Basics for the RV Toolbox

Published on 10/6/2021

Basics for the RV Toolbox

Hitting the Open Road”…ahh the images it conjures up.  

                  Freedom, adventure, new experiences. 

It's an emotional phrase. If you are RVing, you have probably been bit by the travel bug and the sense of independence that comes with your RV. 

 Basics for the RV Toolbox

It seems like people from every walk of life are captured by the idea of a rig all their own. It is the perfect getaway for families, the perfect retirement plan, the perfect couples retreat, the perfect…the list goes on and on.

But RVing is not for the faint of heart. Before hitting the open road there are some essentials that need to be added to the RV toolbox.

The # 1 Question

O. K. What tools go into the toolbox for the motor home?


#1== CASH and lots of it

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DO NOTkeep this tool in your RV toolbox 🙂

Cash might not be seen as a tool, but cash is the essential on-the-road tool. 

It is not cheap to RV. Gas alone can run into hundreds of dollars.

Campsites run anywhere from $25 – $75 per night unless, of course, you are boondocking.

If you run into mechanical problems and are fortunate enough to find someone who will work on your rig (it is harder than you think) the minimum cost at RV dealerships is $129 per hour and this can go as high as $189.

This is where your mechanical, jack-of-all-trades person really comes in handy. If that person knows how to use the tools and can fix the problem, life on the open road is so much easier.  Otherwise, cash or credit card are your friends.

Basics for the RV Toolbox 1

First up – Do you know how to use these tools?

Do you know how to use these tools? 

First on the list, if at all possible, is someone who can actually use the tools that you have in the toolbox. 

In the RV Toolbox: Duct Tape

You will always find duct tape handy in your RV toolbox.  Don’t leave home without it. 

It’s flexible, resists tearing, and sticks to just about anything. Its uses are limited only by your imagination.  If it moves and it shouldn’t use duct tape. 

Just some of its many uses:

  • Keep antenna in place

  • Cover broken windows

  • Fix a leaky hose

  • Temporary fix for a vent cover

  • Adhere the ‘extra’ key to a secure place

In the RV Toolbox: Assorted Screwdrivers

And don't forget the actual toolbox!

In the RV Toolbox: WD 40

  • WD40 removes tar, tree sap and bird poop from the outside of your RV. Camping under trees can really do a number on the outside of your rig.

  • Lubricates squeaky drawers and doors.

  • Keeps hose ends from corroding.

  • Lubricates all those tools that you have in your tool box to prevent them from rusting.

  • If you have your bikes with you, it will keep mud from sticking and will prevent saltwater oxidation. It will also lubricate and remove rust from your bike chain.

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In the RV Toolbox: Hammer

 Use it to hammer something shut or pry something open.  They are very handy to have on the road. If you don't already have a hammer, consider getting a camping hammer, or travel hammer, as these are smaller but still work well.

In the RV Toolbox: Zip Ties 

Zip ties are versatile, inexpensive, and take up very little room. May be managing wires or holding things together. They can secure items and also “lock” items that you don’t want people to get into.

Also in theRV Toolbox: an LED Flashlight

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Get an LED flashlight.

They are usually compact, ultrabright, and long-lasting. 

In the RV Toolbox: Pocket Knife

It’s small enough to fit in your pocket and it has multiple uses. It will cut just about anything. It can be used as a screwdriver in a pinch. It’s also very handy to cut an apple or to slice some cheese for the impromptu lunch. 


 In the RV Toolbox: Pliers

  • Needle Nose are for those hard-to-get-into places 

  • A set of Tongue and Groove Pliers


Also In the RV Toolbox: Wire Cutters, Small, Medium and Large Adjustable Wrenches and Utility Knife or Multitool

More Helpful lists for RV Toolbox

All basic non-power tools you can think of.  Plus electrical tools – tow strap/chain, ratchet straps all types

2. Zip ties

3. Duck tape

4. Water pump pliers

5. Straight slot screwdriver

6. Phillips screwdriver

7. Dikes

8. 1/4 inch drive socket set (SAE and metric)

9. Water hose repair kit (male and female)

10. SAE wrench set (1/4 to 3/4)

11. Metric wrench set (8mm to 16mm)

12. Razor knife

13. Multimeter

14. Fuses

15. Needle nose pliers

16. Hex wrench set (SAE and metric)

17. Cheater Bar to go with the Tire Tool!!

18. YouTube videos

19. Vodka



Don’t have what you need in your RV toolbox? 

 Ask a smart RV camping buddy.


Your RV buddy might have what you need.  Fellow RVers are very friendly and can help with practical advice about how to fix something. Think tools and expertise from your fellow RVer. 

You may even gain a friend and learn from experience. 

PLUS-- Almost anything can be learned by looking at YouTube. 

After the first year, you will probably have gathered up all the tools that you need, well almost. There is always that one tool that you wish that you had.

WD40 is a great product. Just be careful using it because it will eventually get sticky then hard. Also add a rust destroyer like PB Blaster, some silicone spray, lithium grease spray and good old fashioned oil.
Bring a multimeter and electrical tape. They will save a lot of time when trying to figure out electrical problems especially at RV Resorts and shore power.

Suggestions: 1.) A spray can of Flex Seal – you the stuff you spray on the screen door bottom of your boat. (2.) Fire starter, igniter, etc. (3.) kindling, ie cedar shingles.(4) Tire pressure gauge. (5.) Pocket charger for your cell phone & iPad.


Want to avoid the build up of maintenance and avoid the need to use many of the tools because you opted to store your RV under a tarp in the harsh Maine winters?  


After talking to many RVers, the common thread has been, 

“Gosh, I tried to save some money by storing my RV outside in the tough Maine Winters. What costly a mistake!!”  

Taking that to heart, and taking advantage of another’s “wisdom”. Consider storing your investment in an indoor storage facility.  Central Maine RV Storage in Corinna, ME caters to RVers with large oversized units requiring a high clearance—13’ 6”.  Our newly refurbished facility has concrete floors and white galvanized metal walls with 7 roll up doors for easy access. The repurposed facility is clean, dry and safe with 24/7 camera surveillance. Of course it is heavily treated for potential rodent infestation. 

This model has served and our indoor storage customers us well since 2011 without a hitch.  


Call 207 278 2789