Important things to remember when using an RV in winter

This is a writing sample from Scripted writer Michael Kahoru

Important things to remember when using an RV in winter

Standard RVs are not designed for winter exploration but rather for summer vacations since that is most ideal for road tripping with fair weather. However, you can get yourself a premium camper package with the ability to withstand the teeth-clattering cold while housing you in comfort. Remember if the RV feels cold, you will also feel the cold. These motorhomes are an awesome means of experiencing the wonders of the wetlands with the chance of enjoying outdoor sports such as skiing, skate shoeing, or hiking through the white snow. It is important to ensure that you have checked out campgrounds earlier in advance, even though they will be mostly empty, you don't want to find the "closed" sign on your favorite camping spot. There are important considerations when preparing to RV in winter.

Skirt the underbelly

Wind blowing beneath the motorhome can freeze your water hose pipes, water tank and damage your batteries while in winter causing your camper severe damage. Skirting keeps away the wind and cold and this can be achieved by using foam material, insulation material, plywood, or tart. An RV skirt pays off well enough as it provides insulation against heat loss, extra enclosed storage as well as tire protection.

Holding Tanks

It is important to drain your grey and black water tanks before setting off on that trip. You should then add the special pink RV antifreeze to either of them to protect the dump valves from freezing. You should also insulate the water pipes that drain to the tank using heat tape or foam pipe insulation so they do not break from the freezing cold. You can also consider using an electric water pipe heater when you are camping below-freezing temperatures for a long duration but this will demand that you use an electric connection or a generator.

Seal Your Windows

If you are using an old RV model which does not have dual pane windows, you will have to do a total re-haul on your windows. This can be done by fitting insulated windows or opting for insulated curtains. There is also a cheaper option to seal your windows air-tight. This is the foil-backed foam insulation that is readily available at most home improvement stores. It is less bulky and easily cut and fit. You can also go for the insulation film used for windows that is said to keep off condensation while minimizing the amount of heat lost. Using heavy drape material can also achieve the same task.


Clean up and test your furnace before the trip, this can be done by using compressed air or brushing off the dust and dirt. If your RV only got heat tins, you should consider using an additional source of heat such as a propane or a portable electric space heater which can come in handy in helping stay warm. While this heat and air are trapped in your motorhome, you may also need a dehumidifier when it starts to get stuffy.

Emergency Equipment

Casualties always arrive unannounced and it is always better safe than sorry. It is important to have emergency gear such as a first aid kit, glove, surplus food supply, thermal heat blankets, snow shovels, magnesium allow fire starters, and a flashlight. Stocking up survival supply helps you survive when stranded in harsh weather.

Use an Engine Block Heater

While using the RV in sub-zero temperatures, your engine may knock out due to the cold and fail to start. You will eventually need to use the engine blocker at every end of a trip when you are ready to drive home or move to a different location. The engine block heater should be used 3 hours before departure.

Chain your tires

Use chains to secure your tires especially when cruising through icy roads. This helps improve your RV's traction and will help you drive safely through winter weather. These chains should be stored in your compartment unit, just in case you need them.

Clear snow from your camper

While using your RV in winter, you will have to scrape off snow and ice that accumulate on the vehicle's roof, windshield, tires, and gasket. You can also opt to use stabilizing jacks although they will probably freeze in the cold. Use wooden blocks beneath the jacks to prevent them from sticking on the frozen ground.

Anti-freeze for your vehicle's fluids

Not just your water risks freezing in the cold but also your RV fluids. It is essential to add anti-freezing diesel fluid since frozen diesel may limit your RV driving experience while you also need anti-freezing wiper fluid since you will surely need to use those wipers a great deal in the wet, winter weather to maintain visibility.

Store your hoses in a heated compartment

While camping in the summer, most folks leave the sewage valve open, however, do not do this in winter since this will freeze your hose, its valve, and the contents of your black tank. Ensure you close your valve when you are done flushing the contents of the black tank. After using the sewage hose and the freshwater hose make sure to store them in a heated compartment that is sealed. You can use insulation pipe material when you are using the hoses outdoor.

Do not camp on hillsides

While using your RV out in the winter, be wary of camping on hillsides or the bottom of the hills due to the dangers of the avalanche. Also, ensure to get a spot with sufficient sunlight as it helps warm up your RV.

Warm sleeping bag

You can be sure that while using the RV in the cold, you will need warm, insulated, and probably waterproof clothing. You can opt for a breathable later material for outdoor material to keep you warm outdoors and a variety of middle layer clothe such as fleece or wool. Waterproof clothe keeps away the snow and the icy rain. Warm hats and socks can help in retaining body heat and helps you stay cozy in the cold. Consider carrying an extra blanket and clothing.

Written by:

Michael Kahoru
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