2017 RV Gear Guide

 

Our Annual guide to motorhome accessories is a valuable resource for owners looking to upgrade or replace tired components

You already know that owning a motorhome is the key to the ultimate road trip. With onboard conveniences like your own bed, food in the fridge and hot and cold running water, traveling in a motorhome remains the best way to get out and enjoy the countryside.

But the motorhome itself is only the beginning, as a trip to any RV resort or campground will attest. At one time or another, we’ve all found ourselves coveting some of our neighbor’s gadgets; the helpful things he or she has brought along to improve setup, entertainment, everyday life or even the dinghy-towing experience. Or, perhaps you’ve found yourself unable to utilize one of the onboard systems because you forgot to buy a new sewer fitting or Wi-Fi booster, or maybe your residential fridge drains your batteries far too quickly when without hookups. There’s no need to remain green with envy (or to feel left out of the loop), as we’ve gathered some of the most popular must-have accessories and their manufacturers here in one resource, making for easy one-stop perusing and shopping. Keeping up with the Joneses (or staying ahead of the curve) has never been easier.

 

Care and Maintenance

 

Cleaners and Waxes

We all know that a clean motorhome is a happy motorhome, as few things are as eye-catching (or pride-inducing) as piloting a glistening coach that sports that showroom shine. But, keeping the motorhome’s exterior free from black streaks, dead bugs and other debris goes well beyond aesthetics. Neglecting the exterior of a motorhome can lead to cracked seals, exposed seams and, in some cases, delamination of the side walls and roof. And that’s not even mentioning the damage accumulated road debris can do to vents and appliances, outside and in. Take some time before your trip (or between stops at your site, if permitted by the facility) to invest a little elbow grease with some of the following products. Your motorhome, and your pocketbook, will thank you in the long run.

Dometic, 800-544-4881, www.dometic.com/usa
Gel-Gloss, 800-243-3272, www.gel-gloss.com
Gold Eagle, 844-601-9841, www.goldeagle.com
Griot’s Garage, 800-345-5789, www.griotsgarage.com
Meguiar’s, 800-347-5700, www.meguiars.com
Poli Glow, 800-922-5013, www.poliglow-int.com
ProtectAll, 800-521-3032, www.protectall.com
RejeX, 469-583-9218, www.rejex.com
Reliable Products, 800-932-8742, www.reliableproductsonline.com
Roadmaster (Voom!), 800-669-9690, www.roadmasterinc.com
Shurhold Industries, 772-287-1313, www.shurhold.com
Star brite, 800-327-8583, www.starbrite.com
Thetford, 800-543-1219, www.thetford.com

Sealants

Sealing exterior components against the elements is an often-overlooked maintenance item, which is an oversight that can be costly. Many RV warranties require periodic sealant maintenance and replacement, which is a far cry from waiting for a window or slideout to leak before squeezing some generic caulking into the gaps. It’s best to inspect the sealants on the roof every 90 days for dryness, cracks or separations, and they must be serviced as needed. Sealants are available in a variety of forms, including tape, foam, caulking, silicone and more. It’s important to know which type of sealants you need, as using the wrong product on your roof and side walls can lead to disastrous results. When applying sealants, follow the curing instructions to the letter, and always be sure to work in a well-ventilated area.

Alpha Systems, 800-462-4698, www.alphasystemsinc.com/productcare
Dicor, 800-837-2059, www.dicor.com
EternaBond, 800-248-4010, www.eternabond.com
Geocel, 800-348-7615, www.geocelusa.com
GE Silicone, 866-275-4372, www.caulkyourhome.com
Loctite Products, 800-624-7767, www.loctiteproducts.com
Sika Corporation, 800-933-7452, www.usa.sika.com

RV Covers and Tire Covers

Unless you have access to a climate-controlled storage facility, investing in a motorhome cover is a good idea. Damaging UV rays, rain, snowfall and bird droppings all take their toll on any motorhome’s exterior. Covers are available in a variety of configurations, including universal fit, covers intended for a particular class of motorhome and covers customized specifically for a particular make and model. Look for a cover made of breathable, rip-stop material to help prevent pooling and mold. Covers made using Tyvek material on the roof may cost a little more up front, but they offer better overall protection.

