Is your RV ready for spring? 

Whether you have a bumper pull trailer, fifth wheel or motor coach, here is a list of items that need to be addressed at the beginning of each year.

1

De-Winterize your RV

  1. Drain and flush the fresh water systems

  2. Reconnect the ice maker hose & open the supply valve if applicable.

  3. Reset the hot water bypass to the use position and install the drain plug. Make sure you start with a new anode rod at the beginning of each year.

  4. Flush out the fresh water holding tank, cycle the pump this removes any remaining antifreeze from the pump and pre strainer.

  5. If your RV has water filters remove the bypasses and reinstall them, make sure you completely flush your RV’s water system before you install a new filter.

2

Holding Tanks

Inspect your holding tank valves for leakage & smoothness of operation, winter storage can cause the seals to dry out or crack.

3

Tires

Check all tires for weather cracking and proper inflation, see your V.I.N. tag for the proper inflation pressure. Know the age of your tires, there is a lot more than your RV riding on them.

4

Axles

Trailers require a semi-annual axle and brake inspection. The axle manufacture recommends that the bearings be repacked every 6 months. The lug nuts should be checked for the proper torque at this time. You can find this information located on the V.I.N. tag.

5

Batteries

Inspect all of your RV’s batteries. If you have a motor coach, make sure and check your engine batteries. Inspect all cables and connections for corrosion, clean and replace as needed. Check  that your batteries are filled to the proper level with fluid. If you need to add water, make sure to use distilled water only.

6

Roof inspection

The manufacture recommends that your roof be inspected and serviced every 4 months. This encompasses all roof top vents, refrigerator, skylights, sewer, crank ups, antennas and all seams.

If repairs are needed do not wait, this will only result in costly repairs in the future.

Make sure when servicing your roof that you use the correct materials. Caulking for an aluminum roof is not the same as a rubber roof. Use only caulking supply’s recommended by your roof manufacture. Make sure and clean all surfaces thoroughly and allow to completely dry before attempting any repairs. This will allow the sealants to adhere properly and prevent any future leakage or failure.

Now that your roof has been cleaned and resealed you need to apply a good UV stabilizer to your rubber roof. These products are designed to reflect the suns UV rays away from your roof and allow your roof to absorb less heat, resulting in a cooler environment inside your RV during the summer months and greatly extending the life of your roof. There are a lot of really good products on the market specifically designed for cleaning and treating your rubber roof.

Proper routine care and maintenance will add years of trouble free life to your roof and greatly reduce the need for costly repairs.

7

Outside inspection of your RV.

Inspect all seams and joints on the outside of your RV. If calking is needed make sure and take care of it soon. Putting it off will only result in future more costly repairs.

8

Slide outs

Operate all slide outs and thoroughly inspect all seals and gaskets for damage. Replace any seals that are weather cracked or not adhered properly.

The seals and wiper seals play a very important roll in keeping moisture and dirt from entering and damaging your RV. Have any issues addressed immediately.

9

Compartment inspection

During winter storage unwanted guests may invade your RV compartments. This inspection is especially important for motor coach owners because there are a lot more areas for our little friends to hide and make a home. Inspect your engine compartment for signs of rodent damage. Inspect all visible wiring harnesses. Check all compartment and storage bays.

10

Check all lights

Make sure and check all exterior lights. running, brake, turn signal and head lights if you have a motor coach. Address any issues that you find, remember these are safety issues and the rest of us are counting on you making sure these devices are working correctly.

11

Awnings

Awnings require care and maintenance just like everything else.

Open your awning and inspect its operation. Check for worn or broken parts; inspect your awning fabric for wear or tears. To clean your awning, make sure to use a correct awning cleaner. Never use a harsh abrasive or chemicals. Use cleaners that are marked

“Awning Care” or “Awning Cleaner” only!

Always allow your awning to completely dry before rolling it up, to prevent mildewing.

