Thursday, August 11, 2011

RV sound check

Dear Dr. R.V. Shrink:
We were recently camping in Yellowstone in one of our favorite, usually quiet campgrounds. Unfortunately, we ended up next to a lovely couple with a very noisy generator. I don’t think it even had a muffler. During the summer season it is combat camping and moving was not an option. We were lucky to get the spot we had. Our real dilemma was that we liked these people very much and could not bring ourselves to complain about the noise. They seemed to be having a problem keeping their batteries charged. My husband hinted around that we have solar panels but they seemed happy with the old generator in the back of their pickup. Should we have just come right out with our grievance or suffer in silence as we did?
--Double Digit Decibel in Dubois

Dear Double Digit:
First a few thoughts that might help you avoid the problem in the future. Most campgrounds do allow generators but most now offer loops that are generator free. Also generator users should be following the quiet hour rules. Many campgrounds now post hours that generators can be operated. If you have neighbors that are not following these guidelines you have every right to voice your protest to the individual or campground host. When you end up stuck in a situation like you experienced in Yellowstone and you have nice neighbors that are following generator use rules, you might consider a hike or ranger program during the hours they are charging. When forming a relationship with noisy campground neighbors, absence makes the heart grow fonder. This scenario is becoming less of an issue as the newest generation of generators are whisper quiet, solar panels continue to drop in price and more RV manufacturers are beginning to offer panels on new model rigs. A noisy generator does not annoy many boomer campers. They lost their hearing years ago at Woodstock. "Wish you could have been there."
--Keep Smilin’, Dr. R.V. Shrink



Anonymous said...

I thought national parks had a noise level (db) restriction. They should have contacted a park ranger and inquired about this.

Anonymous said...

I cannot tell you how many times we have had a campsite next to noisy generator people! We have found that the best approach for us is to go directly to the ranger and describe the situation. Most national parks/forests and state parks have noise level regulations for generators. They will almost always enforce them. My advice is do not ask the moisy generator people themselves to turn it off, they only become defensive and upset with you. Leave it to the authorities. If possible move to another campsite when you can...but not always an option.

PapPappy said...

Seem to be missing the point. These people like the neighbors, to the point of not wanting to complain (go to the Ranger), so they need to try and come up with another option.

Hinting about solar won't do the trick, simply because the folks are THERE, and the solar store isn't! Even if they wanted it.

If they had problems with their batteries charging, would the OP have the ability to help them with charging....such as a quieter genset and an extension cord?

Ultimately, the OP needed to develop a spine, and discuss the problem with these people. If they were such wonderful neighbors, I would assume that they would also be very understanding, and probably didn't realize they were causing problems.

Better to try asking, or you will never change the situation.

Happy Camping:)