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Old 07-07-2020, 01:21 PM   #1
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FIRST TIME RV TRIP - Please help with questions and calm anxiety!

Hello everyone! I have been reading this thread and site for the last week and am so impressed with the kind members and the patience to help people like me. So in advance - Thank you - we need this these types of communities and help thy neighbor in our country more than ever!

So i have to get my mother and family up to Oregon to visit ailing family during Covid from SoCal. We are borrowing / renting a 2018 Greyhawk 29v from my coworker. I have a few questions if i can please ask for some advice.

1- picking up RV day before travel (my wife wants to super clean and load) - how do i turn on fridge to load the day before and keep on overnight and the first 600 miles till we get to the rv site?

I hear about propane vs generator.
I have read alot of research on running propane during driving (wont bring this up as i know it create whole other discussion).

if propane is the way to go - how much propane will this use for basically about 30-35 hours?

would i need to refill at some point?

Why dont people use generator while driving?

what would recommend. start fridge from Tuesday at 1:00 to camp site next day about 7:00 P.M.?

BTW this has the 12 CF double fridge.


2 - This unit has 2 AC units - can you run these while driving and if so - how are they powered? it is supposed to be close to 100 degrees during the drive.

3- are the outlets live during the drive - the power outlets to plug in things?

4- why is it not recommended to drive with full water in tank?

Thank you everyone for the patience on the long thread and thank you for the help!
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Old 07-07-2020, 02:02 PM   #2
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The fridge will automatically switch between propane and 120v if you have it in the auto position. I would ask the owner to turn it on the day before you pick it up since it takes about 24 hours to get cold. If the propane tank is full you will not need to worry about it running out. We rarely filled ours more than 2 times a season since the fridge uses very little and we always ran it on propane when driving. The propane hogs are the furnace and water heater. Put the water heater on elec when you get to the camp ground. If you think you will use a lot of hot water use both gas and elec, it increases the amount of hot water produced.

Many do run the generator while driving so that they can use the roof air it is not a problem either. You just have to remember that the geny will usually shut off when the gas tank gets to 1/4, that is so you don't run out of gas prematurely. All the outlets will work off the geny.

The idea of not driving with a full water tank is because of the weight and the bouncing down the road.

Have a safe trip.
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Old 07-07-2020, 02:09 PM   #3
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Well it's just a big truck..... With a house on it that's constantly in a earthquake...nothing to be afraid of...lol

But seriously, it's all pretty easy

I'd hope who ya get the RV from will answer those questions for u...if not...here goes

1..... Run the fridge on gas or plug the RV into SHORE POWER or yer house while loading. It will take 5+ hours to cool...ish

I run gas/propane when I drive. Once in a blue moon it may blow out, just re start it

Yer full propane tank will last two weeks, so yer good there

Running the generator uses 1/2gal of gasoline per hr...that's why
And never run yer gas tank below 1/4 tank or the Genny won't run


2....if u need the roof AC to run, ya gotta run the Genny while driving, or plugged into shore power


3....outlets don't work unless Genny or shore power is on

4... It's just Xtra weight and Les mpg... I always fill mine before I go cuz I boondock camp


Have fun
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Old 07-07-2020, 02:12 PM   #4
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x2 on the water weight. We stop on the way overnight but only carry enough for flushing and washing hands. consider how many will ride with you and figure at least 3 or 4 gallons a day per person if you stay out of the shower. We use a lot less but have been at this for a while.

Also agree on LP in tank will last a very long time just running the fridge. Since we camp where we have electricity most nights we can go a whole season on 1 tank. Just make sure they are starting you on a full tank.
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Old 07-07-2020, 02:25 PM   #5
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wow - this is exactly what i was looking for perfect. So propane for the fridge till we get to the full hook ups on site and generator for the drive to run the outlets and AC units. Generator will use about 1/2 gallon of gas per hour - so make sure to basically stop for gas more often at just below half vs below 1/4. You guys are great seriously super helpful! thank you so much!!! Now have to stress about the right turns in town - or narrow left turns - i understand to turn wide (kinda like a bus?). Thank you
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Old 07-07-2020, 02:52 PM   #6
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I always fill up at about 1/2 tank. That's usually 3hrs and the Capt and Co-Pilot (my dog) usually need a break

Like mentioned. Be sure the fridge is on Auto or A, then anytime the Genny is on it runs off of it and saves propane


And most importantly


HAVE FUN!!!
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Old 07-07-2020, 03:01 PM   #7
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I am currently camping in Oregon up from the good old Inland Empire in my 2017 Greyhawk. Strange coincidence.

