Basic RV Maintenance Tips
Learning how to keep your RV in good condition doesn't have to be a huge task. Here are few basic tips to make your trip hassle free every time.
How to Maintain your RV Roof
RV roofs take a lot of abuse from harsh weather like hail, sun, wind, and rain. Roofs should be checked periodically for damage.
As a general rule, if your RV comes equipped with a factory-installed ladder, your roof is walkable. If not, use a stable ladder to maintain your roof from the side. Keep your roof clean by washing it with a light solvent and water. Parking under sappy trees warrants a wash as soon as possible.
Regularly Inspect your Roof
Inspect the roof seals and seams of your RV every six months. Water damage can cost hundreds or thousands of dollars to repair if it’s not taken care of immediately.
Inspect the roof at its seams for possible culprits for leaks. Apply sealant to a clean rooftop to prevent harmful water damage over time.
If you have a rubber roof, make sure to have the roof treated at least once per year. This prevents the sun from doing damage. You should also have a roof inspection at least twice a year.
How to Maintain your RV Tires
Maintain your RV tires just as you would your car. Use a tire pressure monitoring system to gauge pressure. Give the tires a visual check to check for uneven tread wear. Improperly loading your trailer can wear the tires down in specific spots, leading to a blowout. Keep in mind, tire pressure changes with temperature fluctuations and altitude changes. Learn how to keep your tires in good condition while in storage so you’re ready for camping season.
Check your Tire Pressure
Check your tire pressure and lug nuts before every trip. Tighten lug nuts as necessary and add air to tires based on proper specifications.
How to Maintain Your Motorhome Engine and Chassis
For motorhome owners, your coach’s engine requires maintenance just like a car. Refer to your motorhome manual for guidelines on when and how to maintain the engine, like changing the oil and engine air filters. When in doubt, consult the manufacturer’s guidelines found online.
Change Oil and Filters
Like cars, RVs need their oil and filters changed at regular intervals. This is necessary to keep your engine running properly and if left undone could eventually cause your engine to seize. This could cost you as much as $10,000. Most manufacturers suggest an oil change every 3,000 to 4,500 miles, but you should check your owner’s manual for advice on your specific vehicle.
How to Maintain Your RV Batteries
Check your batteries regularly. Check your batteries before your trip. Deep cycle batteries last 3-5 years and should be replaced after their life cycle is complete.
Store your battery properly. Take your battery out during the winter months and store it somewhere warm. They have the possibility to freeze and break, voiding the warranty and rendering them unusable.
How to Maintain Your RV Tanks
Most RVs come equipped with three different holding tanks, each requiring its own kind of attention. For a comprehensive breakdown of care, consult our tutorial for how to maintain your RV’s holding tanks.
Freshwater tanks simply require a bi-annual flush, typically when bringing your RV out of seasonal storage. Bacteria can build in a moist environment, so a gentle bleach and water solution can sanitize the tank, and a few fills and flushes of the system will clear out the bleach. Take a look at our step by step process for sanitizing your freshwater tank in 5 simple steps.
Grey Water Tank
Grey water tanks require very little maintenance. Still, with normal use it’s common for grey tanks to develop a smell. If your tank starts to have an odor, consider an odor blocker to keep foul scents away.
When using your black tank, always use approved black tank chemicals to break down solids. After emptying the tank, use your RV’s black tank flush system, if it is equipped with one, to keep sensors clean and reading accurately. Our 5 tips for maintaining your RV toilet can help keep your black tank in working order as well.
RV maintenance isn’t rocket science. In fact, it’s quite simple and usually requires a little focused attention a few times a year to ensure everything is functional and clean. Keeping an eye on these aspects of your RV will not only save you money on repairs over time, but will keep your RV’s resale value up.