30+ Acronyms and Abbreviations RVers Love to Use

RV Acronyms and Abbreviations

Vehicle Abbreviations and Acronyms

RVers love to use shorthand abbreviatons for everything. This can get confusing when it comes to discussing your motorhomes, trailer or campers. Let’s get these all sorted out.

RV (Recreational Vehicle)
RV applies to any motorhome, camper van, truck camper, trailer, toy hauler or fifth wheel. If it is a vehicles that you a can camp in, then the term RV can describe it.

Class A
Large motorhome

Class B
Van camper

Class C
Motorhome on a truck or van chassis, usually with an over-cab bed.

TT
Travel Trailer

5er
Fifth Wheel

TH
Toy Hauler which is a trailer with a “garage” for small off-road vehicles or other “toys.”

TC
Truck Camper that slides into the bed of a pickup truck.

RV abbreviations and acronyms

Other Common Acronyms

B&M (Bricks and Mortar)
RVer slang for a stationery business that resides at one specific location.

BLM
An abbreviation for Bureau of Land Management, a federal public land department. BLM land often offers some of the largest and best boondocking land.

BTU (British Thermal Unit)
A measurement of heat which is the quantity required to raise the temperature of one pound of water 1 degree F. BTUs are used to measure RV air conditioning and furnace output ratings.

CCC (Cargo Carrying Capacity)
The maximum weight limit for personal items you can add to an RV.

COE
The Army Corp of Engineers, who have created some very nice, limited services campgrounds.

FHU
An abbreviation for full hook-up campsites, that have access to electrical power, water, and sewer.

GAWR (Gross Axle Weight Rating)
The total allowable weight on each individual axle, which includes the weight of tires, wheels, brakes, and the axle itself. It is the manufacturer’s rating for the maximum allowable weight (including the weight of tires, wheels, brakes and the axle itself) that an axle is designed to carry. GAWR applies to tow vehicle, trailer, fifth-wheel and motorhome axles.

GCWR (Gross Combination Weight Rating)
The maximum allowable weight of the combination of tow vehicle and trailer/ fifth-wheel, or motorhome and dinghy: the weight of the vehicle, trailer/fifth-wheel (or dinghy), cargo, passengers and a full load of fluids (fresh water, propane, fuel, etc.).

GTWR (Gross Trailer Weight Rating)
The maximum allowable weight of a trailer, fully loaded with cargo and fluids.

GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating)
The maximum weight an RV must not exceed to ensure safe traveling. It includes the vehicle’s chassis, body, engine, fluids, fuel, accessories, passengers, cargo, etc.

LTVA (Long Term Visitor Area)
An area requiring an inexpensive seasonal permit granted by the Bureau of Land Management. LTVAs often have a few additional limited services versus regular dispersed camping.

NCC (Net Carrying Capacity)
The maximum combined weight of all passengers, personal belongings, food, fresh water, and supplies. It is derived by subtracting the UVW from the GVWR.

NPS
An abbreviation for the National Park Service, a federal department that manages natural preserves and parks.

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NRA (U.S. National Recreation Areas)
Areas managed by multiple land agencies such as the National Park Service, the Bureau of Land Management or the U.S. Forest Service. (List available here.)

NWR (US National Wildlife Refuge System)
A national network of lands and waters for the conservation, management, and where appropriate, restoration of the fish, wildlife, and plant resources and their habitats within the United States for the “benefit of present and future generations of Americans.”

OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer)
OEM refers to the company that originally manufactured the product. When referring to RV parts, OEM designates a replacement part is made by the original manufacturer of the original part.

O/N (Overnight Parking)
“No O/N Parking” means you may not keep your vehicle there overnight.

PDI
Short for pre-delivery inspection. It is the walk through you get before finalizing an RV purchase.

S&B (Sticks and Bricks)
RVer slang for a traditional permanent house (built with wood and cement).

UP
The meaning can vary, but usually it meant the upper peninsula of Michigan.

OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer)
OEM refers to the company that originally manufactured the product. When referring to RV parts, OEM designates a replacement part is made by the original manufacturer of the original part.

SRA (State Recreational Area) 
Public land managed by states, with some primitive camping areas.

SWA (State Wildlife Areas)
An abbreviation for State Wildlife Areas are generally for wildlife preservation, management and hunting. Unlike the US National Wildlife Refuge system, camping is usually prohibited.

UTQGL (Uniform Tire Quality Grade Labeling)
A government program to provide consumers with information about three characteristics of the tire: tread wear, traction and temperature.

UVW (Unloaded Vehicle Weight)
The weight of the vehicle without manufacturer’s or dealer-installed options and before adding fuel, water or supplies.

W/E
A campsite that offer only water and electric hookups.

W/E/S
A full hookup site with water, electric, and sewer.

WMA (Wildlife Management Area)
A protected area set aside for the conservation of wildlife and for recreational activities involving wildlife. Camping policies vary by state.

What other abbreviations or acronyms did we miss?

One thing RVers like to do is abbreviate things, so we know we missed some. If you have any to add to this list of abbreviations or acronyms, please let us know in the comments at the bottom of this page.

Also check out…
The Ultimate RV Dictionary and Glossary of RV Slang


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