Camping season is right around the corner. Are you ready? Is your rig ready? If not, here are a few tips for getting your rig ready for the upcoming season. It’s time to get them out of storage, dust off the cobwebs, and have another great season of RVing, camping, and making memories with your loved ones.
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One of the first things we like to do is get inside and open all the windows. This of course lets fresh air circulate through the rig. We make sure we wash the sheets, curtains, and anything else that might have become musty and dusty over the long cold winter. Doing this will start to bring the freshness back into your RV.
While your cleaning linens and things, go ahead and sweep, mop, or vacuum. This might be a great time to replace any air fresheners you may still have in there. Don’t forget to wipe out pantries, cabinets, and other inside storage areas.
Inspect the Awning(if equipped)
Fully extend the awning and check for any damage. Inspect rails, guides, etc. to ensure all are in good working order. Be sure to leave it extended while you wash the outside of your RV to make sure it gets a good washing as well. Let the awning completely dry before rolling it back up. If you notice any damage, repair it yourself or take it to a qualified technician or mobile RV repairman.
Check All Appliances
Check that all appliances are in working order. Be sure to inspect and clean outside vents as well. Make sure the insects didn’t make a winter home in any of the vents. It is also recommended that you check your water heater anode while you have the vent cover off. Now would be a great time to replace it if needed. Don’t forget to check the A/C filter as well. We live in Texas and had to spend a whole weekend in August without A/C. We managed but it was quite miserable.
This would also be a great time to check the operation of your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors. Be sure to check the fire extinguisher as well. If it has been discharged or is not full, replace it.
Sanitize Water System/Holding Tanks
We all know it is recommended to clean your waste holding tanks after every trip, but it would not hurt to go ahead and freshen the tanks up with a little bit of sanitizer. You can pick up tank fresheners at just about any local big box store, or by clicking the link below.
Be sure to sanitize your fresh water holding tank as well. Pour one ounce of bleach per 8 gallons of tank capacity. For example, if you have a 20-gallon holding tank, you will need 2.5 ounces of bleach. Fill the tank with water and use your 12V water pump to pump it through the system. After 12 to 24 hours of letting it sit, drain the entire water system. NOTE: Make sure the water heater is off before draining water. You may have to fill and drain a few times to get rid of the bleach smell.
Extend slides and check the track and seals for any sign of wear or damage. Lubricate per manufacturers recommendations to avoid voiding any warranty. Different models may have different mechanisms that require specific treatments.
Fill Propane Tanks
You will want to be sure your propane tanks are full and in proper working order. I could never tell the level of propane in our tanks, so I installed a level indicator for propane tanks to take the guess work out of it.
Last but certainly not least is your tow vehicle. Take it down and have the oil changed if needed and while you’re at it, have the tires rotated and the pressure checked. Be sure to check the pressure on your RV as well. Improper tire inflation can and will lead to costly repairs down the road, literally. A blow out can do major damage to your rig.
I call it a bonus. I just remembered as I was about to hit the publish button. Check your RV battery. If you had it disconnected and stored through the cold winter months, you should be okay. Check the voltage and if you are not certain, carry it down to your local auto parts store. They will check it for free and provide a replacement if necessary.
With a little bit of preparation, you can have a stress-free RV and camping season ahead. We need to get busy on this list soon. Camping season is right around the corner. If you have something that I missed or another checklist item, please feel free to leave a comment below.