Thursday, September 11, 2014

Use a leaf blower to clean slideout tops

By Jim Twamley

RV slideouts are a wonderful invention and make RVs so much more spacious! Our first 5th wheel with a slideout would accumulate leaves, pine needles and dust especially when we parked under a tree. Since I didn’t know any better, we quickly accumulated this debris inside the rig when we retracted the slides. Some folks elect to install slideout awnings to keep dirt and debris off of their slideouts.
These short awnings automatically deploy when you extend your slides. They can be purchased and installed from any RV dealer with a service department, or if you are so inclined, you can install them yourself. Here is a cheaper solution that has multifunctionality and when I can use a tool in multiple ways it makes me happy. I like leaf blowers! They are great at cleaning up a paved campsite or blowing debris off your little slice of heaven in the RV park.
Arizona is dusty and I use this jewel of a tool to clean up my site in a hurry. But, it also does double duty as a slideout sweeper. I used a length of PVC pipe and a threaded elbow fitting to make a blower extension. I used some gorilla tape to secure it to the nozzle that came with the blower. Now I can clean off the roof and the slideouts without having to get on the roof or climb a ladder. I use a bungee ball cord to hold the blower attachment handle to the main unit and use it as a “sawed off” air shotgun to clean the campsite. When I want to clean the slides I simply attach the homemade blower nozzle extension. I also use this unit to blow out the bed of the truck.

Protect yourself and others
from sharp edges of RV slideouts!

Cut your head just once on the corner of a sharp RV slide out and you'll race out to buy a set of these so it never happens again! Camco's Black RV Slide-Out Corner Guards offer a simple solution to the danger posed by sharp corners on RV slideouts. Simply place them on each exterior corner of the slide to provide a cushion zone. They're made of advanced UV-stabilized resin for long life. Easy to install and no tools are required. Learn more or order.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Heartland debuts fifth wheel aimed at full-timers and families

The following is based on a news release from Heartland

Hitting a price point that “establishes a new category” in the expanding fifth-wheel market, Heartland Recreational Vehicles has introduced its full-profile Oakmont line equipped with the company’s exclusive “Mega Slide.”

Recognizing a heightened demand in the full-profile fifth-wheel segment — driven by an affluent Baby Boomer demographic — Heartland focused on creating a residential-style environment that caters to the needs of both full-timers and RVers with families. The 2015 Oakmont is initially available in four floorplans, two 41-foot bunk models and two 35- to 38-foot couples coaches, with MSRP’s starting at $53,900 well-equipped.

“Our team spent the last eight months reviewing and evaluating residential interiors,” said General Manager Kary Katzenberger, noting Heartland would grow the number of floorplans to seven or eight by next spring. “Our goal was to bring that type of upscale look and comfort into the Oakmont, but even more importantly, at a cost that undercuts the competition. We accomplished that by designing an interior that will grab the attention of the retail customer.”

Heartland President Chris Hermon added, “Heartland’s marketing strategy is to always offer our dealer partners unprecedented value. With the Oakmont, we were are able to create a whole new price point in one of the industry’s fastest-selling segments while still providing the features, amenities and structural integrity that today’s consumers are demanding.”

Katzenberger reported that a key element in the Oakmont design was integrating Heartland’s Mega Slide offered in the builder’s upper-end Big Horn fifth-wheel lineup. “It features a 7-foot-2-inch ceiling height that really opens up the coach,” he said, noting the slide room was currently available on certain Oakmont models. “The slide also offers large, panoramic windows that help enhance the feel of a more spacious interior without sacrificing storage.”

Other features include:
• Six-point hydraulic level system.
• Three to four hydraulic-powered sliderooms
• 7,000-pound Dexter axle and E-Z Flex suspension.
• Residential-style furniture including recliners with power massagers.
• Stackable washer/dryer prep.
• 50-inch LED TVs in main living area.
• Lippert Correct Track suspension system.

Keying on another residential trend, the Oakmont also provides a spacious, fully-equipped kitchen area with residential-style refrigerator and appliances, 20–inch stove for maximum counter space and a deep stainless steel sink and faucet.

The Oakmont will make its debut to consumers at America’s Largest RV Show in Hershey, Pa., while Heartland’s dealer body will receive a first look at the Elkhart County RV Open House.

For more information on the Oakmont fifth-wheel line and other Heartland RV products visit

Thursday, September 4, 2014

How to get rid of slideout squeaks and extend your slideout's life, too

In this two-minute video, Stew Oleson and Bill Gehr show you how to get rid of annoying squeaks on an RV slideout using a product called Protect All Slideout Dry Lubricant. It's a simple process, as Stew and Bill demonstrate. The result is no more squeak, and the simple process (which should probably be done about once a year) may increase the life of the slide out.