The Fourth of July is a signal for the beginning of Road Trip Season.
I experienced some issues with an older friends Trailer that had me thinking some RV check-out is in order.
Below is a Pre Trip check out list that may help avoid on the road issues.
Check Propane: Selector switch selects which tank is used for cooking, refrigerator, and heat.
- Both tanks should be removed and refilled if needed.
- Spray bottle with water and detergent to check for bubbles in propane connections.
- If you carry propane for exterior grilling make sure tanks are full - Clean grill and test
Battery(s) condition: Clean terminals, distilled water in cells.
- If you have multiple batteries check all cells by removing the caps.
- Water should cover the cells.
Warning: Be careful not to overfill battery as the battery is full of hydrochloric acid.
Water checkout: Holding tank drain, sink traps, toilet valve: Load your RV with water, make sure plug is in the hot water tank. Turn on the pump
- Check drain valve underneath camper - Closed
- Make sure city water filter has a filter and is closed
- Once pump stops the system is pressurized.
> Check for leaks at faucets, shower connectors, and the toilet foot switch
> Check hot water tank for leaks
> Check sink traps underneath the sink for leaks
Awning Check: Look close for rips or deterioration
- Use a ladder to examine the exposed portion of the awning for any damage
- Any rips in the awning demand immediate attention/replacement
- Example: Hail can cause small rips in the edge of the awning.
Roof Check: Solar Cell, skylight cracks, sealant condition
- Examine all areas where sealant has been used to seal seams or penetrations.
- If sealant is cracked (all caulk eventually cracks) then reapply Self Leveling caulk from the RV Store.
- While on the roof plan to check skylights for cracks. Sky lights are easy and cheap to replace.
- Plan to clean Solar Panels - dirt can decrease voltage gain by 50%
Lights: Inside and Outside
- With camper connected to tow vehicle check brakes, turn signals, and running lights.
- Check inside lights
Refrigerator Checkout: Make sure the exhaust stack is clear of debris or cob webs
- Run the refrigerator on propane to verify functionality (Cold Freezer)
- Test only with camper level (or very close to level)
Axel bearings: This step be best completed at a competent facility.
- Rear bearing needs to have grease.
- Grease caps present and in good shape
- Bearing failure is expensive and hard to get road service.
- Check mount bolts on vehicle frame for cracks.
- Hitch on tow vehicle should have locking pin
- Grease ball or fifth wheel
- Add a little grease to the load leaving bars where they attach to hitch
Door Locks: Make sure the doors and screens are in good shape
Septic: Add water and deodorizer tab to septic.
- Make sure the septic hose is present and in good repair
- Make sure your water hose is present and in good repair.
- Check air pressure per specs on tire
- Check for damage to tread and side walls
Check oil, Windshield washer, Battery condition, Tires, Alignment, A/C, Radio/Stereo
Camera Check: Batteries, Charger, Memory Card
Bon Voyage: Pack and have a great trip!