MotorHome Tech Tips
Refueling your Diesel Pusher RV at Truck Stops
Truck Stop Refueling
When you are driving your diesel pusher motorhome and pulling your tow car, or if driving your diesel pick-up and pulling a big 5th wheel, at some point you are going to have to stop to fuel up. I have found that it is easiest to go to a truck stop to accomplish this and I always go to the islands where the big rig 18 wheelers go as it's much easier to get in and out.
I never go to the islands designated for cars or RV's and only go to the islands (usually in a separate area) for big rigs, because sooner or later you will find yourself in a spot where you might have to back up or even unhook your tow car just to negotiate a tight turn in order to exit. Most of the time there will be a separate entrance designated for "Trucks"....go there!
When you go to the big rig island, you will usually find a telephone there on each island to speak directly to the cashier inside. Simply tell them that you are "a private party" filling with a credit card. They might just turn on the pump or may ask for your credit card number or might have you come inside and leave your card then go fill up your motorhome. Several things to be aware of when using the truck islands:
1. The nozzles are usually high speed fill nozzles, so be careful to tend the pump while filling.
2. Be careful of stepping in any diesel spill spots on the ground next to the pumps. It is a hassle to clean diesel off your shoes and be careful not to track it back into your coach.
3. You can fill from either side as usually there are pumps on both sides.
4. I go to Costco and get a box of surgical gloves which I carry with me so that I do not have to ever touch the nozzles and possibly get diesel on my hands that could be then be transfered to my leather covered steering wheel. Yuk!
5. If you do spill diesel while fueling, usually there is some cat litter available to absorb it on the ground. Clean up your spill as the truckers behind you will appreciate it.
6. Usually there are long handled window washer squeegees available at each island that make it convenient to clean the high motorhome windshields without getting out your ladder.
7. When you are finished fueling, pull ahead at least the length of your motorhome and tow car (usually there is a white painted line on the ground indicating where to stop), so that the truck behind you can start fueling while you go inside and pay.
Entry and exiting from the truck islands is a very easy and convenient way to fuel without worrying about getting your rig into a tight car island where someone might inadvertently block you in. We have often found that other drivers don't realize that your turning radius might prevent you from clearing them when they have parked, thus blocking you in.
It should be noted that, although most truck stops have fueling islands able to deliver diesel thru large high volume delivery nozzles to either side of a truck or coach, that not all diesel coaches have fuel ports available on both sides and often they are unable to fuel from the large high volume delivery rate nozzles used for trucks. It is important that the coach owner know which side to fuel on and enter the truck fuel island correctly if fueling is only possible on one side. It is also important to know if your coach will accept the large high delivery nozzle. If not, you must not go to the 'truck-only islands'.
Caution: The recommendations on this page are meant as general guidelines only, and you should always follow the designated rules that are posted at each truck stop. See 'Legal Disclaimer' below.
The last thing that you want to do when fueling at a truck stop is to be a nuisance to the truckers, as it is only a courtesy that we are allowed to share those facilities.
Legal Disclaimer & Caution: Before using any advice, and/or performing any maintenance procedures recommended on this website you should consult with your RV dealer, and/or a professional Motorhome or RV mechanic. The recommendations and advice given on this website are intended as general guidelines ONLY, and may not pertain to your particular make and/or model of RV or Motorhome. Use these suggestions, repair tips, and/or maintenance advice AT YOUR OWN RISK. Under no circumstances will this website, or any of its officers or employees be liable for any consequential, incidental, special or exemplary damages even if appraised of the likelihood of such damages occurring. The owners of this website do not warrant the information against errors, omissions or deficiencies of any kind.
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