We’re just a few weeks into autumn, but it’s never too soon to start thinking about winterizing your RV. Unless you plan on traveling to Florida or other southern states, your main concern for your recreational vehicle during the winter months is the water system.
If freezing water expands in water lines, the pump, toilet flush valve, faucets, water heater and drains, you can have a pretty expensive repair bill come spring. If you plan on winterizing your RV on your own, you can actually start while on your way home from the last trip of the season.
You can begin by draining all of the holding tanks at the camp site sewer dump. You’ll want to leave the water heater for a later time, as that water is probably still pretty hot. Draining and flushing out the black water tank is a good start, but even with the drive home you won’t get 100% of the water out of the lines. Once you get home you can finish the job. Using the pink RV antifreeze is your best bet to getting all of the water out of your lines. It’s non-toxic as long as you use it as directed and you will need to use it as full strength. If you don’t have a bypass valve, you’ll want to pick up a bypass kit for this job. You’ll also want to have your RV’s owner manual by your side. The owners manual should give you pretty good instructions on how to properly drain your lines, but if you still have questions, you can read more on draining the lines at the Woodall’s blog or call the Johnson RV Service Department and we’ll be happy to answer any questions you have.
Another great idea is to go ahead and turn off the refrigerator and let the freezer defrost. If you start this before leaving the campground, you could even wash out the fridge so it’s one less thing to do when you get home.
Make sure you gather up any type of paper such as paper towels, coloring books, food wrappers, toilet paper, and anything else that small woodland creatures can use to shred and make a nest with. Because once the cold winter months set in, these little guys are going to be looking for anything to help keep them warm.
Another little thing you can have the passengers do while driving home is look around for rust spots. If not treated, rust can create a major headache. For small rust spots you can just paint over the top of them to help stop it. But for larger rust spots you’ll want to sand the area first. Of course once you get home, be sure to check the entire outside of the RV for other areas that may have rust.
There are several more items to do in order to properly winterize your unit, but these are just a few to help you get started while on your drive home.
For a full winterization of your unit you can always call the service department at Johnson RV and schedule an appointment. We’ll be happy to get the job done for you, so you can have time to sit back and relax.