Wintering caravan and motorhome

zimowanie kampera

The charms of caravanning are most often used mainly in the summer season. More and more often, of course, due to the favorable weather, developing infrastructure and due to the increasing number of rallies, many of us extend the season. Finally, the time comes when the caravan or camper goes to a well-deserved winter sleep. It is worth making sure that the equipment is well prepared for the winter to avoid problems at the beginning of the next season.

Preparing the caravan and motorhome for winter - how to do it?

It is worth starting with a thorough body wash . At the same time, avoid any corrosive and highly acidic agents. If we cannot use dedicated detergents for recreational vehicles, let's make sure that they are neutral to seals and window surfaces. Depending on the material (aluminium / laminate), the sheathing should be protected with impregnation or wax. ATTENTION! In the case of aluminum sheathing, it is strongly recommended to carry out the so-called pre-treatment before applying any coatings. claying to get rid of any ferrous metal filings. Agents for this type of treatment in the name usually have the phrase "de-iron", and those who have not used such a treatment so far will be surprised how many such pits will literally flow down the sheathing of our vehicle after spraying the surface with the preparation.

Remember not to abuse delicate windows with a sharp sponge and accidental specifics - the best are milks and agents dedicated to polycarbonate and soft chamois / microfibre. However, we start polishing/cleaning the windows only after they have been thoroughly cleaned with a pressure washer. Due to the very delicate and scratch-prone surface, it would be a pity to spoil the effect and dull the surface of the window.

Phew... From the outside, it's all over - what's next? Let's start by simply dealing with the mess inside, and then clean all the furniture and fixtures. Whatever we can, let's clean the inside as well. Each part should be wiped dry so that it does not remain wet. It is good to lubricate the hinges, it is also worth taking care of the seals (a special agent based on silicone or technical petroleum jelly will be perfect).

When the house on wheels will shine both from the outside and inside, we start emptying the water system. Attention! Before emptying, it is worth considering disinfecting the system with a special preparation - this will allow you to clean the tank and piping from biofilm.

How to empty the water system in the motorhome?

It is best to simultaneously open the flow using all taps (kitchen, sink, shower). After emptying the system, it is worth unscrewing the air vent valve on the boiler (or releasing the Frost Control safety valve). The most common failures after wintering are cracks in boilers and submersible pumps.

ATTENTION! The factory installation of motorhomes and trailers (regardless of whether we are dealing with a submersible pump or a pressure installation) is designed in such a way that during preparation for wintering the water flows by gravity. The problem may arise when we have connected accessories to the installation, the construction and arrangement of which prevent such emptying - an example may be an external shower installed below the level of the drain valve (e.g. Frost Control). Then it is worth using a compressor and additionally "blowing" the installation.

In trailers equipped with a submersible pump, it is strongly recommended to physically remove it from the water tank, remove it from the hose and dry it (even a small amount of water in the pump can cause it to blow up if it freezes). Leave the taps (faucets) in the open position. The toilet cassette should also be emptied and cleaned with liquid.

Wintering caravan and motorhome – image 1

Disconnect the on-board devices from the power supply , including the batteries and the gas cylinder (during the winter parking, it is best to remove the cylinder from the motorhome or trailer). When disconnecting the battery power, the easiest way is to disable the main protection of the switch cabinet on board. If we do not remove the battery for the winter, it is worth making sure that it is fully charged at the time of disconnection. You should also remember to recharge it regularly during the winter shutdown. It is best to leave all cupboards and the refrigerator in the open position. Ventilation openings and at least one of the side windows should remain unsealed.

Items that easily absorb moisture, such as rugs, curtains or bedding, are best taken home . If we have somewhere to store mattresses, it's best to take them too. If the upholstery is to remain in the vehicle, the use of moisture absorbers is strongly recommended. We definitely do NOT wash upholstery and carpets immediately before wintering.

An unused motorhome or trailer can become a target for rodents. One of the ideas to protect the vehicle from unwanted guests will be the use of an electronic, ultrasonic rodent repeller . However, let us remember above all not to leave food in the vehicles (e.g. leftover provisions from holiday trips).

The drawbar of the trailer should be protected against frost, snow and water, and appropriate chocks should be placed under the wheels. Their use will eliminate the need to apply the brake. We lower the trailer supports to relieve the wheels, but do NOT suspend the vehicle "in the air" - lifting the whole thing may (especially in older trailers) weaken the corners of the chassis.

If the vehicle will be wintered outside, in the event of heavy snowfall, the roof should be removed from time to time. In the case of motorhomes, it is advisable to run it at least once a month, even during the winter. Even if the car will only be run for a few minutes, do not forget about the right coolant in the radiator, adapted to sub-zero temperatures (the same, of course, also applies to the washer fluid). It is best if the motorhome is parked after filling it up with a full tank and after adding an additive preventing the precipitation of paraffin from diesel fuel .

Work related to the preparation of the trailer or motorhome for seasoning is best carried out on an autumn, sunny and dry day. The vehicle should not be covered with an ordinary tarpaulin or foil . Special covers are recommended for motorhomes and trailers, which not only match the dimensions of a specific vehicle, but also do not restrict airflow and minimize the risk of abrasions/scratches of the sheathing.

Winterizing caravans and motorhomes

What to do if we have little space at home or live in a block of flats without a piece of our own land? Where to park your motorhome or caravan? Storage of caravans and motorhomes is an increasingly popular service.

How much does wintering a caravan cost? How much does wintering a motorhome cost?

Companies offering winterizing caravans and motorhomes have various facilities and offer various services. The service of winter parking outside the season "under the cloud" from September 1 to April 30 costs about PLN 700-900. In addition to the parking itself, the package includes a professional service of preparation for wintering, and in the spring an inspection and preparation for the season.

Many companies also have warehouses to store vestibules, floors and other equipment. A place under a roof (a shelter) or in an unheated hall costs PLN 300 per month. Places in heated warehouses are rare, although the demand for this type of service is obviously there - especially in large agglomerations. This is a convenient solution, especially when we do winter caravanning - when choosing, for example , a ski campervan , we just get in and go, without having to perform a number of service activities.

Maciej Kinal
Maciej Kinal

I feel best in the form of trade fairs and meetings with enthusiasts. Technical freak. In my life I have dismantled many motorhomes for the first time. Fan of large vehicles, mountain biking and traveling without weight and financial restrictions. At CampRest, I am responsible for all publications on automotive topics.

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