ADCO, 800-541-2326, www.adcoprod.com
CalMark Cover, 800-838-7236, www.calmarkcovers.com
Carver Industries, 888-482-6837, www.carvercovers.com
Classic Accessories, 800-854-2315, www.classicaccessories.com
Covercraft Direct, 800-274-7006, www.covercraft.com
Coverking, 800-268-3754, www.coverking.com
CoverQuest, 888-726-9300, www.coverquest.com
Elements, 888-626-7576, www.campingworld.com/elements
Empire Covers, 844-859-0910, www.empirecovers.com

 

Dinghy Towing

 

Tow Bars

Providing the connection between motorhome and dinghy vehicle, tow bars are generally the first purchase made after selecting a vehicle to tow four wheels down. A-frame tow bars are offered in solid or folding varieties and are designed to fit specific baseplates (sold separately) mounted to the dinghy-vehicle frame. The folding design will generally fit a wider range than the solid design.

Self-aligning tow bars are available in dinghy- or motorhome-mounted configurations. Self-aligning tow bars are designed to fit a wide range of vehicles by attaching to model-specific baseplates. Motorhome-mounted bars are often the better choice, as there is less chance of damage when not in use, and hitching is generally a one-person job with a bit of practice.

Blue Ox, 800-228-9289, www.blueox.com
Demco, 800-543-3626, www.demco-products.com
Roadmaster Inc., 800-669-9690, www.roadmasterinc.com

Auxiliary Braking Systems

A dinghy-braking system will increase safety and help improve the stopping power of your motorhome-and-dinghy combination. Whether it’s direct or proportional, or permanently or temporarily mounted, an auxiliary braking system is a must-have if you plan to tow a dinghy vehicle. Not only does it make stopping less of a white-knuckle experience, but it will also ease the burden on the motorhome’s braking components, helping improve long-term durability and reducing maintenance costs — and to comply with motor vehicle laws.

Blue Ox, 800-228-9289, www.blueox.com
Brakebuddy (Hopkins Towing Solutions), 800-835-0129, www.hopkinstowingsolutions.com
Roadmaster Inc., 800-669-9690, www.roadmasterinc.com
RViBrake (Danko Manufacturing), 800-815-2159, www.rvibrake.com
SMI Manufacturing Inc., 800-893-3763, www.smibrake.com
VIP Enterprises, 734-516-2056, www.viprv.com

Tow Dollies

Using a tow dolly is a less-intrusive alternative (no baseplate or wiring) to towing a dinghy vehicle. It also allows you to tow a vehicle that isn’t approved for four-down towing applications, like many front-wheel-drive cars with an automatic transmission. Tow dollies are easy to use and can even be equipped with brakes; some even break down for easy storage.

Demco, 800-543-3626, www.demco-products.com
Roadmaster Inc., 800-669-9690, www.roadmasterinc.com

Electronics/Electrical

 

Backup Cameras

We can’t always rely on our co-pilot to guide us into a campsite or out of the driveway. In those cases, a backup camera is a great tool, offering a wide view of the area behind the motorhome. Side cameras can also be useful to help overcome blind spots while on the road. Backup cameras are also valuable for keeping an eye on the dinghy vehicle.

ASA Electronics, 877-305-0445, www.asaelectronics.com
Furrion, 888-354-5792, www.furrion.com
Hopkins Towing Solutions, 800-835-0129, www.hopkinstowingsolutions.com
iBall, 877-298-2055, www.iballhitchcam.com
Toren (Swift Hitch), 617-600-8282, www.swifthitch.com

