Electric vehicles have the potential to change the way we camp.

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We were recently discussing electric vehicles (EVs). We questioned how long it would be before campground owners had to deal with EV owners desperate to plugin for an electronic “refill” of their wacky e-car. We laughed at the prospect of an electric vehicle towing an RV in the distant future.

That’s a Tesla pulling out of a campground just south of San Francisco, towing an Airstream Bambi. I’m afraid the future has already arrived, and the plugin is looking for a home.

A few forward-thinking RV park owners have already installed standalone, pay-to-plug EV charging stations at their facilities, generating some cash flow from the new Green Economy. 

The vast majority of dedicated EV charging stations can “rapidly charge” a car from empty to full in about an hour. Most EV drivers are passing through and only use campgrounds as filling stations if it is permitted.

Is it safe to charge up at a campground?

However, most campground owners will soon face whether to allow more electronic owners to plug their excellent adapters into 50-amp site power pedestals. This could cause a site to be unavailable for several hours. With campgrounds at capacity this summer, conflicts are unavoidable.

The people who make power pedestals warn that charging EVs on traditional campground pedestals isn’t intelligent for the car or the campground. Both may be harmed if things are not done perfectly.

Consider the uproar if a 40-foot class A diesel pusher arrives, towing an electric vehicle. That overnight RVer will undoubtedly want to plug their EV into the 50-amp charging station while using a 30-amp adapter to draw power to their RV from the same support to power those two ACs, umpteen televisions, and the microwave on occasion. Many campground power grids will not be able to withstand that amperage draw.

State governments, particularly those in California, are eager to encourage more “green” development and e-charging stations by distributing valuable “Green Credits” and other incentives. 

Without a doubt, the newly green Executive Branch in Washington, D.C., will sweeten the pot as well.

What types of new electric vehicles should you keep an eye out for?

Ford recently unveiled an all-electric F-150 pickup truck. Tesla plans to begin production of its 250-mile-range pickup truck in 2022. We also know that all-electric motorhomes are in the works. Winnebago unveiled its prototype in 2018, and Camping World collaborates with Lordstown Motors to develop an all-electric RV.

What comes next?

There are numerous issues that electric vehicles cause for both RVers and campgrounds. 

  • How can you provide charging stations cost-effectively? 
  • When should you think about buying an EV? 
  • When can we expect to see all-electric RVs on the market? 
  • How far can you expect an EV to travel in a day?

The possibilities for electric vehicles and the future of RVing are limitless. 

In the coming weeks, we’ll look at what we believe you should know about the subject. We also welcome your questions about EVs and the future, and we promise to do our best to respond.

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