43 Dumbest RV Tenting Errors: DON’T DO THIS!


Did you make a really stupid RVing mistake? You’re not alone! Here are the dumbest RV camping mistakes our fellow travelers often see…

Recently an RV Lifestyle member asked a question on our Facebook group:

“What are the dumbest RV camping mistakes you see all the time? (I don’t want to be one of THESE guys!).”

Your question triggered more than 440 comments! Like I said, we all made mistakes.

The good news is we can laugh at some of the stupid things we’ve done. The bad news is that some mistakes can cost you time or money or both!

10 unwritten rules of camping etiquette

Do you like what you see in these videos? We would appreciate it if you subscribe to our YouTube channel (just do it right here) and consider ringing the bell icon to be notified of every new video from us. 🙂 Thank you!

You’ll see in the list below that many of the silliest mistakes have to do with disregarding campground etiquette. Because of this, we highly recommend watching the video above.

Or read 5 Campground Etiquette Tips – Parking, Privacy, Patience, Pets and Poop and Top 10 Campground Laundry Etiquette Tips and Tricks.

The Stupidest RV Camping Mistakes: DON’T DO THIS!

Below are some silly mistakes that our RV Lifestyle members have made or witnessed. Read on to be sure NOT to make the same mistakes!

1. Leave the gray and black water tank valves open.

2. Bringing dogs that bark constantly.

3. Go through other people’s campsites.

4. Place dog poop bags on the picnic table.

5. Forgetting to take bug spray with you on your trip.

6. Thinking your vehicle is powerful enough to tow your trailer when it isn’t. (Always account for extra weight such as water, clothing, and other items.)

7. Driving out of the camp with the antenna set up. A member of RV Lifestyle did just that and when it hit a tree it was ripped right off the RV!

8. Pull out without realizing that the windows are still open.

9. Forgetting to close a storage door.

10. Not realizing that the handrail is still in the down position.

11. Forgetting to unplug the power cord. Pulling is a hazard!

12. Forgot to take off the stabilizers! Otherwise your trailer may simply tip over and send you flying through the air!

MORE Stupid RV Camping Mistakes

13. Forgetting to ensure trailer is level before unhitching. It’s really annoying having to rehook and reset your rig.

14. Making noise too early in the morning. If you are outside before 8am, be polite to your neighbors and use a whisper if you need to communicate.

15. Taking turns too quickly and too soon. If you tack too early, your rig’s tail deflection can get dangerously close to things you want to avoid!

16. Not sealing your food properly. Even if you’re not camping in bear country, you might attract other unwanted visitors.

17. Not double checking your hitch and jack or undercarriage.

18. Driving too fast! Staying safe in your RV can save lives and keep you from being caught in a speed trap.

19. Do not drive in steps!

Mike’s favorite navy blue hoodie and hat – perfect for those fresh RV lifestyle days!

20. Do not set a timer when washing out the black tank. Otherwise, you might forget and flood your bathroom!

21. Forget that the RV walls aren’t soundproof. Be careful with your words and sounds!

22. Window coverings aren’t always opaque. Be careful not to expose yourself to others.

23. Forgot to close the roof vent covers when packing.

24. Don’t put away camping gear you don’t want stolen. An RV Lifestyle member had his camp stove, firewood and other small camping gear stolen while sightseeing.

25. Forgetting to check if your tailgate is touching the hitch before you open it.

26. Forgetting to turn off the faucet in the outdoor sink when the water in the facility is turned on. Otherwise there is a risk of flooding!

27. Not retracting your awning at night. Many awnings are not suitable for bad weather and can be damaged by rain or wind. They are very expensive to replace if you are not careful!

An RV Lifestyle member, Laura, had great awning tips to follow. She said if it’s just raining you can leave the awning open. But if the weather report uses the words “wind” or “storm” then you want to close your awning.

However, the weather can change quickly, so we always recommend closing it at night or when leaving your motorhome for long periods of time.

28. Not cleaning up after your dog!

29. Do not use a surge protector on the electrical box. Otherwise, you may damage your RV’s electrical panel as many electrical cabinets in the camp are unstable.

30. Do not wear gloves when emptying the septic tank.

31. Don’t forget to put your black inner tube in the back of the truck to dry and then accelerate on the freeway. You no longer have black tubing and other riders may not appreciate it.

32. Forgetting to remove the wheel chocks before driving off. (It happens A LOT! Have you ever seen any of my favorite road trip movies, RV?!)

33. Forgetting to turn off your outside lights when you go to bed.

34. Using the fresh water faucet to clean your sewer hose. Yuck!

35. Not checking if your RV is shorter than the basketball hoop when backing into the driveway! (The same applies to crossing under overpasses!)

36. Not being polite to other campers and staff. It makes for a much more enjoyable experience for everyone!

More Stupid RV Camping Mistakes

37. Not understanding the tail swing of your RV! It can be an expensive and unsafe mistake!

38. Not having multiple sets of keys and keeping one in a locker outside the caravan. If you lose one while hiking or on another adventure, you don’t want to have to break into the trailer.

An RV Lifestyle member, Jody, had to do just that. They were forced to cut a hole under the bed with a chainsaw to get through. She now has six sets of keys!

39. Do not lock the wheels of your trailer before unhitching.

A member named Curt witnessed someone forgetting this while camping. The trailer rolled down the hill and ripped off the front receiver. Talk about an expensive mistake!

40. Not making an RV checklist and following it every time.

41. Listening to music or television too loud, especially outdoors.

42. Not packing enough water. People tend to drink more when camping than at home.

43. Don’t keep your batteries and tires in good condition!

While you want to avoid making as many mistakes as possible, know that you’re bound to make a few along the way.

Yes, they can cost you some time and money. But as RV Lifestyle member Jonathan says, “Most will end up being fun campfire stories.”

Would you like to read more? Check out the craziest campsite stories!

43 Stupid RV Camping Mistakes: DON'T DO THIS!  2

Get the Home Study Course today and take care of the road, not the repairs!
Every time you move your RV it’s like driving through a hurricane during an earthquake. Parts break and many items require maintenance. This program will show you how you can save time and money by gaining the confidence to tackle most of the problems you will encounter. Don’t get caught in the shop with your motorhome! Learn how to maintain and repair your RV at your own pace and at the time that is most convenient for you! This course is created by the National RV Training Academy.