So, we are eights months in and we have already found some small RV repairs are needed.
RV repairs are inevitable, right? Sometimes things go wrong even in a brand new RV. Within the first few months, you may need RV repairs.
Let’s face it, most RVs are not built to live in. They are made for using a few weeks out of the year and stored the rest of the year. You can expect to have to fix something in the first few months of owning it.
With a new RV, generally, only small repairs are needed. They can generally be done quickly by the owner without involving warranty repairs or the manufacturer.
We have had quite to complete quite a few little RV repairs. Fortunately, all were fixable by us and were not overly costly.
Fridge Drainage Hose: The drainage hose for the fridge wasn’t draining outside the RV.
Our RV fridge has a tendency to ice up. This is pretty typical of most RV refrigerators. After about 3 months in our RV, the ice was really building up and needed to be defrosted. When you defrost, the water is supposed to drain through a small hose and drain outside the RV. Our hose hadn’t been set up to drain outside. EEK!
When our RV was built and the fridge was installed, the hose was just left lying on the floor of the RV under the fridge. The area around the RV refrigerator is all built in so we didn’t know the hose wasn’t set up to drain water outside of the RV. We didn’t realize there was a problem until a puddle of water started coming out from under the fridge! Once we realized there was an issue, we moved the hose so that it drained outside of the RV and cleaned up the water that was now all over the floor of the trailer. It probably wasn’t a huge amount of water but it sure seemed like it was everywhere!
Besides fixing the hose placement we also did one other thing that stopped a lot of the icing up in the first place. We ordered a fridge fan from Amazon and that has made a big difference. We no longer have to worry about defrosting as often (if at all) because the fan moves the air around. Because of the air movement, there is way less icing up. Also another bonus with the fan…less of our food freezes. Food freezing (particularly veggies) was a problem for us without the fan. We haven’t had any issues since we started using the fan.
Sink: The sealant around the sink drain fell apart within 6 months of daily use.
The sink drain was sealed with plumbers putty. The putty didn’t stand up to constant hot water and cleaners. Everytime hot water was put into the sink to wash the dishes the putty would get soft and bit by bit it washed away. Also, I would occasionally put some bleach in the water if I was doing a deep clean of something or doing a bit of handwash that needed a bit of bleach. The bleach basically ate the putty away. We tried replacing it with kitchen and bath silicone but that lasted even less time. So, for now, we have purchased some plumbers putty and are ready if additional RV repairs are needed.
Sink Cover: The cover got water in it and swelled up. It no longer fits in the sink.
So anything that gets wet over and over but isn’t sealed properly isn’t going to last…particularly if its made of press wood! That’s what happened to our sink covers. They are a pressboard material with a laminate type coating but where the laminate meets at the corners, it wasn’t sealed very well so water got into it. It bloated the cover so it no longer fit properly in the sink.
Honestly, we wanted to have a cutting board cover for the sink anyway so no big loss. We used the covers as a template to cut out butcher block wood to the same shape then sealed it with food safe butcher block oil. There are a ton of options for changing out your RV sink covers that come with your RV. We liked the look of butcher block but there are many other options.
Outside Storage Locks: The locks and keys are flimsy.
We have had a few issues with locks on our trailer. Firstly, the outside storage compartments locks are the same as most other trailers. If someone has a key for outside storage for a trailer then they probably have the same key as you! For security sake, you will need to get the outside storage locks changed! The same key is pretty much universal to all RVs!!
The locks on our trailer were not well built. This is particularly important in a cold climate. Keys don’t work well in cheap locks in the cold. There is a good chance you key will get stuck and break off. One of our keys got stuck and broke so we upgraded all of our passthrough locks to combination locks. The combination locks are better built and you don’t have to worry about a key. The ones we got and recommend based on our experience is the 3 pack of combination locks from Amazon.
Having the combination locks on the outside storage allow you to store back up keys in your passthrough storage. If you get locked out of your RV you will have access to extra keys! Plug in the combination and grab an extra key out of your hiding spot in the passthrough and you are back inside in no time. No need to call the locksmith or break in. Trust me! I speak from experience! Get the combo locks!
Door Latch: The door latch broke.
The door latch that came installed on the trailer was a little bit hard to close. We had to use a bit of force to close the door. Because of the extra force, the door latch fell apart. Looking back we think it may have been a bit loose or was a bit crooked.
On one of the coldest days of the year, the latch broke and we were no longer able to keep the door closed. These things always happen at the worst possible time! We rigged up a bungee system to hold the door closed. Once we were able to the RV dealership, we replaced it. We replaced the door handle with the same style as the one that broke. This was the only style that was what was available to purchase at the time.
We have been doing a bit a research into upgrading our locks. We have two outside doors on our travel trailer and would like to get keyless handles with deadbolt locks that are a bit harder to open if someone wanted to break in. After doing a bit of research we have found a few recommended and will be switching them out sometime in the near future (will post our review after we have done the switch and tried them out for a while).
Water Hose: The water hose froze in the winter.
One of the common RV repairs needed are issues with water hoses. The hoses can freeze and even burst! We made a rookie mistake. We were not prepared for winter. Oops!
- The trailer wasn’t skirted in.
- We didn’t insulate the tap.
- We didn’t set up heat tape on the water line.
So guess what? Our water froze. Fortunately for us, the weather didn’t stay below freezing and we only went without water for about 24 hours.
Protect the lines running through and under your RV if you are in a cold location. We have a four-season trailer. Three-season RVs have less insulation than the four-season models. Four-season trailer underbellies are enclosed and insulated. We have temperature controlled heating pads on our tanks to keep them from freezing. The water line that runs to the faucet outside the trailer and the lines that come into the trailer before the insulated underbelly are spots that may be vulnerable to freezing. We have to take extra precautions in those areas next winter or we will have the same problem.
We have completed all of the minor RV repairs. I am feeling grateful that no big issues have come up with our RV. Our little home is so cozy. I feel blessed to have an opportunity to live this lifestyle.
Have you had any RV repairs you have had to do? Let me know about your experiences and how you fixed them. I want to be on the lookout for potential issues and I know others do as well.
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