Sunday, December 09, 2007

Remember the RV

It's winter and for many of you, the RV is winterized and stored somewhere. For the rest of us in warmer places, the RV is parked nearby and not used as much.

Just because you're not traveling doesn't mean the RV will be all right just sitting there until you want to use it. Whether it's a trailer, fifth wheel, tent trailer, truck camper, folding trailer, or motorhome, some kind of moisture barrier should be placed on the ground under the RV. Your truck camper is probably on some kind of platform or pallet. If your RV has tires, you can purchase inexpensive plastic placemats to put between the tires and the surface they're resting on: dirt, gravel, asphalt, cement, concrete, etc. Use your jacks to raise the rig slightly so all the weight isn't resting on the tires. Flat spots could develop on the tires from sitting.

If your RV is nearby and you have an electrical connection, keep it plugged in. Use the refrigerator on propane to keep critters, especially spiders, from setting up housekeeping in vital areas. Spiders love propane. Your water heater should be drained (stand back because what comes out will be ugly and smelly), filled with fresh water and turned on weekly to let it cycle through heating your six or ten gallons of water. Run a water hose to the RV as well and check your connections for any leaks in the faucet, sink, shower or toilet.

Your motorhome should be started weekly and ideally driven somewhere. It's meant to move so just running the engine is not enough. Drive it around the block or to the grocery store, park or shopping center.

You might also consider using the RV as a private office to escape the hustle and bustle of the holidays. Watch your football games or read your favorite novel.

The picture above was taken two miles from where I used to live and was a favorite overnight place for my RV and me to go for some exercise.

Remember the RV!


  1. This link offers good information on "winterizing" an RV: you can do as much or as little of the freezing weather prep as is required by your local climate:

    Also, if you do keep the RV plugged in to shore power while in storage, *be sure* to maintain the coach batteries; they should be checked weekly for correct electrolyte level.

  2. Most RV manufacturers recommend that the batteries are removed for winter storage. and it not recommended to leave the RV on shore power full time, as most RV charging systems provide a trickle charge, not a taper charge, so that means its possible to cook the batteries if not checked on a regular basis.
    Why waste all that energy running water throught the system, if you properly drained the entire water system and added RV refrigerant, your RV is set until you are ready to take it out of storage. One last thing, if you extend your jacks for any length of time, make sure you lube the shiny with silicon.

  3. I turn off my liability insurance while I am not using the RV for more than a month. As a result, I don't drive it unless it is necessary. Saves a bunch of bucks.

    John Andrews, Knoxville, Tennessee

  4. Mr Anon, you need to remember not all Rv's are parked in Wisconsin or Thief River Falls for the winter and since she is in Calif, with their relatively short and mild winters, it would be easier to do as she sez, just like here in AZ, where it never dips below freezing. No matter how much we would like it to, [sometimes].