Winter can be tough on your RV, mainly if you’re in a place like Albuquerque, with its distinct seasons. Properly preparing for RV storage can make all the difference in its longevity and performance. RVs are a significant investment, and ensuring their care during off-season periods becomes essential.
With the increasing popularity of RVing and the need for quality RV storage, it’s important to take actionable steps in winterizing your vehicle. Here’s a step-by-step guide on preparing your RV for winter storage in Albuquerque.
Important RV Storage Tips
1. Thorough Cleaning – Inside and Out
Before getting started with anything technical, it’s essential to clean your RV thoroughly.
Interior Cleaning: Remove all perishables and any food items to avoid pests. Clean out the refrigerator, and leave the door slightly open to prevent mold. Vacuum the floors, wipe down all surfaces, and clean the windows. Make sure everything is dry to prevent mold and mildew growth.
Exterior Cleaning: Wash the exterior of your RV with a quality RV or car wash solution. Make sure to get rid of all the dirt and grime, especially from the undercarriage where salts and dirt from roads might accumulate. Waxing your RV after washing can add an extra layer of protection against the winter elements.
2. Protect and Winterize Plumbing Systems
The plumbing system in your RV is particularly vulnerable during winter. Water left in lines can freeze, causing pipes and fixtures to break.
Drain the System: Start by draining all tanks—fresh water, black, and gray. Open all faucets, including the shower, and flush the toilet to ensure all water is out. Don’t forget to drain the water heater.
Add RV Antifreeze: After draining, add RV-specific antifreeze to the plumbing system. Avoid regular automotive antifreeze, which can be toxic. Turn on the RV’s water pump and open all faucets until you see the antifreeze coming out. This ensures the antifreeze is throughout the plumbing system.
3. Safeguard the Electrical System and Batteries
Your RV’s electrical system is its lifeline, and batteries can suffer in the cold.
Disconnect and Store Batteries: First, turn off the main breaker in the RV. Then, disconnect the batteries. Clean the terminals and fully charge the batteries. Store them in a cool, dry place. Avoid placing them directly on concrete floors, which can drain them. Periodically charge them during winter to keep them in top shape.
Inspect and Seal: Ensure all exterior openings, like vents or holes, are sealed to prevent rodents from making your RV their winter home. Rodents can chew through wiring, causing extensive damage.
4. Take Care of Tires
Your RV’s tires are vulnerable to the cold, and taking care of them will prevent flat spots and cracking.
Clean and Check for Damage: After cleaning the tires, inspect them for any signs of damage or wear.
Elevate and Cover: If possible, elevate your RV to take the weight off the tires. This can be done using jacks or other supporting mechanisms. Whether you elevate the RV or not, make sure to cover the tires to protect them from UV rays and the elements.
Maintain Proper Inflation: Check the tire pressure to ensure they’re inflated to the recommended PSI. Proper inflation will prevent flat spots from forming.
5. Choose the Right RV Storage Facility
Lastly, the place where you store your RV plays a crucial role in ensuring its safety during winter.
Security: Look for an RV storage facility that has security measures in place. Surveillance cameras, gated access, and on-site personnel are great features to consider.
Location: Proximity to your home is essential for easy access. Moreover, Albuquerque, with its climate, may have some areas better suited for winter storage than others. Consider factors like elevation and flooding risks when choosing a location.
Covered vs. Uncovered Storage: While covered storage might be more expensive, it offers better protection against snow, ice, and sun. However, if you’re opting for uncovered storage, invest in a high-quality RV cover that provides protection against UV rays and is breathable to prevent mold and mildew.
Proper RV Storage Matters
In conclusion, preparing your RV for winter storage in Albuquerque is not just about finding the right RV storage facility, but also about ensuring that your vehicle is well-protected from the inside out. The above actionable steps will not only ensure the longevity of your RV but also ensure that come spring, your RV is ready for all the adventures ahead without any hiccups. Remember, a little preparation now can save a lot of time, effort, and money in the long run.