Essential RV Fall Maintenance Checklist

October 9, 2023
By: Team Keystone with Bart Taylor

As the trees shed their summer greens for the warm hues of autumn, it's our cue to gear up our trusty RVs for a season of rugged adventures. Before you set out on your next camping trip, let’s talk business. It’s time for some hard-core fall maintenance on your beloved rig. In this guide, I’ll walk you through the nitty-gritty, making sure your RV is battle-ready for the cozy season Let’s dive in, shall we?

Here's a checklist of fall maintenance items for your RV to help ensure it's in top condition for the autumn season:

1. Inspect the roof and seals: Check the roof for cracks, tears, or signs of wear on the membrane. Inspect seals around vents, skylights, and seams for damage. Replace or repair any damaged areas to prevent water leaks.

2. Clean and Store Awnings: Clean awnings thoroughly to remove debris and dirt. Ensure the awnings are dry before rolling them up for storage. Consider using awning covers to protect them from falling leaves.

3. Winterize the Plumbing System: Drain and flush the fresh water tank. Add antifreeze to the plumbing lines to prevent freezing. Drain the water heater and bypass it if necessary.

4. Check the heating system: Clean and vacuum the fresh air intake grill, removing dust, debris, and pet hair. Inspect heating vents for obstructions. Test the thermostat to ensure it's functioning properly.

5. Inspect Tires and Brakes: Check tire tread for wear and ensure proper inflation. Inspect the brakes, wheel bearings, and axles for safety. Don't forget to check wheel lug torque.

6. Clean and Insulate Windows and Doors: Replace worn weather stripping around windows and doors. Use insulation kits or draft stoppers as needed. Clean and lubricate window tracks for smooth operation. Heating tip: RV doors are meant to be opened using the furnace to equally distribute the heat.

7. Prepare for Fall Cooking: Check and clean RV kitchen appliances. Stock up on fall recipes and ingredients. Ensure propane systems are functioning safely. Check and fill LP tanks as they are utilized more in colder weather.

8. Test Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors: Test and replace the batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Ensure they are in proper working order for safety.

9. Declutter and organize: Declutter your RV to create space for fall essentials. Pack warm clothing, cozy blankets, and fall decorations. Organize your storage areas for easier access.

10. Check the Propane System: Inspect propane lines and connections for leaks. Ensure propane appliances are working correctly.

11. Clean and Inspect the Exterior: Wash and wax the exterior to protect against fall weather. Inspect exterior lights and replace any burned-out bulbs.

12. Test the Generator: Run the generator to ensure it's functioning properly. Change the oil and air filters as needed.

13. Check Batteries: Inspect and clean battery terminals. Ensure the batteries are charged. If using lead acid, make certain the cells are full of distilled water.

14. Seal Any Exterior Gaps: Look for gaps or openings in the RV's exterior and seal them. This helps prevent drafts and water intrusion.

15. Clean and Maintain the Sewer System: Empty and clean the holding tanks. Inspect sewer hoses and connections for leaks.

16. Check Safety Equipment: Verify that fire extinguishers and first-aid kits are in good condition. Review safety procedures with your travel companions.

17. Stock Emergency Supplies: Prepare an emergency kit with essentials like flashlights, batteries, non-perishable food, and blankets.

Completing these fall maintenance tasks will help ensure a safe and enjoyable RVing experience during the autumn season. It's essential to address any issues before heading out on your fall adventures.