How to Keep Your RV Safe During Thunderstorms

When it comes to one of America’s most favorite pastimes, RV’ing is easily near the top of the list. Not only does it give you a chance to vacation and get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, but hitting the open road and traveling to various destinations gives you a real chance to view the country in a way that airplane travel just can’t offer. According to statistics, there are more than 7% of households in the country who now own at least one RV, and this number seems to be on the rise as of late.

With that said, people are investing a fair amount of money into their RV, spending anywhere from $10,000 for a basic travel trailer, all the way to $300,000+ on a luxury motorhome. That is a rather large investment that you want to protect and make sure it stays in tip-top shape. Because you won’t be traveling at all times, part of owning an RV is being conscious of how you plan on storing it or parking it when not in use. Clearly, you want to be sure it’s kept safe from theft, but then there are also weather concerns.

Thunderstorms can prove to be quite damaging to RVs if when the proper measures aren’t taken in advance. In fact, it can damage your RV so extensively that you may need major repairs before it can even be used again. With that in mind, we’ve gone ahead and put together a number of tips that will help you keep your RV safe during thunderstorms.

Install a Carport

One of the very best ways to protect your RV from bad weather is to park/store it under shelter. Carports can offer you shelter from the rain, wind, and even harsh UV rays that can do a number on your RV. You can find carports made specifically for RVs that feature a vertical roof, or even a boxed eave.

CarportUS is a company that specializes in carports such as these, with options that range from 6′ to 16′ in height and 21′ to 51′ in length. You can even find carports that house more than one RV if you happen to own multiples. You can find more information about its offerings on this page.

Just be sure that when shopping for a carport you look for one that features heavy gauge metal roofing that will hold up to debris and wind, and that the base itself has enough strength and integrity that it won’t buckle.

Cover Up Your RV

If a carport or shelter just isn’t possible, then the next best thing is to cover your RV. This will offer some protection from wind and rain, but keep in mind it isn’t fool-proof. If you are going to go this route, be sure to find a cover that offers UV protection. As well, you will probably want to spray it with some sort of insect repellent or else they will eat right through the cover. This means you’ll have to replace it more often than you had hoped for.

As well, the cover should be breathable or else you run the risk of mold forming since moisture can build up. This is even more of a risk if you don’t use your RV on a regular basis.

Remove Any Nearby Large or Weak Branches and Limbs

Another tip is to look around where you plan on parking your RV and check if there are any large or weak branches and limbs that could possibly fall onto your RV. Wind is quite common during thunderstorms, and can easily take down a branch or two. Not only that but trees attract lightning, so parking your RV near one can be asking for trouble.

Remove Any Other Projectiles

Now that you’ve removed any potentially damaging tree branches, you also want to look around for other possible projectiles. Things such as lawn furniture, picnic tables, a BBQ, toys, etc., can all be tossed around in the wind and end up damaging the RV.

Secure All Loose Objects

You will also want to do an inspection of the exterior of your RV, looking for any loose objects or parts. Everything should be secure and snug so that there is no chance of it coming off during a storm.

Unplug Devices When Not in Use

It’s also a good idea to unplug any electrical devices inside your RV when they aren’t in use. This includes items like the TV, coffee part, a computer, etc. Should your RV get struck with lightning, at least your electronics won’t get fried.

Close Everything Up When Not in Use

This next tip probably can go without saying, but you also want to be sure that you keep all doors, windows, screens, and skylights closed when you aren’t actually using your RV. Summer is known for quickly producing thunderstorms, so what starts off as a sunny gorgeous day can suddenly take a turn for the worse. If you’re at work, or just not at home when a storm strikes, and you left your windows open to “air out the RV”, well you can bet you will be coming home to a real mess to clean up.

You also want to be sure that all your awnings and storage doors are closed and latched up tight. This can just become part of your typical end of use checklist. Each time you finish using your RV, ensure that everything is locked and latched nice and tightly.

Ensure You Have Working Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarms

Your RV should also be equipped with working carbon monoxide and smoke detector alarms at all times. Be sure you stick to a schedule to regularly check and change the batteries in the alarms.

As Safe and Secure as Possible

By following each of these tips you’ll be doing all you can to ensure that your RV stays as safe and secure as possible during a thunderstorm.

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