Just because cold weather is on its way doesn’t mean you have to pack up your RV and put it into storage. Believe it or not, quite a few RVers continue their travels in colder climates throughout the winter. While it takes a little bit more ingenuity and preparation to RV during the winter, it is possible! To help prove it, we’ve collected some tips for making your RV more energy efficient in winter so you can stay extra warm without spending any extra!
Trapping In The Heat
Maximizing your insulation is one of the best ways to trap in heat and make your RV more energy efficient in cold temperatures. While your RV already comes equipped with an R-value insulation built in, there are some other products that you can add to help enhance the insulating property of your RV's frame. Here are some ideas for how to maximize your RV’s insulation:
Hatch Vent Cushions: A lot of heat can escape through your hatch vents because they have very minimal thermal resistance. Insulated, reflective vent pillows can be shoved up into your vents to trap heat inside. For a more economical option, a thick-cut piece of insulated styrofoam can also be used.
Reflectix Screens: Covering your windows will dramatically increase the energy efficiency of your RV during the winter. Wedging reflectix screens between your window shade and the window panes will help to keep your heat inside where it belongs. For a more price-conscious option, you can also use regular bubble wrap.
Exterior Skirting: By preventing air flow underneath your RV, you are, in essence, providing an additional measure of insulation to your flooring. Specialty RV skirting can be purchased, or you can also use sheets of plywood as a DIY alternative.
Thermal Curtains: If you’re handy with a sewing machine, consider whipping up some energy-efficient curtains. Purchase some thermal material at your local fabric store and sew up some basic curtains which will help lock heat inside while also adding to the visual appeal of your interior design.
Keeping Out The Cold
Taking steps to trap heat inside your RV is only half the battle. The other half is keeping the cold air out. With a few easy modifications and the addition of some handy after-market products, you can stay nice and cozy inside your RV while keeping the cold air outside where it belongs. Here are some ideas for how to keep cold air out of your RV:
Draft Stoppers: These products can be slid in beneath the bottom of your entry door to prevent cold air from leaking inside. They are cheap to purchase and they can dramatically reduce cold air infiltration. As a side note, you should also avoid opening your doors as much as possible to reduce the amount of cold air you let in.
Seal Leaks: Using a rubber coating or silicone caulk, reinforce the seals and seams of your unit. Pay special attention to areas where cracking or tearing is present. If these signs of damage are extensive, you might want to consider replacing the entire rubber seal or gasket altogether depending on the severity.
Depending on the age of your RV, it might be a smart idea to replace your old appliances with newer, more energy-efficient appliances. The fact is that the equipment being manufactured ten or twenty year ago can’t compare to modern appliances, especially when it comes to energy efficiency. When deciding on improvements you will want to consider making sure they’re propane compatible. Here are some ideas for appliances to upgrade or install in order to improve your energy efficiency:
With a few creative modifications you can comfortably RV through the winter without spending more than what you need to stay warm. Do you have any other ideas for making your RV more energy efficient in winter? Let us know by leaving a comment!