GPS Devices

Goodbye road atlas, hello smart technology! Not only does a modern GPS unit contain up-to-the-minute road maps and detours, but RV-specific models allow users to program in their vehicles’ profiles, offering the best route without leading them under short overpasses or on twisty mountain passes. Today’s GPS units can also update traffic and weather conditions, and can display the location of the nearest campgrounds, fuel stops, restaurants, convenience stores and other places of interest — all using audio, so your eyes need not leave the road.
Garmin, 800-800-1020, www.garmin.com
Magellan GPS, 800-707-9971, www.magellangps.com
Rand McNally, 877-446-4863, www.randmcnally.com
TomTom, www.tomtom.com/en_us/drive/camper-caravan

Solar-Powered Systems

A valuable tool for those who like to live life unplugged, a solar system enables users to harness the sun’s energy to generate usable power that can keep house batteries properly charged to perform much longer. An investment up front will easily pay for itself in terms of convenience and enhanced livability.

AM Solar, 541-726-1091, www.amsolarrv.com
Deltran USA (Battery Tender), 877-456-7901, www.batterytender.com
EEZ RV Products, 510-910-5397, www.eezrvproducts.com
Go Power, 866-247-6527, www.gpelectric.com
Nature Power, 800-588-0590, www.naturepowerproducts.com
Samlex Solar, 800-561-5885, www.samlexsolar.com
Sunforce Products, 888-478-6435, www.sunforceproducts.com
Zamp Solar, 541-728-0924, www.zampsolar.com

Surge Protectors

Surge protectors plug in to the RV park pedestal and are designed to protect the motorhome from damaging, unsteady/unreliable 30- or 50-amp 120-volt AC power. Think of all those sensitive electronics in your coach; just a few seconds of faulty power or a power surge may be all it takes to fry the circuits, resulting in expensive replacements. Some surge protectors are also equipped with a miswired pedestal indicator, which informs the user that the coast is clear before plugging in.

Camco, 800-334-2004, www.camco.net
Hughes Autoformers, 888-540-1504, www.hughesautoformers.com
Progressive Industries, 919-267-6948, www.progressiveindustries.net
Technology Research, 800-780-4324, www.trci.net

Inverters

Residential refrigerators continue to grow in popularity, as the additional space and conveniences like cold water and ice cubes at your stick home are hard to give up while on the road. But, where does the additional power needed to run these cooling closets come from? An inverter can provide the necessary power to run residential refrigerators, plus TVs and other small appliances, when 120-volt AC hookups are not available, or when it’s just not proper to run your motorhome’s AC generator. Using the battery bank as its power source, inverters come in sizes to produce as little as 150 watts to as much as 3,000 watts of 120-volt AC electricity, and many have multistage charging circuits.

Progressive Industries, 919-267-6948, www.progressiveindustries.net
Samlex Solar, 800-561-5885, www.samlexsolar.com
Sensata Technologies (Magnum Energy), 425-353-8833, www.magnum-dimensions.com
Tripp Lite, 773-869-1111, www.tripplite.com
Xantrex, 800-670-0707, www.xantrex.com

Generators

When camping off the beaten path, life without a generator can be like, well, camping. One of the reasons we decided to join the motorhome community was onboard convenience; an AC generator is a great accessory for powering most of the appliances and electronics (within the power rating) when a 120-volt AC source is not available. For additional versatility, a portable generator will offer auxiliary power at the campsite. Before purchasing, remember to calculate the likely power draw, and don’t forget that the motorhome’s air conditioner requires surge amperage upon startup.

Champion Power Equipment, 877-338-0999, www.championpowerequipment.com
Cummins Onan, 800-888–6626, www.power.cummins.com
Generac Power Systems, 888-436-3722, www.generac.com
Honda Power Equipment, 770-497-6400, www.powerequipmenthonda.com
Powerhouse Generators, 877-544-4449, www.powerhouse-products.com
Yamaha, 800-962-7926, www.yamahamotorsports.com/generator

LED Lighting

LED lighting isn’t only for holiday displays and televisions. In fact, most newer motorhomes include LED lighting in one form or another, as LED lights offer a more concentrated light source and last longer than their incandescent lightbulb counterparts, not to mention the fact that they use a fraction of the power. Retrofit kits are readily available for interior lighting, so RVers can finally stop burning their hands on the scorching incandescent bulbs on bedside reading lights.

