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Springtime is on the horizon! As we head into the end of winter, it’s the perfect time to start thinking about getting your RV ready for this season’s first camping trip. Now is when you’ll want to make sure you have everything you need. De-winterizing your camper deals with more than just removing the anti-freeze from your plumbing. When you’ve taken your RV out of long term storage, here are a few things to keep in mind, along with some RV accessories you'll want to make sure you have.

Getting rid of the anti-freeze is what first crosses everyone’s mind when the topic of de-winterizing comes up. Removing the anti-freeze requires the use of your water pump, so fresh water can move through the plumbing system. Faucets should be turned on, starting with the ones furthest away, and the toilet flushed several times in order to keep the water flowing until all the anti-freeze is out. This also includes showerheads as well. You’ll know when it’s finished when the water runs clear and there is no pink anti-freeze coming out. Shut everything off once you’re done. Make sure your water heater is no longer being bypassed. Assuming you didn’t fill it with anti-freeze, the hot water heater needs to be refilled as well. You might think you’re done with the plumbing at this point, but the system also needs to be sanitized. A bleach solution of ¼ cup in one gallon of water for every 15 gallons of a fresh water tank will ensure any pathogens are eliminated. This also needs to be run through the whole plumbing system. Shut your faucets off when you start to smell bleach and let it sit for 8-12 hours. Afterwards, flush the bleach solution from your system until you no longer smell bleach.

After that part is done you still have to check out the rest of your camper, both inside and out! You’ll want to make sure everything is in good condition as well as check for damage or repairs. If your RV has an engine, you’ll want to make sure all the fluids are topped off and that the batteries are fully charged, so you may need a battery charger on hand. Tires can lose inflation even when they are not actively used, so check the tire pressure using a tire pressure gauge. Check the vents as well as other openings to make sure no animals or insects have built a nest inside. Reconnect the LP tanks and check for leaks. A little soapy water around the connection is the easiest way to tell. It’s a good idea to drive your RV around the neighborhood briefly to make sure everything works ok, including brakes, brake lights, and turn signals. Also clean the exterior and treat the roof.

When inside you’ll want to check for evidence of leaks, both from your plumbing system as well as from your roof. Open all of your cabinets, drawers, and the fridge to look for mold or evidence of pests. Put in new batteries for your smoke, CO, and LP gas detectors as well as any more battery-operated devices. All appliances should be tested to make sure they are working correctly. Re-stock your camper with whatever food and supplies you may need. Clean the inside, while also replacing any linens or towels that you may have removed at the end of the last season.

You should only de-winterize your camper once the temperatures consistently stay above freezing. We have a variety of cleaners, sealants, and other supplies to get your camper ready for the upcoming season. While inspecting your RV, if you come across anything you might need to repair or replace, we have replacement parts for a number of items.

Tips on De-Winterizing Your RV