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Camped Out: Storing Your RV For Winter

Summer is a wonderful time of year, with the great outdoors being wide open for exploration and adventures. From picnics and barbecues to camping and bonfires, those summer months and warm weather are inviting to all, especially those with RVs to add a little comfort to their travels.

But when fall arrives and things start to cool off, the outdoor expeditions take a back seat to after-school activities and indoor enjoyment. And some of the harsh weather that occurs once winter settles in can leave your camper out in the cold if you aren’t careful. But with some proper maintenance and a few smart storage tips, your home away from home will be ready to hit the road again after the first spring thaw.

Exterior Exam

Performing a thorough inspection of the exterior of your RV is critical before letting it rest for the winter season. Identifying cracks and holes, and repairing them proactively can prevent significant damage from affecting your camper. The most important part of this process is making sure that you’re using a sealant that is appropriate for both your model of RV and your climate.

 

Bundle Up

 

Covering up your RV is one of the best ways to ensure that it doesn’t suffer damage throughout the winter. A secure, weatherproof cover will allow you to avoid potential issues caused by everything from animals to sun exposure, along with harsh winter weather. The biggest tip here is to get a sturdy cover made specifically for RV’s – a plastic tarp may be more affordable, but it won’t protect your camper as well, and moisture can get trapped between the tarp and the exterior walls, leading to mold and other problems.

Get Rid Of The Water

One of the most important things you can do when it comes to storing your RV properly for the colder months is to drain the water system. Just like the pipes in your house, water left in the pipes of your RV’s plumbing can freeze, expand, and cause catastrophic damage to your investment. In order to avoid these issues, you’ll want to empty and winterize the water system before the first big freeze.

Depending on how complex your RV’s water system is, this can either be a do-it-yourself project or a job for a professional. The process is fairly simple – it involves completely emptying the fresh water and waste pipes, and pumping non-toxic RV antifreeze throughout the system. The owner’s manual for your vehicle should contain thorough instructions; however, if you don’t feel comfortable doing this on your own, you can always have it serviced professionally.