Trailer Life Magazine Open Roads Forum: Beginning RVing: storing for winter
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canadiancamper2018

everywhere

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Posted: 10/08/18 09:12pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Ok so this has probably been posted over and over again but Ive spent hours looking for the answer to my questions and cant seem to find what I need. so here it goes hopefully someone has some input. I just picked up a wolfpack 24pack14+ about a month ago. our season ends mid October found a park that's open one week more then the rest and gonna push the season. after that the trailer is being winterized by the dealer not gonna take that in this year already taking on a lot of info. after that I have a place to store it for the winter not what I would call preferred parking by any means but I spot that was cost effective and big enough for the trailer. the area has deep grass but is level. so now the questions aside was hitting the grass with a weed wacker is there any point in putting down a tarp under the trailer to keep the grass down? what about mouse traps I was reading that putting them under the trailer isn't a bad idea? also should everything be taken out, what can be left in over the winter? is it a bad idea to drop the support jacks to lessen the load on the suspension for the winter? I know its a lot to read and bunch of things asked hopefully you guys got something for me.

zcookiemonstar

Midwest

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Posted: 10/08/18 10:28pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Cutting the grass down is a good idea. The tarp can help with moisture coming up from the ground but it will kill the grass so check with the property owner first. Mouse traps can hurt other animals so watch what you use and any bait for traps WILL attract other animals like raccoons so don't use any bait. The jacks are only for stabilizing not to lift the trailer of the suspension. You need to remove anything you worry about freezing and any food.

I would also park it on some treated wood boards like 2x12 long enough for both tires and raise or lower the front so water can run off easier.

Artum Snowbird

Campbell River, B.C., Canada

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Posted: 10/08/18 10:33pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Well, the information is in these forums many many times over. This is your rig, and it's your responsibility to look after it.

It takes about one hour to do it right. Your dealer might be busy and not get to yours before it freezes solid and cracks all kinds of things.

It matters not about the grass under it, protect yourself and look after what is in it. Drain the water, clear the tanks, blow it out or put in the antifreeze properly. Let it sit on it's wheels, do not lower jacks.

Absolutely disconnect the battery, crack a vent just a tiny amount and all will be just fine without too much worry.


Mike and Carole
2012 Winnebago Impulse Silver 26QP
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doxiemom11

New Mexico

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Posted: 10/08/18 10:44pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I would removed any food, bedding, towels, throw rugs. If you have mice, they will use any loose fabric for bedding, they may also tear into other fabrics that you can't remove, so you do want to do something to try to prevent them. Have heard Freshcab mentioned a lot. Haven't researched to see what that is.

We did not remove our battery, used the battery disconnect switch and the house battery which was older was bulging/had frozen and we had to replace it. Engine battery was fine and the coach started right up. If we were to store it over winter again, we would remove both batteries and store them in a warmer place.

DutchmenSport

Between Anderson, Pendleton, & Lapel, Indiana

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Posted: 10/09/18 07:35am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

1. I wouldn't worry about the grass or putting anything under the trailer either. The shade from the trailer will choke out anything growing under it. If you are in a snow state, the grass will soon be dormant anyway.

2. Considering you are parking on grass and dirt, definitely put some lumber under the tires. Get something long enough and wide enough, a single board that will comfortably support your tires, like, at least a 6 foot 8 inch wide 2 inch deep board. Treated lumber is good, if you plan on keeping the board long term. But for one season, any untreated 2x8x6 (or longer) will work. I have, in the past, used untreated lumber outside and used it for several years. But treated lumber will last virtually forever.

3. Put boards (shorter ones), under your stabilizer jacks and lower them tight, but they are not designed to lift the camper, just stabilize it. Also put lumber under the tongue jack. After setting up the camper for winter storage, you should return after a few days and re-snug the jacks again. Sitting on dirt, they will sink into the ground.

4. Remove anything that may freeze and break. Anything with liquid, remove it.

5. Remove ALL food items, even stuff in cans. Water in cans can break when they freeze. It's better you bring all food items back into your house and use it up, so next Spring you start out all fresh again with new food items and nothing has hit expiration dates.

6. Depending upon where you plan to store the camper, remove all personal items that are important to you, and remove all electronics. (potential theft). If it's important to you, get it out of the camper and safeguard it at home.

