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Episode 143: How Technology is Changing the RV Lifestyle

| Updated Jun 7, 2017

Technology is changing the RV World and Lifestyle faster than any of us could imagine. Terms like electrical independence, Voltstart, Ecotrek and technologies like lithium ion batteries and solar power generation are revolutionizing the way we camp and experience the outdoors in our recreational vehicles.

This week, we talk about the future of RV technical innovation with an RV engineer, our friend Yan Seiner from the Erwin Hymer Group of North America, the makers of Roadtrek motorhomes. Yan tells us how far technology has advanced and where it’s headed. That’s in our interview segment.

But we have much more, including our regular RV tip segments, a traveling tech report, your questions and an off the beaten path destination… all coming up in this episode of the RV podcast.

Click the player below to Listen Now or scroll down through the show note details. When you see a time code hyperlink, you can click it to jump directly to that segment of the podcast.


Show Notes for Episode #143 June 7, 2017 of Roadtreking – The RV Podcast:


Mike and Jennifer chat about their multi-trip west and how they intend to keep Mike’s “330 Rule,” which is to stop for the day after traveling no more than 330 miles or by 3:30 PM local time, whichever is first.[spp-timestamp time=”2:18″]

To help keep their own rule, they need to be held accountable and the best way to do that is to be committed to keeping a live video report schedule. So, starting Thursday, June 8, they will go live on the Roadtreking Facebook Page at 4PM local time…which will be 5 or 6PM Eastern Time as they head through the various time zones.

Also look for video report on Mike and Jennifer’s RV Lifestyle Channel on YouTube.


Episode 143: How Technology is Changing the RV Lifestyle 1

You know those maps we all like to use that show all the states and provinces we visit? A lot of RVers use them but there’s one thing that many don’t like: They can sometimes leave an ugly residue on the paint because of the adhesive used to stick them on the RV. [spp-timestamp time=”9:57″]

Well, a listener named Sharon found a way to solve that and she sent us in this tip!

Sharon bought a magnetic sheet and affixes the stocker to it, instead of the RV body. The magnetic sheet attaches without glue and can easily be removed. You can find those sheets in differing sizes at craft stores, office supply stores and, of course, Amazon.

Be sure to send me your tips and suggestions for the RV lifestyle. You can use the “Leave Voicemail” link at Just click it and then use the built-in microphone on your computer or mobile devise to record a message to me. You can do it over as many times as you want, until you are satisfied. And then you just click a button and it comes right to my email inbox.

I love hearing from you!

Jennifer's tip of the week is brought to you by RadPower Bikes (www.RadPowerBikes.com_… an electric bike manufacturer offering direct to consumer pricing on powerful premium electric bikes. Now with free shipping!


Listener Jim noticed our new RV has the roof mounted air conditioner, rather than the undermount that we used to have. He also wonders about solar and fuel mileage. We explain that the unit we have was bought off the lot, and to have waited for an undermount would have meant a new build and these days, that takes months. Besides, our new unit is a 4 x 4 and we were not keen on hanging stuff under the chassis because we plan to do a lot of back road boondocking. [spp-timestamp time=”14:00″]

Kathy from Hamiliton, ON, Canada is picking up a new Leisure Travel Van Unity in the fall. She asks if she needs a Canadian plan and a US cellular plan if she is traveling in both countries.  [spp-timestamp time=”25:40″]As with Sprint and Verizon in the US have plans for US people traveling to Canada, nearly all Canadian carriers have all-inclusive roaming plans for visiting the US. The benefits are obvious: you get to keep your phone numbers, allowing you to send and receive calls and texts as if you were at home For $5 per day, customers on Rogers Share Everything plans can access their call, texts and data buckets from back home. Bell has a similar $5 a day plan called Bell Roam Better.And for $7 a day Telus has a US Easy Roam plan. And for $15 per month, Wind Mobile customers can add unlimited talk and text, and 1GB of full-speed data in the US. Wind also offers many plans that include unlimited US talk, text and 1GB of monthly data. Customers spending longer than 10 days per month in the US will only be charged for 10 days, to a maximum of $50.

