Don'T Let Winter Stop You From Using Your RV
Winter weather doesn't have to put your RVing fun on hold until spring. You can enjoy the wintery scenes from your RV, pay lower rates at some of your favorite parks, and take your RV for your holiday travels. You also get to avoid the overcrowded, overpriced hotels by keeping a few things in mind.
Plan For Winter Travel
The unpredictable weather that comes with winter can complicate traveling in an RV. You may make it through one area without seeing a single flake, while just up the road, there are several inches on the ground. Give yourself a day or two extra for travel time so that you can stop when the weather gets too dangerous to proceed.
If your camper is diesel-fueled, remember that cold temperatures can cause problems. Pour some cold-climate additive into the tank to prevent the fuel from jelling up and clogging up the fuel lines.
Check the antifreeze in the cooling system. If you are driving into climates much colder than your home climate, make sure that the antifreeze that is in your system is rated for temperatures low enough to protect the system while you travel.
If you have never used your RV in cold climates, check the water and drain lines to ensure that they are well insulated or wrapped in heat tape. In many cases, the water and drain lines are not prepared for cold climate use and will need to be wrapped with heat tape to prevent freezing and cracking.
If your home climate is cold, don't fill your water tank until you have warmed up the RV. Run the furnace for several hours to bring up the internal temperature before you fill the tank. This will help to prevent the water from freezing before you head out for your trip.
Parking The RV
If you plan to stay put for a few days in cold temperatures, there are a few things that will make the stay more comfortable and prevent icing issues.
- If your RV is older, the windows are likely not going to keep the cold air out very well. You can purchase panels of Plexiglas to use as storm windows inside your RV. A little Velcro attached to the wall of the RV and the Plexiglas will help you install the temporary storm window without doing any damage to the RV.
- Skirting can help you protect the water and drain lines while you are parked. You have a number of options to consider. For quick trips, choose skirting that quickly wraps around the bottom of the RV. For longer stays, you can use the clip-on skirting that snaps into place and can be removed when you are ready to pack up and leave.
Talk with your local camper sales professional to learn more about using your camper during the winter months. Companies like Crowder RV Center, Inc., may be able to help.