 

Alpenglow Marine Lights, 406-889-3586, www.alpenglowlights.com
Command Electronics, 269-679-4011, www.commandelectronics.com
Diamond Group, 800-456-4498, www.dg-usa.com
EEZ RV Products, 510-910-5397, www.eezrvproducts.com
Jirah, 909-297-1926, www.jirahled.com
M4Products, 818-717-8840, www.m4products.com
Star Lights, 800-883-5444, www.starlightsinc.com
Super Bright LEDs, 866-590-3533, www.superbrightleds.com

Tire-Pressure Monitoring Systems

Tire monitoring is a task that is often overlooked by daily travelers trying to rack up the miles as quickly as possible. That can be a costly oversight, but a tire-pressure-monitoring system (TPMS) has your back. A TPMS uses sensors to monitor the pressure of all the tires on the motorhome (and dinghy vehicle, in most cases) and then transmits that information to a monitor in the cab. If a tire loses pressure or merely approaches a preset low-pressure threshold, the driver is alerted with flashing lights and/or an audible alarm. This allows you to pull over and address the situation before a costly — and dangerous — blowout occurs. Some new systems have also integrated smart-phone monitoring and alarms.

Advantage PressurePro, 816-887-3505, www.advantagepressurepro.com
Danko Manufacturing (Tire Patrol), 800-815-2159, www.tirepatrol.com
Doran Manufacturing, 866-816-7233, www.doranmfg.com
EEZ RV Products, 510-910-5397, www.eezrvproducts.com
Hopkins Towing Solutions, 800-835-0129, www.hopkinstowingsolutions.com
Minder Research (Tire Minder), 772-463-6522, www.minderresearch.com
Tire Traker, 866-200-9773, www.tiretraker.com
Truck System Technologies, 770-889-9102, www.tsttruck.com
Valor TPMS, 800-568-9188, www.valortpms.com

Entertainment

 

Audio and Video

When watercolor sunsets and the melodic croaking of frogs from a nearby pond aren’t enough, or when Old Maid is a drag and board games are boring, it’s good to know we have instant entertainment onboard. Motorhome entertainment systems can be as simple as an AM/FM/CD stereo and a small television, or as complex as a smart big-screen LED TV with eardrum-splitting surround sound and crisp 3-D picture from the Blu-ray player. Residential brands are becoming more and more prevalent, especially in bigger-bucks coaches, but we’ve included companies here with products designed specifically for the mobile/RV market — meaning extra measures are taken to ensure the components can withstand extreme weather conditions and on-the-road vibrations associated with a mobile lifestyle.

 

ASA Electronics, 877-305-0445, www.asaelectronics.com
Furrion, 888-354-5792, www.furrion.com
Fusion, 623-580-9000, www.fusionentertainment.com
Insignia Products, 877-467-4289, www.insigniaproducts.com
King, 952-922-6889, www.kingconnect.com
Patrick Industries (iRV Technologies), 888-373-3939, www.patrickind.com
PQN Audio, 805-794-6475, www.pqnenterprises.com

Satellite Programming Providers

Cable hookups at the RV park can be inconsistent, and over-the-air broadcast channels few and far between, so if television-watching is on your agenda, you’ll probably need a satellite provider. The equipment can be rented (under contract) or purchased, and there are plans designed specifically for RVers that can be turned on or off depending on your travel schedule.

 

Bell, 866-897-4117, www.bell.ca
DirecTV, 855-567-1665, www.directv.com
Dish, 888-434-0112, www.dish.com
Shaw Direct, 888-554-7827, www.shawdirect.ca

Antennas

Often (incorrectly) referred to as a satellite dish, in order to receive satellite programming (or over-the-air local channels, for that matter), you’ll need an antenna. These are available in permanent-mount and/or portable configurations, and continue to evolve in terms of ease of use and functionality. Some antennas are designed specifically for a particular provider, so take note. And, remember that if you wish to receive over-the-air programming, you’ll need a separate antenna in addition to one for a satellite provider.

