man spray off the windshiled of an RV

How to Prepare for An RV Trip

Now that summer is officially here, and everyone is getting stir crazy from being cooped up during the COVID-19 quarantine, many people are planning a summer RV trip. There are so many reasons to go RVing in the summer of 2020. You get flexibility and freedom of traveling wherever you want while having the ability to keep your family safe and healthy. If this is your first RV trip or the first in a long time, keep reading for tips on how to prepare for an RV trip. 

Prepare The RV 

Unless you are renting an RV from a company that prepares the RV for you, you must take some crucial steps to ensure that your RV is in proper condition to hit the road. 

Check the RV Batteries

Batteries can lose up to 10% of their charge each month that they sit unused. So, make sure to get your batteries fully charged. Take the necessary precautions and check your battery manual to be sure you are using the correct processes. 

Check the RV Engine

Take a look at all of the fluid levels in your RV to ensure they are fresh and full. Refer to your RV owner’s manual for specifics. You will want to check the fluids in the transmission, engine coolant, engine oil, power steering, brake fluid, windshield washer, and generator oil. Low fluids could indicate a leak, so it’s worth it to investigate further if you’re suspicious. When you’re done, check all of your gauges to ensure they are giving accurate readings. 

Flush the RV Water Tank

If you’re experienced in RVing, then you’ve probably winterized your RV before storing it for the off-season. But maybe you just bought a new RV or are borrowing one from a friend or family member, so be sure you know whether or not it needs to be de-winterized. Check for leaks, flush the system, sanitize, connect the hoses properly, add fresh potable water, and replace your water cartridge if you have one. 

Check All RV Appliances

Many RVs use propane gas, so if yours does, check the connections, the valve, and the firing operations and make sure the tanks are full. If your tanks are refillable, check the date because propane does expire, so leftovers may need to be replaced. 

RV Safety Items

There are some safety items that can be forgotten. You will need to be sure you have a smoke detector, PL gas leak detector, carbon monoxide detector, and fire extinguisher onboard. Check their batteries and see if they need to be inspected or recharged. 

Do a Tire Check

Tires are one of the most crucial parts of your RV. Some companies claim that RV tires should be replaced every five years, and some say they can last up to 10 years. Regardless of what your tire manufacturer says, always check your tires before you take off. While tires are in storage, they can lose pressure. Inspect each tire thoroughly for cracking, tread wear or any other concerns. 

Check the RV Interior and Exterior for Leaks

There are tons of seams all over your RV. Forgetting to seal any that might have a leak can create issues down the road. Start with inspecting the roof and work your way down. Check for any cracks or openings and use an RV compatible sealant that is appropriate for the material you need to seal. 

Make Your Packing Checklist

When traveling in an RV, you can *technically* pack whatever you want, but you don’t want to end up with a bunch of unnecessary items that just take up space and add extra weight. Make a packing checklist, check it twice, and try not to add things you don’t really need. Think about safety-related items, making a grocery list, what kitchen items you need, bedding and clothing, personal items, first aid, and outdoor gear. With COVID-19 still lingering, don’t forget to bring hand soap, hand sanitizer and face masks. 

Plan Your Route and Destination

Now the fun part begins! You probably already have some idea of where you want to go and how long you would like to stay, but having a solid plan before you depart can alleviate a lot of stress. It may also be necessary to make reservations at an RV park before you arrive to be sure you have a place to park with the appropriate hookups. With COVID-19 concerns, some RV parks may limit their capacity or be closed entirely, so calling ahead could save you from being turned away. 

Get the Equipment You Need to Travel Safely

Blue Ox has products to get you to your destination safely. Whether you are flat towing a car behind your RV or you are towing a travel trailer, we have the equipment you need. Visit our website today!