Video Transcript for “How to Back Up a Camper
| Pete’s RV Quick Tips” Randy: Hey, guys. Randy with Pete’s RV TV
here today. Today we’re on our way to the Lone Pine Campground in Malletts Bay, Vermont.
We’re going to show you how to back up a camper and put it on the site. So we’ll be there
in just a minute, and we’ll catch up with you then.
Hey, here we are at beautiful Lone Pine Campground. They’re nice enough to let us use the site
today. So, I’m just going to pull past my site. We’re going to be on site 31. I’m going
to hop out and take a look at the site and see where I want to put this camper and then
we’re gonna go right ahead back around the site.
Okay, so what I’ve done at this point, and this is the easiest way to put your camper
on the site, is I’ve driven past the site, and I’ve got the site on the driver’s side
of the truck. I do that on purpose so I can see where the slide side of the off door-side
of the camper is going, because that’s the side that we want to keep as far this way
as possible to give us more real estate on the usable part of our site. So, if you can
all, at all do that when you pull up to your campsite, try to keep the driver’s side on
the, on the site’s side, not all the time you’ll be able to do that, but if you can
it’s definitely going to work in your benefit. So, at this point I just kind of walk the
site and see what I’ve got to, that I’ve got to avoid, or if there’s any trees in the way.
We see we’ve got a big stump here. I see my power pedestals over here, so I’m gonna wanna
keep my camper, keep in mind that I’ve got a slide that’s gonna go out, but I want to
keep my camper as far this way as possible to give me as much real estate on that side,
as I’ve mentioned before. So, this looks like a pretty open site, which most campsites are.
We’ve just gotta contend with the stump there. My power cord’s gonna be in the back, so that’ll
work out perfectly for me. So, I guess what I’m going to do now is just hop back in the
truck, and see if we can negotiate this guy on the site.
Hey, so I’m gonna pull ahead just a hair, and I’m going to kind of put the tail on my
camper headed in the right direction that I want to back this guy up on. Now, very important
at this point is remembering that our wheels are pivot point for our camper. So, that’s
where the camper is going to turn, so I don’t want to watch the front of the camper or the
back so much, I want to keep my eyes on the wheels. So, here we go.
And sometimes when I’m driving a different truck, this truck’s working out pretty well,
but sometimes I’ll even angle the mirror [02:00] down so I can see the wheels a little bit
better. Want to make sure I got nothing going on on the other side of me. I’m just letting
the camper kind of do the job here, keeping an eye on both mirrors; and obviously turn
the steering wheel the opposite way that you want the unit to go. And as you start getting
close to where you want to be straight, that’s when you want to start counter-steering.
We’re getting the unit on there pretty straight; nothing on the other side. Well, I think I’m
gonna hit this one pretty good right off the bat. Now, if you’re finding that you’re not
backing on straight, or you know, that the camper just keeps jackknifing on you a little
bit, maybe don’t have enough room in front of the truck to get the truck out where you
need it to to get you straight, you always can put the truck back in drive and pull forward
and straighten the trailer out. So, if you’ve gone too far…too far past, and the camper’s
going the wrong way, or the, the back end of the camper is gone too far the way you
don’t want it to go, simply put the truck in drive and pull straight ahead, and that’s
gonna straighten the unit out for you. So, we’re gonna just back this guy up here.
And I think I’ve hit my mark. Now, this is the point where, if you’ve watched my leveling
video, is where you want to get out and check the camper for level; so, that’s what we’re
gonna do right now. Okay, so that first time went very easy because there’s not a whole
lot of people in the park. So, now I’m gonna try to simulate a full park with cars and
campers on my other side, and I’m gonna try to keep my vehicle on the road without going
on the lawn over there like I did on the last pull-in.
So, this time I’m going to start backing up a little bit sooner, so I’ve just got my camper
kind of headed. And you can see, like with the camper headed, it’s gonna start to turn
even with my truck straight. [04:00] And the camper is just starting to turn more and more,
so I’m gonna compensate just a hair now for it. Now, I’m really gonna jack-knife this
camper, and try to swing this thing around. Now, I can start to turn my truck a little
bit. So, I’ve stayed on the road for the most part, I’ve got my camper pretty straight,
but you’ll see that the back end of the camper still wants to swing around because I don’t
have enough room in front of the truck to get it to where I want to go, and this is
where people mostly run into trouble. So, I’ve got a trick for this too. If I keep
backing up my back end of my camper’s just gonna keep swinging where I don’t want it
to swing. A lot people will go back and forth and back and forth and they never find that
happy spot. So, what I’m gonna do at this point, is I’m just gonna stop the truck right
here, and I’m gonna unhook the camper. Sounds crazy, but this would get you out of a pinch
in a second. Okay, so as you can see we turned off the
camera. I’m back … I unhooked the truck from the camper, I re-situated my truck, so
now my truck is straight in line with the camper, and we can continue to back up on
the site, and now we’re not gonna be jackknifing or having the camper off-angle on our site
because I’ve now straightened the truck out, and that was out problem. So, I’m gonna hop
back in the truck and finish backing up on the site, and we’re gonna be good to go here.
Okay, so here we go. Back up for our final destination. If you got somebody with you,
behind you to keep the, an eye out, not a bad idea. Think that looks good right about
there. So, at this point I’m gonna get out and do a couple of the checks that I like
to do just to make sure I’ve got enough room. That way we know we’ve got our stump here,
so I’m gonna do my arm check. We’ve got plenty of room there. I’m right off my electrical
box, my electrical cords gonna be here, so I’m within my 25 feet here. I think this looks
like a great spot. I’m gonna run the slide-out out, and put, check the levels on the front
of the camper, and see if we’re level and then we’re gonna take it from there.
So, in a nutshell, [06:00] a lot of people get intimidated by this, it’s a really simple
process. Don’t care about anybody watching me. I’m just focused on what I’m doing. Does
take a little bit of practice, you’re not gonna hit the mark on the first time out,
but the more and more you do it, and the less you worry about other people watching you,
the easier it’s gonna be for you. So, just follow my quick steps, make sure you watch
your wheels, watch your mirrors, if you can’t get the camper exactly where you want, unhook
the truck and re-situate the truck, and the next time you’ll be right on the site right
where you want it. So, thanks again for watching Pete’s RV TV,
with Randy today. New segment here for you, hopefully this’ll help with make your camping
a little bit easier. Check out our other videos. Check out our YouTube channel, as well as
our Facebook page. We’ve always got a great information on there as well. So, thanks again
for watching Pete’s RV, and happy camping. The video of this presentation by Pete’s
RV Center is available at: http://youtu.be/hSyylWzrOX0