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Green RV’ing Tips



Some people call me cheap or frugal. Frugal sounds a little better than cheap but I guess I'll take either. Every penny you save and every little thing you do to save on trash or energy use really does add up in the long run. Going green when you can means you'll have more green in your pocket too.

Return maps and handouts in good condition for another use whenever possible. Try to avoid taking them if you don't need them in the first place. Many times, you can look at them at the counter and then leave them if you don't need any of the information. Or carry your own notebook to make notes. Instead of wasting a whole calendar, schedule or brochure when you only need to note one particular time or event. If I do take something like this, I put it to use later on to help start a fire .

Take advantage of book exchanges and library give aways. Donate yours and take another. Many libraries have a section in the back where magazines are free. You usually don't even have to be a member.

Change to rechargeable batteries whenever possible. Buy a solar recharger and charge batteries in the sun on your dashboard as you drive. I have just about eliminated regular batteries now. They cost more upfront but you'll quickly be ahead as you won't have to buy those 4-packs, 8-packs or even 32-packs any longer.

Change to LED lighting . There are cheap ones, poor ones and great ones out there now.

Buy your own tote bags or cloth bags and use them while shopping. This reduces the number of plastic bags you consume and trash. I have a set of bags that I've now been using for years and will for many more.

Plan your meals with the consideration of re-using cups, plates and reducing the overall amount of cleaning needed. Rinse dishes right away as this uses less water and effort than when the food has dried and hardened. Or use the largest dirty pan or bowl, let water sit in it with all the other dirty dishes and silverware. Most things come clean by themselves sitting in the water so you don't have to scrape as much or waste running water.

Switch to online banking. You can receive many bills by email and pay online. You save the money for stamps. Your bank should allow this for free. If they charge for it, find a better bank. This reduces the paper you receive and send out as well as the security impact of not having as many bills in your mailbox or waiting for you when you are gone.

Stop buying bottled water. Use refillable water jugs. Get your own water filter and drinking jug. Many bottled water companies just use local tap water and it's no better than what you can do yourself. It's a rip off. You can get collapsible ones as well to save space.

Turn off the water heater at night or on days when you don't need it. In my case, I leave it off all the time except for when I plan on using it. If possible, try to time washing dishes and showering around each other and only turn it on when you need it. Most hot water heaters will heat the smaller RV water tanks in less than a half hour.

Consider where you park. Try shade in warm weather and park in the sun in cold weather to use natural solar gain. Note how your windows are on your RV. Wherever the most glass is, like your front cab, will take in the most heat in the sun. If it is windy, point the most enclosed end of you RV into the wind. This reduces draft and the rocking and a rolling in the wind. This is a reason why we like to be able to pick our own spots, which many RV parks do not allow you to do. They assign you one without you seeing it. I really don't like when they do that.

Use your blinds, window covers and buy some reflective insulation material at the big hardware stores and make your own to fit any window that doesn't have good covers already. Covers are good for both heat and cold and they do make a big difference.

Use another blanket and lower your furnace temperature. Most RVs warm up real quick when the sun comes up. Or maybe you are taking off and driving for the day so you can use the engine heater at that point.

Do you have any more ideas on going green and saving money at the same time?


Adam | Mar 21, 2009 | Category: RV Tips, Green

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