Beginners Guide: How to drive a Motorhome
Driving a motorhome / RV
How to drive a Motorhome. If you can drive a car, you can drive a modern motor home. Driving a motorhome / RV is really no harder than driving a car you just have a few more things to think about.
With many new drivers entering the rental motorhome lifestyle every single day, there’s no reason for you to feel that you’re the only one who’s nervous about pulling out onto the highway for the first time.
With the proper preparation, you will feel confident enough to know that motorhome driving is something you can do safely. Over a period of time, your confidence will increase. Before you know it, driving your motorhome will become second nature.
How to drive a motorhome Video
There are a lot of helpful motorhome videos on youtube if you still feel a little unsure.
Remember the motorhomes Height
How to drive a motorhome. Nothing would ruin your day faster than the instant you realized that your motorhome was too tall to fit below the bridge you just went under. Every state is different as to whether they mark the height of bridges or not.
Some clearly label their bridges and low overpasses well in advance, so you have the opportunity to take an alternate route around. However, not all states are this thoughtful; some give no indication at all that the bridge you’re approaching is 6 inches too low to clear your motorhomes rooftop.
How to drive a motorhome
Your motorhome takes longer to stop
Heavy vehicles take longer to stop than lighter ones. How long depends on a lot of things, but driving speed is a major factor, and one that you control. Slow down. You’ll save money on gas as a reward.
Increase your following distance too. The best way to avoid accidents is to maintain long distances between yourself and everyone else on the road.
Motorhome in side winds
It’s quite possible for a large gust of wind to grab your motorhome and drag it right off the road.
When faced with high winds, or strong gusting winds, these 2 simple tips can help to prevent a disaster behind the wheel of your RV:
•Slow way down so that you can maintain control when a gust of wind hits your motorhome.
•Proceed at a greatly reduced speed until you can find a safe place to get off the road.
Mind your middle
When making turns, the back wheels don’t follow directly in the path of the front ones; they take a shortcut. With long vehicles, like RVs, the difference can be meaningful. If turns are not negotiated properly the back tires clip curbs and the middle section of the RV can swing into objects.
To prevent this, identify the objects you want to avoid hitting (curbs, street signs, cars, puppy dogs) and drive straight until your hips are past them. Only then crank the wheel in the direction you want to turn. As you turn, keep an eye on the side mirrors to make sure you’re middle and back wheels don’t hit anything. If it gets close, straighten the wheel out some and continue past the obstructions.
Drive your Motorhome Like a Pro by RV Education 101®
Mind the back of your motorhome
While the middle of the RV swings in the same direction the frontend is turning, the back swings the opposite way. How much depends on how far the RV overhangs its back wheels. This is especially important to remember when pulling out of places with nearby obstructions and requiring tight turns: like gas stations and parking spots.
If there are objects close to your motorhome opposite from the direction you want to turn, try to drive straight forward until the back end clears those objects. Alternatively, turn slowly while keeping a careful eye on those objects in your side mirrors. The idea is to take wide, rather than sharp turns.