Looking for the best camper hacks for organization, safety, travel days, and more? As full-time RVers, we live the RV life day in and day out! Living, working, and traveling in a small space is not always easy. Simple RV hacks have been life savers for us.
Whether you have a travel trailer, fifth wheel, or driveable camper, we’ve curated the ultimate list of RV camping hacks so you can make your next camping experience as smooth and comfortable as possible!
Best Camping Hacks To Save You Time, Money & Energy
A list of our best hacks and tips to help you find the best ways to solve some of the problems and challenges inherent with RV travel, camping, and road trips.
General Tips & Hacks for Outdoor Spaces
Build a pet bowl holder into an existing space to keep it stable while traveling
One of our favorite parts of RVing is being able to travel, camp, and explore with our dog Azalea.
Building a permanent holder for her bowls is one of our favorite custom features and helps to keep her bowls sturdy during transit, and keep her water and food elevated, and out of the way.
Use a snap fastener for your pocket doors shut
Pocket doors in RVs typically have a locking mechanism at the bottom. What we found was that this was not always enough to keep the door from sliding across on bumpy travel days.
Not only can this cause damage to the door itself (and ours has glass inlay), but it can also damage the door frame.
A cheap plastic snap fastener is an easy way to add an extra layer of safety, keeping the door tight in place.
Use command strips or command hooks for better organization
One of the best things you can keep on hand in your RV or camper are command products. They are mess-free, damage-free, and easy to use for all kinds of organizational needs.
Using Command strips or Command hooks for hanging towels, facecloths, clothes, keys, and other items is a practical and space-saving solution in an RV or camper. These adhesive hooks provide a damage-free way to create storage and keep essential items within easy reach.
They can be conveniently placed on walls, cabinets, or doors, optimizing storage space without the need for drilling or causing permanent damage to the interior of your RV. Whether you’re drying towels after use or organizing small items, Command strips or hooks offer versatility and convenience, making them ideal for RV living and camping adventures.
Use a slide-out wall, steps, or storage bay as a sticker and journey map to track your adventures
This might not be a hack per se, but is a fun way to immerse yourself in the RV community and strike up conversations wherever you go. Save your memories by making them everlasting on your sticker map, and display them for others to enjoy as well.
We love looking around at other people’s maps in the campground to see where they have been!
Mount your Starlink on a flagpole for increased height to avoid obstructions
Starlink has been a game changer for allowing us to have reliable internet to work while we enjoy our full-time RV lifestyle. The caveat with Starlink is that it requires an open view of the sky to work without delays or interruptions.
While this is easy in the desert, it becomes a bit more difficult in campgrounds and around trees.
Having Starlink on a flagpole is a great solution for the challenge of trees or other RVs. It allows you to raise the Starlink for increased height to avoid obstructions, while also keeping cords up off the ground and away from critters (we did have mice nibble on our cord when we were using it on the ground).
Get up and running in 3 easy steps:
- Buy Flag Pole Buddy Kit (you can do this cheaper with custom clamps, a Harbor Freight flagpole, and a 3D printed Starlink adapter)
- Attach components to your RV ladder
- Enjoy wifi almost anywhere!
Pro Tip: We strongly suggest you don’t permanently install Starlink on your RV. Being able to put dishy in different places is critical for finding open sky in many different campsites and boondocking locations.
Interested in learning if Starlink is right for you? Read more: Starlink Internet Guide & Review
Use a verbal or physical checklist before departure on travel day
Travel days can come with a bit of added stress.
You are packing up, getting everything together, and making sure everything is in its place. There can be a lot to remember!
To make sure you do not miss anything crucial (like forgetting to bring your awnings in, leaving a slide out, forgetting to put the stairs in, etc.), it is a good idea to work off of either a physical or verbal checklist.
We have a system that we are used to it that has evolved from a physical list to a verbal one and we try to do the same thing every time. As a couple, we also find it helpful to split responsibilities and know who always does what.
