Friday, May 1, 2015
Traveling across Canada by RV can be the experience of a lifetime. The scenic beauty of Canada’s pristine lakes, awe-inspiring mountains, dramatic seascapes, diverse wildlife and seemingly countless national parks is best enjoyed at a leisurely pace.
RVs offer travelers the freedom to set their own course and schedule - and vacationing in an RV costs significantly less than traditional vacations. A July 2014 Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) study showed that RV traveling can save up 60 percent when compared to traditional vacations.
Getting ready for the road
As you prepare to get your own RV on the road, follow these maintenance tips to make sure your trip is a safe one:
Check the tires
Conscientious tire maintenance helps ensure a smooth ride and optimal fuel efficiency. Check your tire pressure, making sure it is consistent with the pressure recommended in your owner’s manual. Check your tire treads. Rotate your tires to ensure even wear. (Most experts recommend rotation every 8,000 kilometres or every other oil change.) Make sure the lug nuts are tight.
Check the fluids
High performance depends on proper levels of oil, transmission fluid, brake fluid, coolant, battery fluid and windshield washer fluid. You might want to change the oil and replace the air filter as well, according to the frequency specified in your owner’s manual.
Check the battery
Your battery can lose power and its parts can corrode while your vehicle is inactive. Visually inspect it, clean any corrosion and make sure your vehicle starts.
Inspect the lights and windshield wiper blades
Check your headlights, taillights, brake lights, turn signal bulbs and windshield wiper blades to see if any of them need to be replaced.
Check your propane tank. Inspect the gauge, regulator and inspection dates, and make sure the connections are snug.
Flush your water system
Make sure your gray tank system and valves are in good working order. Flush, drain, disinfect and refill the water, and replace any water filters.
Test your appliances
Check your range, cooktop, refrigerator, microwave, water heater, air conditioner – every appliance you intend to put to use on your trip. It’s much easier to repair or replace them while you are home rather than on the road.
Check for pest infestations
What could be worse than being out on the road and opening the door to a cupboard full of mice? Insects, rodents, wild animals and snakes can get really cozy in your motorhome when it’s parked for any length of time. Be sure to give it a thorough once-over before your travels begin.
Inspect the roof seams and windows seams for leakage
Repairing water damage can be expensive, but not repairing it could cost you even more!
Lube the slide
If your unit has one or more slide-outs, use silicone spray or lithium grease (consult your manufacturer to determine the best product) to keep your rubber slide wipers and rails in good condition.
Install fresh batteries in your alarms
Put new batteries into your fire, smoke, carbon monoxide and propane alarms.
Inspect your fire extinguisher
Make sure the pin is intact and check the expiration date to ensure you’re safe from the threat of fire.
Check your insurance policy
Before you leave, you also want to make sure that your recreational vehicle insurance is up to date. Check with your agent before your departure so you know you’re adequately covered for anything.
It’s easier, faster and less costly to take the time to prepare your RV properly before hitting the open road. That way, you can relax and make the most of your outdoor adventures.
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on September 5, 2012 and has been updated for relevancy and accuracy.
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