If you’ve recently purchased an RV online, you’re probably still in the honeymoon phase. Motorhomes and travel trailers are unique hybrids of home and vehicle that require a different approach to vehicle ownership than you may be used to.¬†Unlike a car, you can’t simply turn the key and pull out of the driveway or campsite in the morning. Because your RV is also a living space, there are slides and awnings to secure, systems to disconnect, hoses and cables to stow, and other minor but important chores that can easily slip the mind of a new RV owner. Unfortunately, these kinds of new owner errors can¬†potentially damage your new rig.

To prevent inadvertent — and sometimes costly — accidents from happening, it’s a good idea to make yourself a couple of pre-travel checklists to help you remember what needs to be squared away both inside and outside your rig before you turn the key and pull out of your camp slot. Make it a practice to add to your list as problems arise or new ideas occur. At the end of your first RV season, compile your scribbled lists into a single master checklist that you can store on your computer and print out at the start of each new RV season.

Next time: Recommended checklists