- Alyssa does all of the inside prep (securing doors, organizing, taking slides in, etc.) and Zach does all of the outside prep (dumping tanks, taking electrical cord in, etc.)
Use unistrut to mount solar panels
Unistrut allows you to limit the number of holes in your roof when installing solar panels as you only screw the unistrut into the roof and then fasten the solar panels to the unistrut.
This is also a great idea for maintenance as if you need to work on or replace a panel, you can leave everything affixed to the roof in place and simply remove the panels you need to.
Use solar rope lights under your RV or vehicle to keep rodents away
Mice are small and will find their way into any tiny spaces they can.
Even with being careful about filling in holes around our RV, having a fully enclosed underbelly, and being vigilant, on multiple occasions mice have made their way into our RV (mostly our basement and at one time also our bedroom …EEEK)!
They also loved making themselves at home in the insulation of our truck engine bay where they could quickly do a lot of damage.
Luckily they are deterred by light and using solar lights under our RV and truck helped keep them at bay. You may also want to keep some form of rodent deterrent in your storage bays and have some traps on hand…just in case
Use orange safety triangles or cones to mark your RV or Starlink
Whether you are staying overnight somewhere near a road, or have your Startlink or dish on the ground where it can be driven over or cut by the lawnmower, orange cones can come in handy to mark your camping equipment and keep it safe!
Install SimpliSafe alarms on doors and storage compartments
SimpliSafe allows for peace of mind if safety is a concern.
We installed SimpliSafe alarms on our main door and our storage bay compartments and also have a video camera which we can check in on remotely.
In addition to considering a security system, you may also want to change your storage bay locks, as many RVs all work off the same key.
Put blankets over computer chairs or large items for travel day
Our dinette area butts up to our island when our RV slides are in. We have transformed our dinette area into our office space and swapped out the traditional dining chairs for office chairs.
Our first travel day with our office setup resulted in some damage to our island when the chairs shifted and rubbed against the wood.
Our solution for this has been to drape blankets over the chairs and use a sock over the chair wheels that point out towards the island. This has worked well and we have not had any further damage since!
Leave the door of your washing machine open to avoid mildew
Just like in a house, washing machines in an RV (if you have one) are a common place where mildew can build up. Leave the door cracked to let it dry out after using it to prevent bad smells!
Open windows on the shade side of your RV and use your fans to keep things cool
Especially when boondocking, things can heat up fast in the sun.
Either by opening your awnings if it’s not windy or by where the sun is casting its shadow over your RV, there will typically be some areas where the air is shaded and cooler. This is where you want to open your windows and use the fans to suck in the cool air, creating a stream or flow of that chilled air to keep things cool.
Keeping your shades shut where the natural light is not needed can also help.
Stuff dryer sheets in holes around plumbing to further deter critters
Putting dryer sheets in the holes and crevices around your RV can help deter rodents due to their strong scent, which many pests find unpleasant.
The scent of the dryer sheets acts as a natural repellent, making your RV less appealing to mice and other rodents, thus reducing the likelihood of unwanted house guests and damage.
Use this easy trick to help with backing in your RV
When backing up: put your hand at the bottom of the wheel. The direction you move your hand is the direction the trailer will turn.
This is a quick and easy camper hack to help with backing your trailer or RV up! Backing into a spot, especially if there is an audience can be daunting and this can help keep it simple!
Use pool noodles or tennis balls on the corner of your slide-outs
Putting something soft protects you from bumps, scrapes, and bruises you can get from the sharp corners of your slide-outs when walking around your RV.
In addition, choosing bright-colored noodles and fresh tennis balls can help the edges stand out to alert you to duck or step around.
Use museum putty to keep items in place during travel!
If you have items you like to have out in your camper when set up, but typically have to put away while traveling (pictures, trinkets, plants, etc.) consider using museum putty to make things more permanent.
This can make your setup and breakdown time much quicker and you would be surprised at how well these products hold things in place!
