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Your Guide to RVing on a Budget

Posted on: November 30, 2020 at 4:12 pm, in by Katie Hiatt

An RV trip tends to be a much more cost-friendly alternative to going on vacation by plane and staying in a fancy hotel. Of course, there’s the initial investment of buying a motorhome, but you’ll save money over time as you can use it on trip after trip, year after year.

Still, like any vacation, RVing involves a variety of different costs, from fuel and vehicle maintenance to camping and leisure activities. If you’re planning an RV trip on a small budget, then here are some tips to help you keep costs down.

Find free or low-cost camping sites

Staying at luxury RV parks may be a fun and comfortable option, but it also makes for an expensive vacation. To reduce your daily costs, look for a cheaper RV park or campground, which will likely have fewer hook-ups, facilities, and amenities. Or you can go even further off the grid with boondocking or dispersed camping, which means staying outside of a specified campground, often in a remote location. This means you can camp without spending a cent on the location.

Rely on homemade food

Of course, you also need to eat and drink while you’re traveling in your RV. If you choose to eat out at lots of local cafes, restaurants, and takeout places on the road, then these costs will soon add up. Try packing a variety of non-perishable foods for the trip and stocking up at local grocery stores on your trip to save money by cooking and eating in your RV or under the stars.

Save money on gas

Gas can be one of the biggest costs of RVing for some people, but you can do certain things to reduce it. If you’re still deciding where to go on your trip, then choosing somewhere closer to home would mean that you don’t have to drive as far or spend as much on gas. Staying at one campsite for longer instead of driving around every day will also reduce your gas usage. Plus, here are some tips to help you make your RV more fuel-efficient.

Reduce heating and cooling

The running costs of your RV and the equipment inside it also contributes to the cost of your trip. The more you run your HVAC system, the more energy it will use and the more it will cost. There are certain things you can do to help control the internal temperature of your vehicle, such as ventilating it during warm days and even wrapping up in blankets and layers on cold nights.

RV shades also help to manage the temperature of your RV, providing a layer of insulation on the inside of windows and windshields. Motorhome shades help to block out the heat of the sun during summer and keep the heat inside your RV from escaping through the glass on colder days.

RV shades are the perfect accessory for your motorhome. Check out the different shade options we have available at Magne Shade.

Your Guide to Boondocking

Posted on: November 30, 2020 at 4:10 pm, in by Katie Hiatt

If you’re tired of racking up fees on nightly, weekly, or monthly fees at RV parks, then you could try the alternative of boondocking, also known as dry camping or dispersed camping. If you’re new to RVing or are looking for ways to save money on your trips, then read on to find out more about boondocking and whether it’s right for you.

What is boondocking?

Boondocking involves parking your RV somewhere that isn’t specifically set up for RVs and camping. Instead, you just find some open, public land and set up your RV there. Just make sure that you find a location where you can legally do this. You can click here for a handy search tool that will help you find free camping spots for boondocking.

Pros and cons of boondocking

The main benefit of boondocking is that you don’t have to pay the fees associated with official RV parks and campgrounds. In some places, you may need to pay for a camping pass, but this will be a small fee compared to campsite fees. And in many places, you can boondock completely for free.

Another advantage is that it takes you to the heart of what camping is about; spending time in nature without the luxuries and the hustle and bustle of modern life. By pitching up at a dispersed camping site, you’re surrounded by natural beauty and may even be the only people there.

There can also be downsides to boondocking, though, depending on your sensibilities. You don’t have the usual facilities and hook-ups that you do at RV parks and campgrounds. This puts you at risk of running out of electricity, fresh water, and fuel. But, for some people, this more primal experience is part of the attraction, where you have no luxuries and may have to rely on basic survival skills.

There is also the question of safety when it comes to camping in remote locations, far from civilization. You can’t rely on the ‘safety in numbers’ approach that comes from having lots of RV neighbors, and you may have to hike a long distance if you’re caught without fuel or suffer an injury.

Free camping sites may also have a limit of how long you can stay there, so make sure you check the regulations of the area you’re traveling to.

Make sure that your RV is properly maintained and has all the essentials you need before embarking on your trip. If you need any accessories for your motorhome, such as windshield shades and tire shades, then contact Magne Shade for a quote or check out our online store to see the range of RV shades available.

