Getting out camping in the summer is always a good time - warm weather and long hours of sunlight to enjoy. But what happens when the weather is too hot, and you aren’t at a campground that has electrical hookups to run your air conditioning? We have a few tips that we have learned over the years travelling in our RV that have helped keep us and our cat comfortable when the temperature rises.
The first tip is going to involve how you position your RV. When settling on which angle you want to park your RV there are 3 things we try and keep in mind. One is positioning yourself so that if you can have your awning out it provides shade over your whole sidewall which really helps keep the direct sun heat down. The second is trying to keep the side of your RV where your refrigerator is out of direct sunlight. We have found that this helps significantly with keeping your fridge cool and running more efficiently. Finally, of course, is if you can find shade to park in, do it! RVs are giant sun magnets, so if you can find a shady spot in a parking lot or book a campsite that provides mid-day shade rather than full sun, you will be much comfier.
We have noticed travelling in our Class C RV that the sun shining on our windshield heats up our entire motorhome quickly! That’s why our next tip is to purchase a reflective sunshade to put up in your windshield when you are parked. Even if the sun is not directly shining on the windshield, it makes a big difference in controlling your cab temperature, which then becomes your internal RV temperature. They are a cheap and easy buy and make a world of a difference if you have never used one. On our travels, we have also seen some RVers install external magnetic sunshades that cover the entire windshield and side cab windows. These would be a bit more of an investment, but we imagine they would work great at keeping the heat out of your RV.
Another great way to beat the summer heat is to create good airflow in your RV. We will open all of our windows and the door to let any breeze enter our RV, which makes a huge difference. If your RV has a FanTastic Fan, be sure to turn it on to really maximize the airflow and pull the hot air out of your RV. The fan will use a little bit of battery, but is well worth it on those hot days!
Planning your trips based on seasons is also something we focus on. When we are planning our trips for the season, we will try to plan to visit the warmer climate and desert areas in the spring or fall. This means that in the middle of summer when temperatures are at their highest, we won’t be stuck in an extremely hot area. When it is the hottest in the summer, we like to plan trips that take us to an ocean breeze, a higher elevation, or a campsite with electrical hookups so that we can run our air conditioner. For example, last August (one of the hottest months of the year) we travelled with our RV and camped in Jasper National Park, on the Icefields Parkway, and at Banff National Park – high elevation areas. Our RV stayed at a comfortable temperature the entire time, and some nights we even switched on the heater! So, if you are planning somewhere midsummer, try and avoid the hot and dry locations. Or at least make sure you are able to run your air conditioning or have a lake to jump in!
Not all of these tips are always an option, but if you keep these tips in mind they may come in handy someday! Of course, on very hot days you can run your generator (if you have one and the campground allows it) to get a quick burst of air conditioning, but we like to try and avoid it as much as possible.
We hope some of these tips prove useful to you and help you enjoy a nice hot summer camping season! Take care!
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About Luke and Alysha
Hi there! We're Luke and Alysha, and we travel and camp in our Adventurer 23DS Class C motorhome with our cat named “Cat". We have taken our RV across Canada from BC to Newfoundland and back, and made so many fun memories along the way. We are continuing to explore more of Canada (when there is no snow on the ground at least) and share all of our adventures along the way on our YouTube channel. You can also follow us on Instagram.