This is a popular product among full-time RVers: Quakehold Museum Putty
Use tie-offs or bungee cords to keep cords off the ground and organized
RV’s have a lot of things that can get tangled. Power cords, hoses, straps, and more. We recommend using ties or bungee cords to keep cords off the ground and away from critters and to fasten/ organize hoses when in transport.
Keeping things tangle-free protects them from damage and saves you from the frustration of having to de-tangle them.
Mount chargers or tools to the side wall in your storage areas to save space
RVs and campers are short on space, but can also require a lot of maintenance. This means you need tools! Save space by going vertical and mounting tools or chargers on the side wall of your storage bays or basement (if you are able).
Utilize a truck bed tool box-auxillary tank combo for added storage space and diesel fuel
If you plan to camp in remote areas or through mountainous areas having extra fuel can be at the very least a huge stress reliever and at most even a lifesaver. Towing at elevation and up and down steep grades can be taxing and you will watch your fuel gauge tank very quickly.
In addition, remote areas can leave you with long distances between fuel stops. While the auxiliary fuel tank only applies to diesel vehicles, the toolbox storage can be helpful for gas vehicles as well.
As we mentioned in our previous hack, RVing can require tools for regular maintenance, and saving space in your RV by storing them in your truck can be really nice. In addition, it allows you to have tools on hand for your vehicle itself if you are away from the RV exploring.
Important safety tip: Make sure you are not exceeding the payload on your tow vehicle when everything is full and loaded down
Use a label maker to organize basement bins so you can easily see what is inside each bin
Our RV is our home which means we have more than the average weekend warrior might have in their camper. This being said, camping often comes with some added “stuff” such as cooking equipment, outdoor chairs, and tables, games, tents, and swimming or water toys (like a kayak or paddle board).
Storage bins help keep things organized and a label maker can help keep things clear so that you can do not have to pull out every bin and look through it to know what’s inside. It’s simple and can really cut down on frustration (as long as you continue to put those items back in the correctly labeled box)!
Install extra shelving on tall cabinets to be able to utilize more space
Sometimes RV cabinets can be funny. They are either weirdly shallow, too tall or too deep, and can lead to unused space or poorly organized space.
Use thin wood to create extra shelves in cabinets that are too tall to create more storage space and better organization!
Hacks For the RV Kitchen
Use collapsible items to save you a lot of space
This is an easy solution or swap that can make a big difference when it comes to saving space.
Things like collapsible silicon dishes, collapsible laundry baskets, or nesting bowls allow you to have the products you want, while saving on space.
Amazon has a large assortment of collapsible containers in plenty of shapes, sizes, and colors!
Use non-slip liners in cabinets where things are likely to move during transit
These liners help prevent the shifting and sliding of kitchenware and other belongings, reducing the risk of damage during travel.
Additionally, non-slip liners add an extra layer of protection, keeping items securely in place and ensuring a more organized and hassle-free journey on the road.
Use paper plates while boondocking or camping off-grid
Paper plates eliminate the need for washing dishes, reducing water usage and conserving precious resources while enjoying nature. They also save time and effort, allowing you to focus on outdoor adventures instead of spending time on chores.
This is not the most eco-friendly option, but there are plenty of options out there for compostable paper products or those made from recycled materials.
For more game-changing tips for epic off-grid camping read more: 51 Boondocking Tips
Fill a large water bottle with any water you have left in your water filter before traveling
Travel days can be long and can come with unexpected twists and turns.
Filling a large water bottle with any water you have left in your Berkey or water filter before traveling is a smart and efficient way to make the most of your purified water. This practice helps minimize waste and ensures that you have a supply of clean and safe drinking water while on the road.
Invest in storage containers for your pantry
Larger storage containers allow you to stock up on bulk items and keep them fresh and free from spills.
RV pantries and kitchens can be lacking in storage space. Depending on the dimensions of your kitchen space, using various sizes of storage containers can help you optimize the space and also allow you to stock up on items while keeping them fresh…and also keeping critters out.
Amazon also has a great selection of storage containers! I personally love the ones with the write-on labels!
