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De-Winterizing Your RVThough it is technically still winter, and the snow may be flying where you live, now is the perfect time to make sure you have everything you need to get your RV ready for spring. Making sure your motorhome is ready for this year’s travel season goes beyond just de-winterizing the plumbing system. It also involves checking the condition of appliances and parts, and even cleaning the coach inside and out. Here are a few things to keep in mind when it’s time to take your RV back out of storage, along with a few accessories you might need.
The main thing is of course, de-winterizing the plumbing system. The water system should be flushed out to get rid of all the anti-freeze that you added last fall. Make sure to remember to redirect water through the water heater if it was bypassed. Now is also a good time to clean the plumbing system and freshwater tank. The best way to do this is to dilute bleach in water, add the solution to the water tank, and run it through the system. When you start to smell bleach coming through the faucets, turn the faucets off and let the solution sit for at least several hours. Then you can drain the faucets & use regular fresh water to clear out the system until there is no more bleach. Typically a quarter cup of bleach is suitable for a 15 gallon tank. Note that it may take more than one tank of water to completely clear out all of the remaining bleach. Keeping the water pump on with the faucets closed for a period of time can also alert you to possible leaks.
Another big part of making sure your RV is travel ready is to do a thorough inspection to see if all parts & appliances are in good working order. Some of this, such as checking the roof or other parts of the exterior, can be done during cleaning. Tires should be checked to make sure they are not damaged and have the right pressure. Batteries should be inspected and re-installed if they were removed. Check out our article on battery maintenance for more information. When testing the electricity, make sure it’s done after handling the plumbing system. LP gas tanks & connections should be checked for leaks. This is also a good time to inspect gas appliances. Make sure the refrigerator is working properly and does not need repair or replacement. Replacement fittings, LP tanks, adapters, and hoses are available, should your LP gas system need repair. Just like a car, the RV’s engine should be inspected, paying special attention to hose connections and the amount of oil. Lastly, make sure items such as smoke and carbon monoxide detectors have fresh batteries.
An RV should be cleaned a few times a year, but especially once it’s taken out of storage. It’s also the perfect time to check both the inside & outside for moisture damage, evidence of animals or insects, and debris that may block ventilation. When cleaning the outside, the most logical way is to work from the top down. That is, clean the roof first before cleaning the sides. EternaBond tape is perfect for fixing leaks, while Dicor roof cleaners & coatings can help restore a rubber roof. Cleaning the interior would be done much the same way, working on higher surfaces first before vacuuming and cleaning floors. Having a central vacuum system such as the Dirt Devil CV1500 can come in handy for this task, allowing you to clean hard floors, carpets, and furniture easily. A number of interior and exterior cleaners are available, along with the right cleaning tools, to help get the job done properly and make your RV look like new.
These are just some of the more important things to remember as you prepare your motorhome for the warmer weather. Make sure you don't start the de-winterizing process until you know that temperatures will be consistently above freezing. This is especially important in areas where the temperature can fluctuate many times before it steadily remains warm.
By Julie T

Making Sure Your RV is Ready for the Travel Season