Winterizing your RV, part 4 — ‘Check for leaks; clean inside of aerosols, food’

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+TerryCooper_checkingRVforDamageThis is the final post of a four-part series on ‘Winterizing your RV.’

Another major concern of storing an RV for months is the rig’s exterior, its roof and sidewalls. After thoroughly cleaning the rig, inspect all sealants for signs of damage or cracking where water might seep into the RV.

“There can be a tremendous amount of water damage done over the winter,” said Terry Cooper of Mobile RV Academy.

Water can leak into the smallest surface cracks, freeze and expand, making the situation worse. “Soon a large gap opens up allowing water to enter the attic and interior of the walls,” he said.

As for inside your RV, give it a complete cleaning and take out anything that could possibly freeze including fluids and aerosol sprays. Also remove any food items that might attract rodents and insects.

“Clean under the cook top burners. Grease and food debris attract critters — big and small,” said Cooper,  a 40-year veteran of the RV business.  “Leaving the refrigerator doors slightly open to allow air inside will help keep the mold and mildew down. While a box of opened baking soda does wonders to help control moisture and odors,” he added.

Once your RV is cleaned and winterized, it is ready to take a safe snooze for the winter. If it is stored outside you may want to consider a good RV cover. Always keep the tires covered to block sunlight UV deterioration of the sidewalls. And, finally, place tires on plywood sheets or plastic panels to prevent ground-to-tire contact.

For those who do not have the time or desire to do-it-yourself, most RV dealerships and service centers will winterize RVs.  Call for at least two estimates on your specific rig.

If you missed “Winterizing your RV, part 1 – Now or before hard freeze” — click here.
For  Part 2 — “Protect water systems from freezing temperatures” — click here
For  Part 3 — “Check batteries” — click here

Julianne G. Crane

Photo:  Terry Cooper inspecting for damages to RV’s skin. (Courtesy of  Mobile RV Academy).  

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