RV travel is a year-round pursuit, but no more so than in the warmer months. With that brings its own set of maintenance points to keep in mind. Read on for the details.
RV maintenance is key to keeping your RV in top shape and maximizing your enjoyment on the road. Before setting out, walk around the entire unit to make sure everything that could move or fall during travel is secure and in its proper place.
Do a Pre-Trip Inspection
Before every trip, an RV maintenance inspection is vitally important. This should include making sure all smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors are functioning as expected and that their batteries have been upgraded accordingly.
Battery fluid tends to evaporate in hot weather, so it is wise to refill your battery with distilled water and test it to ensure it has sufficient charge. Also, consider adding a voltmeter to your tool kit in order to monitor battery voltage on a regular basis.
Lubricate all moving parts such as hinges, jacks, and slideouts so they function smoothly and efficiently. Inspect the exterior of your RV for signs of wear and tear as well as sealing windows, doors, and seams.
Check your wheel lug nuts and tire pressure regularly to avoid accidents, and clean and wax your tires to protect them from UV rays while making them appear like new.
Maintain the RV Cooling System
Your RV air conditioning system provides welcome relief in a hot environment. Just like its counterpart in your home, however, its performance must be properly maintained to achieve peak performance. That means taking steps such as inspecting shrouds for dirt, bugs, or bent fins that might obstruct the flow of cool air. Additionally, filters and ducts must also be regularly inspected and cleaned to keep performance at its best.
RV Tire Pressure
Checking tire pressure regularly is another essential RV maintenance task, and should always follow manufacturer recommendations when inflating them to prevent under-inflation and excessive heat build-up that could eventually cause tire failure. Check them periodically and adjust according to manufacturer recommendations in order to stay safe on the road!
Check the RV Plumbing and Water System
Preventative care can go a long way toward keeping RV plumbing issues at bay. Regularly check pipes, fittings ,and tanks for leaks, corrosion, or blockages to avoid costly repair bills later on. Failing to drain and flush tanks properly – including emptying gray water and black water tanks and using tank cleaning solutions when necessary – could lead to pesky clogs that can be difficult to clear.
An effective approach is to deep clean and replace the anode rod of your water heater according to manufacturer specifications, in order to keep its water clean and prevent its valves from corrosion. Furthermore, inspect and sanitize your freshwater holding tank at least annually by running your pump system through a bleach-water solution to stop bacteria and harmful organisms from building up within it. This step can protect both you and other users who use your RV from potential health threats that might otherwise accumulate there.
Exterior RV Care
Your RV should also receive an exterior examination and protective wax coating to shield against road salt, dirt, and rust damage. Lubricate any moving parts on its trailer such as hinges, jacks, or slideouts as this will prolong their serviceability.
RVs are large vehicles with many crevasses to collect dirt and grime, making regular washing with products designed for RVs the best way to prevent staining. Waxing it twice annually using TopCoat may also protect it from UV degradation while providing seal protection in window and door areas, vinyl linings, cargo doors, and more.
Cleaning your RV roof regularly is essential to its appearance and value, too. Use an appropriate cleaner such as fiberglass, metal, or EPDM. Inspect your seams regularly for any cracks or gaps and seal them at the first sign of degradation with a sealant to maintain peak performance.
Always conduct regular inspections and tests of all the safety equipment in your RV, such as smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and fire extinguishers, to keep these up-to-date in case an emergency should arise while traveling. Being prepared can save lives in case something happens on the road!