What to Watch While Storing your RV!

If proactive steps are taken, once you remove the rig from storage,  it likely will be in the same working condition as the day you placed it in storage. Here are some areas to watch while storing your RV.

Wintertime finds a lot of RV owners taking a break from travel. Considering the idea of storing your RV?   Whether tucked away inside a rented storage unit or under a carport in your yard, there are some issues that can arise during the dormant period. Problems can be found within the exterior and interior of the rig that can range from critters to cold temps.

Preventing Battery Drainage

It is highly recommended to remove all the batteries before storing your RV. This is especially true for those facing a cold and hard winter. Before storing them in a dry and clean location, fully charge the batteries. Storing the batteries in a garage or similar location to protect from the elements is best.

The reason it is important to store batteries at a fully charged level is to prevent freezing. It is quite difficult for a fully charged battery to freeze, as it will only happen if the temperature registers at 55 or 60 degrees below zero.

In contrast, an uncharged battery can freeze at or around 20 degrees above zero.

Stopping Pipes from Freezing

While this is likely the most important preventive measure to take, it is also one of the simplest. Just like pipes in your house, cold temperatures can cause your RV pipes to freeze, expand and burst. A simple act can prevent severe water damage.

Drain the storage tanks and connecting pipes and storing the RV with empty tanks is the best practice to prevent frozen, broken pipes.

Say No to Water Damage

Frozen pipes aren’t the only way to have destructive water damage. Windows not insulated well enough, a leaky fridge or a weak seam that needs reinforced are all options for the messy, hard-to-clean damage.

Before storing, consider insulating single-pane windows to reduce condensation. If storing at home, park on gravel instead of on a dirt patch. Emptying the fridge and leaving the door propped open is also a way to prevent condensation buildup.

Mice Love a Stored RV

The idea of a family of mice taking up residence in a stored RV isn’t pleasant. Their presence can surely create a difficult situation quickly. Luckily, the prevention isn’t a difficult one at all. To avoid the damage they can leave behind, there are a few options that are fairly cheap and pretty reliable.

    • Peppermint- Peppermint is said to be a very effective scent to deter mice from entering your home away from home. Placing peppermint leaves around the door is suggested, as is the idea of soaking cotton balls with peppermint oil or use a peppermint oil spray around entryways as well.
    • Dryer Sheets- Bounce dryer sheets are also a scent not appreciated by rodents. Though the mice detest the smell of these dryer sheets, it isn’t a long-term solution. The sheets will need to be replaced on a weekly basis, as the sheets don’t have a scent too long.
    • Irish Spring Soap- This green soap is believed to keep mice at bay. A bonus will be a pleasantly nice smelling rig when removing it from storage.
    • Moth Balls- Kill two birds with one stone by placing some moth balls under the sink and around the RV. Like mice, moth balls are disliked by snakes and moths. A cheap preventive that has a long-lasting, potent smell.

The most important way to keep mice out is to take away all the things that attract them. Remove all food items and leave a clean rig.  Another possibility is to have lights on under your RV.

Tire Care

Providing extra care to your RV’s tires before storing will help ensure their longevity long after the storage period is over.

    • Clean them before storing. Wash them when washing the rest of the RV and then spray the tires with a special conditioner or tire cleaner. Spray it on, let it remain for a few minutes and then wipe it back off.
    • Leave tires fully inflated. Air the tires up to maximum pressure because this will ensure tires distribute the weight correctly.
    • Consider using tire covers to protect from all the various weather elements. Covering them not only keep them safe from damage caused by rain, wind, snow and bring sunshine, it also increases their ‘road life’.

By taking these preventive steps, you can  store your RV with peace of mind.

About Debra Pamplin

Since 2007, Debra Pamplin has worn her freelancing hat proudly. Though she has written about music and RV topics over the years, travel writing has always been her priority. Since the beginning of her career, she has had many articles published on a variety of topics. Websites such as USA Today Travel, Coldwell Banker and NerdWallet.com have published her stories. Her byline has appeared in numerous print publications and popular websites over the years. https://www.clippings.me/debrapamplin

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