1. Set the fridge on AUTO and it will select either 120 or propane as needed. At home make sure the rig is mostly level for the fridge to work. If it is hot there it will take overnight to cool. Load the fridge with items that are already cold or it will take forever to chill things. You can use a standard good quality extension cord at home as long as you don't run the air conditioner. It will power the fridge just fine. If you need the ac to cool the insides down for loading, fire up the generator and use both units then turn it off when done.

When you are driving the fridge will automatically run off propane. As it has electronic ignition it will relight if the flame goes out. I don't seem to have any blow out problems in my Greyhawk as I never get an error message saying there is a flame problem. It typically can give you that error if it fails to light in the beginning after refilling until propane can get to the fridge.

The propane will last many days unless you run the furnace or do a heck of a lot of cooking. I wouldn't even blink at running the fridge for a week on propane.

The only reason to run the generator while driving is to run the air conditioner. It would be extremely wasteful to use the generator for the fridge. With the testing I have done my fridge seems to cool a bit better off propane.

I have the same fridge and recommend starting it as soon as you can get the rig level and plugged in. If you can't plug in right away go ahead and use the propane at home.

If you will have people riding in back during the drive you may want them to be comfortable so fire up the generator and run BOTH airs. If it is only 2 people up front your regular ac will be just fine but it won't do anything for the people in back. It all depends on how much you like the people in back.

As far as how to run the airs for max cooling I have real first hand experience here with my 32 foot Greyhawk. On hot days you will need BOTH units running. The main area unit should have the downward vents OPEN so it forces air straight down. You get more airflow to the main area that way. But it is not enough. On the bedroom AC, close off the down vents so the airflow feeds the air ducts as some of these feed the main area. Your bedroom AC will add cooling to the front area and is definitely needed. Also, the bedroom will get very cool and the AC will cycle off. I recommend setting its thermostat a few degrees lower than the main area's AC so it stays on longer. Of course if anyone is laying on the bed they may get cold.

With the generator running you will have 120 volts to all outlets. You can use items that don't draw a lot of power while both airs are running. Fans, laptops, etc. are all fine. No hair dryer though. If you have the power management center you can use the microwave as it will turn off the rear compressor temporarily while the microwave is running so the 30 amp power max is not exceeded.

If you run the generator for extended periods of time, allow it to cool down before turning off. Shut down the airs and let the generator run for 10 minutes or so with no load.

I dry camp a lot and always travel with a full tank of water. If you will be at a hookup site just fill the tank to half or less to save the weight. Not sure if it will make a big difference in mileage or not. Probably not enough to jump up and down about.

I just installed an engine monitor so I can watch my mileage. I basically like gauges and gadgets. On my trip to Bend, Oregon I averaged 7.5 mpg until I cleared the Mt Shasta area. Mileage started out at above 8 but the Grapevine and these other mountain roads dropped it. Once I cleared Mt Shasta and hit mostly level roads I was showing 9.2 mpg which surprised me as this shoe box is not designed for efficiency. My best mileage on the second leg was driving at about 63 mph as I was following someone towing. This helped raise my reading. My first leg was at 70-75 with wind.

Your drive will be a LONG one and very tiring for the driver. If you have multiple drivers it won't be so bad. For me, my wife volunteered me to do it all as she is a wimp when it comes to driving a big vehicle. We stayed at a couple of campgrounds on the trip up which helped tremendously. Also stopped for gas at about 1/2 tank every time mainly to stretch our legs. I still hated the long drive.

Enjoy your trip! The scenery in Oregon was way better than the 5 freeway in CA.
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Old 07-07-2020, 04:41 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by KOPIER View Post
1- picking up RV day before travel (my wife wants to super clean and load) - how do i turn on fridge to load the day before and keep on overnight and the first 600 miles till we get to the rv site?

1.1 if propane is the way to go - how much propane will this use for basically about 30-35 hours?

1.2 would i need to refill at some point?

1.3 Why dont people use generator while driving?

1.4 what would recommend. start fridge from Tuesday at 1:00 to camp site next day about 7:00 P.M.?

BTW this has the 12 CF double fridge.


2 - This unit has 2 AC units - can you run these while driving and if so - how are they powered? it is supposed to be close to 100 degrees during the drive.

3- are the outlets live during the drive - the power outlets to plug in things?

4- why is it not recommended to drive with full water in tank?

Thank you everyone for the patience on the long thread and thank you for the help!

1. Short n' sweet - turn it on to Auto
1.1 Very little.
1.2 Nope. I mean yes, but not for a long time. Weeks.
1.3 We do.
1.4 As soon as you get it, turn the propane on, plug the RV in and turn on the fridge

2. Yes. By running the generator (see 1.3)

3. Some are. If the generator is running then all are.

4. We do sometimes. Water's heavy. Heavy adds weight, weight means less miles per gallon.
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Old 07-07-2020, 06:07 PM   #9
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snip..." the first 600 miles till we get to the rv site?"...

