TIPS FOR WINTER MAINTENANCE
Take care of your tires
Taking care of your RV’s tires over the winter months will keep them at their best, and avoid premature wear and tear.
During storage, place your RV on blocks to remove the weight from the tires, or choose a firm, clean, well-drained, and level area, to keep the pressure on each tire distributed evenly. Be sure to keep your tires properly inflated, as low tire pressure can cause extra pressure on the sidewall or create flat spots.
Use tire covers or a piece of plywood to keep the sun off your tires while in storage, as UV damage can cause cracks in the rubber.
Keep your RV’s exterior in top shape with a cover
An RV cover will prevent the fading of your RV’s sidewalls, paint, or decals during storage, due to winter weather and harsh UV rays. It will also reduce fading of interior curtains, fabrics, leather, and vinyl, and make your spring cleaning even easier by protecting it from dirt and grime. Do not use plastic tarps, as they don’t breathe and can trap moisture inside.
TIPS FOR WINTER RVING
Prepare your water system
You don’t want is water freezing in your plumbing lines or holding tank, so always travel with your RV winterized. Before use, when the tanks are empty, pour half a jug of RV antifreeze down the sink drain to the grey tank, and the other half down the toilet to the black tank, to ensure both are protected.
Using drain valve lubricant will also assist in preventing freezing. Available at most RV parts departments, it is a good idea for regular maintenance, but even more important when using your RV in cooler weather.
The age and make of your RV are going to play a big part in how easy it is to use your water system in the winter, so talk to your RV Care dealer about your specific model.
Watch the weather
Don’t let a highway snowstorm catch you by surprise! Take a good look at the long-range forecast, not only for your destination, but also all the way along your route. The weather on highways at higher elevations can differ greatly from the weather at your destination in a nearby valley.
Be prepared for early evenings
With a later sunrise and an earlier sunset, be prepared for darkness. Pack a headlamp for chopping wood and other campsite chores, and string awning lights for a nice, cozy glow.
Pack a winterized first aid & emergency kit
Pack along an emergency thermal blanket, extra candles, non-perishable foods, a bucket of sand for extra tire traction, extra windshield wiper fluid, a windshield ice scraper with snow brush, de-icing crystals, and a snow shovel.
Pack off-the-grid necessities
Camping in the winter often means camping without services, so check in advance to see if you’ll need to bring along water, wood, or a generator.
As temperatures drop outside, humidity can become a problem in your RV. Open your vents or crack open a window to allow air circulation, and use dehumidifying crystals to soak up excess moisture.
Be prepared with extra supplies
Bad weather can interrupt travel plans, so have a plan for what you’ll do if you end up stranded by the weather. You’ll want to have a few extra days of food, water, and propane, depending on how remote you are traveling.
Don’t rely entirely on your furnace, add some extra warmth to your bed with a heated mattress pad or an electric blanket for a comfortable night’s sleep.
Pack a heated water hose
Upgrade your regular water hose to one that is heated and reduce your risk of a frozen hose.
Bring back-up heat
Bring an electric space heater to supplement the heat from your furnace. It’s also important to have in the event of a furnace failure, or if you run out of propane.
Pack cozy layers
The key to staying warm on a winter camping trip is to stay dry! Bring extra wool or thermal layers designed to wick moisture away. Waterproof gloves and hats are also essential.
Are you heading out for a winter RV adventure this season? Share your photos with us on our social networks!