 

King, 952-922-6889, www.kingconnect.com
KVH Industries, 401-847 3327, www.kvh.com
Shakespeare Marine, 800-845-7750, www.shakespeare-ce.com/marine
Winegard, 800-288-8094, www.winegard.com

Internet/Wi-Fi/Cell Boosters

What good is all the smart technology in the world when you aren’t able to receive a signal? These gadgets are practically a necessity in today’s technology-driven environment, especially when you consider that most highly desirable off-the-beaten-path destinations offer spotty service at best. Although these boosters don’t create hotspots or cellular signals, they do amplify the existing signals to give users the best opportunity for the most bars.

C. Crane, 800-522-8863, www.ccrane.com
PDQ Connect, 858-598-5001, www.pdqconnect.com
Shakespeare Marine, 803-227-1590, www.shakespeare.ce.com
Singlepoint, 866-959-9434, www.yoursinglepoint.com
SmoothTalker, 877-726-3444, www.smoothtalker.com
weBoost, 866-294-1660, www.weboost.com
Wi-Fi Ranger, 208-321-5544, www.wifiranger.com
Wilson Amplifiers, 800-568-2723, www.wilsonamplifiers.com
Winegard, 800-288-8094, www.winegard.com

Freshwater Systems

Water Hoses, Appliances and Connectors

Water on demand is one of the main features that sets RVing apart from tent camping; selecting the proper hoses, adapters and fittings is an important component of delivering the wet stuff to your motorhome. Remember to carry at least two hoses: one for the city-water connection and one for rinsing the black holding tank. Your motorhome likely already has a demand water pump, but upgrading to a more efficient (or quieter) model enhances the motorhome livability experience.

 

Camco, 800-334-2004, www.camco.net
Camping World, 888-626-7576, www.campingworld.com
Pirit, 888-747-4844, www.pirithose.com
Shurflo, 800-854-3218, www.shurflo.com
Teknor Apex, 800-556-3864, www.apexhose.com
Valterra, 818-898-1671, www.valterra.com
Xylem (Flojet), 949-608-3888,  www.xylemflowcontrol.com

Water Filters

Although water from the campground spigot is a wonderful convenience, its quality can be inconsistent and it can not only taste bad, but can damage the faucets, sinks and shower enclosures if left unfiltered. Installing an in-line filter helps to reduce harmful and foul-tasting contaminants. Many new motorhomes contain whole-house filters; when replacing those filters, we recommend a filter with a rating of 1 micron or less.

Camco (TastePure), 800-334-2004, www.camco.net
Culligan, 877-386-0823, www.culligan.com
Flow Pur, 234-759-3077, www.flowpur.com
Hydro Life, 800-626-7130, www.hydrolife.com
Multipure, 800-622-9206, www.multipure.com
RV Water Filter Store, 602-625-1875, www.rvwaterfilterstore.com
Water King, 337-988-2360, www.waterking.com

Exterior Shower Accessories

Even under the best circumstances, prolonged exposure to the elements and continued usage can eventually lead to damaged fittings, hoses, etc., on your motorhome’s exterior shower. In order to avoid the resultant damage to the motorhome’s side walls and structure, replace faulty components immediately.

Camco, 800-334-2004, www.camco.net
Dura Faucet, 888-242-5932, www.durafaucet.com
ITC Marine, 616-396-1355, www.itc-marine.com
LaSalle Bristol, 800-718-7187, www.lasallebristol.com
Phoenix Faucet, 800-222-6041, www.phoenixfaucets.com
Thetford, 800-543-1219, www.thetford.com

Indoor Living

 

 

Shades

A motorhome sitting out in the open can get quite hot (or cold, depending on the season), which puts additional demands on the air conditioning (if you’re plugged in or running the generator) or heating. Shades can be your first line of defense against the penetrating heat or frigid cold, especially when you cover the large windshield. The shades can be so effective that you may be able to limit the use of the air conditioning. The additional measure of privacy shades offer is an added benefit.

