Who says you can't be the captain of your RV's upkeep? While you may not be a seasoned mechanic, there's plenty you can do to keep your RV in tiptop shape. In fact, even the most mechanically uninclined person can handle simple maintenance tasks with ease, and the best part? It'll leave you with a happy RV and a happier wallet!
Let's explore some simple maintenance tasks that all RVers can confidently take on:
Maintaining Your Roof
Your RV's roof deserves some love and attention. Don't worry if climbing up there makes you uneasy; you can still keep an eye on it from the ground. Take a moment to scan the roof and check for any cracks in the sealant. If you spot any, it's time to replace your RV roof.
Remember, neglecting your roof can lead to costly damages and even make your beloved RV unlivable. Water damage is the ultimate nemesis, causing mold growth, structural issues, and other nightmares.
Tire Care for a Smooth Journey
Inflating your tires is a breeze. Most gas stations have air compressors that do the trick. You can also carry a compact air compressor in your RV. Remember not to overinflate the tires, as it can reduce traction or even cause blowouts. Check the maximum tire pressure recommended on the side of the tire and inflate it close to that number, leaving a few PSI below the maximum.
Checking Fluid Levels in a Motorhome
If you're cruising in a motorhome, you have an extra set of maintenance tasks to keep your engine and systems purring. It's essential to check the vital engine fluids regularly. Some may shy away from popping the hood, but trust us, this simple task can save you a bundle.
Check these major fluid levels:
- power steering fluid
- brake fluid
- coolant levels
- windshield wiper fluid
Taking a few minutes to check these fluids can work wonders. Your RV's owner's manual is your trusted companion for finding the proper levels. Most manuals provide clear instructions for basic tasks like checking oil. Follow them diligently, but if the manual advises certified technicians for specific maintenance, it's wise to leave it to the pros. Also, don't forget to double-check the warranty information to ensure you're in line with the requirements.
Cleaning and Treating Slides
While it may be tempting to reach for the WD-40, opting for a dedicated product is worth it. Different types of slides require specific maintenance approaches. Use an RV slide lubricant designed specifically designed for RV slides.
Checking and Cleaning Your Awning
To keep all the awning mechanisms working smoothly, lubricate them. WD-40 generally works fine, but you can also use RV-specific lubricants that might provide even better results. The same slide out lubricant slide-out lubricant we mentioned earlier can often serve double duty here.
Change All Filters Regularly
There are various filters on your RV, depending on the model.
- Engine air filter
- Cabin air filter
- Water filtration filter
Take a tour of your RV and locate all the filters that require periodic attention. Then, determine their accessibility. More often than not, you'll find that replacing them is a breeze, helping you save on labor costs.
As an RVer, taking care of basic maintenance tasks can be a fantastic money-saving strategy. Just like any other home, RVs require regular upkeep, and it can quickly become costly. If you decide to outsource all of these maintenance jobs, it can result in substantial expenses. However, by personally handling the tasks mentioned above, you have the opportunity to save money and allocate those funds towards your upcoming road trip.