Types of Motorhomes

Posted on 2 September 2009

Motorhome Rental

So what makes a motorhome a motorhome? In general a motorhome is considered a self-contained vehicle that often contains cooking, sleeping, and sanitary quarters and a drivers cabin that can be entered via walking position. They are also called motor home and motor caravan (or motorhome and motorcaravan).

Types of Motorhomes

Class A Motorhome: These will be either purpose built by specialist motorhome/RV manufacturers or they will be built on a truck or bus chassis. The larger floor area (than Class B or C motorhomes) allows for accommodation of more people and the luxury of more or larger amenities.

Class B Campervan/Motorhome: These holiday homes are built using a conventional van (e.g. Ford Transit van, Dodge Sprinter, Toyota Hiace) thus they are also referred to as campervans. The van may be modified such as a raised roof may be added or the back replaced by a low-profile body. The advantage of the van sized vehicle is that while the living space is limited, they can be driven almost anywhere you can drive a car. Although often considered campervans, many Class B Campervans have all the features to be considered a motorhome (cooking, sanitory and sleeping quarters and easily accessible drivers cabin).

Class C Motorhome: Class C motorhomes can be the same size as Class B motorhomes however they have separate driving and living units. Class C or “Mini-Motorhomes” are built on a custom made or truck chassis and they usually have a cabin or “cab-over” above the driving unit which contains a bed (in the UK this is referred to as the Luton).

Motorhoming Terminology

  • Awning: An awning is a secondary covering attached to the exterior wall of a recreational vehicle. It is typically consists of canvas made of cotton, acrylic or polyester fabric that is stretched over a metalic frame.
  • Black water: Waste water from a recreational vehicle toilet.
  • Dry camping (also called boondocking): This referes to camper in a designated area that has no amenities such as water, electricity and sewage hookups, including parking lots or driveways.
  • Dump station: A station for releasing waste water from a Recreational vehicle
  • Generator A gasoline, diesel or propane-powered device for generating 120 or 240 volts AC electrical power for use when boondocking or dry camping. Generators are rated by their electrical output, usually in watts. A minimum generator size for a small RV would be 1500 to 2000 watts. To run an RV air conditioner, a minimum of 3000 watts is usually needed. Larger RV's with multiple air conditioners require generators with 6000 and more watts of capacity. Generators also charge the house battery(s). Generators are common in North America but very unusual in Europe, where their noise would be an unpopular intrusion to the rural calm of a campsite.
  • Grey water: Waste water from faucets and showers.
  • Pink water: Refers to water to which 'pink' antifreeze has been added. This is done in cold climates to keep the internal plumbing pipes and tubing from freezing. Pink is used to imply that it is not toxic. Normal antifreeze is colored green or blue to show that it is a toxic chemical.
  • Shore power External source of electricity provided to the Recreational Vehicle.
  • Slide-Out A section of the Recreational Vehicle that can expand to create more space inside the the unit.
  • White water Fresh water that is taken into the Recreational Vehicle.
  • Wild camping/Bush Camping: Term used to refer to camping at unofficial sites or at the side of the road. Depending on the country, this may be highly risky or illegal.
  • Winterize/Winterise To prepare an RV for winter weather by removing water from the hoses and tanks.

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