Use velcro fasteners to keep cabinet doors shut
Many RVs and campers are like rolling earthquakes. Things can and will shift during transit while you are out on the open road and the last thing anyone wants is to show up to their campsite, open the door to their camper, and find their food, appliances, and kitchenware thrown around all over.
Velcro fasteners are a great and simple solution as they are inexpensive and can be tightly latched around cabinet doors as an extra safety measure. Velcro is reliable and they are easy and quick to take on and off.
Use PVC pipe as a great way (DIY) to keep your french door fridge closed
If you have a residential refrigerator in your RV, you may have run into the problem where the doors do not stay closed on travel days.
Using 3 pieces of PVC pipe, you can create a cheap alternative to a fancy fridge lock that will hold your fridge and freezer doors shut and in place.
We also like to rearrange the content of our fridge for travel day, keeping breakable items in drawers or bins to limit damage from shifting. You can also use tension rods, a curtain rod, or a suspension rod to keep fridge contents in place.
Looking for more RV DIY projects? Read More about DIY RV jack blocks
Camper Hacks For Your RV Bathroom
Use styrofoam to prevent breakage if the shower door lock fails
Another common area where damage can occur is the shower door. We have a 3-pane sliding glass door for our shower and this has a hook lock that keeps in place for travel. This being said these have been known to fail or pop open, leaving room for the doors to slide and break.
A cheap DIY solution is to use a piece of styrofoam that is placed in the shower sill (door tracks). We had a piece that was a bit short for the space and used old sponges as well to extend to meet the doors when in the stow position.
You could also opt for a wooden dowel with styrofoam on the end – whatever works best for you!
RV bathrooms are also great places for using containers for organizing, collapsible laundry hampers if you are low on space, and command hooks!
Camper Hacks for Cold Weather
Use Reflectix to maintain your interior temperature
Using Reflectix insulation is an effective way to maintain a comfortable and cozy interior temperature in your RV or camper. The insulating properties of Reflectix help keep warm air inside during colder weather, preventing heat loss and reducing the need for excessive heating.
Additionally, Reflectix can serve as a barrier to keep cold air out during hot weather, helping to maintain a cooler interior and reducing the reliance on air conditioning.
This versatile and lightweight material can be easily cut and fitted to windows, doors, and other openings, providing an efficient solution to regulate the temperature inside your RV while camping or traveling.
Reflectix can be cut to the specific size you need for the windows on your RV easily, making it easy to customize for your needs.
Use a space heater or electric blanket to stay warm if you have electric hook-ups
Space heaters provide localized warmth, allowing you to heat specific areas like the living space or bedroom without having to warm the entire RV.
Electric blankets can be a cozy addition to your bedding, providing a gentle and consistent source of heat during colder nights. With electric hook-ups, these appliances can be used safely and efficiently, making your camping experience more enjoyable during chilly weather conditions.
Utilize a warm water bottle
Fill a water bottle with hot water and place it in bed with you. This can work when camping in a tent as well, placing a hot water bottle or hand warmers in your sleeping bag.
Other Ways To Get Inspiration For Camper Hacks
When working with limited space in a camper or RV, you have to get creative. This list is a collection of easy hacks that we hope will make your life easier, and leave you less stressed when it comes to your camping adventures and with more time for exploring the great outdoors.
The internet is a great place with plenty of unique and creative ideas floating around. If you want to continue to find other great sources of information and inspiration, check out social media sites like Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube!
Check out our other helpful camping tips & RV resources:
- Ultimate RV Maintenance Checklist
- RV Tips 101: Education Guide For Beginners
- 7 Must-Have RV Accessories
- RV Camping Essentials Every Camper Needs
- The Best Apps For RVing: Proven Reliable Resources
- Beginner’s Guide to RV Boondocking
- 51 Best Boondocking Tips
Have a great RV hack you think should be on this list for others to see and try out? Comment below or reach out and let us know. We are always looking for innovative new solutions and the latest, greatest, and best camping hacks!