Insulating Your RV

Posted on: November 13, 2020 at 2:39 pm, in by Katie Hiatt

Do you find yourself having to wrap up in multiple blankets at night in your RV? Or are you overly reliant on your air conditioning on summer road trips? A poorly-insulated motorhome lets the outside temperatures have a big impact on the temperature inside the vehicle. Read on for some tips about how to insulate your RV and keep it comfortable all year round.

Why should you insulate your RV?

Whether you want to keep the heat of summer out or the cold of winter in, insulating your RV can make it a much more comfortable and efficient space. Heat transfers in and out of your RV through the windows, walls, and roof of the vehicle. This means the hot summer sun can increase the temperature inside your vehicle by a lot, and heat will also transfer out of your RV when you’re trying to heat it from the inside on a cold day.

All of this makes it more difficult to maintain the desired temperature inside your RV. This means that you’re likely to be uncomfortable – too hot or too cold – and that you’ll have to use more energy to reach that desired temperature, which wastes money and increases your carbon footprint.

How to insulate your RV

Motorhomes will come with varying levels of insulation depending on the price and quality of the vehicle. If you need to add to the existing insulation, then here are some ways you can do this:

  • Weatherproof your RV – Any tiny gaps, cracks, or holes around your RV will let even more heat in and out of your RV. Check the caulking and weather stripping around the windows and doors to make sure everything is sealed properly.
  • Upgrade your windows – The thickness and material of your windows will determine how much heat can transfer through them. If you have single-pane windows, then consider replacing them with thicker, more energy-efficient ones.
  • Add or upgrade RV skirting – Heat can also be lost through the bottom of your RV, but skirting helps to create a barrier that prevents this.
  • Insulate the walls – If the walls of your RV aren’t insulated, you can install foam panels or use spray foam insulation to reduce the amount of heat that can conduct through them.
  • Add RV shades – Placing motorhome shades on your windshield and windows also helps to add insulation. Our RV shades filter the sun’s rays to help block out some of the heat that would usually be transmitted. They also help to trap any hot or cold air that transmits through your windows between the glass and the shade.

Make your RV more comfortable and energy-efficient with window and windshield shades from Magne Shade. Get in touch if you have any questions or to request a quote for your motorhome.

When is the Best Time of Year to Go RVing?

Posted on: October 30, 2020 at 2:17 pm, in by Katie Hiatt

Some people have truly adopted the RV life and travel in their motorhome all year round, while others just enjoy the occasional trip as a nice break from their everyday life and responsibilities. If you fit into this second category, then you might be wondering when the best times are to plan your RV trips.

Every season has its ups and downs, so let’s look at some of these to help you plan your perfect RV and camping trip.

RVing in the spring

The spring can bring some really nice sunny days that are perfect for hiking and camping as they are slightly cooler than summer temperatures. Spring weather can be unpredictable, however, so you should be sure to pack for all eventualities. Spring is especially a popular time for families camping during spring break.

Spring can also be the best time to see wildlife as animals start to become more active after winter ends and flowers start to bloom. It can, however, be a difficult season for anyone with pollen allergies.

RVing in the summer

Summer is often the most popular time to go camping because of the warm weather and, for families going on vacation, the kids having time off school. It can be much more comfortable going on a hike or relaxing outside your RV when you don’t have to wrap up warm. Just make sure you take plenty of sun protection and keep water with you to stay safe in the sun.

It being the most popular season can also be a downside of summer camping, though. Campsites will be busy and prices may be higher due to it being peak season. You will also have to face a lot of bugs, so don’t forget to pack repellent.

RVing in the fall

Perhaps the best thing about RVing in the fall is the amazing colors from the trees and their falling leaves. Nice views can be made even more spectacular with all the different hues of red and orange brightening them up. Fall is also a perfect choice if summer is too hot for you and winter is too cold. Make sure you go prepared for cooler temperatures and potential rainfall, though.

RVing in the winter

Winter camping isn’t for everyone due to the cold weather and potential frost and snow. Although, having an RV makes it easier as you don’t always have to be out in the cold. You can still keep pretty warm at night sleeping in your RV.

If you’re tough enough to brave the cold, or if you’re heading to an area with relatively mild winters, then winter RVing does have some advantages. Campsites are likely to be much quieter and perhaps cheaper than they are for the rest of the year, and you won’t have to face as many flies and other bugs that are more active during hot weather. Plus, you could enjoy some breath-taking snow-covered landscapes.

