The Best RV Skirts for Winter
Installing a Skirt Provides Warmth and Protection for Your RV in Cold Weather.
More and more people are discovering the joys of camping during the winter. Sure, the temperatures are colder, and the snow can sometimes make things challenging, but campsites are often empty, and the landscapes are always beautiful.
However, cold temperatures can play havoc with an RV, pulling heat from the interior and potentially freezing vital equipment. Thankfully, skirting can help your vehicle stay warmer and burn less fuel, making for a more comfortable and reliable cold-weather shelter.
What is Skirting?
In RV parlance, skirting is the process of enclosing the vehicle’s undercarriage to protect it from cold temperatures and frigid winds. Typically, this involves wrapping the camper in a removable protective layer—known as a skirt—that acts as a shield against the elements.
The goal is to trap warmth in and keep cold air out. Adding a skirt helps the interior of the RV stay cozier by preventing warm air from escaping beneath the vehicle. It also keeps fragile parts—like water tanks and pipes—from freezing and reduces the amount of propane or electricity needed to heat the interior.
Types of Skirts
RV skirts come in various shapes, sizes, and styles, but all of them have the same fundamental goal in mind: keeping cold air from reaching the vehicle’s undercarriage. Some are made from thick fabrics, while others are constructed out of durable, weather-resistant vinyl. Other skirts consist of inflatable tubes placed under the motorhome and inflated to fill the open space, preventing cold winds from passing through.
A skirt can come in a one-size-fits-all option, or it can be custom-made for a specific motorhome. Some RV manufacturers design their own for their most popular models, while others rely on third-party manufacturers. Most can be easily adjusted, allowing them to accommodate a wide variety of vehicle shapes and sizes.
Which type of skirt works best for you generally comes down to three factors: how well it fits, how easy it is to install, and how much it costs. The fit will usually be dictated by whether the skirt was made specifically for your RV or if it features a generic design for use with various vehicles. The ease of installation depends on how it connects with the camper—with snaps, clips, and Velcro all commonly used. The skirt’s price will depend on its material and whether it was custom built or is an off-the-rack model.
The Best RV Skirts for Winter
Now that we’ve defined skirts and their use, which one should you buy for your RV? Here are a few suggestions for your shortlist.
EZ Snap RV skirts are some of the most popular in the industry, and for good reason. These skirts are durable, affordable, and easy to install without the need for drilling. RV owners connect the skirt by first installing a set of adhesive studs to the side of their vehicle. Once that process is complete, the weather-resistant vinyl pieces that make up the skirt simply “snap” into place.
The company sells its skirts in kits of various sizes based on the type of RV, with options ranging from small camper vans to large fifth wheel trailers. This approach helps keep costs down but requires owners to do some of the work by cutting the pieces to fit their specific motorhome. Once that initial setup process is complete, the skirt installs quickly, providing excellent protection from the elements.
ICON J-Wrap Panel Skirting
Made from rugged ABS plastic, the ICON J-Wrap Panel Skirting creates a hard-shell layer of protection around the base of an RV. The panels are 52 inches and have a “J” shape that connects while wrapping under the vehicle. And, priced at $168 per panel, this option provides excellent versatility without breaking the bank.
The durable plastic panels connect using hook and loop joiners, making them easy to attach and remove as needed. Getting an exact fit may require some of the pieces to be trimmed down in size, so a jigsaw or similar tool may be required. Once in place, the plastic skirt serves as a protective shield for the vehicle’s undercarriage.
Another option for toolless installation is the AirSkirt. The concept behind this product is that RV owners place long, heavy-duty inflatable cylinders under their vehicles and then inflate them, filling in gaps that would normally allow cold air to seep in. This is a straightforward process, but inflating the tubes can take time, depending on their size and the air temperature.
AirSkirts are sold in kits based on the size of the RV, with options ranging from “tiny” to “extra-large.” The kits include tubes of various lengths for filling in the gaps between the tires found under the vehicle. The package includes a handy storage bag and an 800-watt electric air pump. Pricing starts at $1800 and can go as high as $2900, depending on which kit is needed.
The RV WindSkirt is another affordable option for creating a protective barrier around a motorhome. The lightweight and durable skirts come in two sizes—48- and 82-inches—with owners selecting the individual pieces they need to fit their specific vehicle. The skirts are made from high-quality canvas, which provides durability without becoming overly bulky. The bottom of the skirt is also weighted, which helps keep it connected to the ground when forming a sealed barrier around the RV.
Installation for this skirt does require drilling snaps to the side of the camper, which means the initial setup can take some time. Not everyone likes adding holes to the frame of their RV either, but the panels can then be locked into place quickly and easily. Best of all, the individual panels cost just $108 and $118 for the 48- and 82-inch versions, respectively.
Fabricover RV Skirting
Available in a wide variety of lengths and heights, Fabricover RV Skirting has options for just about every type of motorhome. The individual panels made from heavyweight vinyl resist wind, rain, snow, and subzero temperatures. The material is also tear-resistant, designed to not fray around the edges, yet it cuts easily to fit around stairs, pipes, hitches, and other features.
When selecting the size of the skirt panels, customers can also choose one of four colors and from three different methods of attachment—Velcro, twist ties, or snaps. This lends the Fabricover RV Skirting a level of versatility not found with some other models, allowing RV owners to choose the type of installation that works best for them. The panel size determines the price, ranging from as little as $93 to as much as $391 per piece.
RV Skirting Pros
For RV owners looking for a skirt that provides the absolute best fit, a custom-made option may be the way to go. The team at RV Skirting Pros are experts in making bespoke skirts built for a customer’s specific RV. Their models are made to exacting standards, creating a tighter, more efficient seal around the vehicle’s base, keeping the interior warmer as a result.
These skirts are held in place using a track system installed along the sides of the RV. The tracks are connected using a 3M adhesive component that keeps the required drilling to a minimum. Best of all, customers can decide to install the skirt themselves or have the pros do it for them. Pricing starts at $963, which is surprisingly competitive compared to some other options on this list.
Another option for RVers seeking a custom skirt is RVSkirting.com. A family-run business for more than two decades, the company specializes in making bespoke skirts cut to exact vehicle measurements. When completed, most skirts consist of 5 to 11 panels, which can be installed at the campsite in about 20 minutes.
Pricing starts at $2000, with the average cost of a custom model coming in at $2550. That includes all of the necessary panels—made from durable vinyl fabrics—as well as custom fitting around steps, hitches, and other features. The skirts include a dedicated outlet to accommodate a generator and have extended lengths to ensure ample coverage when parked on uneven ground. There is even a built-in 5-inch pocket along the bottom edge of the skirt to accommodate a PVC pipe. This gives the panels additional weight, holding them more firmly in place during windy conditions.
Some RV owners choose to go the DIY route and create their own makeshift skirts. This approach can take various forms ranging from placing bales of straw underneath the vehicle to creating a custom vinyl skirt from scratch. Other popular options include lining the base of the motorhome with styrofoam panels, plywood, or even snow.
The significant advantage of making your own skirt is that it can be very cost-effective and efficient when providing insulation. The drawback is that these options are usually not as quick and easy to install and may not provide as tight of a fit as a commercial skirt. Still, they often get the job done at a fraction of the cost, which is always worth considering.
As the RV market continues to expand, look for more skirting options to become available. Winter camping continues to grow in popularity, and those new to camping during that season will be seeking solutions to protect their motorhomes from the cold. This could lead to some innovative new approaches to designing and installing a skirt, but these are the best options available for now.