You never forget your first motorhome. It’s one of those life-changing moments when you buy a leisure vehicle and drive it for the first time. Purchase a motorhome and it can also be a little bit intimidating at first. There’s a lot to consider as you gradually master the controls and get used to manoeuvring the vehicle to different campsites. Don’t sweat it. You’ll soon be a dab hand behind the wheel of your motorhome and enjoy many amazing adventures together.
Take it nice and steady at first and your confidence will soar. Practice makes perfect, and by following this advice you’ll soon be a confident RV driver.
Give yourself extra space
Motorhomes are much larger than your average family car so you need to be aware of this when you are behind the wheel. Consider the extra space you need when passing parked cars or turning at junctions, and also remember it’ll take longer to stop the motorhome due to the extra weight of the vehicle, so your braking distance should be longer too. Allow extra space for manoeuvring and give yourself plenty of stopping room too.
Don’t cut corners
When you are turning corners in your motorhome, it’s best to take them wider than you would normally in a car. Your leisure vehicle is longer than a standard car and it needs extra space to avoid cutting the corner or clipping the kerb. With some practice, you’ll soon get used to doing this and will be able to judge the length of the vehicle accordingly. Check your mirrors as you make the manoeuvre to ensure your motorhome hasn’t mounted anything it shouldn’t.
Acceleration is slower
Give yourself more time when you are pulling out of junctions in your motorhome. Spaces in traffic that would be adequate to pull out safely in a car might not be quite as safe when you are driving a leisure vehicle. Acceleration will be slower and a motorhome is longer than a car, so respect other traffic and give yourself plenty of time, especially when you are pulling out of side roads onto main roads. It’s better to be patient and there’s nothing wrong with being cautious if this avoids an incident.
Check the weight of the RV
The maximum speed limit you can travel in your motorhome might differ from that of a standard car depending on the weight of the vehicle. For example, motorhomes more than 3.05 tonnes maximum unladed weight have a maximum speed limit of 60 mph on dual carriageways, in comparison to 70 mph for cars. It’s important to establish the weight of your motorhome before you set off on your travels so you are fully aware of the facts.
Be a considerate driver
Take extra care when you are passing cyclists, moped or motorbike riders and horses due to the buffeting effect caused by high-sided vehicles. Give them as much room as possible to reduce the impact of wind buffeting caused by your vehicle. It can be quite intimidating for cyclists and horse riders to be overtaken by large recreational vehicles, especially on narrow roads. Slow down in this instance and provide them with as much space as possible, passing them carefully and considerately.
Get to know your height and width
It’s best to plan your route in advance when you are driving a motorhome. Fail to do this and you never know when you might encounter width restrictions on minor B roads or height restrictions in car parks. A really good suggestion is to make a note of the width, height, length and weight of your motorhome for future reference. You could have this information printed on a card or a sticker then place it in a prominent position inside the cab of your RV.
Driver training can help
Obviously, the more you drive your motorhome the more confident you will become as you gain experience behind the wheel. If you think a little driver training will help, the Camping and Caravanning Club run specialist motorhome manoeuvring courses, and here you will be taught a range of driving skills behind the wheel of your very own motorhome. This could be the ideal confidence booster to help you fully enjoy life with your leisure vehicle.
Of course, if you have a minor accident with your motorhome, don’t worry, we offer quality repair solutions for you here at DMR Motorhome Body Repair. Try not to let this dent your confidence. Simply contact us for a no-obligation quote and let us fix your motorhome – we’ll soon have you back on the road! You can call us for a FREE repair estimate today on 01302 711377.