Sponsoring this part of the podcast is Van City RV in St. Louis, and their Partner Dealerships Creston RV in Kalispell, Montana, and Wagon Trail RV in Las Vegas. Bringing You the largest Inventory of class B’s from three locations.


This week, I have three tips that we’ve picked up from our friends at that can come in handy. [spp-timestamp time=”30:07″]


Tip #1: If your cat or dog likes chewing on electrical cords, we know you need a solution, and fast! Here it is: Unplug the electronics, then rub the cords with a wedge of lemon. Once they’ve dried, you can plug them back in. Animals hate the taste of lemon and will steer clear.

Tip #2: The busiest days at the pet groomer’s are Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday. Find a groomer who offers discounts on Tuesdays through Thursdays, or ask your groomer if she will offer you a discount for coming midweek.

#Tip 3: Keep your pet’s playthings clean and free from bacteria and germs by tossing them into the dishwasher alone (without dishes) once a month. But hold the detergent: Just turn the temp to hot and the heat plus the water pressure will completely sanitize plastic or rubber toys. And not only will a quick wash help ensure that Fido stays healthy, it’ll prolong the life of the toys and keep your floors, carpets, and furniture clean, too.

This part of the podcast is brought to you by Dozers Dental Chews, an all natural and healthy treat your dog will love. Available direct through Amazon , Retailers and Pet Shops across the USA


Episode 143: How Technology is Changing the RV Lifestyle 2
Yan Seiner

Technology is changing the RV World and Lifestyle faster than any of us could imagine. Terms like electrical independence, Voltstart, Ecotrek and technologies like lithium ion batteries and solar power generation are revolutionizing the way we camp and experience the outdoors in our recreational vehicles. [spp-timestamp time=”33:32″]

This week, we talk about the future of RV technical innovation with an RV engineer, our friend Yan Seiner from the Erwin Hymer Group of North America, the makers of Roadtrek motorhomes. Yan tells us how far technology has advanced and where it’s headed. That’s in our interview segment.

The interview of the week is brought to you by, where every new or used Roadtrek motorhome is delivered to the customer free, anywhere in the country


Three stories this week, all involving wildlife: [spp-timestamp time=”43:12″]

  • Bear Totals Vehicle in Search of Food – Read More
  • Bears in Canada's Banff National Park causing several challenges for officials who are trying to keep the humans safe.Read more
  • Alaska wildlife officials warn public to beware of moose after seeing rise in human/moose injuries this year.Read more

This portion of the podcast is brought to you by Alde  the only name in heat that you need to know for your RV


By Steve Van Dinter
Verizon Wireless

Episode 143: How Technology is Changing the RV Lifestyle 3
Steve Van Dinter

I know you and your listeners are always on the go – and often that probably means the RV feels more like home than the one your mail goes to. [spp-timestamp time=”51:57″]

Today I’ve got a gadget that can make your home on the road feel even more comfy. It’s called the Verizon SmartHub.

You travel all over the country, so I don’t need to remind you that Verizon has more of rural America covered than any other carrier. And because of that the SmartHub is a great choice to make your RV truly a smart home.

Plug it in and it’ll take the Verizon 4G LTE signal in the area and convert it into a mobile wifi hotspot. But hold onto your wheels, because here’s where it gets exciting.

First it has an ethernet port on the back. This means you can plug in a printer, smart lighting router like Hue or anything else that takes a direct connection and bring it on the go. It also has a traditional phone jack. You can have a mobile landline on the go!

But the reason it’s called a SmartHub is it can connect to smart home accessories directly. And through the Verizon Home app you can control all of them in one place. That means adding things like smart lighting and security cameras and setting schedules or checking in on them is a breeze.

Again the device powering it all is the Verizon Smarthub. Learn more at

This part of the podcast is brought to you by Verizon, which operates America’s most reliable wireless network, with more than 112 million retail connections nationwide.

