Sooner or later, all RVs have to go into storage. At that point, they can be exposed to a variety of elements that can lead them into chaos. The easiest and most effective way to keep your RV free from this kind of attention is through the use of an RV trailer cover.
RVs stored in the open, whether in a side yard or on the street, can fall victim to UV degradation, a process that first fades the paint and color of the trailer.
Likewise, the exposed fiberglass oxidizes over time, dulling the RV's finish even more. Without paint as an external protective layer, sunlight and other elements are more likely to damage the vital metal and plastic parts that make up the body of an RV and cause problems.
In addition to sunlight, tree sap, bird droppings, acid rain, and even simple dust buildup can all contribute to the deterioration of an RV's surface if left unchecked. A degraded appearance can affect resale value, as potential buyers will immediately notice how an RV looks over anything else.
As with most products, more expensive covers offer far more than their more affordable counterparts, so deciding which cover to purchase is a game of trade-offs.
Here are some key factors to consider before making a purchase
Almost all RV trailer covers prominently indicate on the packaging or in the product description what size RV they fit. However, we recommend that you measure your RV yourself before you buy, rather than relying on the registration manual.
How Many Layers?
Most RV covers are made of polypropylene fabric or polyester, and some have two or even three layers to ensure durability. When choosing an RV cover, consider where your RV will be placed when not in use. Some RV covers are best for dust and debris, while others are made for extreme weather. If you keep your RV in the garage during the off-season, a dust cover may be sufficient, but if you keep it outside in extreme weather, such as snow or rain, you may need an all-weather cover. You may also want to make sure that the RV cover you choose provides additional protection from the sun. If you're not sure which one to purchase, you'll likely use an all-weather RV cover.
When reading the specifications of RV trailer covers, check to see if they include UV or water repellents. The latter is especially important in allowing water to evaporate rather than seep through the cover and cause mold to form.
Other common features include straps around the bottom of the RV to hold the cover in place. Better quality covers include vents to prevent them from heaving in the wind and trapping air resistance that could eventually cause tears. Some also have zippered sections that allow access to doors and compartments without the need to completely remove the hood. This is generally convenient for loading a vehicle without going through the hassle of removing the hood, but it is by no means a necessary part of a good hood.
In addition to an RV cover, it may be worth investing in a tire cover for your tires to protect the metal rims and rubber tires from elemental buildup. Even if you buy an RV cover that hangs low and doesn't cover your tires, a separate tire cover will save you money in the long run by ensuring you don't have to change your wheels as often. But that's a subject for another article.
Go For Quality Name-Brand Covers
While it's tempting to buy the first cheap option you stumble upon, buying a name brand car cover is almost always worth the inherent extra cost. Off-brand products offer lower prices, many of which advertise unrealistic warranties, but name-brand products have a greater incentive to provide longer lasting coverage to ensure their business continues to generate revenue.
RVMasking offers different sizes and strengths, so you can pick from several options, depending on what kind of coverage you expect your trailer might experience.
The price of an RV cover depends not only on the features included, but also on the size. While smaller trailer and camper covers may cost as low as $80, owners will generally need to pay $200 or more for any larger size cover.
The price range for RV covers can be quite large due to differences in size and materials, but the range can be between $200-$500.
Installing the Cover
Be aware that when you finally make your choice and purchase a car cover, it is not easy to secure such a large garment to such a large vehicle. The process is much smoother if you first place the car cover on a flat surface, undo any straps and know where you are working. It helps just as much if you have a second person helping from the roof of the car while another person works from the ground.
With this information, you can confidently store your RV until your next adventure!