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Motorhome Basics | FMCA

Spring is an ideal time to clean the motorhome inside and out, and to inspect equipment and components. Before hitting the road for that first spring getaway, Workhorse Custom Chassis recommends following this spring-cleaning checklist to prepare the motorhome for many safe, enjoyable journeys:

Exterior wash

  • First, examine the coach exterior, including the body and roof, to detect cracks or separation. Look under the vehicle for signs of gas or fluid leaks. If one is discovered, note the location and color (if a fluid leak), and then ask a certified technician to inspect the vehicle.
  • Avoid using household detergents that may damage paint and diminish the shine. Use a specially formulated soap from an RV supply store.
  • Spray the motorhome with a power nozzle before applying suds. Be sure the sponge and towels are free of abrasive dirt before scrubbing. Use specialized cleaners to make tires and trim look new.
  • Work in the shade, because washing a hot surface can leave stubborn streaks on windows.

Wall-to-wall cleansing

  • If the motorhome was stored during winter, it may need time to air out. Use a carpet deodorizer and a heavy-duty fabric refresher to eliminate odors. Vacuum carpet, upholstery and door panels. Wash all removable cushions and window treatments.
  • Polish and protect the dashboard and other vinyl areas by using wipe-on or spray products designed for these surfaces.

Check fluids and connections

  • Change the engine oil even if the mileage doesn't call for it, because cold weather affects oil quality. Have a new filter installed during the spring-cleaning oil change.
  • Check battery connections. Corrosion may have accumulated during winter. If so, the connections should be removed, cleaned and, after reassembly, treated with an anticorrosive product.

Check tires

  • Motorhome tires are subject to weathering conditions through natural aging and periods of inactivity. Look for cracking and other damage on the tires. A professional can inspect worn, cracked and older tires to determine whether they should be replaced.

Home safety check

  • Test batteries in smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors to confirm they are in working order. Check fire extinguishers and place them in convenient locations.

Preparedness check

  • Update an emergency kit for spring travel. The kit should include: flares, bottled drinking water, a clean gas can, reflective triangles, duct tape, jumper cables, heavy rope and a four-way screwdriver.

Last-minute review

  • Stock up on necessities for cooking, cleaning and entertaining. Review kitchen equipment and the inventory of games, puzzles, CDs, DVDs and videotapes that can enhance trips.
  • Make sure appliances are working properly if they were not used during winter.


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