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Winterizing Your RV is the Best Way to Prepare for Next Year's Camping Season

RV Storage - How to Prepare for Winter

Winterizing Your RV is the Best Way to Prepare for Next Year's Camping Season

As Autumn Winds Down Be Sure to Prepare Your RV for Winter Storage

Autumn is a beatiful time of year. The season is full of excitement as children go back to school, and you begin preparing for the Fall and Winter holidays. But, as the leaves are blowing off the trees as a sure sign that Winter is blowing in, there is one more task to tackle as an RVer. Winter can be a difficult time for an RV. Have you thought about how to take care of your RV to help it survive the Winter well, for a safe and happy start to next year's camping season? Here are a few tips and tricks to help winterize your RV:

  • First be sure to consult your owner's manual before you begin. Not all RVs are the same.
  • The best time to start the winterization process is on the way home from your last planned camping trip of the season.
  • Find your campground's sewer dump and drain all of your holding tanks.
  • Drain and flush the fresh water tank, gray water holding tank, and black water holding tank. If you have low-point lines under your RV, open the hot and cold faucets and the shower, flush the toilet, and uncap the low-point lines. Once drained recap the low-point lines and shut all faucets.
  • Next, drain the hot water tank, turn on the hot water faucet. Air will equalize the pressure and help drain the tank. Once drained, be sure to turn off the hot water faucet.
  • Screw a compressed air adapter into the fresh water inlet. Open all faucets and shower, one at a time. You will also need to flush the toilet.
  • If equipped, put your hot water tank in the bypass position. Take out the plug from the hot water tank, and give the air compressor time to blow the remaining water from all the lines. Place drain plug back on.
  • Important: make sure you use RV antifreeze! Purchase RV antifreeze. Using the fresh water pump and a vinyl hose, pump antifreeze through the plumbing by turning the pump on.
  • Open the cold water side of all fixtures first and wait for the antifreeze to come out of the faucets. Turn them off and repeat for the hot water side.
  • Flush the toilet until antifreeze starts to fill the bowl, then pour a half gallon of antifreeze down the toilet. This will winterize the black tank.
  • Pour antifreeze down all sinks and shower/tub drains. Be sure to use enough to fill the gray water tank with a half gallon of antifreeze.

Overall Inspection of Your RV in Preparation for Winter Storage

  • Wash your RV from top to bottom. You RV has done a lot through the year and collected a lot of dirt and possibly mildew. Before settling it in for winter, give it a thorough cleaning.
  • While washing your RV, look for cracks or holes on the outside; anything mice, insects, or reptiles could fit into. If you find a crack or a hole, fill it. You don't want to find in Spring that a new family has moved in.
  • Make sure you've emptied the fridge of your RV and defrost the freezer. Clean out your cabinets of anything perishable or that could freeze. You'd be surprised what rodents may find appealing.

Keeping these tips in mind will make for a happy Spring when it's time to take your RV out of storage for another year of family fun and adventure in the outdoors.