Adverse weather can completely ruin your RV camping trips.
However, even with advanced weather-predicting technology, you can’t always prevent against storms and extreme temperatures. Especially when you are driving across the country, you can’t guarantee clear skies for the entire drive.
To be prepared for whatever Mother Nature may throw at you, get used to checking the weather forecast every day.
Covering your RV when you’re not using it is one of the easiest ways to protect your camper from the weather, even when you’re sitting safely at home.
This article will walk you through how to weatherproof your RV for the following types of adverse weather.
- Freezing rain and hail
- Strong winds
- Extreme heat
How To Weatherproof Your RV For Different Types Of Weather
The United States is one of the countries with the most diverse range of climates.
In one day of driving, you can go from a pleasant, breezy beach to a freezing winter tundra.
When driving across the country, you need to be prepared for anything that can come your way.
Here is a brief rundown of how to weatherproof for different conditions.
Most RVs are already made to stand up to the rain. However, that doesn’t mean it won’t start developing any leaks.
Leaks are one of the biggest reasons that RVs stop working. Make sure you stay on top of them and prevent them from becoming structural.
Aside from preventing leaks, there isn’t much you can do to your trailer.
But by adopting specific behaviors, you’ll be able to make sure your RV can last in the rain. Create a schedule for checking all joints, rivets, and seams to make sure they’re tightly sealed. If anything looks out of place, take it in immediately.
If there’s heavy rain in the forecast, stay away from low spots or washes. Try to avoid dirt roads that might become impassable in case of a flood.
If you need to tow your RV in the rain, make sure to do a safety check first. Glance over all of your lights, and make sure everything has been closed and secured so nothing can get into your camper.
Drive slowly in the rain, as the roads will be slick.
Hail can do some serious damage to your RV. You might be tempted to park under a tree, but then you have to worry about the tree falling over as well.
One way to keep your RV safe from hail is to avoid camping when the forecast predicts thunderstorms.
Most RV roofs are sturdy enough that normal sized hail won’t puncture or damage it.
However, most hail storms simply won’t be bad enough to damage your RV.
Extreme hail is only reported in 10% of cases, and most storms less than that won’t be bad enough to damage your vehicle.
If you do experience a hail storm bad enough to crack your roof, you can use epoxy or resin to patch up the cracks.
Driving in a blizzard inside of a normal car can be a frightening experience.
Trying to do so in a large vehicle is not only scary but can be extremely dangerous. RVs take longer to respond than other vehicles.
You’ll want to have chains or snow tires on hand, as some states require you to use them.
This is especially helpful for mountainous and high elevation regions.
The best thing you can do when you see ice or snow in the forecast is to leave the area, or wait it out until it’s gone. You’ll probably want to avoid traveling in snow-heavy states during the winter.
Do everything you can to avoid getting stuck in a blizzard while you’re RVing. If you can’t avoid getting caught in a blizzard, take some time to stock up on supplies in case you get stuck. Make sure you have cooking materials that don’t rely on electricity, as it is likely to go out during a serious snow storm.
Driving in a blizzard inside of a normal car can be a frightening experience. Trying to do so in a large vehicle is not only scary, but can be extremely dangerous. RVs take longer to respond than other vehicles.
The biggest danger of high winds is that it could flip your RV over. There are several factors at play in determining whether or not you will flip over.
RVs are made to withstand the head on wind that naturally happens when you are driving.
However, wind storms almost never come in a straight line. The direction, force, and duration of the wind storm can mean the difference between staying upright and toppling over.
Your RV should be safe in 53 MPH or less wind.
Anything more than this could be incredibly dangerous.
If you’re stuck out in the open during a massive windstorm, there are a few things you can do to protect yourself. Point your rig in the direction of the wind and put stabilizing jacks down to keep your RV on solid ground.
No matter what temperature it is outside, the inside of your RV will likely be much warmer.
When it gets to be 90 or even 100 degrees, this can become unmanageable.
One of the easiest ways to deal with extreme heat is to install an air conditioner in your vehicle.
Bigger RV’s often needs a 2nd air conditioner installed.
RV air conditioning is completely dependant on a BTU (British thermal unit) for power. If you frequent hotter locations, you’ll need a unit with higher BTU specs.
However, this requires you to have an electrical setup, which isn’t always an option. If you can’t install an air conditioner, make sure you roll out the awning to keep the sun away from your windows.
You can also create a homemade swamp cooler with an inward blowing vent and a wet washcloth.
Bad weather doesn’t have to ruin your camping trip completely. As long as you stay on top of the forecast and have the right equipment on hand, you’ll be able to stay safe in almost any condition.