Written by the Getaway Couple Rae & Jason
There is no denying the fact that technology has changed every aspect of our lives, and this includes the way we camp too. Many of today’s RVs come loaded with new gadgets and technology right from the factory. In addition, there is an almost endless selection of aftermarket products available to consumers who want the latest and greatest in technology for their camping trips. We understand, we are exactly the same way, which is why we created this list. Without further ado, here are 7 pieces of RV technology that you must own.
1. Cell Signal Booster
Most campgrounds tend to be a little bit off the beaten path. But that’s sort of the whole point of camping in the first place, right? However, your escape to nature can also bring some difficulties along with it. One of those is a weak and spotty cell signal. This is especially annoying if you work full time like Jason and I do, where strong internet is imperative.
Investing in a good cell signal booster can help ensure that you always have access to your phone should you need it. This can also be great in cases where the campground Wi-Fi is subpar, which let’s be honest, is most of the time. The cell signal booster will allow you to make calls as well as access the Internet using your cellular service. A must-have piece of technology for anyone needing to stay connected while on the road.
2. Portable Propane Fire Pit
No camping trip is complete without a campfire and all the traditions that go along with it. However, the smoke from the campfire always leaves your clothes and all your belongings smelling like smoke for days to come. If you fulltime RV like us, this gets old really fast! Not to mention the fact that some people are sensitive to smoke due to allergies or other issues.
To never deal with fire smoke again, we highly recommend looking into portable propane fire pits. These devices run off of propane so you are never dealing with smoke in your face again. There is a range of sizes on the market today so you can easily find something for two people to cozy up next to or the whole family. Personally, we have a small propane fire pit perfect for the two of us and love it! Now everyone can enjoy the benefits and fun of a campfire without the annoying side effect of the smoke.
3. Solar Cell Phone Charger
Boondocking has become a popular activity among RV enthusiasts in recent years and it’s an activity we recently dove into headfirst in 2019. This is essentially camping “off the grid” without any power or water hookups. When boondocking, power can become an issue, especially if your RV battery runs out of juice. If your cell phone dies, you have no way to recharge it then.
You can keep your phone charged and conserve your RV battery life at the same time by getting a solar cell phone charger. Simply set this little device outside and let your phone charge away! You can find one available that is compatible with nearly any type of phone, so you never have to worry about your phone being dead again.
4. Smart Control and Monitoring
With all the technology available today for the smart home, it was only a matter of time before this technology became prevalent in the RV industry too. Connected devices such as thermostats, hot water heaters, and holding tanks allow you to remotely monitor and control the things inside your travel trailer. Some manufacturers are even beginning to release completely connected models to the market.
For example, Airstream has just released their Smart Control Technology in their Classic travel trailers. This allows you to control everything from the temperature to the awning without even being at the campground. Imagine receiving an alert on your mobile device that the wind is picking up and then retracting your awning at the touch of a button. This technology makes it possible!
Even if you’re RV doesn’t come with this technology already installed, you can custom add almost any modification you want. We installed two Radio Thermostats in our Solitude to be able to control the temperature while we’re gone.
5. Backup Camera
Yes, backup cameras have been around for quite some time. They’re not exactly new technology. However, recent advancements in this technology have made them a must-have for anyone who uses their RV regularly.
Today’s backup cameras are a breeze to install, and they provide a crystal-clear picture. They can also be viewed while in motion, so you can see exactly what is around or behind you as you drive! Plus, backing into a tight spot or maneuvering without a spotter has never been easier. They can help make your life much easier and also prevent accidents. If you haven’t already, you should invest in one today!
6. Campground Locator App
It’s getting late, you’re still on the road, and you have no idea where you’re going to park your rig for the night. Many of us have been there, especially full-timers who like to move around often. With our recent cross country trips, we are finding ourselves in this position more and more. Thankfully in today’s RV world, there are many apps available for your mobile phone that make finding a campground a piece of cake.
Check out some of the popular apps like RV Trip Wizard or Campendium. These apps allow you to view photos, reviews, and search for campgrounds based on your current location. Some of the apps will even provide turn by turn directions to the campground you choose, while ensuring you don’t take any routes with low clearance or unsafe mountain roads. The apps also provide a community aspect where you can interact with fellow campers and share routes, tips, and tricks. Both of these apps have helped us find a safe spot for the night and weeklong stays in popular destinations.
7. Portable Washing Machine
Not everyone has the luxury of owning a large RV with a washer and dryer. It can be difficult finding laundry facilities when you need to wash some clothes or linens. Even when these facilities are easily accessible, it gets expensive shelling out several dollars for every load of laundry.
Thankfully the portable washing machines available today can help alleviate these issues. These devices are small enough to travel everywhere with you, but powerful enough to get the job done! They are also inexpensive with many costing less than $100. Simply plug in the unit, add water and detergent, and you’ll have clean clothes in no time. We’d also recommend investing in a simple drying rack, as you will still need to dry your clothes.
There has never been more awesome technology available for RVs than there is today. From connected devices to neat gadgets, you can find a solution to nearly any problem you may face. And most of these devices are just plain fun to play with! We love finding innovative and helpful RV technology so we hope you found these 7 gadgets useful!