Spring is in the air! Maybe your RV was in storage for the winter. Or maybe your RV was used heavily this winter, as you traveled to a warm destination. (Here’s hoping it was the latter!) Either way, spring is the perfect time to roll up your sleeves and make sure your rig gets a thorough deep cleaning.
We know, we know – you already know the basics, and spring cleaning is probably part of your standard dewinterization routine. However, FMCA has gathered a few less-routine cleaning tips that are easy to overlook when you’re excited to prepare for the season ahead.
- Insects, especially mud dauber wasps, like to build nests in refrigerator burner tubes, rooftop tank vents, water heater vents, and furnace chimneys. Check and remove any obstructions.
- Spring is a good time to seal your RV’s exterior with a wax or poly sealant. This will provide a barrier to the elements and protect your rig throughout the year. Consult your RV owner’s manual for recommendations for the particular finish of your RV.
- Windows, door frames, vents, and any rooftop protrusions (plumbing, air conditioner, satellite, or antennas) should all be cleaned. They also need a good bead of sealant to prevent water intrusion. Check for any cracked caulking, and recaulk any problem areas.
- Don’t forget to check your RV storage areas. Odds are that dust and dirt have settled here. Sweep out and, if needed, wash these compartments.
Carpet and Furniture
- Carefully check your RV’s carpet and furniture. Unfortunately, an RV can be a haven for insects, mice, or other rodents during the cold winter months. Mice have been known to chew through carpet or furniture to make their nests.
- Wash items that you may just spot-clean throughout the year, such as heavy bedding, rugs, pillows, etc. Before you hit the road this spring, now is the time to take care of items that can be difficult to clean while on the road.
- Clean upholstery and furniture per your RV owner’s manual instructions. Some finishes, such as suede or leather, need special care. Leather can keep its beautiful finish for years if properly maintained.
- Also, this is a good time to vacuum and steam-clean the carpet. This will help prevent odor problems and is another task that is more difficult to complete while you’re in the midst of the RV season.
- Clean the air filters on the microwave oven and stove hood exhaust. Replace as needed.
- Speaking of filters…there may also be filters on your water lines for incoming water. Check filters for the sink or ice maker, and clean as needed.
- Clean the interior of the refrigerator with a good disinfecting cleaner, such as Lysol or Clorox Anywhere. Leave the doors open to allow for air circulation.
- Clean the toilet, sink, and shower with a mild cleaner such as lemon juice and baking soda. Try to avoid bleach products, as they can degrade the seals in your holding tanks over time.
- Check your bathroom cabinets for expired medications and products. Make sure your first aid kit is stocked.
Removing RV Odors
The need for odor and moisture control is greatest when an RV is closed up and placed in storage during the off-season. Mold, mildew, and bacteria love to grow in enclosed spaces where the air is not refreshed. Air fresheners help, but they merely mask odors rather than remove them. To remove odors that have a foothold in your RV, consider using an activated charcoal odor removal substance, such as Bad Air Sponge.
And Don’t Forget…
Spring cleaning is the perfect time to check the batteries in your fire detector and carbon monoxide detector. This is a simple and important step to protect your family throughout the year.
Hopefully these less common tips provide ideas as you begin your RV’s spring cleaning. What other tasks do you perform this time of year to prep or clean your RV?
Do you need more guidance when it comes to RV dewinterization? Read our post and download our checklist. Best of luck as you prepare your RV for another travel season!
This information is for educational purposes. FMCA shall not be responsible nor retain liability for RVer’s use of the provided information. Prior to making any RV service decision, you are advised to consult with an RV professional.
Info compiled from published articles in FMCA’s official magazine. FMCA members receive a monthly subscription and have exclusive access to the digital archives. Learn about other member benefits when you join FMCA.