Our trusty RVs are there to take us where we need to go and provide a comfortable place to live and sleep in.
When we park somewhere that makes them go off-center though, it can do some damage to the vehicle and make our portable homes less comfortable, which is why leveling blocks were invented.
What does an RV leveling block do? RV leveling blocks are placed underneath the wheels of your rig to balance out the vehicle.
Parking on uneven ground, as RVs are often forced to do, can make the vehicle uneven too, which leads to issues with stability and unwanted stress.
Most RVs have a reliable set of leveling blocks on board to solve this issue, but there may come a time when you find yourself without them.
With our guide, you can create a set of homemade RV leveling blocks that get the job done and just with a few basic tools, so read on to see how you can get some balance back in your rig.
Why Does Your RV Need to Be Level?
It may seem like common sense, but not everyone realizes how important it is for your RV to be level when it is parked.
These gigantic vehicles have many moving parts in them and for your safety and the wellbeing of your RV, these are the reasons why you should always make sure your RV is level:
A leveled RV will have minimal stress on its frame as it’s evenly supported throughout. This will keep it in good condition for a lot longer.
Your RV fridge requires a stable level so that the flow of ammonia is correct, and this is not just important for the process of refrigeration, but for your health and safety as well.
To read the tank levels correctly, including the waste and fresh water, you’ll need the RV to be level.
If your RV has any slide-outs, it should be level so that they can be pulled out and slid back in without any issues.
The occupants of the RV will notice an uneven living space and it can affect your quality of sleep when you’re on a slope.
How to Level an RV
Whenever you pull up somewhere for the night, one of the first things you’ll want to do is get your RV leveled out. There are a few ways you can do this, but you need an accurate reading of how level it is to start with.
Most RVs have a spirit level built into them that you can read but for the most accurate evaluation, you should have a level that you carry with you in the RV.
The best places to keep the bubble level are on the floor of the RV, the rear bumper, or the kitchen countertop, so you may need someone watching this and another moving the vehicle.
The level should be read from left to right, and you’ll be able to see as you maneuver in the parking spot how slight changes will adjust the level.
If you can’t get the RV level just by doing this, you’ll need a good set of leveling blocks to help you out.
The leveling blocks can be added underneath the tire on the opposite side of where you need to level out.
From here, you can decide whether to drive up onto the blocks or reverse up onto them, so you’ll have to assess the safest approach depending on the campsite.
Place a wheel chock behind whatever wheels you didn’t raise so that the vehicle is kept secure.
How to Make DIY Leveling Blocks
If you know some basic woodworking skills, you can easily create a set of homemade leveling blocks to use with your RV.
Keep in mind though, these aren’t designed to last for years, and being exposed to the outdoors as they are, the wood used to make them can rot after some time, so make sure you inspect them regularly.
The Tools and Equipment
2 x 8’ 2x10s
Steps to Follow
There’s no need to fork out hundreds of dollars for a set of leveling blocks when you can easily make your own. Follow these steps to create blocks that are custom-made for your RV and see how easy it is.
Measure the distance from the center to other center of your RV’s axles and the distance between the tires on the ground. These measurements will guide you towards where you want to cut on the timber.
Cut one of the 2x10s to the measurement you made between the tires.
Bevel both ends of the first plank that you’ve cut, and then cut another piece at the same length. Only bevel one end of this piece.
Make a mark at the middle of these two pieces, place them on top of the longer plank so they’re lined up at either end. Make a mark on this plank where it lines up with the center mark of the two smaller pieces.
Use the measurement of the distance between the axle’s centers and then mark this on the long board.
Line up the center mark that you made on the short board with the bevels that you made, and then mark the long board with the distance between the tires.
Cut the long board where marked and bevel one end of it.
Lay all of the pieces out and then stack them together from shortest to longest, then glue and screw them together.
Quick Tips for Leveling Your RV
The first time you attempt to park and level an RV can be a daunting experience, so it’s always best to take it slow. We have some helpful tips that will help you become a master of leveling with as little stress as possible.
Opt for camping spots that have a concrete pad for you to park on. This can be especially helpful when you’re new to RV ownership and are concerned about using leveling blocks.
Spend some time practicing with your RV before taking a trip in it, including getting the vehicle level and using blocks. This way, you won’t be using them for the very first time when you’re out in the middle of nowhere.
If you’re not comfortable using level blocks because of the ground, you can use a small shovel to dig a hole and even out that way. You’ll still be able to balance the rig but it’s not as technical as reversing up onto blocks and can get you out of a bind.
Investing in a compact but quality bubble level that’s made for an RV and it’ll make a world of difference. Even if you’re parking the RV yourself, you’ll know that you have something reliable to do it with.
The Key to a Balanced Home on the Road
With leveling blocks in place, your RV will be balanced and in the best position to provide you with a stable home.
When you’re out on the road and not able to locate your trusty blocks to do the job, knowing how to whip up a set of homemade leveling blocks can be a lifesaver.
Leveling blocks are just one important component for keeping your RV in check, and there is a lot more to learn about before you take your motorhome on the road.
To find out more, we’ve answered some commonly asked questions about RV living that can give you a push in the right direction.
Do I Need Wheel Chocks For My RV?
All RVs, regardless of their size, should have a set of wheel chocks that they can use to keep their vehicle secure.
Even though a parking brake is applied whenever you park your rig somewhere, the wheels chocks placed behind each wheel give you an added sense of security and ensure that you don’t move anywhere.
How Do I Keep My RV From Being Stolen?
Although larger vehicles, RVs can still be stolen by thieves and you must do what you can to keep them secure.
Some methods for securing an RV include using tire boot locks, hitch locks, steering wheel locks, and X-chocks, that act as X-stabilizers on the wheels to prevent anyone from driving it.
Why Do RVs Have Small Tires?
RV tires are smaller than other comparably sized vehicles because they take up less space from the undercarriage and wheel wells.
Not only does this give you more room inside the cabin to enjoy but it helps to stabilize the RV when you’re traveling on the road and parked for the night.
George Cummings enjoys connecting with nature, meeting new people, and making friends from all over the world. RVing and camping create the perfect opportunity for [him/her] to take part in these activities. After spending several years on the road and exploring the great outdoors, George Cummings shares some of his best pieces of advice on how to make the most of your time while camping. TourTheOutdoors is his way of helping outdoorsy individuals like [him/her] start on a right footing with amazing recommendations and buying guides.