Camper Winter Storage Tips
Your camper works hard during the summer season when you are on the road, but winter can be the most damaging season if you don't prepare it for off-season storage correctly. The following tips can help ensure your camper is ready to hit the road again as soon as the the snow melts and spring arrives.
Tip #1: Prep the roof
This is especially important in wet or snow climates, but should be done everywhere. Climb up a ladder and check the condition of the roof. If you notice cracked or peeling caulk around seams or rooftop vents, replace it with new caulking. If the seal on the roof looks like it is peeling or cracking, apply a new coat of RV roof membrane sealer. A leak is the quickest way to cause expensive damage to a camper.
Tip #2: Park under cover
If possible, pull the camper underneath a cover of some kind. A raised carport or even an enclosed garage are ideal since they protect from snow loads. If that's not possible, at least cover the roof with a tarp or camper cover to protect it from UV rays. Park on the lee side (the protected side) of a building to help prevent snow buildup on the roof, and sweep it off if snow does start to buildup on the roof.
Tip #3: Mind the tires
It's best to remove tires for long-term winter storage, since they can be prone to rot or even to developing flat spots if they aren't moved. If this isn't possible, inflate the tires to their max pressure rating and use a tire cover to protect them from the sun. Move the camper every few weeks. To prevent flat spots, you only need to move it a foot or two so that the tires aren't resting on the same spot.
Tip #4: Winterize the plumbing
You will need to drain all water from the system, including all faucets, the hot water tank, and the sewage tank. Do this by opening all faucets, showers, and drain valves (with the exception of the sewage tank, which must be drained at a dump station). Turn on the pump for a minute or two to blow out the excess water. Once done, close all the valves and turn on the water heater bi-pass valve. Pour an antifreeze formulated for RV water system use. Open a faucet and turn on the water pump until antifreeze begins flowing. Then, shut off the sink and pump. Pour a bit of antifreeze down each drain and into the toilet to prevent any remaining moisture from freezing.
For more help, talk to an RV professional in your area like Crowder RV Center, Inc..