Auto-Motion Shade, 905-470-6198, www.automotionshade.com
Carefree of Colorado, 800-621-2617, www.carefreeofcolorado.com
Dicor (United Shade), 877-262-0954, www.unitedshade.com
Irvine Shade and Door, 574-522-1446, www.irvineshadeanddoor.com
Magne Shade, 336-753-0905, www.magneshade.com
MCD Innovations, 972-548-1850, www.mcdinnovations.com

Climate Control

When the climate-control system that came with your motorhome isn’t up to par, upgrading to a more efficient system can immediately improve the comfort level inside your RV. Replacing these systems is easier than you think, as most are designed to fit the same standard 14-inch roof openings. Heat pumps are available that offer heating and cooling from a single unit, and options are also available for ducted and nonducted applications.

Airxcel, 316-832-3400, www.airxcel.com
Atwood Mobile, 800-546-8759, www.atwoodmobile.com
Dometic, 800-544-4881, www.dometic.com/usa

Powered Roof Vents

Keeping the air moving inside the motorhome is important not only for comfort, but to help defend against mold and mildew. A powered roof vent with a fan is a great low-current-draw option to keep the air flowing. Some models can be controlled with a wireless remote, and some offer a rain sensor that will automatically close the dome when the storm hits.

Airxcel (MaxxAir), 316-832-3400, www.airxcel.com
Fan-Tastic Vent, 800-521-0298, www.fantasticvent.com
Heng’s Industries, 877-295-1205, www.hengsindustries.com

Appliances

Residential appliances in motorhomes have been trending as of late, with a familiar list of brand names that has previously been confined to the stationary-home market. But here, we’re talking primarily about appliances designed for RV use, or at the very least, appliances that have been available for use in an RV for more than a few months. We all know that upgrading appliances is a surefire way to improve the overall look of your motorhome, not to mention the benefits of newer, more efficient technology that goes along with the upgrade. Be sure to keep power requirements and weight restrictions in mind when shopping for your dream kitchen.

Airxcel (Suburban), 316-832-3400, www.airxcel.com
Atwood Mobile, 800-546-8759, www.atwoodmobile.com
Dometic, 800-544-4881, www.dometic.com/usa
Fisher and Paykel, 888-936-7872, www.fisherpaykel.com
Furrion, 888-354-5792, www.furrion.com
Girard Products, 866-559-1221, www.greenrvproducts.com
Splendide, 800-356-0766, www.splendide.com
Thetford (Norcold), 800-543-1219, www.thetford.com
Truma, 855-558-7862, www.truma.com

Outdoor Living

 

Awnings and Accessories

For a pleasant campsite experience, a patio awning is almost a necessity. A good-quality awning enables RVers to bring the party outside without completely exposing the festivities to the harsh elements. In addition to complete replacements, there are a number of add-ons available. Some companies even offer a “powered” awning channel that enables you to plug in fans, lights, speakers and other campsite gizmos.

Awnings by ZipDee, 800-338-2378, www.awningsbyzipdee.com
Camco, 800-334-2004, www.camco.net
Carefree of Colorado, 800-621-2617, www.carefreeofcolorado.com
Dometic (Power Channel), 800-544-4881, www.dometic.com/usa
EEZ RV Products, 510-910-5397, www.eezrvproducts.com
Fiamma, 407-672-0093, www.fiammausa.com
Girard Systems, 800-382-8442, www.girardrv.com
Lippert Components, 574-535-1125, www.lci1.com
ShadePro, 800-328-5100, www.shadepro.net

Leveling Systems

With a modern leveling system, you can finally say goodbye to those stacks of wood scraps in your storage compartments. Simply push a button upon arrival, and your motorhome can be completely level within seconds. These hydraulic levelers are fully automatic and are available for all motorhome classes.

Bullseye Leveling, 574-727-5795, www.bullseyeleveling.com
HWH Corporation, 800-321-3494, www.hwhcorp.com
Lippert Components (Power Gear), 574-535-1125, www.lci1.com
Quadra Manufacturing (Bigfoot), 800-752-9815, www.thebigfootleveler.com
 

 

 

Powertrain

 

Motor Oils and Lubricants

Changing the engine oil on a regular basis is one of the most important tasks to keep your motorhome healthy and on the road. Always follow the vehicle manufacturer’s recommended intervals to the letter when it comes to oil changes, and always stick to the oil required by the engine manufacturer.

