ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

An RV Drivers Checklist of Things to Do Before Pulling Out.

Updated on January 28, 2021
Don Bobbitt profile image

Don has been an avid traveler and motorhome owner for most of his life. He shares his experiences and valuable tips with RV owners.

A Typical campsite in Virginia

Our Holiday Rambler, Neptune motorhome sitting our TT campsite in Rustburg, VA.
Our Holiday Rambler, Neptune motorhome sitting our TT campsite in Rustburg, VA. | Source

A Great 8 Step Procedure

When you are traveling in your RV, and making those stops in places like Rest Areas, Gas Stations, and even supermarket parking lots, these stop-offs are a great opportunity for you to do a quick "walk around" and make sure everything is as it should be with your RV before you get in and start the next leg of your trip.

EIGHT-Step Driver Checklist before Pulling Out

If you are the driver of an RV, especially a relatively inexperienced one, then here is a quick and simple Eight-Step Checklist you should perform before pulling onto the Road.

This list is almost intuitive to the experienced RVer, but everyone should perform these steps whenever you are pulling your Rig onto the road.

And, these simple steps should be followed regardless of whether; you are leaving a campground after a long stay, you are leaving a rest stop, or you are just leaving a fuel station after a fill-up.

Again, they may end up being intuitive after a while, but remember, it is best to catch a potential problem before it happens, than to have something force you onto the side of the road with a breakdown, and a costly service call.

So, before pulling onto the road, perform these simple steps:

Important Checks to always make.

At some point you will intuitively make these checks before you enter or re-enter your RV and pull out and onto the road.

1 – Start UP and Warm UP:

First, always warm up the engine of your RV before you pull out onto the road. I can’t tell you how many stories I have heard from other Diesel and even Gas RV owners about such things as cracked exhaust manifolds that were a result of driving off in an RV before everything warms up properly.

So, the first thing you do is start your engine, then double check that you have the emergency brake on. Then you can walk through the following checks while the engine warms up.

You won’t regret it.

2 - Chassis Walk-around:

Go outside and take a slow walk around the RV, paying careful attention to the Chassis and undercarriage.

Particularly, look for fluids that may have leaked from your RV, as this is a bad sign that always requires further inspection. You could have hydraulic leaks from the slide systems or even your holding tanks.

Tire Checks

You should take a quick look at your tires for low air pressure and check the sidewalls of each tire for potential cuts. I always reach over and touch the top of my RV, truck, or other vehicle and check for excessive heat.

Regardless of the outside temperature, a properly aligned tire with the appropriate level of air in it will always feel cool (or just warm) to the touch.

If one of your tires feels hot to the touch, then you have a potential problem that could cause a blow-out at any time.

Hanging Road Debris -

Believe it or not, you should also look under the RV for any hanging debris. I have had to crawl under mine to remove such items as; a tree limb, a large piece of a plastic tarp, and once I even removed a piece of a tractor-trailer tire from my Generator Exhaust pipe.

3 – Storage Compartments:

While performing your walk-around, look and confirm that all of your storage compartments are firmly closed and locked.

You want them closed firmly to assure that you don’t get to your destination and find that you have donated some of your stored items to the highway department for cleanup.

You want them locked so that you can pull off of the road, whether; at a rest area for the night, at a restaurant for a meal, or at a mall or department store to shop; and return to the RV later with some level of confidence that your property has not been stolen while you were away from your RV.

4 - Slide Windows:

And, believe it or not, while you are walking around the outside of your RV, look to see that all of your Slide windows on the RV are closed.

Driving through rain with an open window for a while can really get things wet in an RV, without your noticing, especially if the open window is in the back of the RV.

5 – Items Attached Outside the RV:

RVers will often end up with certain things that do not fit in their RV or their towed car, and they end up attached to the exterior of one or the other.

Such items as Bicycles, Ladders, Lounge Chairs, etc. top the list, and many are attached using Bungee cords and ropes.

You need to check that these things are still attached securely at every stop of your trip, because they tend to vibrate and shake in the winds generated as the RV travels down the road.

Remember, you don’t just have to worry about the cost of replacement of an item lost along the road, but more importantly, you should worry about the damage such items might do to other people and/or their property.

6 – Tow Vehicle:

Take a look and assure that your towed vehicle, whether it is a TOAD, a car on a Tow Caddy, or even a trailer, is still properly hitched to your RV.

Check the electrical connections, emergency chains, brake emergency pull cable, and the hitch itself and assure that all are still connected firmly to the RV.

7 – Loose Gear Check:

After completing the steps listed above, go back into the RV, and perform one more walk through, from the front to the back. On this walk through, you need to look for any loose items that might be sitting around, as well as any unsecured cabinet drawers or doors.

Remember, even something as simple as a flashlight, or a coffee cup, can turn into a dangerous missile when you slam on the brakes or take a sharp turn.

8 – Dash Check:

OK, if you went through the checks listed above, you can now sit down at the driver's seat with a level of confidence that you have a secure RV ready for the road.

Finally, Hit the Road!

The last thing, that you need to do now is;

You need to check all of your gauges and assure that they are indicating the appropriate levels for a warmed up vehicle.

Once this is done, another check of your mirrors, start your Pull-Out Procedure and …..

Hit the Road!

Emergency Road Assistance Kit

Lifeline AAA Premium Road Kit, 42 Piece Emergency Car Kit with Jumper Cables, Flashlight and First Aid Kit,4330AAA,Black
Lifeline AAA Premium Road Kit, 42 Piece Emergency Car Kit with Jumper Cables, Flashlight and First Aid Kit,4330AAA,Black
Every Rv must have a good Emergency Kit, and this is the one I have. I purchased it two years ago, and feel a lot safer knowing I have it when I travel.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)