That's a very long day behind the wheel. Those of us that study such things have come to a unanimous conclusion that 99.9% of the time, you'll average only 50 MPH for a day's drive. That works out to driving for 12 hours. I'm hoping you can drive in shifts with another driver, to make that distance. Whatever you do please be safe in your journey. Feel free to ask any more questions that may come to mind. Happy trails, and enjoy!
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Old 07-08-2020, 11:29 AM   #10
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wow - what a cool group of guys on here - truly appreciate it. Super helpful as well. Great info and ideas. Thank you everyone. Yes long drive - I do not mind as i have driven 12-15 hours a few times and will stop and take snack breaks. Great info on the gas Mileage as well - thanks everyone!!
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Old 07-08-2020, 12:08 PM   #11
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Before you leave, or while traveling (except the driver of course), you have to watch the movie RV with Robin Williams.
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Old 07-09-2020, 10:00 AM   #12
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watched the movie last night - super funny and kinda scary - lol! The dump scene in the dessert was the best!! Wife is freaked out now ha ha
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Old 07-09-2020, 10:26 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by oh355mbqs View Post
Before you leave, or while traveling (except the driver of course), you have to watch the movie RV with Robin Williams.
Quote:
Originally Posted by KOPIER View Post
watched the movie last night - super funny and kinda scary - lol! The dump scene in the dessert was the best!! Wife is freaked out now ha ha
Just don't watch the movie "Leisure Seeker" before you go...
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Old 07-09-2020, 03:54 PM   #14
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You are new to driving it. Remember the steering wheel is not connected to the front wheels (that is what it feels like) You will get used to it. Remember behind the rear wheels It is like a big whale tail (like having another car hanging out the back) If you are in a parking spot and you clear the front end and turn the front wheels left or right the back end will swing and hit anything next to you. At a gas pump watch the back end when you pull out so you don't hit the pump, island or another car. It's not a 24 foot unit it's over 32 feet. Be careful and have a good trip. (don't forget to turn the gas bottle on)
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Old 07-09-2020, 04:06 PM   #15
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Before you leave, or while traveling (except the driver of course), you have to watch the movie RV with Robin Williams.
And The Long Long Trailer with Lucy & Desi. Granted, it's a trailer, but still hilarious IMO!!
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Old 07-09-2020, 04:44 PM   #16
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You are new to driving it. Remember the steering wheel is not connected to the front wheels (that is what it feels like) You will get used to it. Remember behind the rear wheels It is like a big whale tail (like having another car hanging out the back) If you are in a parking spot and you clear the front end and turn the front wheels left or right the back end will swing and hit anything next to you. At a gas pump watch the back end when you pull out so you don't hit the pump, island or another car. It's not a 24 foot unit it's over 32 feet. Be careful and have a good trip. (don't forget to turn the gas bottle on)
Thank you Bill - So you would pull out a bit more than usual before you start the turn - kinda like a big truck? pull ahead as much as possible before you start the turn process - I am just worried about the right turn on a two way street or even a left turn with someone in the turn lane and not having enough room for the turns.
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Old 07-09-2020, 05:03 PM   #17
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Yes, always add 2 ft. to the original length. I asked the dealer why is that and they couldn't answer. So my 24B is actually 26 ft.
Just try to get gas (whenever possible) where the trucks stop, Pilot, TA etc. there is always easy way in and out, no stress.
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Old 07-09-2020, 05:33 PM   #18
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Yes pull forward. Keep an eye on your mirrors
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Old 07-09-2020, 09:57 PM   #19
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Thank you Bill - So you would pull out a bit more than usual before you start the turn - kinda like a big truck? pull ahead as much as possible before you start the turn process - I am just worried about the right turn on a two way street or even a left turn with someone in the turn lane and not having enough room for the turns.



My advice on this is to go sloooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooow.
Don't worry one flip about anyone behind you.


If you don't think there's room to make a wide turn, then sit there until there is room.


My wife drives our 31FK like a sports car. And she'll get a little flustered if she thinks she's slowing someone else down.


Me? I take some turns at 5mph.
And I don't give a rat's patootie about the person behind me.




That reminds me of something else - you'll need to drive extra defensively. Every one who sees you coming down in the RV will gun it to make sure they get in front of you.


When approaching intersections, I'm usually 5 mph below the speed limit. And I'm watching the lights like a hawk. In case they turn yellow, you;ll have to learn when to hit the brake and when to just ride thru.
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Old 07-10-2020, 09:27 AM   #20
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And The Long Long Trailer with Lucy & Desi. Granted, it's a trailer, but still hilarious IMO!!
Camper Bob you forgot to have them collect large rocks from all over the country
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