Here in Maryland, peak RV season will soon be officially underway. Trees are starting to leaf out, the chances of snow are decreasing, robin sightings are increasing, and the air is beginning to warm up. The time has come to prepare your travel trailer for spring and summer RVing in Maryland and beyond!
De-winterizing your RV is a fitting time to perform thorough inspections and maintenance on the vehicle. Doing so now will hopefully prevent any mishaps during your upcoming trips, as well as extend the life of your travel trailer.
When Should I Start De-Winterizing my RV?
If the temperatures in your area have been staying consistently above freezing, that is your sign to go ahead with de-winterizing your RV. The key word is “consistently” – don’t jump the gun too early, or you’ll run the risk of having your pipes freeze, which could damage the water systems.
If you don’t have time to commit to the process, contact our professional RV service for assistance so your vehicle will be ready for a smooth camping season.
Inspection After-Winter Storage
If you have stored your RV in an indoor facility, this first step may not apply. However, if you have kept it under a plastic tarp or quality RV cover outdoors, the first thing we recommend doing come spring is to remove the tarp and look around inside for any potential damage that may have occurred.
Regions that experience heavy snowfall (which was not the case for Maryland this winter) can pile several feet of snow on a roof. If that accumulates all winter, the vehicle could collapse under that additional weight. Ideally, you will check on it every few weeks and shovel excess snow from the top to protect it during winter.
Even if you’ve been keeping a general eye out, freezing and thawing cycles in the winter months can create entry points for snow and rain to sneakily leak their way inside. Inspect the RV roof, window seals, and slide-outs for any evidence of water intrusion. It could show up as discoloring on walls or ceilings or ponding on windowsills or countertops.
If you make an unfortunate discovery of water damage, schedule proper repair immediately in an effort to avoid further damage via bacteria growth that could negatively affect the integrity of the RV’s frame. Thoroughly clean the area that needs repair with soap and water before allowing it to dry completely. If necessary, remove any dirt with a mild solvent or abrasive pad.
If you’re free and clear from damage, reinstall the vehicle’s battery and check that the battery is properly charged. One trick for winterizing a new or used RV is to purchase a trickle charger that is for sale to help maintain the charge and lengthen the life of the batteries.
Like any automobile, an RV’s tires will lose air pressure after being in storage for an extended amount of time. Under-inflated tires lead to decreased fuel efficiency and other potential hazards while operating the RV.
Inflate the tires to your manufacturer’s recommended pressure. If any of the tires show signs of rot or deterioration, have them replaced.
Flush the winterizing antifreeze out of all potable water lines in your RV, as well as from the storage tank. Next, to ensure the water supply will be safe, you must sanitize the potable water system. Doing this should also take care of any bad taste or odor in the water. Finally, replace the water filters.
Check all the RV engine fluid levels (brake fluid, coolant, oil, transmission fluid, windshield wiper fluid) before heading out anywhere. If any levels are low, top them off or have the vehicle serviced. Take the RV to a mechanic if you suspect any leaks.
Next, turn on the RV and read the gauges to confirm all dash lights, headlights, tail lights, and windshield wipers are in working order. Replace any defective lights.
At Economy RVS in southern Maryland, we have an assortment of new RV parts and accessories for sale so you can find what you need.
And finally, before you stock the fridge with Maryland crabcakes and beer, be sure to check the fire extinguisher (needle should be in the green) and the batteries in your RV’s smoke detector and carbon monoxide detector and replace if necessary. Check that the needle is in the green on your fire extinguisher and that it is within the expiration date. Replace it with a new fire extinguisher if it is outdated. Check and restock your first aid and emergency supplies, too.
Your future self will also thank you if you make and keep a de-winterization document to alert you of areas of potential concern and any other reminders for next spring.
New RVs and Campers for Sale in Maryland
Taking time to effectively de-winterize your RV will set you up for a smooth camping season! If at any point in the process you feel ill-prepared for the task or run out of time to complete them all, keep professional de-winterization by a RV dealership like Economy RVS in mind. Our RV experts can provide completely hassle-free de-winterization services to save you time and provide peace of mind.
In addition to providing service appointments, Economy RVS offers new RVs and campers for sale at our convenient location in Mechanicsville, MD. If you’ve been searching in Maryland for the best new campers and RVS for sale, check out our inventory online or visit us today. We’d love to help get you on the road to making great memories this year!