RV in snow in front of house

Trip Planning

Surviving Snow and Cold Weather in an RV

Did you know you can also RV comfortably in the winter? By taking some simple steps, you can continue your adventure, driving through the states to admire the beautiful fall scenery and majestic colors of the landscape.

There are still many adventures you can have with your RV and family during the winter months. Did you know you can also RV comfortably in the winter? By taking some simple steps, you can continue your adventure, driving through the states to admire the beautiful scenery through the winter months.

While RV systems can be damaged in extreme cold, they can also be protected for a longer and more durable lifespan. Here are some tips and tricks to help keep your RV running for years to come, in summer, fall, and winter.

Using Your RV During the Winter

The key to driving your RV all over during the winter months is pure and simple preparation. Your RV can experience problems if it gets too cold for too long during the winter months, but there are a number of steps you can take to prepare it for freezing temperatures. The first step youll want to check is if your RV comes with a thermal package. These include extra insulation and can be applied to your RV quickly and easily.

Next, youll want to buy a skirt” for your RV. Skirting your vehicle will keep multiple components in it warm, such as the batteries, plumbing, and heating system. If you don’t have the budget to buy a skirt or you only plan on trying out the winter for one season, you can always pack snow around the RV bays with some Reflectix insulation, though a skirt will be more effective. You should also insulate windows with foam insulation boards, bubble insulation, or solar blankets. If youre still feeling chilly, consider investing in thermal curtains.

Snowy RV with skirt and chairs
RV with skirt for added protection
Snowy 5th wheel with slide out and skirt
RV with skirt for added protection
Snowy 5th wheel with slide outs, skirt and hookups
RV with skirt for added protection

Keeping the RV Warm During Winter

Keeping the exterior and interior of your RV warm during the winter can be a difficult task, but theres one thing you have to know to start the process. Most newer RVs come with a fireplace that doubles up as a furnace and it runs off electricity.

Also, you want to make sure that your propane tanks are always full to avoid waking up to frozen pipes because you ran out of propane to heat your onboard furnace. If the temperature is below forty-five degrees outside, you should always use the onboard furnace.

Also, make sure to program your thermostat to warm the RV if it falls below a certain temperature. You dont want it to freeze while youre away adventuring! Finally, on top of skirting and wrapping pipes thoroughly with heat tape, you should buy indoor space heaters and place them far apart inside the RV. These will provide extra warmth to keep both your family and the RV at a reasonable temperature throughout the day.

A Handy Winter Weather Packing Checklist

Those are the basics to living in your RV and heating it during the winter. To keep yourself warm during the winter months, you should ensure youve packed all of the necessary clothes and equipment youll need for the duration of your trip. These include:

  • Coats and other winter wear
  • Heavy boots and effective winter shoes
  • Heat tape and thermal curtains to use on parts of your RV which are prone to freezing
  • A freeze-proof water hose
  • An RV skirt to put around your vehicle
  • An ice scraper
  • RV antifreeze and engine antifreeze for your two vehicles and the engine of the RV if you do not have a towable RV
  • Mini indoor space heaters to keep your family warm and comfy at night and during slow days
  • Warm blankets, mugs for hot beverages, some tea and coco mix, and anything else you’ll want to take to have fun during the winter

Selecting an RV and Preparing it for Winter

Choosing the proper RV for winter adventures is key. You’ll want to choose an RV that is self-contained and insulated against harsh winter conditions. Make sure it has maximum insulation, and add some more if you feel it necessary, the more insulation the warmer you and your family will be during the winter months. 

Typically, larger RVs are sturdier, but smaller RVs will be easier to properly heat all the way through, so know there’s a tradeoff. There are also some luxury RVs which come equipped with fireplaces, though these are more expensive than the average RV. 

Ready to RV in the Winter?

Going RVing during the winter months is a great way to experience natural wonders and see everything our country has to offer after the grueling summer months. If you want to RV during the winter, make sure you pack plenty of supplies, choose the right RV, and use a skirt to keep your RV and family nice and warm.

Don’t forget to have fun collecting all of those experiences and sit back and enjoy watching the snow fall as you sip on some coffee or hot cocoa!

Have you ever gone RVing in the winter months? Please share your tips and tricks in the comments below:

Also, just in case you missed our post on making the perfect S’mores we have 10 different ways you can make some yummy S’mores around the fire.

Kids making snow angels
1st Class Adventure family photo on with snow tubes
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