You’re excited. The open road beckons, and you can’t wait to hit the highway with your trusty recreational vehicle (RV). Whether it’s a weekend escape, a cross-country adventure, or something in between, preparing your RV before a trip is crucial to ensure a safe, comfortable, and hassle-free journey.
Let’s have a look at some essential steps to get your RV ready for the road, so you can make the most of your travel experience.
Inspection of Exterior and Interior
Begin by inspecting your RV inside and out. Examine the exterior for any visible damage, such as cracks, dents, or loose parts. Check the tires, including their pressure and condition.
Inside, look for signs of leaks, ensure all appliances work, and inspect the plumbing and electrical systems. An initial inspection helps identify potential issues that may need attention. Ask your mechanic to use high quality suspension bushings for your van.
Fluids and Lubrication
Just like you need fluids to stay healthy, your RV does too. Check the levels of engine oil, transmission fluid, and coolant. Don’t forget to inspect the windshield washer fluid as well. Additionally, lubricate moving parts like hinges, locks, and slides to prevent rust and ensure smooth operation.
Your safety and that of your fellow travelers are paramount. Make sure your fire extinguisher is in working order and that you have a first-aid kit onboard. Test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. It’s also a good idea to have a basic toolkit for minor repairs and adjustments during your trip.
Cleaning and Stocking
Give your RV a thorough cleaning, both inside and out. A clean RV not only looks better but also prevents pests and other issues. Stock up on necessary supplies, including toiletries, bedding, and kitchen essentials. Don’t forget to bring along any personal items that will make your journey more enjoyable.
Fuel and Propane
Ensure that your RV’s fuel tank is filled and that you have enough propane for cooking and heating. Plan your fuel stops along your route and check the availability of propane refueling stations if you’re using propane appliances in your RV.
Pre-trip checklists are invaluable. Create lists for things like leveling the RV, extending the awning, or hooking up utilities. Having these checklists can help you avoid forgetting essential steps and ensure that everything is properly set up at your campsite.
Tires and Brakes
Your RV’s tires and brakes are critical for your safety. Inspect your tire tread, check tire pressure (including the spare), and look for any signs of wear or damage. Verify that your brakes are in good working condition, as RVs can be heavy and require efficient braking systems.
Freshwater and Waste Systems
If you plan to use the onboard water system, ensure the freshwater tank is filled and that all connections are secure. Likewise, empty and clean the waste tanks, and be sure to have the necessary hoses and connections for dumping at campgrounds or RV dump stations.