How To Prepare Your RV for Storage?

Last Updated on March 6, 2024

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Key Takeaways:

  • Clean Thoroughly: Clean the interior and exterior of the RV to prevent mold, mildew, and pests.
  • Check for Leaks: Inspect the roof, windows, and seams for any signs of leaks and repair them promptly.
  • Empty Tanks: Drain and flush the water tanks, including the fresh water, gray water, and black water tanks.
  • Protective Measures: Cover the RV with a breathable, waterproof cover to shield it from the elements.
  • Maintenance Checks: Perform routine maintenance tasks such as checking tire pressure, lubricating moving parts, and topping off fluids.


Each summer I try to go to spend a couple of months in Budapest with my parents, my good old friends, and family. I didn’t have an RV last year, so this is the first time I am dealing with finding long-term storage for my home on wheels. These kinds of vehicles are popular targets for thieves. I’ve heard so many horror stories when the fridge, the tv, and appliances were stolen by the time the owner got their RV back.  You also need to find the right space for your RVs, or you’re going to risk some sort of parking violation in the case of long-term storage. Finding the right storage space is half the battle, and it might not even be the hardest half of the battle. It’s just as important to fully prepare your RVs for storage, which is going to require a lot of different considerations.

Leaving an RV

If you are lucky enough you can actually have your RV parking on your property or you can ask a friend with a good driveway to store it for you.

I don’t want to leave my RV out in the 100-degree weather for months so I had to look into some covered storage options. Many people store their RV at RV storage lots or RV parks, which have their own positives and negatives. RV parks are good for the people who will be gone for a few months and are willing to pay for the monthly fees. Many RV parks have storage which is a good option. You will need to shop around for affordable rates. If you are not in the city, prices are way lower. Since I am flying out of LAX it is not worth it for me to store my RV hours away since the commute will cost me more than storing it closer.

The enclosed storage spaces are usually better from a security standpoint, especially if they are located in some sort of warehouse. These places will be more expensive.

People who must park their RVs outside for whatever reason should at least avoid parking them beneath the trees or near tall weeds or grasses, or other natural hazards. The trees and plants, at best, are going to cover the RV with pollen. At the worst, the trees can shed branches during storms that actively damage the RVs. These sorts of natural structures tend to attract wildlife, which is never good for an RV even if the animals might not permanently damage the vehicle.


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Preparing an RV for Storage

For one thing, you need to ask yourself about the seasonal conditions that are going to be present when the RV is in storage. Sometimes, the RV might need to be winterized, especially if it is being stored for a long time where the temperatures reach below 32 Fahrenheit. It might need to be covered so that it will withstand extreme heat, snow, or rain. One of the ways that you can avoid some unexpected surprises is to hire someone to check on the RV every few weeks if it is going to be there for a long period of time. Some storages offer this as well for an extra price.

You will need to flush and clean the tanks. You also need to get rid of all food that can rot quickly or to prevent bugs/rodents to get to it. Defrosting the fridge and leaving the door open is a good idea, as is cleaning out the air filters of the air conditioner. You need to cover the water heater, furnace, and refrigerator vents in order to keep away the bugs, which sometimes get lured in by the smell of the fuel.

If you are storing outside get a cover for your RVs. However, these should be breathable covers, or they might create an appealing environment for mold or mildew. Close all windows. If you store inside, keep some vents open.

While some people might find it frustrating to clean an RV before they’re just going to leave it to rest in a location for a long time anyway, it is still a good idea to clean it before leaving it. The bacteria and other messes that are initially present are just going to keep on spreading and getting worse, and you are going to find your RVs in terrible condition when you decide to pick it up. Initial cleaning can prevent this problem.

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