Getting your RV ready for long-term storage is a long and complex process. It's easy to make costly mistakes when you have so much to get done. If you want to avoid having to take your RV straight from the storage lot to the repair shop, here are some common mistakes to watch out for.
Washing Your RV With Dish Soap
Most household cleaners that might be used to wash your RV before storage are actually much too harsh on the rubber elements. Dish soap is popular for washing vehicles, but using it can damage the seals on the outside of your RV. Since you're about to put it in storage for a long period, this damage can develop into full-blown cracking and hardening while you're away. You can avoid this by only washing your vehicle with rubber-safe car and RV washing soaps.
Not Using Tire Covers
Tires are already under enormous pressure from the weight of the RV, but the conditions of long-term storage are especially unfriendly to them. As the RV sits in the same spot, certain parts of its tires will experience the brunt of the strain for an extended period. These sections are vulnerable to damage from the elements, especially temperature changes and direct sunlight. If you don't cover your tires in insulating covers, you may find them ruined by dry rot when you come back to retrieve your RV.
Letting Some Water Lines Go Untreated
Freezing water can burst your RV's lines, and allowing any untreated water to stay in the RV only raises the risk of this happening. Before you put your vehicle into storage, you need to either thoroughly blow out all of the water lines or run them until they fill with nontoxic antifreeze. Make sure to address smaller lines like the ice maker and shower, since these are often overlooked.
Leaving The Battery In The RV
Batteries lose their ability to hold a charge the longer they stay out in the cold, which means leaving a battery inside the RV during winter storage can ruin it. Allowing the battery to go uncharged for long periods can also shorten its lifespan. The easy solution for both problems is to take the battery home with you when you put your RV away. Keep it plugged into a charger in a warm room, and you won't have to worry about buying a new battery next time you feel like traveling.
Small mistakes when preparing your RV for storage can cost you big money in the long run. Before you park on the long-term lot for good, make sure you've done everything possible to help your RV get through the winter safely. If you're careful enough, you'll be able to drive off the lot next summer totally worry-free.