Whatever season you’re preparing your motorhome for, make sure it’s properly equipped with windshield shades and other RV accessories from Magne Shade.

Touring National Parks Virtually

Posted on: October 30, 2020 at 2:17 pm, in by Katie Hiatt

 

This year, we’ve had less freedom to do what we want and go where we want, so you might find yourself itching to see some of the amazing sights across the US. Some national parks and campgrounds have even had to close due to the current circumstances.

If you’re stuck at home and are looking for a sense of exploration, then there are still some virtual options. Lots of businesses, venues, and services have adapted to lockdowns and social distancing by increasing their presence online, allowing them to still serve their customers. And some of our country’s greatest national parks have done the same.

Yellowstone National Park

The National Park Service website features a range of videos and map tours showing some of Yellowstone’s best landmarks and hiking routes. You can take a virtual walk to Canary Spring at Mammoth Hot Springs, the overlook of the Upper Falls, Dragon’s Mouth Spring at Mud Volcano, and more.

Their map-based tours let you view the park’s landmarks and their surrounding area on a virtual map while also providing information and background about each landmark. These features are great for planning your next trip to the park.

Wildlife webcams

Getting to see wildlife in its natural environment is incredible, but animals are often too afraid to come out when there are lots of people hiking around the park. Now that parks are quieter, it’s the perfect time to check out the National Park Service’s wildlife webcams. There are hundreds of different streams from a variety of parks that let you look out for bears, birds, ocean life, and more.

Google Earth

Google has also got on board to help us explore the most amazing sights across the US. Google Earth allows us to explore the far reaches of the earth in impressive detail. And now, Google Arts and Culture has brought us 360-degree panoramic views of 5 national parks, along with some narration from park rangers to provide more detail about the sights being viewed.

Take in views from:

  • Kenai Fjords National Park in Alaska
  • Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
  • Carlsbad Caverns National Park in New Mexico
  • Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah
  • Dry Tortugas National Park in Florida

Although it’s not quite the same as experiencing the great outdoors and its amazing sights in person, virtual tours of national parks can hopefully satisfy your cravings for exploration until you can get back out there again.

If RVing is off the table for you at the moment, then now is a great time to make sure your motorhome is in good condition and has all the accessories it needs for the perfect RV trip. Perform checks and maintenance on your vehicle and check out our online store where you can buy window shades, windshield shades, and tire shades for your RV.

What Are Neodymium Magnets?

Posted on: October 13, 2020 at 2:16 pm, in by Katie Hiatt

 

All of our RV shades are easy to apply, adjust, and remove. This is because they use powerful rare-earth magnets to attach securely to your windshield or windows. These are called neodymium magnets. Read on to find out more about these magnets and why they work well with our windshield shades.

What are neodymium magnets?

Developed in the 1980s by General Motors and Sumitomo Special Metals, neodymium magnets are made from an alloy combining three chemical elements; neodymium, iron, and boron. They are classed as rare-earth magnets because the metal neodymium belongs to the rare-earth class of elements.

Neodymium magnets are widely used in various industries since they are the strongest type of permanent magnet that is commercially available. Being a permanent magnet simply means that it always creates a force that acts on other magnets and magnetic materials, not just when it is placed in a magnetic field.

The benefits of using neodymium magnets

So, why do we use neodymium magnets for our RV shades? Here are some of the key benefits of these rare-earth magnets:

  • Extremely strong – The strong magnetic field of neodymium magnets makes them incredibly useful, ensuring that your RV shades will stay in place.
  • Versatile – Neodymium magnets can be made in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, making them suitable for lots of different applications. They have an extremely high power-to-weight ratio, so even these tiny magnets exert a strong force.
  • Resistant to demagnetization – Magnets start to lose their magnetization under certain conditions, meaning they will no longer work as effectively or at all. Neodymium magnets are highly resistant to this, so you can be assured that they’ll keep working.
  • Cost-effective – Neodymium magnets are reasonably low cost and incredibly long-lasting, making them a cost-effective choice for your motorhome shades.

Precautions while using neodymium magnets

The strong magnetic fields exerted by neodymium magnets are completely safe for humans, however, they can have an impact on electronics. So, if you have a medically implanted device, then we advise you to consult your physician or the manufacturer of the device in regard to handling strong magnets. We suggest you do this before ordering our product or any products using strong neodymium magnets in case they cause any problems.

