Your new RV is remarkably ill-equipped when you leave the dealership. You still have to buy accessories and fittings that cost hundreds of dollars.
Sometimes dealers will throw in a few “extras” to make a sale, but you will still fall short of your needs.
Most dealers will have a store where you can buy some of the gear you need, often at a premium price. The smart consumer looks at all the options. My go-to retailers are Amazon, Walmart and Camping World.
Camping World carries everything you can possibly need or want to outfit your RV. Just browsing around the store will give you ideas.
Amazon has a broad selection of RV accessories and fittings online.
Destinations with high concentrations of RVers may also have mom-and-pop RV supply stores. Marine supply stores may carry items common to RV’s and boats, such as water hoses and disposable toilet paper.
Checklist for outfitting your new RV
Some of these accessories may be included in your purchase as part of the deal you negotiate, but you are otherwise left to your own resources.
We’ll try to help you find what you need at competitive prices.*
* Prices listed may change.
Drinking water hose. At least one 25-foot drinking-water-safe hose. (I carry two.) Do not use a standard garden hose. $10.40 each on Amazon
Water pressure regulator. Prevents surges in pressure that can damage pipes inside your RV. $8.97 on Amazon.
Water Filter w/Flexible Hose Protector. Filter campground water before it enters the trailer. $13.90 on Amazon.
Sewer hose. Minimum 15 feet. $29.97 at Amazon.
Foam rubber sewer collar. Required in most states. $5.10 at Amazon.
Clear 45-degree sewer fitting. Optional, but useful to see when tanks are empty. $4.17 at Amazon
Sidewinder Sewer Hose Support. Aids flow of wastewater to sewer hookup. 15 feet. $32.94 at Amazon
Gray water sewer fitting. Drain gray water only to sewer hookup or tote tank with garden hose. $6.28 on Amazon.
Swivel stick holding tank rinser. Provides pressurized rinse of black water tank through your toilet. $19.82 on Amazon.
Holding tank back flush with valve. Flush the tank from outside with a garden hose. For me, this is an absolute must unless you already have a back-flush system built into your rig. $24.30 on Amazon.
Blue Tote Tank. Towable tank to cart wastewater to the campground dump station without have to move your rig. I’ve owned both sizes listed here and prefer the 15-gallon for ease of handling and storage. 15-gallon, $104 on Amazon. 25-gallon, $209.00 on Amazon
RV Disposable Dump Gloves and Dispenser. For handling the sewer hose. Essential. $7.30 on Amazon.
Toilet paper. Rapidly dissolving TP for marine and RV toilets. Don’t use household TP. $4.04 at Amazon.
30-amp extension cord. I carry a 25-foot extension, just in case I need it, and I have used it many times. $38 at Amazon.
15-amp to 30-amp adapter. For those times only a 15-amp power supply is available, but you need a 30-amp connector for your RV. $10.77 at Amazon
Note: The longer the chord, the thicker it should be. I use a 14-gauge extension cord for connecting to standard (15-amp) outlets when the connection is distant, and I’ve used it when parked in driveways for the night. $47.63 on Amazon
Graduated Levels. A pair of stick-on levels for setting up camp on uneven ground. $8.16 at Amazon
Stabilizer jack pads. Protects stabilizer jacks. These are compact for storage, but you can use scrap 2×4’s.) $13.89 at Amazon
Electric tongue jack cover. Protect your electric jack from weather while in storage. $18.95 on Amazon
Tire Lock Wheel Chock. Locks tandem wheels to prevents trailer from rolling. $39 on Amazon. Otherwise, basic wheel chocks will do. I carry both.
Patio carpet — Keep off the dirt or gravel pads. Various prices and colors on Amazon. Also, see the patio mat collection at Camping World. I bought mine at Wal-Mart.
Picnic tablecloth and bench covers — For dirty campsite picnic tables. $5.28 on Amazon.
Patio Chairs — We have a fold-up rocker, a gravity chair, and fold-up camp chairs. Buy at a store where you can try them out.
A cordless drill is handy for stabilizers. Use a 3/4″ hex-drive socket. Basic tool kit containing a hammer, screwdrivers, etc., and I often use a rubber mallet. Note that you may need a special screwdriver for interior screws. You probably have most of the tools you need in your garage or basement.
Dish soap is a multi-purpose, inside and outside the trailer. I also carry a spray bottle of water and vinegar for quick cleanup, and a second spray bottle with bleach and water to sanitize hose ends before hooking up. McGuire’s Marine One-Step Wash and Wax removes tough stains and black streaks that won’t wash off with dish soap.
Bucket, sponge and brush mop with expandable handle for reaching high sides of the trailer and cleaning the roof. A foldaway broom and Swifter are perfect for cleaning interior floors.
DampRid. Moisture, mold and condensation are an RV’s worst enemy. DampRid helps keep the interior dry. $5 on Amazon
Wheel Covers. Protect your tires and spare from the weather and the sun with wheel covers. $48 on Amazon.
Hitch Coupler Lock. Whether parked in a campground or in storage, prevent your rig from being towed away by a stranger. $28 on Amazon.
Disclaimer: FloridaRambler.com receives a modest commission when you click on these links. We recommend, however, that you compare prices to get the best deals. And if you are near a Camping World, go in and browse. Sometimes you never know what you need until you see it! 🙂
Related Florida Rambler articles
Buying a travel trailer: What the salesman should have told you
RV Camping: Tips for booking campsites in Florida this winter
Other Useful Resources:
Tips for Buying a Used RV – AARP
Your recommendations and comments are welcome below.
Notes from the editor:
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Bob Rountree is a beach bum, angler and camper who has explored Florida for decades. No adventure is complete without a scenic paddle trail or unpaved road to nowhere. Bob co-founded FloridaRambler.com with fellow journalist Bonnie Gross 12 years ago.