April 16, 2024

If you are an RV owner or if you plan on purchasing one, you will want to feel comfortable with features in your Class C motorhome and maximize the usage of these. Having and understanding of what they offer and gaining knowledge of how to use these features will help you whether you're on your first or twentieth RV trip. Here are 4 features that you will want to completely understand to be best prepared!

The Monitor Panel

The main hub of your Class C motorhome, the Monitor Panel will provide an easy access point to most of the features you will use on a daily basis. You will use this panel and the switches on the face to turn on and off certain parts of the vehicles. The switches will include:

  • Gas and Electric Water Heater
  • Water pump
  • Slide-out
  • Arctic pack
  • Generator Stop/Start
  • Voltmeter to show coach battery voltage
  • Lights

You will also find the levels of the grey, black, and freshwater tanks. It will show the levels at full, 2/3, 1/3 and empty.

12 Volt Electrical System

The electrical components of your new RV are going to start with the 12 Volt System. To gain power to the coach, you will need to have a sufficient battery reading, sitting at 12.2 Volts or higher. To charge this system, you have to turn on the ignition, plug into your shore power at a campsite, or run the generator. The 12 Volt system will provide power to the lights, USB outlets, electrical water heater, furnace, fridge and freezer, water pump, television, and propane gas detector.

As well as powering the coach, there is also a 12 Volt system that powers the engine. To charge this battery system, simply drive the vehicle and turn the ignition on as it will charge via the alternator. It powers the following:

  • engine system
  • dash controls
  • switches
  • exterior lighting

If you need to turn these off or back on, you will find a main battery switch in the vehicle located near the stairs. It is also referred to as the Battery Disconnect Switch. The battery disconnect switches can vary by colour in each unit. It is recommended to do this while fueling and while on a ferry, while also turning off the propane system.


Water Systems

In all RVs there are multiple ways to get water into the pipes and flowing through. There will be a freshwater fill outside of your unit, allowing you to have a non-pressurized, limited water supply. The freshwater tank will have to be used in conjunction with the water pump, which will help to bring the water from the tank to your sinks, toilet, and shower. The water pump will be controlled on the monitor panel by a switch. Depending on the vehicle you choose to take out on your journey, your freshwater tank will be between 102L – 167L. This means that we suggest filling the tanks every 2-3 days, depending on your usage. You will use this tank if you do plan on camping without a water hook-up or if you want to try camping in a more remote area.

If you are planning on staying at a campground or somewhere with a city water connection, you will then have access to pressurized, unlimited water in your kitchen and bathroom. Outside of your RV, typically near the freshwater inlet, you will find a city water connection, and this is where you will attach one of the ends of your hose. The other will join at the campsite water nozzle and can be controlled by turning the handle on or off.

Keep in mind that either way you choose, this water will not be warm when it comes into the motorhome. You will want to get familiar with your water heater so you can take those nice, hot showers! The water heater switches, just like the water pump, will be located on the monitor panel. You will have access to either the electrical water heater, which runs off of the 12 Volt battery system or the gas water heater which runs off of propane. We recommend pressing one of the switches on approximately 30 minutes before you plan on either taking a hot shower or washing your dishes to give some time for the water to heat up. After you have completed your task, it is best to turn off the switch until the next time!

Safety Systems

The Safety systems in your newly purchase RV are there to help in case of any sort of emergency. In the case one of the following items go off, it is best to stop driving, turn off the motor, open the doors, and exit the RV. Once you do not hear alarms or detectors going off, it will be then safe to enter the motorhome once again.
  • Smoke Detector: Will be able to detect smoke from a burning fire within the RV and is located on the ceiling. The smoke detector is powered by replaceable batteries.
  • Propane Gas Detector: Designed to detect and alert you of possible dangerous gases in the RV. This detector is powered by the coach battery and warns with a fast-chirping sound.
  • Carbon Monoxide (CO) Detector: The carbon monoxide detector is an electronic device designed to detect and alert you of possible CO gas in the RV. This detector may be in combination with a propane gas detector, or it may be separate. If separate, the CO detector will be powered by replaceable batteries. 

In the case of an emergency, when you purchase a CanaDream RV, each vehicle will come equipped with these two items.
  • Fire Extinguisher: Used in case of a fire, the fire extinguisher is provided for emergency use only and should never be used to extinguish a campfire. The fire extinguisher is mostly located near the front entrance or step into the RV, as accessible as possible. Read instructions on fire extinguisher to learn how to use and become familiar with this in case you need to use it.
  • Emergency Exits: Mostly located at the dinette table window or the rear bedroom window, the emergency exit can be clearly marked with an exit sign and one or two red latches. Pull slightly on the latch to release window and sliding the glass. The front passenger door, the driver door and the coach doors are also considered emergency exits.

Mastering the features of your RV is key to enhancing your travel experience, whether you're a seasoned RVer or just starting out. From the monitor panel to the safety systems, each feature plays a crucial role in ensuring your comfort and safety on the road. Understanding how these systems work and how to maximize their potential can make a significant difference in your journey. So, next time you hit the road, be sure to make the most of these features.

If you're ready to secure your RV for your next adventure, give us a call or check out our Sales listings here!

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