If you have any questions about the strong magnets used in our RV shades, safety concerns, or how to install your windshield shades, then contact the team at Magne Shade.

Nano Shades for Your RV

Posted on: September 30, 2020 at 4:41 pm, in by Katie Hiatt

We have a variety of RV shades to help maintain comfort and privacy inside your RV while also helping to protect the condition of your RV. Our newest Magne Shade product is an innovative alternative for your motorhome – nano shades. Read on to find out more about these nano shades, how they work, and the benefits of buying these shades for your RV.

What are nano shades?

Our nano shades are interior motorhome shades made from the same high-quality, durable, and flexible material as our exterior shades. Unlike our exterior shades that securely attach to your windows and windshields using strong magnets, these interior shades stick to the inside of your windows using nano tape.

Nano tape has thousands of microscopic suction cups on one side that easily stick to the glass or any other non-porous surface. This tape covers the width of your nano shade. All your have to do is position the shade where you like and then run your hand across the nano tape to stick it in place.

What are the benefits of using nano shades?

Nano shades help to give you privacy inside your RV, allowing you to easily see out through the shades while obscuring the view of anyone looking in. This makes quiet days spent inside your RV more relaxing, while also providing some security as onlookers won’t be able to see if you have valuables inside your motorhome.

The shades also help to reduce glare from the sun and heat transmitted through the window from the sun’s rays. This makes it easier to control the temperature inside your RV, making you more comfortable.

Magne Shade’s Nano Shades are also extremely easy to install, as described above. The nano tape adheres strongly to the inside of your windows, making sure they stay in place. At the same time, they are also easy to remove if you want to adjust them or store them away. Even better, the nano tape won’t leave behind a sticky residue once removed.

Whatever the size of your RV and its windows, we can cut our nano shades to size to custom fit your vehicle. Ensure comfort and privacy inside your RV with an accessory that looks great, too.

If you’re interested in purchasing nano shades for your RV, or any of our other styles of motorhome shades, then get in touch with Magne Shade to get a custom quote to meet your needs.

Keeping Entertained on Long Drives

Posted on: September 30, 2020 at 4:37 pm, in by Katie Hiatt

You’ve probably packed loads of books, toys, games, and digital devices to keep the kids entertained in the back of the RV. But what about whoever’s in the driver’s seat. Long drives can be boring and tiring, but it’s essential that you stay alert while driving. The trip will also be more fun for you if you have plenty of ways to keep entertained.

Make a road trip mix

Don’t get stuck listening to the same CD on repeat for the entire journey. Prepare your favorite music before your trip to listen to and sing along to while you drive. You could pack a load of CDs to switch between, but this could take up a lot of space.

A better option is to make a Spotify playlist with hours of your favorite songs, or fill an iPod with your music instead. Most modern RVs can connect to smart devices either by Bluetooth or through a USB connection. This allows you to easily skip songs and control the music you listen to while driving.

Listen to podcasts and audiobooks

You might not want to listen to music the whole way, so add some variety by downloading podcasts or audiobooks to listen to. These are perfect for keeping you entertained when everyone else in the RV has decided to take a nap.

You can find podcasts on pretty much any topic imaginable, so start searching for some that interest you. And lots of fiction and non-fiction books are available as audiobooks, some even being read to you by celebrities.

Play driving games

When your travel partners are awake and not glued to a screen, play some road trip games with them to keep you all entertained. There are lots of word games you can play, such as choosing a category and naming something from that category for each letter of the alphabet. I spy is another fun driving game, as is the license plate game, where you try to spot license plates from as many different states as possible.

This article has some more driving games for you to try on your next road trip.

How do you keep entertained on long drives? Preparing before your trip can help to keep your road trip fun for everyone, even when you’re stuck in traffic. Make sure your drive is comfortable, too, by preparing all the equipment and accessories you need for your trip. Window shades help to filter the sun’s rays to keep the back of your RV comfortable and not too hot. Contact Magne Shade to get a quote for all your RV shades.

Top Tips for Solo RVing

Posted on: September 14, 2020 at 3:45 pm, in by Katie Hiatt

We recently looked at some of the advantages and disadvantages of RVing by yourself rather than with family or friends. If you’re convinced that solo RVing is for you, then read on for tips about how to make your solo trip the best it can be.