 

Amsoil, 800-956-5695, www.amsoil.com
Castrol, 800-462-0835, www.castrol.com
Delo, 800-822-5823, www.deloperformance.com
Havoline, 800-822-5823, www.havoline.com
Lucas Oil, 800-342-2512, www.lucasoil.com
Mobil 1, 800-662-4525, www.mobiloil.com
Pennzoil, 800-237-8645, www.pennzoil.com
Prestone, 888-269-0750, www.prestone.com
Quaker State, 800-237-8645, www.quakerstate.com
Royal Purple, 888-382-6300, www.royalpurpleconsumer.com
Shell Rotella, 800-237-8645, www.rotella.shell.com
STP, 888-464-7871, www.stp.com
Valvoline, 800-832-6825, www.valvoline.com

Tires

Inspecting the motorhome’s tires should be a part of your daily routine when on the road; check for uneven wear, sidewall cracks or bulges, and ensure the tread depth is adequate for safe travel. Tires should be rotated as instructed by the manufacturer, and replaced when they time out, even if the tread looks good. It’s generally accepted that tires time out in seven years, but some manufacturers extend that period to 10 years, if they have been covered or stored indoors.

Goodyear, 800-321-2136, www.goodyearrvtires.com
Maxxis, 800-462-9947, www.maxxis.com/tires/autolt/trailer
Michelin, 888-622-2306, www.michelinrvtires.com
West Lake Tire, www.lionsheadtireandwheel.com/westlake-radial-tire

Engine Power Enhancements

Long popular in the pickup segment, engine-enhancement products such as tuners, chips and programmers can also work with the motorhome engine’s electronics to provide more power and torque by adjusting heating points, air-to-fuel mixtures and even engine timing. Available for diesel- and gas-powered applications, these products include diagnostics, temperature and horsepower/torque readouts. A variety of air-flow enhancements are also available to help squeeze additional performance out of the engine.

5 Star Tuning, 843-536-1244, www.5startuning.com
aFe Power, 888-901-7693, www.afepower.com
Banks Power, 800-601-8072, www.bankspower.com
BD Diesel Performance, 800-887-5030, www.dieselperformance.com
Bully Dog, 940-783-9914, www.bullydog.com
DiabloSport, 561-908-0040, www.diablosport.com
Edge Products, 801-476-3343, www.edgeproducts.com
Hypertech, 901-382-8888, www.hypertech.com
SCT, 407-774-2447, www.sctflash.com
Snow Performance, 719-633-3811, www.snowperformance.net
Superchips, 888-227-2447, www.superchips.com

Suspension Enhancements

Smoothing out the bumps not only makes the driving experience more enjoyable, but it can also protect many of the motorhome’s chassis and driving components from premature failure. Upgrading the motorhome’s suspension can help soften the blows, while installing a steering stabilizer can improve handling impacted by passing semis, high winds or even a blowout.

Bilstein, 858-386-5900, www.bilsteinus.com
Blue Ox, 800-228-9289, www.blueox.com
Hellwig, 800-435-5944, www.hellwigproducts.com
Koni, 859-586-4100, www.koni-na.com
Lippert Components, 574-535-1125, www.lci1.com
MORryde, 574-293-1581, www.morryde.com
Roadmaster, 800-669-9690, www.roadmasterinc.com
Safe-T-Plus, 800-872-7233, www.safe-t-plus.com
SuperSprings, 866-898-0720, www.supersprings.com

Fuel Additives

Available for diesel- and gas-powered applications, fuel additives are formulated for a variety of benefits, from prolonging the life of engine components to improving fuel economy and performance.

