and office chest of drawers back in place.   Then we put the wall panels back up in the garage, remounted the upper and lower cabinets so we could put all the labeled parts bins back in them.  So at least there is some semblance of order and maybe we can find items that we need now. 

Ray came over to spackle and caulk the gaps by the window apron, and then gave me 6 tiny (1”) little Beefsteak tomato plants, so I had to stop and pot them.  It was another day of walking back and forth for any tools that we needed, so I waited until I was a bit more rested to move the computer desk back to where it belongs.

It was cooler and overcast, so I thought I might be able to take my sweet old cat Terry back to the vet.  He isn’t getting any better, and should be showing signs of improvement by now.  Then the sun came out, and I don’t like to carry animals around in the TX afternoon sun, even with the AC on.  I always worry about being in a traffic tie up or breakdown.  The sun through the glass sure makes the van hot when parked anywhere, even for a short time.  Terry went out onto the screen porch, and was happily lapping up some sunshine and Vit. D.  So I called the vet clinic first, as it is a few towns away, and they were very busy with a long wait, so the vet tech said just to keep him on the meds, and see how he is next week.  He has been on his meds now for the prescribed 14 days.


Rod and Loyce Ivers said...

Could Terry be allergic to some or any of the plants in your house or yard..?

LakeConroePenny,TX said...

Hi Rod, thank you for your comment.

I delayed replying to this, hoping that I would have more info.

It is now Sunday, and I can hear that Terry's sinuses are still congested, and so are mine. Terry doesn't go outside, but he does like to sit in my screen porch.

It might be the yellow pollen around here, so I think another trip to the vet is necessary, especially as he is still eating ravenously, but not putting on weight.

Happy Tails,and Trails, Penny,