Safety tips for solo RVing

One of the main concerns of solo traveling, which we touched on briefly in our last article, is safety. You could be at greater risk by traveling by yourself, but some simple precautions can help to keep you and your belongings safe while you travel.

  • Lock it up – Don’t get complacent when traveling alone. It’s important to always lock your RV overnight and when you leave it unattended. It’s also a good idea to keep your valuables in a safe or lockbox inside your RV, and keep valuables out of sight. Drawing your curtains or installing RV shades can protect your privacy.
  • Choose trustworthy sites – Camping by yourself in the middle of nowhere may sound like an exciting adventure, but it’s much safer to find a registered campsite or RV park. If you arrive somewhere and feel suspicious of the location or people there, then trust your gut instinct and find another site.
  • Carry the essentials – If you’re hiking alone and something goes wrong, having a basic first aid can help in a lot of situations. Make sure you always have water and snacks with you, just in case. In more severe situations, make sure you have emergency contact numbers on you. A portable charger is also a good idea in case you run out of battery.

More solo RVing tips

It’s not all about safety, but also about having fun and making the most of your trip. So, here are some more tips for your solo RV trip.

  • Get familiar with your rig – If it’s your first time RVing solo, then it’s important that you get familiar with your motorhome, including how to drive it, maintain it, and hook it up at campsites. This will make sure you don’t get stalled by any problems, giving you more time to explore and enjoy yourself. Get plenty of practice with it before you set off on your own. And get a routine professional tune-up before your trip to make sure everything is in good working order.
  • Be social (if you want) – Campgrounds are a great place to meet like-minded people, so RVing solo doesn’t mean you have to be on your own the whole trip. Don’t be afraid to strike up a conversation with a fellow traveler if you feel like socializing.
  • Bring entertainment – There’s obviously going to be a lot to see and do on your RV trip, but you may also have a lot of downtime. Bring books or an e-reader with you, download movies to a tablet, and any other types of entertainment that interest you.

Make sure your RV is fully kitted out for your big solo trip. Contact Magne Shade to get a quote for your window and windshield shades.

The Pros and Cons of Solo RVing

Posted on: August 27, 2020 at 7:02 pm, in by Katie Hiatt

You often hear about couples or families leaving behind their regular lives (at least temporarily) to go traveling in an RV. But what about single people or those who simply prefer to travel alone? Solo travel and solo RVing are gaining a lot of popularity. Let’s look at some of the benefits of RVing by yourself and some tips to do it right.

The advantages of solo RVing

How much time have you spent planning trips with family or friends? It always seems to be difficult to get everyone’s schedules lined up and meet everyone’s needs. One person wants to be near a beach, another wants to be deep in the wilderness, someone else thinks fast WiFi is a priority. It can be near impossible to organize.

When you travel alone, you don’t have to deal with any of this. You can just pick up and go wherever and whenever you want. You only have your needs and schedule to worry about. This applies while you’re on your trip, too. No more debating what you want to do each day, you can just go and do what you want.

Another benefit is that it becomes a lot easier to meet new people while you’re traveling by yourself. There’s bound to be other solo travelers along the way who you can strike up a conversation with and maybe even hang out together.

It’s often the case that other travelers are more likely to approach you if you’re alone rather than in a couple or family unit. Plus, you’re more likely to make the effort if you’re by yourself and looking for fellow travelers to connect with.

The disadvantages of solo RVing

Of course, traveling solo isn’t going to be for everyone. If you’re the type of person who doesn’t cope well in solitary and needs company to stay happy and entertained, then it might not be the best idea. Even though you can meet people while traveling and camping, some people might still find the solo travel life lonely.

Another potential issue is safety. Traveling solo can still be extremely safe if you take the proper precautions, but there can still be risks. Say you’re hiking solo for the day and you suffer an injury, with no cell signal in sight. There’s no one else there to go and get help. This won’t be an issue if you’re in a popular area with other hikers on the same path, so try to stick to these areas if you’re concerned about this.

Does solo RVing sound like the perfect trip to you, or do you prefer the company of friends and family to share the experience with? Either way, make sure you have the proper equipment and accessories for your RV. Check out our range of RV shades and get a quote today.

Upcoming Events

  • 12-17 January

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