Winterizing Your RV: Uhlmann RV Shares Tips for Increasing the Lifespan of Your Recreation Vehicle | ThurstonTalk
Winterizing Your RV: Uhlmann RV Shares Tips for Increasing the Lifespan of Your Recreation Vehicle
Fall is fast approaching, and not far behind it a long, wet Washington winter follows. As the days grow shorter and the warmth of summer quickly vanishes, Chris Hardesty of Olympia’s Uhlmann RV says it is a good time to start thinking about winterizing your RV. To ensure that you’re recreation vehicle will be in tip-top shape for all of next summer’s adventures, Jim Jussila of Uhlmann RV’s Chehalis location shares some tips for gearing up your RV for winter.
Jussila says each spring, Uhlmann RV services as many as 50-100 RVs due to lack of or improper winterization techniques. Jussila stresses that by taking the necessary steps to properly winterize your recreation vehicle, you can save anywhere from $100-$2000 in repairs, depending on the severity of the situation. With the money you will save from properly winterizing your RV, you’ll have more cash leftover to spend on next year’s camping trip.
Start taking steps to winterize your RV before you even leave the campground this summer. As you get ready to head home from your last scheduled RV trip, take advantage of the sewer dump at your campground and empty all of your holding tanks. Use this time as an opportunity to also dispose of any perishable items and other trash that you may have collected throughout the summer.
Once you arrive at home, it is time to get to work. Be sure to remove items from the freezer and any other perishables you forgot to throw out earlier. You’ll also want to take out items like tissue paper and paper towels. On the off chance that a mouse gets into your RV, removing these tissues will help prevent unwanted nesting. If you have an LCD television in your RV, you will want to remove this as well, as cold weather could damage it.
Next, you’ll want to thoroughly clean both the interior and exterior of the RV, being sure to check behind, under and inside of cupboards, bedding and other objects where food, garbage and other unwanted items may have collected. While cleaning the RV, be sure to check for any rust that may have developed. Rust only gets worse with age, so it is best to catch it as early as possible. Small rust spots can be repaired simply at home using a paint kit, while larger rust spots will need to be fixed by a professional.
Now that the preliminary cleaning is taken care of, it’s time to winterize. Jussila says that the biggest concern that comes with winterizing RVs is making sure that the water systems are protected against damage caused by freezing. Jussila says if you plan on storing your RV during periods of sub-freezing weather in an unheated environment, winterizing your water system is absolutely necessary.
The following is an itemized checklist created by Uhlmann RV, designed to help you get the most out of your recreation vehicles by increasing its lifespan through the practice of winterization techniques. Use this checklist as your guide and enjoy years of fun to come with your properly maintained RV.
Level the unit for good system drainage.
- Drain the waste water tanks.
- Turn the water pump switch off.
- Open all faucets (both hot and cold lines) and the water heater drain. Don’t forget the outside shower!
- Open low point drains on the water lines.
- Drain the fresh water tank.
- When all lines are drained, close water tank valves, water heater drain, and low point drains on water lines.
- Turn by-pass valves to vertical position by the water heater.
- Insert the hose into a gallon of antifreeze solution. You will need 2-3 gallons. Make sure you are using RV antifreeze, as automotive antifreeze could damage your system.
- Turn on the pump.
- Allow antifreeze to flow out of the faucet into the p-traps of each fixture and then turn off the faucets. Don’t forget the outside shower!
- Flush the toilet.
- Turn off the water pump.
While these steps are the most critical, Jussila says there are a few other items to pay attention to while storing your RV for winter. “In freezing weather, a dead or discharged battery is much more likely to be damaged by freezing,” explains Jussila. Because of this, he recommends making sure that your battery is fully charged for winter, as the electrolytes in charged batteries act as antifreeze and are much less likely to freeze in cold, winter conditions. Jussila also recommends checking the condition of your RV’s sealants (especially the roof sealants) and addressing any deficiencies before the weather turns.
Even though you have winterized your RV, it’s still a good idea to do a quick inspection every couple of weeks while it’s in storage, explains Jussila. “If a water leak or any other problem occurs, you want to catch it as quickly as possible. Every spring we work on units that were left unattended for 3-4 months at a time and the damage and repair costs are significantly higher on these units,” he says.
The user manual for your RV and the knowledgeable, experienced staff at Uhlmann RV are two other great resources to utilize this fall as you gear up to winterize your recreation vehicle. If you’d like to learn more about winterizing your RV.
Here quick reminder for you folks (like me) who need to winterize their rv, a little time a few bucks can save you a lot of time and big bucks later. I have been doing this to all my couches since new and have never had a issue with anything freezing. So I now it is early but the early bird does their thing. Happy Camping
Posted on September 3, 2014, in The world as i see it as a camper and who loves his country and tagged campers, camping, how to's, motorhomes, national parks, outdoors, rv maintenance, rv tips, rv's, rving, tailgating, trailers, traveling, winter camping. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.