RV Storage Tips: Protecting Your Home on Wheels | RecPro

RV Storage Tips: Protecting Your Home on Wheels | RecPro

Are you getting ready to put your RV into storage for the season? In this post, we will cover some of the best practices to follow when prepping your RV for storage, which can save you a pretty penny down the line. Issues arising from improper storage can run the gamut, from frozen and cracked pipes, rodent damage & tire issues, and drained batteries… suffice to say that the list of systems and components that you would rather not have to service or replace unnecessarily is both long and expensive, and we will expand on it below. Thankfully, nearly all of these costly repairs can be avoided entirely by doing a little prep work on the front end.

Disconnect the Batteries

RV Battery And Power SystemDisconnect the RV batteries and store them in a dry, cool place. If the batteries are bussed together in either configuration (Series or Parallel), consider disconnecting the busbars or cable jumps and charging them individually, as this can help extend their service life.

If you plan to store the RV for an extended period of time, disconnect the batteries completely to prevent them from losing their charge. This step could be achieved easily if you install a battery disconnect switch into your battery circuit. Make sure to get one that meets the wattage requirements of your system (e.g., A 12v Lead-Acid Starter battery would need a less beefy disconnect switch than a 48v LiFePo4 battery bank.)

Scrub the Interior

The first step in preparing your RV for storage is thoroughly cleaning the interior. I mean, really get in there with the elbow grease. Be absolutely sure to remove all food and perishable items, and ensure that the refrigerator and freezer are clean, empty, and bone dry. Leaving moisture in a sealed fridge or freezer is a fantastic recipe for mold growth. People often shim the doors of these appliances open when in storage to ensure that there is airflow throughout. Clean the bathroom and kitchen thoroughly, including the sink, shower, and toilet. Dust and vacuum the interior, including the furniture and bedding.

Winterize the Plumbing

In order to prevent damage from freezing temperatures, it is important to winterize the plumbing system of your RV. Drain the water system, including the water heater, and add antifreeze to the pipes. Ensure all faucets and valves are closed, and the water pump is turned off. Check out our blog on this specific topic here.

Protect the Exterior

Many Power Washing His RVFor those of you who store your RVs outdoors, it would be time to consider protecting the exterior of your RV. Bust out that hose or power washer and clean the roof, windows, and awnings. Applying a protective cover or wrap will help prevent damage from the elements; many owners opt to use a durable UV-resistant cover designed explicitly for their RV, as it will provide the best exterior protection for your vehicle.

Check the Tire Pressure

Make sure that the tires are correctly inflated to combat flat spots from developing during their tenure in storage. Check the tire pressure regularly and adjust it as needed. Consider using chocks or blocks under the tires to keep the RV from moving while in storage. Getting the wheels up off the ground would also take care of the issue of developing flat spots, so getting the unit up on jack stands is also a viable option. This strategy would only work for trailers and smaller self-propelled rigs, I would not suggest attempting to jack up your coach RV.

Protect your Shoes!

Protect the wheels and tires from that big old ball of radiation in the sky by sheathing them with protective covers. Make sure the covers are sized correctly and made of substantial material and check them regularly to ensure that they are still in place. A brick or rock on top of the wheel can help make sure these stay put in high winds.

RVs Parked In A Lot With Roof

Weigh the Advantages of Climate Controlled Storage

If possible, store your RV in a climate-controlled facility to prevent damage from extreme temperature changes, humidity, and mold. Climate-controlled storage is hands-down the best way to ensure that your RV will age with grace. However, heated storage is a vastly more expensive solution than throwing it to weather the winter in the ol' tree row, and it is up to you to determine if the investment is worth it.

If you have a pop-up camper, this step may be overkill. But in the case of fifth wheels and coach RVs... they represent a more significant investment. Climate-controlled storage will also help keep the interior of the RV at a consistent temperature, which can help prevent damage to the appliances, furniture, and other items inside. (However, it is still a good idea to winterize your pipes and appliances in case of a power outage at the storage facility.)

By following these few tips for prepping your RV for storage, you can help to protect it from damage and ensure that it is in working condition when you're ready to hit the road again. Whether you're storing your RV for the winter or an extended period, taking the time to prepare your rig properly definitely pays out in the long run.

Nobody enjoys attempting to use their RV only to find that it has sustained damage over the storage period, and is now out-of-commission. Taking a proactive approach to protecting your RV while in storage is imperative to preserving its value and functionality. With proper preparation and maintenance, you can help to ensure that your home on wheels will be shipshape and ready to go when your next adventure comes knocking.

Do you have your own pre-storage checklist? Let us know if you have additional tips down in the comments!

Feb 9th 2023 Chris Ray

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