RV Setup & Breakdown

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Being a little anxious as well as excited about your first time camping with your brand new RV is completely normal for first time RVers. RVs have a lot of moving parts, and sometimes it can be overwhelming to keep track of everything you need to do.

But have no fear, Bretz RV & Marine is here! We have compiled a step-by-step checklist for you to follow when you’re setting up and breaking down your camp. Print this out and keep it handy for your first couple of trips:

Setting up camp

  • Deploy jacks/levelers. Use leveling blocks or pads to give jacks a solid foundation.
  • Open slides if your RV has them.
  • Connect to the park’s electric hookup.
  • Turn on city water to flush out any rust in the lines. Then, hook up to inline filters or city water connections. Always use a water pressure regulator, as the water pressure can vary depending on how full the campground is.
  • Fill the water heater, purge air with pressure relief valve, and then turn the heater on.
  • Turn on A/C or furnace and set the thermostat.
  • Hook up to sewer. Open the gray tank valve, but keep the black tank valve closed until the tank needs to be dumped.
  • Set up your TVs, satellite, grills, chairs, and other accessories.

Breaking down camp

  • Shut off the water heater.
  • Dump and flush all tanks. Treat the tanks for storage. Disconnect and clean the sewer hose.
  • Shut off all appliances except the refrigerator if it has food in it. If it does have food, set it to auto or LP.
  • Put down the antenna.
  • Clean debris from slide-outs and then close.
  • Disconnect from power and put away the cord.
  • Retract jacks or levelers and retrieve the blocks.
  • Lock all compartment doors and do a final walk-around for any loose items.
  • Dump and flush black water tanks at an appropriate dump station.
  • Disconnect water, dump hot water heater, open low point drains, and drain the main tank.
  • Put away the water hose.
  • Close up and lock compartment doors.

When you get home

  • Drain the water heater.
  • Open low point drains and empty freshwater tank.
  • Make sure the battery has a full charge.
  • Shut all appliances off and disconnect the battery.
  • Double-check cabinets and fridge for any perishable food.
  • Prop cabinet and fridge doors open to prevent mildew.


If you are looking for the right RV for the job, then look no further than Bretz RV & Marine’s selection of RVs! Additionally, when you buy an RV from Bretz RV and Marine, an expert will walk you through every feature of the camper, so that you can camp confidently your first time, and every experience will be worry-free!

If you find yourself needing some of the accessories mentioned in this blog, visit our parts department at any of our Bretz RV & Marine locations!


Contact Us


Call 833-BRETZRV

(833) 273-8978


Boise, ID


4180 Broadway

Boise, ID 83705

Sales: (208) 388-4678

Service: (208) 388-4678


Nampa, ID


1608 Industrial Road

Nampa, ID 83687

Sales: (208) 616-7160

Service: (208) 388-4678


Billings, MT


2999 Old Hardin Rd.

Billings, MT 59101

Sales: (208) 616-7160

Service: (208) 388-4678


Missoula, MT


4800 Grant Creek Rd.

Missoula, MT 59808

Sales: (406) 541-4800

Service: (406) 541-4800


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