7. If you are truly storing and have no plans on using it over the winter months, remove the battery and bring it home. Put it on a trickle charger over the winter.

8. Remove your propane tanks. Yes, propane tanks get stolen too.

9. Learn to winterize the camper yourself and save yourself a LOT of money, and have peace of mind it's done right. It take only 15 minutes or less to actually winterize only cost about $5 - $7 for the "pink stuff" RV antifreeze (for 2 gallons), and if you use the compressor blow-out method, actually, that costs nothing after purchasing the blow-out plug to use with your air compressor.

10. If you have an RV cover, cover it and snug it down real good. Do not use a tarp as a cover. It will cause more problems than you want if you use a tarp, rubbing against the finish and roof of your RV. If you cover, get a cover that's made for RV's and tie it down tight so it won't flop and rub in the wind.

11. Rodent protection. Do not use any kind of poisons. If a mouse come into the camper and eats the poison, then crawls into your walls and die, you will FOREVER have stink in the camper and it will NEVER go away, no matter how hard you try, unless you can break through the wall and remove the dead thing. Dead mice stink FOREVER!

12. Remember, anything you use for bait to catch critters, will also attract critters. It's better if you thoroughly inspect your camper and plug any hole or gaps with foamy spray insulation, like "Stuff" with a combination of wire mash filling the holes and gaps first. Plug any hole and the chances are critter invasion are greatly reduced.

13. If in storage, slides in! No reason to keep them out making a wider foot print and exposing the roof of the slides to bird do and snow and ice!

14. You might go ahead and over-inflate your tires by 10 or 15 pounds while it sits over the winter. Chances are, sitting, the tires will loose some air pressure and the last thing you want is to have a low or flat tire in the Spring. Just remember, in the Spring, before moving the trailer, if they are still over inflated, to bring them back to normal pressure before hitting the road. I've done this and it just gives me peace of mind.

15. When in storage, check the camper often over the winter. Don't assume, never ever ever assume someone else is watching out for your camper, even if you place it on close friends or a relative's property for storage. Check it often yourself.

Lots of tips. Hope this helps.


DutchmenSport

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Lwiddis

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Posted: 10/09/18 08:38am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Some of your questions belie any time living in Canada or RVing.


2015 Winnebago 2101DS TT & Tahoe LTZ, 300 watts WindyNation solar-parallel & MPPT, Trojan T-125s. TALL flagpole for US flag. Prefer USFS, COE, BLM, NPS, TVA, USF&WS, state & county camps. Bicyclist! 14 year Army vet - 11B40 then 11A - old MOS 1542 & 1560.


Grit dog

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Posted: 10/09/18 10:08am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Dutchman nailed it 100%.
To add about the cover, if you plan on keeping the camper for the long haul, a cover is good $ spent. The one winter I stored outside, I had a soft cover on the camper.
The issue I had was, snow removal was difficult off the roof due to the cover taking the shape of all the roof appurtenances and the water running off during freeze thaw cycles created large icecicles that clung to the cover fabric and in some cases tore the cover.
Mid winter, had a snow meltdown and at that point I put a plastic tarp over the soft cover.
This helped immensely as the snow came off the roof easier and more completely and that minimized the icecicles.
I'd reccomend full soft cover with tarp over it, at least over the roof.


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Posted: 10/09/18 04:23pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

there several things you can add to keep the mice out of our TT one is Irish spring soap, people say cut a bar in half and put into a paper bowl and place around the trailer, some say dry sheets work too. I crawl under my TT and look for openings and use steel wool or foam insulation the spray kind to seal any opening is the bottom of the TT. So far I don't have any mice to trap in my rig.

canadiancamper2018

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Posted: 10/10/18 03:33pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

thanks guys I appreciate the help Dutchmen thank you for the detailed response I never put much thought into where the mouse would die if it ate poison in the trailer. As for the winterizing I get it free this year so I'm gonna take advantage of it however next year I will likely take it on myself. once again thanks so much.

bukhrn

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Posted: 10/10/18 04:32pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I recently read somewhere,(don't remember where)to scatter hunks of Irish Spring Soap in different areas of the camper, theoretically mice hate the smell, I'm gonna try it this year.


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