Make Your RV Your Home - by Mark Polk

March 05, 2013 -- RV Trader

When you purchase an RV you have visions of spending extended periods of time in it as you travel to various destinations. As much as you might like the floor plan in the RV chances are you will discover a few things you don't like as well. Making your RV more like home requires some personalization and/or customizing.

After taking a couple trips in our new motorhome I soon discovered it was the bedroom that was in need of some customization. I noticed every time we went on a trip I couldn't wait to get back and sleep in our bed at home. Most RV manufacturers don't spend a lot of money putting expensive mattresses in the RVs they build. After sleeping on our RV mattress I was convinced the mattress manufacturer must have paid the RV manufacturer to use their mattresses. That's how bad it was!

Another issue I had with the bedroom was the mini blinds. They were the cheap metal kind and less than satisfactory. We have one window at the head of the bed and when the blind is down at night it would rattle every time your arm or pillow bumped against it. The only temporary fix was to leave the window blind partially open so we didn't have to deal with the noise all night. Nursing my sore back all the way home after one extended RV trip made me think about the possibility of an RV bedroom makeover. When we got home and settled back into our normal routine I did some research on the Internet to see what options I had for the RV bedroom makeover.

There were two main goals I wanted to accomplish: 1) Have a bed in the RV that was comfortable to sleep on. 2) Eliminate the partially open, rattling mini-blinds.

As you are probably aware, RV bed sizes are not the same as standard bed sizes in your home. In most cases a queen size RV bed might be the same width as a standard queen size bed, but not the same length or vice versa. This is because RV manufacturers often work under limited space constraints. When you replace an RV mattress it needs to be sized and constructed specifically for RV bed platforms. I was surprised to discover a wide variety of upgraded RV mattresses to choose from. We decided on a memory foam mattress similar to what we use at home. There would be no more sleepless nights or sore backs caused by a cheap RV mattress.

With that accomplished it was time to move on to the annoying mini-blinds. When I sold RVs one feature I liked that came on some RVs was day/night shades. They are not only aesthetically appealing but they are practical too. They control light, offer privacy and help protect the interior fabrics and upholstery from exposure to direct sunlight. I found the perfect custom Day/Night pleated shades on the Internet. I decided to replace the blinds in the living room as well. The shades were easy to size and order, and if your a DIYer the shades are not that difficult to install. If you prefer not to do the work yourself have your local RV dealer install them for you. To complete the bedroom makeover we added a nice wallpaper border mid-way down the walls, around the entire room. The RV bedroom makeover was a big success!

We solved some major concerns and at the same time added some very attractive and effective new window and wall treatments. But I caution you, when you upgrade a room in the RV you may find yourself upgrading a room at home as well.

-Happy Camping, Mark Polk, RV expert

Mark Polk owns RV Education 101, a North Carolina-based company that produces and sells educational videos, DVDs and E-books on how to use RVs. Mark has more than 30 years of experience in RV maintenance. He retired from the U.S. Army in 1996 as a Chief Warrant Officer Three, specializing in wheeled and track vehicle fleet maintenance operations. He and his wife, Dawn, started RV Education 101 in 1999.

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