How do I hook this up again?

So, you’ve never done this travel trailer camping thing and you have a couple of questions about how it all works. We’ve all been there, below is a basic connect, we will cover towing, set up camp, tear down camp and how to on all the systems on our travel trailer a little later on. As always, your experience may vary slightly from camper to camper and brand to brand, make sure and read your instructions to be sure of safe operation and remember its supposed to be fun, but I hope this gives you an idea of what I go through each time we travel.

Hooking up – (get your mind out of the gutter.)

First make sure you are familiar with your equipment and gear. I will be showing you our truck and trailer and its features. This is meant to be an introduction for the uninitiated. You can look up any of the specs or equipment to check them out for yourself. I start off by getting an oil change, multi-point inspection and filling up all the fluids on the tow vehicle before we get ready to leave for a trip. I try and plan a week or two ahead of departure to account for any problems that might be found and if we need to order parts to make a repair. Once things are mechanically checked out, I top up the gas and air the tires up a little more than daily driver pressures, but below max inflation pressures.

Finally, before contemplating hooking up, I load anything and everything I can into the tow vehicle before I get a trailer hooked up and I lose access to the tailgate and cargo area. Now I am almost ready to hook up a trailer.

Now it’s time for the trailer. Check the condition of the wheels, axles and tires. If you know where they are and how to do it now is a great time to locate your grease fittings and give each one a pump or two with the ole grease gun. Check your tire pressures and adjust accordingly. I then retract all leveling/stabilizing jacks, and stow any blocking from those.

Do not pull the wheel chocks or wheel braces yet! Next, I back the tow vehicle up to the trailer. At this point I usually install our sway control/weight distribution hitch into our receiver. We use an EAZ-Lift Recurve R3 Weight Distribution Kit, (Camco Manufacturing Part #: RV-48752)

Once that’s on, I back under the trailer and lower it down onto the ball hitch. I slide the latch into place and lock it on with a sturdy padlock. With the tow rig captured by the trailer I raise the trailer back up using the tongue jack and install the weight distribution bars.

Once they are firmly locked into place, I hook up the break-away chains, safety braking cable and electric pigtail. Now I can pull the wheel chocks/braces and stow them. With that complete I do a walk around checking lights and tires, then I lower the tongue jack. At this point I drop shore power, if the fridge is loaded, I make sure the propane is flowing from one tank only and make sure the fridge changes over to propane operation. That done, I think we are off like a heard of turtles.

Towing (coming soon)

Setting up Camp (coming soon)

Tearing Down Camp (coming soon)

Power Systems (coming soon)

Water Systems (coming soon)

Sewer Systems (coming soon)

See also: Choosing a Tow Vehicle

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