Motorhome life hacks! A “Lifehack”, according to Wikipedia, refers to any trick, shortcut, skill, or novelty method that increases productivity and efficiency. So what motorhome life hacks have we learnt in the last 2 months of touring in our motorhome? Here are my top 5 motorhome life hacks!
- Fuel efficiency whilst driving our motorhome and French tolls.
Touring in a motorhome is best done slowly. In France, where we are now, diesel has been costing us between 1.22 Euros and 1.35 per litre, so whilst stating the obvious, the more miles you do the more is costs. There are times though where you might have to use motorways and we used the French motorways to get quickly to the Royan area. I have already mentioned in a previous blog about how good the Sanef-t-Tag is driving through France on toll roads. You can access your online Sanef-t account anytime to see how much the tolls have cost you and a copy of my account is pictured below.
Back to fuel efficiency, whilst driving a motorhome I found that using cruise control made a big difference to the miles per gallon but only when driving on the flat. On some stretches of flat motorway I saw the average mpg go up to over 60 as opposed to our normal average of 30.5 mpg so it’s well worth getting to know how your cruise control works if you have one of course! On average with cruise control on we were getting about 15% more miles to the gallon than without cruise control.
2. Fresh water and waste
Before buying our first motorhome we read all sorts of horror stories about emptying a motorhome toilet cassette, but it’s really not that bad. The job of emptying it falls to me though and Anne refuses to do it. With her nursing and midwifery background I’m surprised at that!
I empty the toilet cassette daily and only put enough fresh water in to the fresh water tank to keep us going daily, although if we are wild camping I will put more fresh water in to keep us going a few days more. For those times that you can’t get near to a tap I suggest getting a 10 litre watering can. We have found this the easiest way to get water into the tank. Our toilet cassette is fitted with a SOG system and this avoids the need to use chemicals.
3. Buy steps to access your motorhome
Our motorhome came with an electric step but we decided to buy some stand alone steps, after we had a problem with the electric step. Stand alone steps are more robust than our electric step but they are also multi-purpose. For example we use our steps to clean the windscreen and to make it easier to to take our bikes off and back on our bike carrier. They are mini step ladders!
4. Refillable gas bottles – The Gaslow system.
What a wonderful system the Gaslow re-fillable system is in my opinion. It’s not cheap to fit but because we will be spending a lot of time touring in our motorhome we can re-fill our 2 x 11 kg gas cylinders from many fuel stations in Europe. I have the FillLPG app on my mobile phone so that I can easily find nearby fuel stations that sell LPG. So far it has worked out much cheaper to buy LPG because we only put in what we need.
5. Cadac Safari 2 Gas BBQ
We love this gas BBQ. I’ve always been an advocate of charcoal but we have never had as many BBQ’s as we are having now. I can set up the Cadac BBQ in 2 minutes and be ready to cook 2 minutes later. The hotplate heats up very quickly and it is very easy to clean afterwards. Cleaning charcoal BBQ’s was always a pain! I can highly recommend the Cadac Safari Chef 2. It’s easily big enough for 2 people and I have used it to cook for 4 people with no problems. The Cadac comes with several cooking accessories such as a grill, smooth cooking plate suitable for pizza and frying eggs and a pan/kettle stand.
Experienced motor homers will have heard all this advice before but as newbies to motor homes it’s a steep learning curve for us and I wanted to share this information for other newbies!