Make Your RV Winter Storage Ready
The realization that RV season is over can be a sad one. With autumn well underway and winter nipping at its heels, it’s time to start thinking about packing up your RV for the season. In RV lingo, this process is known as “winterizing” and it’s the preparation every owner storing an RV in a harsh winter climate should take before the cold sets in.
For those intimidated by the prospect of winterizing their RV, we’ve compiled a few key recommendations you should add to your personal to-do lists in the coming weeks.
This is often the first thing RV owners have on their pre-winter checklists, and for good reason. Any water left stranded in your pipes, water heater, water tank, or holding tank could freeze and burst when temperatures plummet. This website has some useful tips on how to winterize your RV’s water system.
Caring for your engine is a no brainer. Make sure your radiator has anti-freeze and while you’re at it make sure the oil, brake fluid, and windshield wiper fluid levels are topped up. A fuel stabilizer that is run through your engine for a few minutes prior to winter will also be beneficial.
Keep out Critters
Make sure the animals preparing for winter hibernation aren’t doing so within your RV. Pesky critters have been known to crawl into the intake and exhaust vents of on-board appliances, setting up a cozy winter homestead. Ensure you seal the roof, outer walls, and underside of your rig to prevent unwanted guests from climbing into vents and air conditioning units.
Watch out for Tire Weight
Your tires will bear the brunt of your RV’s winter hibernation. Tires can develop flat spots under all that weight, which can be a pain when you’re starting up in the spring. Flat tire spots can be avoided by using your RV’s built-in leveling jack while your rig is parked on a paved or concrete surface. If your rig doesn’t have a leveling system, you can use third-party jacks or stacked blocks beneath the axle of each wheel. If neither is an option, be sure to move your RV a one-half tire revolution during the season to better distribute the weight.
Clean is Key
Just as it’s nice to return to a clean home after a vacation, it will be much more pleasant if you can open the doors on a tidy RV come the spring. That means you should make sure all food and drinks have been removed from your RV. Even items perceived as non-perishable can freeze and explode in cold enough climates, so you’re best to also remove those just in case. Once the food is out, give everything a good scrub down. Like all other dirt and grime, messiness gets tougher with time, and your spring self will appreciate your pre-winter cleaning efforts.
The place you store your RV over the winter is important. For those with smaller Class B and Class C motor homes, you may be lucky enough to squeeze the vehicle into your home garage. Another option is outdoor storage canopies so you can house your RV on your driveway or front yard (make sure the cover you buy is breathable in order to prevent mildew). There are a number of professional service lots or campgrounds that also offer storage facilities.
A Winter Ready RV
Even the best RV “winterizers” should check their rig regularly throughout the winter months. Catching a small problem when it develops is better than discovering a full-blown problem in the spring! The tips in this blog post are general guidelines, and your specific RV owner’s manual will include more detailed information for your model.
Remember you can always reach out to one of our La Mesa RV service centers in California, Arizona, Florida, and New Mexico to receive a superior level of customer and RV service. Our passionate staff will help you determine how to best care for your rig in the cold months ahead.List of sources