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RV "How To" Tech Tips

By Mark Polk

Tire Life:

Ozone in the air and UV rays from the sun shorten the life of your tires. It is not uncommon to see RV tires with low mileage and plenty of tread that are ruined by the damaging effects of the ozone and UV rays. Ozone in the air causes tires to dry rot and deteriorate, and UV rays from the sun make it happen quicker. This is especially true of the tires sidewall. Inspect your tires for checking or cracks in the sidewalls. If you notice any damage have the tires inspected by a professional. There are basically two ways to protect your tires from these elements. Keep them covered with covers that will block out the sunlight when not in use, or for long-term storage remove the tires and store them in a cool dry place away from the sunlight. I also recommend that you place something like a piece of wood between the ground and the tires. Be sure that whatever you use is larger then the footprint of the tire.

Water Heater By-Pass Kit:

A water heater by-pass kit can save you six gallons of antifreeze when it’s time to winterize your unit. You drain the water heater, put it in the by-pass mode and the antifreeze bypasses the tank and goes directly into the water lines. Never drain the water heater tank when it is hot or under pressure. For complete step-by-step procedures on winterizing and storing your RV check out our winterizing DVD.

Musty Odors:

When your RV is closed up or in storage it can get a musty stale odor inside. To help avoid this from happening invest in some Maxx Air vent covers. They are easy to install or you can have your RV dealer install them. They fit over the existing vent covers on your RV and allow you to leave the vents open even when it’s raining outside. By placing one towards each end of the RV you have constant ventilation through your RV.

Holding Tanks:

Flushing and cleaning your RV holding tanks is one of those jobs like cutting the grass (1 ½ acres). You don’t want to do it but every time you turn around it needs to be done. One big problem is you can’t flush out the gray tank like you can the black tank. Over time grease and residue build up in the gray tank and it causes a foul odor not to mention how it is affecting the tank and valve assembly. A company called Flush King sent me their product to test. It is a reverse flush valve that connects directly to your sewer outlet and rinses and cleans both holding tanks in one very simple operation. It works extremely well and makes a job we don’t want to do much easier. When you use a wand to clean the black tank you really don’t know how clean it is. The Flush King valve has a see through barrel so you know when the tanks are really clean. They also recommend adding some Simple Green or your favorite grease cutting dish detergent down the drain to help lift residue and freshen the gray tank.

Fogging Oil:

While an RV is in storage, if you don't plan on starting the unit, or won't be able to start it, buy some fogging oil from a marine supply store to protect the cylinder walls. When the unit is parked where it will be stored, spray the fogging oil into the engine intake downstream from the air filter with the engine at an idle. Complete the same steps on the generator. Follow the manufacturer's directions. Caution: Do not use this product in a diesel engine.

Happy Camping,


Copyright 2006 by Mark J. Polk owner of RV Education 101

RV Expert Mark Polk, seen on TV, is the producer & host of America's most highly regarded series of DVD's, videos, books, and e-books. http://www.rveducation101.com/

Sign up for your free "RV Education 101" Newsletter http://rveducation101.com/email/

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