12

AC units

AC units only work correctly if maintained and serviced regularly.

Keep your return air filters clean, this greatly improves the efficiency of your AC.

It is good to have your AC inspected at the beginning of the season to make sure it will operate for you problem free

 

 Appliances

All appliances require routine maintenance and when that routine maintenance is not done they become headaches.

Refrigerators 

Pull the outside vent cover off, this is located on the exterior wall on the back of your refrigerator. Check for obstructions and signs of rodent invasion. Test your Refrigerator on LP and AC, If your fridge is a 3 way make sure and test the DC operation.

Waiting until the day you are going on your outing is not the day to find out that you have problems with your appliances.

Hot water heaters

 

Set the bypass valves to the use or normal operation position, make sure your drain plug (if Attwood) and new anode rod (if Suburban) is installed. Anode rods play a very important roll in the life of your hot water heater. They are a sacrificial item. Anode rods allow the minerals in the water to have something to chew on rather than the lining of your tank. It is best to start the new year out with a fresh anode rod.

Your hot water tank should be completely full before testing the ignition process either with gas or on electric. Damage will occur if you operate this device without a full tank. Test your hot water tank on LP and AC. If you have a problem have it inspected by an authorized technician.

Furnaces

Furnaces are one of the least cared for but most important items in our RV’s

Inspection and routine service is crucial to the life and operation of your furnace.

The manufacture recommends that your furnace be inspected yearly by an authorized technician. The reasons for this is are as follows.

1. Your forced air furnace does not have a pre filter on the return air, thus causing dust and debris from the RV to accumulate in the furnace compartment and on the major operating parts of the furnace. Over time this will greatly reduce the efficiency of your furnace and become a potential fire hazard.

2. During the spring and summer months. The mud daubers, spiders and mice can and will make a home in your burner chamber. This costly problem can be eliminated by installing screens over your external vents. Check with your local RV dealer for this item. Make sure you know the make and model when you go to purchase them.

Your annual furnace inspection will consist of an authorized technician removing your furnace from your RV. Next your technician will thoroughly blow out any dust, debris or obstructions that it might have. After the technician has cleaned and inspected your furnace he will bench test it making sure that it is operating at its peak efficiency.

After vacuuming out the compartment he will reinstall the furnace.

Following these procedures will allow you to have a more trouble free and safer RVing experience.

LP systems and Detectors

Make sure that all LP connections are tight at the beginning of every outing. If LP lines are damaged or weathered replace them before use. If you have any uncertainty about your LP system, be safe and have it checked. Any RV dealership or technician can assist you with this problem.

LP detectors,

Check your LP detector regularly, make sure it is operating correctly at the start of every outing. If your LP detector is not working correctly “”“REPLACE IT””” Many people un plug or cut the wires on the LP detector when it is not working correctly. This is suicide, LP gas is heaver than air thus it hides in pockets and lingers waiting to ignite. Remember it’s not just your life that you are playing around with it is your families.

Smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors

 

Install new batteries at the beginning of each year. Make sure and test these devices before each outing. These are safety devices that are installed for your protection, do not take chances with your families lives, be a responsible RVer.

Fire extinguishers

Inspect your fire extinguisher at the beginning if every outing. All RVs are supplied with one from the manufacture. Waiting until you have a fire is not the time to find out that your extinguisher has lost its charge. Remember be a safe RVer, make sure your extinguisher is in good working order.

Remember RVs are a lifestyle choice and a sizeable investment.

You, the owner, can control the rate of deprecation by performing routine inspections and being sure to follow the manufactures maintenance schedule. There are a lot of resources at your disposal in the RVing community to help make your RVing experience as enjoyable as possible.

Please send any questions to rvdoctor@greencountryrvdoctor.com

           
14179 S Hwy 169 - Oologah, OK 74053 -- Phone 918-704-8329
Email RVDoctor@GreenCountryRVDoctor.com