Not sure your truck camper is in the best condition for your upcoming camping trip? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.
This truck camper maintenance checklist is all you need to get your camper back into shape before hitting the open road.
You’ll be able to rest easy knowing that everything on this list has been checked off, and you’re good to go for an amazing camping trip. Use this checklist every time before a trip. It’s guaranteed to keep your camper running smoothly.
Change the Oil
This is especially important if the last time you used the camper was during the winter months, as we recommend that you change your vehicle’s oil one season later (if it had synthetic oil in it during summer).
Add Water and Antifreeze
If using a manual fill system, make sure you can easily open and close valves without resorting to tools or damaging seals. Make sure all level monitors work and ensure those exterior level monitor doodads are working too.
Remove and Clean Screens and Filters
Screens and filters can be covered in leaves and other debris, and cleaning them will improve indoor airflow and reduce the chance of clogs. Use a hose to flush screens and use compressed air or a vacuum to clean the vents.
This is especially important if it has been more than three months since you last did so. Batteries do not retain charge indefinitely and can be flat if left for a period of time.
Make sure engine oil, transmission fluid (if applicable), power steering, axle (reserve) oil, water (antifreeze/coolant), brake fluid (and all others as necessary for your truck camper) are at proper levels.
Search for Any Leaks
Even if you don’t find any leaks, keep an eye open for abnormal odors or condensation on windows. Any signs of these could signify a leak even if you are having trouble finding it.
Prepare the Holding Tanks
Check level indicators, valves, fittings, and hoses for wear. If you’re using a cassette toilet (common in Europe), make sure it is emptied. You don’t want that thing to start growing mold during your trip.
Drain Water Heater
You don’t want to arrive at camp only to find out there is no hot water. Make sure the levels are low enough so they won’t freeze during cold weather camping.
If necessary, use an external charger (cigarette lighter) or connect the truck camper directly to the vehicle’s electrical system (if available) before departure. You can get a power inverter for truck here if needed.
Ensure Appliances Operate Properly
Use each appliance and listen for any unusual sounds which might indicate a problem with the appliance’s bearings or internal wiring. If there is and suggestion of an electric fault you should seem professional help.
Put in Fresh Water and Sewer Chemicals
If you don’t use a cassette toilet (common outside the US), consider using an odor control solution such as Damp Rid or Zero Odor in each holding tank to help reduce odors.
Make sure your shower works. If so equipped, check the regulator/pressure relief valve for proper operation and any leaks at connections. Check mirror positions.
Be certain all exterior mirrors are properly adjusted before leaving on your trip.
Check for Damages
If you haven’t used the camper in a long time, make sure there aren’t any leaks and all doors and latches operate properly. It’s easy to overlook pre-trip camper maintenance if you haven’t used the camper in a while.
Cover your Truck Camper Securely
Make sure it is well-secured to ensure safety if driving through high wind areas such as mountain passes or open plains. Be certain there are no loose items inside that could injure you or damage the interior components.
Remove all items from behind your seat (if possible) to avoid injury during sudden stops or sharp turns.
Pack Up your Gear
Be certain everything needed for your trip is packed inside before departure. Including dishwashing and laundry supplies, cooking utensils and tools, bedding, toiletries, and towels.
Also, canned goods (if so equipped), flashlights and batteries, firewood (if permitted inside the camper), sewer hose and fittings, portable potty/tote tank sweetener, or cassette type toilets if applicable.
Get a Map
Don’t rely on your GPS to get you where you’re going without a paper backup. Also, remember that not all roads are mapped out even though they exist as access routes between towns.
Check Closure Information
During springtime in the North American Rockies for example, many of the smaller campgrounds may be closed due to snow cover which can limit your ability to find legal overnight parking this time of year.
Make sure you have alternate overnight parking plans for such occasions.
Park and Level the Camper
Make sure it is parked on a firm, level surface to ensure its safety and that of your family and everything else inside the camper truck.
Also, make sure to keep pets restrained. Even if you love Fido, if he gets loose and causes an accident, there’s a good chance his days are over.
He could also get lost or hit by other vehicles while roaming free. Be certain to follow all laws regarding pets in campgrounds (some locales consider pet camping to be boat docking).
Secure your Vehicle
Store nearby items such as tools or other equipment which could easily roll away during travel to avoid possible injuries or damage later on when discovering something has rolled underneath the vehicle.
Put Away Food and Drinks
This is especially important when camping in bear country to avoid attracting them to your campsite. Nothing should be left unpacked or loose.
Choose a Route
Make sure you follow all laws pertaining to where you can and cannot go, such as height restrictions for bridges or low clearance zones. Avoid road construction areas if possible.
Also, be aware of the potential slow-downs ahead so they don’t catch you off guard.
So are you Ready to Hit the Road?
So there you have it. You now have a checklist to ensure your truck camper is ready for departure. It’s simple and does the trick.
We hope this article provides you with everything you need to know about checking your RV maintenance status before each journey.
By following this truck camper maintenance checklist, you can avoid any potential problems on your camping trip. So, what are you waiting for? Get out there and enjoy nature! Happy trails!
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