OFF THE BEATEN PATH REPORT –  Atlanta’s Coca Cola Museum [spp-timestamp time=”55:22″]

The quintessential American drink is Coca-Cola. Nothing comes close. Culturally, the syrupy soft drink is globally recognized and cuts across all political, economic and social divisions and in a real sense, links everyone to a shared and usually pleasant experience. So it's only natural that there would be a Coke museum in the town where a pharmacist named John Pemberton, otherwise known as “Doc,” invented the concoction in 1886.

Pemberton fought in the Civil War, and at the end of the war he decided he wanted to invent something that would bring him commercial success. Usually, everything he made failed in pharmacies. Alas, he probably thought his soft drink failed, too, as he died two years after he mixed it up. He never saw what a winner he invented.

Episode 143: How Technology is Changing the RV Lifestyle 4So much so that,  since opening in 2007, the World of Coke attraction has seen more than 5 million people shell out $16 to, in effect, experience a very long commercial for Coke.

Yeah, you do get all the Coke you want, starting with a free cold bottle to sip while a friendly hostess shows off old advertising signs and historic mementos, and ending in an upstairs tasting room where you can sample all the Coke you want as well as the dozens of ofter sugary, syrupy soft drinks the conglomerate makes around the world.

On the way to the tasting room, they make a big deal of winding you through a supposed vault that contains the Coca Cola “Secret Formula,” but you see nothing and the room seemed to be a pointless and unnecessary exhibit. Maybe I missed something, but like the 12 minute “movie” that we were all hustled into at the start of the tour that was nothing but a long feel-good advertisement, I found myself wondering about the worth of that $16 admission.

But then, as if the sugar high you undoubtedly have after all the free samples wasn't enough, your invited to take still another bottle with you as you exit the attraction through the gift store.

I was particularly interested in discovering whether some of the many myths surrounding the product were true, like the old rumor that the original Coca Cola actually contained cocaine. The attraction never did answer it. So I checked Snopes, the anti-rumor site, and learned that the original recipe indeed did contain an extract of coca leaves and kola nuts. Just how much cocaine was originally in the formulation is hard to determine, said Snopes, but the drink undeniably contained some cocaine in its early days, albeit a mere trace.

And then there was the rumor that a tooth left in a glass of Coca-Cola will dissolve overnight. Again, according to Snopes: “Coca-Cola will not dissolve a tooth (or a nail, or a penny, or a piece of meat) overnight…Coca-Cola contains acids (such as citric acid and phosphoric acid) which will eventually dissolve items such as teeth (given enough time), but so do plenty of other substances we commonly ingest (such as orange juice). The concentration of acid in these products is so low that our digestive systems are easily capable of coping with it with no harm to us.”

I didn't see any displays or exhibits about all the urban myths that have come up about the product at the World of Coke. Again, maybe I missed it. But those numerous Old Wives Tales are much more fascinating than the nostalgic ads and signs on display I did see and you'd think that the company would have had a fun display debunking them.

The World of Coke is on a 20 acre downtown complex called Pemberton Place that also features the Georgia Aquarium (an excellent place to visit – see my story) and the Center for Civil and Human Rights. There is a huge parking garage serving the three attractions but it can not handle RVs, so look for parking in private lots around the complex.

We visited it after touring the aquarium. It took about an hour or so to experience the World of Coke so you can visit both it and the Georgia Aquarium in a single day. Since both are next door to each other, you can easily walk to them. Arrive in the morning and you'll be able to be back on nearby I-75 before Atlanta's afternoon rush hour begins.

Photos and more at

This part of the podcast is sponsored by Steinbring Motorcoach, Roadtrek’s newest dealer and a third generation family business in suburban Minneapolis built on quality motorhomes and excellent pricing and service.

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And remember, you can appear in future episodes. Ask a question or voice your comments about RV topics by clicking the Leave Voicemail tab on the right side of this page here at You can then use the microphone on your computer to record your words.

Mike Wendland

Published on 2017-06-07

Mike Wendland is a multiple Emmy-award-winning Journalist, Podcaster, YouTuber, and Blogger, who has traveled with his wife, Jennifer, all over North America in an RV, sharing adventures and reviewing RV, Camping, Outdoor, Travel and Tech Gear for the past 12 years. They are leading industry experts in RV living and have written 18 travel books.

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