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RV Maintenance is part of owning an RV. Maintaining your RV is important to keep it running well, keep your warranty good, protect your investment, and for resale value. You will want to follow a yearly checklist of maintenance that will need your attention. Keeping the RV maintenance up to date will give you years of trouble-free use of your trailer.
Exterior RV Maintenance
How do you keep the exterior of the trailer cleaned?
Wash your trailer monthly using a mild non-abrasive cleaner. Remove any tree sap, road tar, and bugs as necessary. You can use tar or bug remover, be sure to rinse thoroughly. While drying the trailer, check all the seals and repair or replace them as needed, look for loose or missing screws, rivets, etc.
Waxing your RV
Wax your trailer at least once a year. Always thoroughly dry it, after washing, before waxing. You can use automotive wax and boat wax if you have a fiberglass finish, never use a rubbing compound. If you have yellowing areas, try Meguiar’s M4916 Marine/RV Heavy Duty Oxidation Remover.
Roofs should be cleaned several times a year. It would not hurt to wash the roof every time you wash the trailer. Be sure that you read your manufacture’s manual so as not to void your warranty. You will want to use a non – abrasive detergent to clean the roof. Many people use Murphys Oil Soap not only on the roof but for washing the trailer also. Reseal your roof annually.
Exterior RV Maintenance Checks
You will want to check the following areas a couple of times a year for damage.
- Check Waste tanks and plumbing lines for cracks or leaks.
- Check the propane tanks and assembly.
- Check Sealant around doors, roof, vents, and windows.
- Check RV Exterior lighting to make sure all are working properly.
Replacing the Chaulking.
You need to pay attention to how often the manufacturer wants you to clean and replace the caulking. Follow their recommendation, so you don’t void your warranty. You will need to Re-caulk around the door and windows twice a year. Anything that is protruding from the trailer needs re-caulking as necessary.
Re-caulk when the following conditions occur.
- Weathering or drying of sealant.
- Sealant cracked or peeling.
- Voids in the sealant.
- Shrunken or separated sealant.
Doors and windows.
Clean all windows and doors with a mild detergent, carefully removing dirt from window tracts and seals—you will want to lubricate your doors and hinges yearly.
The AC unit needs yearly cleaning. Here is a list of the things you might need.
Service your Water Heater.
You will want to check the anode rod in the water heater. The anode rod should last 5 to 6 years. The life of the anode will significantly depend on the composite of the water. Check your water heater for leaks. Clean the area thoroughly.
Check Your Brakes, Wheel Bearings, and Rims.
Brakes and wheel bearings should be checked every 12 months or 12,000 miles, whichever comes first. If your trailer comes with an emergency electric breakaway system, you will want to engage it once a year to ensure that it is working correctly. Check your wheel rims for any apparent damage. Replace if needed.
Check Your Battery.
If you have deep -cycle battery, you will want to check these once a month. Add water as necessary and keep the terminals clean. When storing the trailer for the winter, remove the battery so that it does freeze. You will want to check the charge regularly.
Check your Tires and Lug Nuts.
Lug nuts need to be checked before every trip along with tire inflation. Check your tires for cuts, nails, and bulges. Replace your tires when tire tread falls below 1/16 inch depth.
Check your Hitch and connector-Plug.
Check your wiring for any fraying. Verify that the connector-plug prongs and receptacles are clean. If needed, clean the prongs with very fine sandpaper. Lightly coat all electrical terminal connections with non-conducting (dielectric).
Interior RV Maintenance
Walls, and Floors
Give walls and floors a deep cleaning yearly using non-abrasive dish soap. Wax the vinyl floors as needed. Clean the carpet as it is necessary to keep it looking new. Only use foam-type carpet cleaners.
When cleaning the upholstery and drapes, check the manufacturer’s recommendations. Some may require dry cleaning.
Countertops, Sinks, and tubs.
When cleaning countertops and sinks, only use a non-abrasive soap. Never use an abrasive scrub pad as this may scratch or dull the finish. Never use any lye product if a clog forms, instead use a wire drain cleaner. Fiberglass tubs can be waxed once a year to keep their lush look.
- Defrost the refrigerator as needed.
- Clean the filter in the range hood
- Clean the air conditioner filter regularly.
Keeping up on the RV maintenance will keep your trailer running smoothly for years of enjoyment. It will also add resale value if you ever decide to upgrade.