A screen room you can see through parked on grass with a grey RV in the background

My 3 RV Must-Haves For Outdoor Living

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One of the biggest reasons that we took to the road was to live an outdoor life.  We wanted to be outside with the kids more than we were inside.  We see so many people pull into an RV park, hook up the rig, and we never see them again! We get it, some Class A’s are so luxurious on the inside, why bother to step to step outside!

But for us, we want to be outside, but in certain areas it was so hot, we didn’t last for long.  Then we had the issue of the kids tracking dirt into the RV, not their fault but it wasn’t fun cleaning it up either.

Thankfully we found 3 awesome RV must haves that helped to solve these issues and they have enhanced our outdoor RV living massively.  If you’re having the same issues we had, I hope these 3 RV accessories can help you to get outside more!

RV Outdoor Patio Mats To Enhance your Outdoor Living Area

After a few weeks of RVing, dirt getting tracked in, and me cleaning all day long, we saw a neighbor with the perfect setup and I knew I had to have it – outdoor rugs I know I couldn’t believe I hadn’t thought of it before, but I’m a little slow on the uptake sometimes.  

We jumped on Amazon and began to search for outdoor rugs that would work for us.   We have a 38ft 5th wheel so we knew that we needed something big.  We ended up getting a large and a smaller rug in the same set.  This has worked perfectly because the large one doesn’t always fit but the small one will.

PROS:

  • They keep the dirt from making its way inside the RV
  • They enlarge your outdoor space and make it usable
  • They help to make RV living more cozy
  • They are extremely durable having survived wind, pools of water and clumps of dirt.

CONS:

  • They are bulky to transport and to fit under the rig

We make everyone take their shoes off before entering the rug and we blow the dust off several times per day to keep them clean, and to stop dust from entering the RV.  We have had our rugs for 4 years now and they still work great.

Outdoor black rugs with horses running on them laying outside an RV

RV Awning Shade To Help You Stay Cool!

Tampa was the second place we stayed at because we were trading it our travel trailer at Lazy Days for a 5th wheel.  This was in the middle of the summer and the heat was unbearable!

If I’m being honest, I was hating life a little bit. 

It was just……SO hot!!!

For some reason, we always seem to get sites that face west.  This meant that the afternoon sun can chase you right back into your rig and the nice cold AC.  But we didn’t want to be inside, we wanted to be outside playing with the kids

However, that can be difficult when the sun is blasting down on you while you’re trying to eat lunch, read a book, or get some online work accomplished.

Again we came acoss fellow RVers at a campground who had this cool looking shade to keep the sun out.   Over we went asking them lots of questions and they very nicely showed us how it worked.  Within minutes we had ordered our own sun shade on Amazon and we love it!  

PROS:

  • It keeps the sun away and helps to cool the RV down.
  • Having the shade means we can still sit outside when it is 90+ degrees.
  • It helps to extend the size of our outdoor RV living space
  • It gives us a little bit of extra space between us and our neighbors.
  • It takes less than 1 minute and zero effort to put up.

CONS:

  • Again, you need to find the space to fit the shade underneath the rig

This Vista sun shade is magic, it not only blocks the sun from coming in, it also provides an extra room outside.  It gives you privacy when you have too close neighbors, the kids can do their school outside and we can move our office outdoors.  We get so many compliments from other campers because they too have the same issues we had.

Frank loves the fact that it is so easy to put up and down.  There have been times when the wind suddenly picked up and the awning needed to come down before it flew away. In a matter of seconds, he can unzip the shade and bring the awning in. 

We have had our Vista sun shade for over 3 years now and it has worked beautifully.  Honestly, I could not survive without this shade.  I really do consider it to be one of the best purchases we made, if not THE BEST! 

Vista shade installed on 5th wheel awning

Pop Up Screen Room For Extra Space

Not all of the time, but sometimes we are lucky enough to stay at large campsites where you can really spread out and take advantage.  As much as I love our RV awning shade, it doesn’t keep out the mosquitoes!

In order to fix this issue we purchased a Coleman extra outdoor room so that we could continue to enjoy our outdoor time.  This gave us great space, protection from the mosquitoes, and we used it for a good year until someone (cough hubby) opened the awning too close to it and tore it’s top off.

Yikes!!

We decided that although we wanted a new one, we didn’t want the same one.  If you’re a now and again camper, it might not matter to you, but for us, it was a bit of a pain to take down and put up.  We wanted something that could go up and down very quickly.  We found the Coleman Instant Screenhouse and we absolutely love it.

Once you take it out of its packaging, it will ‘pop-up’ in a matter of seconds and taking it down is the same way.  There have been times where it’s been left outside during a wind storm and has so far it has survived.  We use it as a stand-alone sometimes, or we’ll use it to cover a picnic table.  We’ve seen people set one up for their animals, campers will use it for storage, or a playroom.  There are lots of things it can be used for.

We use ours to eat in usually, we’ll set the table up, but we can also fit some comfy chairs in there, so Frank and I will sit in there to relax.  It has a hook so you can hang a light for nighttime.  We love ours and use it as much as we can.  We’ve had some really spacious boondocking sites recently and so we’ve been using it a lot.

PROS:

  • It goes up and down in a matter of seconds!
  • One person can put it up AND down!
  • It is durable.  We have left it outside in wind storms and it has survived. 
  • It can be used for different purposes

CONS:

  • Again you need to find the space to store it under the RV. 
  • It can be a pain to zip the door up and down when you go in and out, but it is what it is.

Once you take it out of its packaging, it will ‘pop-up’ in a matter of seconds and taking it down is the same way.   We use it as a stand-alone sometimes, or we’ll use it to cover a picnic table.  We’ve seen people set one up for their animals, campers will use it for storage, or a playroom.  There are lots of things it can be used for.  It’s extremely versatile and a handy RV accessory to have on hand.

We use ours to eat in mainly, we’ll set the table up, but we can also fit some comfy chairs in there, so Frank and I will relax in it after the kids go to bed.  It has a hook so you can hang a light for nighttime.  We love ours and use it as much as we can.  We’ve had some really spacious boondocking sites recently and so we’ve been using it a lot.

A screen room you can see through parked on grass with a grey RV in the background

We consider these 3 RV must-haves if you want to get your family outdoors more!  These three camping gadgets ensure that we spend most of our time outside, as was the plan when we decided to live full-time in an RV.  Some people may consider these RV accessories more for the ‘glamping’ lifestyle, but we consider them very much essentials.

Do you have any items that you cannot do without in your RV life, we’d love to hear about them?

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