You’ve picked and routed, planned and charted. Now it’s time: the first day of your RV road trip is finally here! But, before you back out of your driveaway and embark on the epic journey, make sure to run through this 20-step pre-trip checklist from The Fit RV. It will make sure your RV is as ready for everything you have planned as you are.
Step One: Turn on Your Fridge
This will ensure it has time to cool down while you complete all the remaining steps.
Step Two: Look Under Your Rig
Check to make sure there are no drips or leaks. Also, make sure that nothing is broken, fallen down, or out of the ordinary.
Step Three: Check Your Engine Fluids
Make sure your van or small RV’s antifreeze, brake fluid, washer fluid, and engine oil are all topped up.
Step Four: Check Your Tires
Everything literally rests on your tires. So, make sure each tire’s pressure is at the recommended level and check for any uneven wear or bulges. Also, ensure that the lug nuts are properly tightened.
Step Five: Check Your Engine’s Starting Battery
Make sure your engine’s starting battery is fully charged. To make it easy on yourself, you can purchase a battery analyzer that works with an app on your smartphone to check at the tap of your finger.
Step Six: Check Your Signalers
Turn signals. Hazard lights. Taillights. Make sure all of them are working before you head out. Pro tip: it’s much easier when you have a friend to help you out with this one. Otherwise, you’ll make a lot of trips in and out of your RV’s driver seat.
Step Seven: Honk Your Horn.
No really, make sure it’s working before you need to alert an RV that it’s about to back into you.
Step Eight: Power Check
Do a power check on your 120 and 12 volts.
Step Nine: Charge Up Everything
Make sure anything with batteries are charged and ready to go – walkie talkies, headlamps, tire pressure monitor.
Step Ten: Check Air Filters
Make sure the air filters for your air conditioner are clean and free of debris. If not, clean them up real quick.
Step Eleven: Fire Extinguishers.
Ensure that you A) Have them B) that they are fully charged and C) that they haven’t expired.
Step Twelve: Check on Your Detectors
Test that all detectors: smoke, carbon monoxide, propane, are on and fully working.
Step Thirteen: Run Your Vents
You’ll want to make sure your kitchen and roof vents are functioning properly before heading out.
Step Fourteen: Look at Your Tanks
Specifically, the tank level indicators for grey and black. They should be empty.
Step Fifteen: Fill Your Fresh Tank
There’s not much that’s better than a full fresh tank and empty grey and black tanks!
Step Sixteen: Watch Your Water Tank
Check to make sure it’s operational. You’ll need to turn on the pump first to do this.
Step Seventeen: Add Toilet Chemicals
Top off your holding tank with the necessary chemicals, or, if you have a composting toilet, freshen up the material.
Step Eighteen: Get Your Manuals
Make sure all manuals for your RV, appliances, etc. are at-the-ready in case you need to troubleshoot. To save space, see if you can download them on your phone. Many offer this functionality.
Step Nineteen: Fill Up on Propane.
You’ll have to make a trip out of the driveway for this one so make sure to get any other last-minute items for your trip while you’re out.
Step Twenty: Pack, Pack, Pack
This step comes with its own separate checklist. For some tips and advice on how and what to pack, check out the Fit RV’s Pack List!
With these 20 steps completed, you can head out on your RV journey prepped, planned, checked, and ready for whatever your adventure has in store for you.