The temperatures are falling, the snow won’t be far behind, and the mercury in the thermometer isn’t the only thing headed south for the winter! But before you embark on your snowbird migration, there are a few things you’ll want to check on to ensure that your RV is ready for the ride to the land of sun and fun. Stop in to any of our RV dealerships and our staff of experience and certified technicians will be happy to inspect your vehicle and get you on the road with peace of mind.
Tire Pressures and Side Wall Tread Condition
Tire life span is generally 6 to 7 years, but keep in mind that storage method and weather are just some of the factors that will increase or reduce that number. Be sure to inspect your tires for any evidence of damage, bulging, cracking, weathering on the sidewalls before you pull out of the driveway.
We recommend your replacing your tires when the depth of the tread reaches 4/32”. Anything less than this will result in reduced traction and performance of the tire, and can result in unsafe operating of your coach or trailer, especially in less-than-ideal weather or road conditions.
Tighten your lug nuts too much and you’ll risk stripping them, don’t tighten them enough and you risk them coming off. That being said, torquing yours to the proper foot pounds is crucial to having a safe voyage. Take the worry out of the situation by trusting our certified technicians to inspect and correct your lug nuts and ensure that your drive ends at your campsite and not on the side of the road waiting for tow truck.
The rule of thumb is to replace your blades every six months to a year, but of course this will vary depending on weather, climate, and storage conditions. Keep an eye on the condition of the rubber blades for any indication of wear, and when you detect it, replace them.
Washer Fluid Fill
You’ll be travelling the well salted and sanded highways and byways out of the Great Northeast for warmer pastures on your snowbird adventure, and that means no shortage of mud splashed across your windshield on your way out of the cold. Top off the washer fluid tank, keep a clear view of the road, and stay safe.
Heat, cold, sun, aging are just a few factors that will cause your roof sealant to deteriorate, and can lead to serious damage if you let it. Check your roof sealant, especially around anything that may be attached to your roof such as your air conditioner, ladder, dish, and any vents and skylights, every six months and keep close watch for any signs of cracking or peeling.
Inspect your RV body’s seals, inspecting for any signs of brittle or weathered sealant.
Coach Battery Water Level
It’s a good idea to be checking your coach battery water level monthly, and you’ll definitely want to give it a peek before rolling out for all points south. As a general rule, you should have the plates covered distilled water. While you’re in there, you’ll also want to peek at your battery’s surface top and terminals to ensure that they’re clean and free of any corrosive buildup. If not, you can wash them with warm water and baking soda solution.
We highly suggest bringing in your RV ahead of your trip and our certified technicians will be happy to check your water level, and make the necessary adjustments.
Propane Tanks/Bottles Filled
Top off your propane tanks/bottles here at Alpin Haus before hitting the open road and avoid making another item on your checklist of things to do when you get to your winter destination.
All Exterior Lights Checked
Safety first! Ensure that all your exterior operating lights (brakes, signal, headlights, trailer lights, etc.) are in working order, but don’t neglect all other providers of exterior illumination. Test out/replace those porch, awning and floodlights before embarking on your trip, eliminate another item on your “things to do when we arrive” list of errands, and get straight to the fun!
Repack Towable’s Wheel Bearings
Has your trailer been sitting idle for a while, waiting for its big chance to shine? If so, there’s a good chance that condensation has accumulated at some point and has begun to do its damage. Moisture around your wheels, when the wheels have not been in motion for a while, will eventually cause rust to form, which in turn causes friction in your bearings and leaves you roadside, stretching your head and waiting for a tow. Most manufacturers advise that you service your wheel bearings every year, or every 20,000 miles. Even if you’ve had a light travel year, it’s still a good idea to consult your manufacturer’s recommendations and take care of this quick and easy bit of maintenance before your big trip.
Odds are that your trailer has a set of electric drum brakes, which over time, through normal wear and tear, will need to be adjusted. We suggest a brake adjustment every 3,000 miles or every 3 months, whichever comes first, but if you’ve noticed your trailer gain numbers are higher than normal, or that the brakes have become less responsive over time, it’s definitely time to stop in to see us.