Amsoil, 800-956-5695, www.amsoil.com
Gold Eagle (Sta-Bil), 844-601-9841, www.goldeagle.com
Lucas Oil, 800-342-2512, www.lucasoil.com
Marvel Mystery Oil, 800-887-8539, www.marvelmysteryoil.com
Red Line, 800-624-7958, www.redlineoil.com
Royal Purple, 888-382-6300, www.royalpurpleconsumer.com
Star brite, 800-327-8583, www.starbrite.com

Sanitation

 

Sewer Hoses

Sewer hoses are an easy target for jokes, but make no mistake: All are not created equal. A cheap hose may work in a pinch, but this is one area where you certainly don’t want to deal with the aftermath of a failure. Spending a little more on high-quality fixtures, hoses and connectors is a good way to ensure smooth operation, and will help avoid embarrassing and messy spills at the campsite or dump station.

 

Blueline (Prest-o-Fit), 888-770-5849, www.prestofit.com
Camco (RhinoFlex), 800-334-2004, www.camco.net
Lippert Components, 574-535-1125, www.lci1.com
Thetford, 800-543-1219, www.thetford.com
Valterra, 818-898-1671, www.valterra.com

Toilets

When you gotta go, it’s good to know a durable and reliable throne awaits your arrival. Selecting the proper toilet, be it porcelain or plastic, or hand- or foot-flush, is a matter of necessity.
Dometic, 800-544-4881, www.dometic.com/usa
Thetford, 800-543-1219, www.thetford.com

 

 



Holding Tank Chemicals

Adding chemical treatments to your motorhome’s holding tank helps control offensive odors, and also aids in breaking down solids for a smooth flow. As an added bonus, many of the treatments are formulated to lubricate the seals, which helps to prolong the life of these vital components to avoid nasty spills.

Camco, 800-334-2004, www.camco.net
Century Chemical (Travel Jon), 800-348-3505, www.centurychemical.com
Dometic, 800-544-4881, www.dometic.com/usa
Eco-Save, 800-950-9666, www.eco-save.com
Star brite, 800-327-8583, www.starbrite.com
Thetford, 800-543-1219, www.thetford.com
Valterra (Odorlos, Pure Power Blue), 818-898-1671, www.valterra.com
Walex, 800-338-3155, www.walex.com
Worldwide Monochem, 512-267–5190, www.monochem.net

 Sewer Vents

These specialty vents create an updraft to expel foul odors from the holding tank before they can settle in the interior. The vents are designed to operate with or without a breeze, and generally don’t contain any moving parts.

360 Products, 503-559-8094, www.360productsnorthamerica.com
Camco, 800-334-2004, www.camco.net
Coil n’ Wrap, www.coilnwrap.com
LaSalle Bristol, 800-718-7187, www.lasallebristol.com
Lippert Components (360 Siphon), 574-535-1125, www.lci1.com
Ventline, 574-848-4491, www.ventline.com

Macerators

Macerators make dumping holding tanks easy, grinding up the solids for expulsion through hoses as small as 1 inch in diameter — and over longer distances than conventional hoses.

Clean Dump, 360-798-2437, www.cleandump.com
Flojet, www.xylemflowcontrol.com
Thetford (Sani-Con), 800-543-1219, www.thetford.com
Valterra, 818-898-1671, www.valterra.com
Portable Waste Tanks

Your motorhome’s holding tanks can fill up in a hurry while boondocking. Rather than completely breaking camp to dump the tanks, use these convenient, portable tanks that are designed to transport the contents to the dump station; some even have wheels. These tanks attach via standard sewer hoses and can accept the waste directly from the motorhome’s gray- and black-water outlets.

Barker Manufacturing, 800-537-9940, www.barkermfg.com
Camco, 800-334-2004, www.camco.net
Thetford (SmartTote), 800-543-1219, www.thetford.com

Holding-Tank Monitors/Sensors

Though newer motorhomes are likely already equipped with holding-tank monitors, adding new probes to an existing system or replacing an older component with one that uses external sensors can yield immediate results for knowing how much space is left in the tanks.

Horst Miracle Probe, www.rvprobes.com
Garnet Technologies (SeeLevel), 877-668-7813, www.garnetinstruments.com

 

 


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