The Expert Guide to RV Storage

Whether you’re cruising in a monster 40-foot motorhome or a petite, easy-to-park Class B, it’s crucial to take good care of your home away from home.

You need somewhere safe to park your precious rig when you’re not exploring lush pine-studded mountains or pristine glacial lakes.

Even if you’ve got sufficient space at home, she’ll still be exposed to HOA fines, inclement weather, and potential theft. Investing in a secure storage facility is a surefire way to protect your toy for your next adventure.

This in-depth RV storage guide covers what to look for in a facility and how to choose the right option for you. We’ll then throw in a few pro tips to help you prepare your RV for storage.

Benefits of Investing in Indoor Storage for RVs

While indoor RV storage is an ongoing expense, and it could save you a considerable sum in the long run. You’ve already spent stacks of cash purchasing your toy (not to mention all those endless little upgrades), so it makes sense to safeguard the investment.

Here are the three key benefits of an indoor RV storage facility.

Protect Your RV from Natural Elements

Even with minor hail damage, most RVs sell for as little as 25-40% of their original value. However, expose your rig to a ferocious North Texas hailstorm, and you’re looking at a complete write-off. Wayward branches from gusty storms, water intrusion from torrential rain, and prolonged UV exposure can all cause significant damage to your cherished RV.

Your insurance might come to the table. But you can’t count on it. Typical T&Cs include a slew of sneaky clauses to wriggle out of payment—have you read the fine print in full?

And even if you get a payout, you don’t want to go through the heartache and hassle of a weather-damaged RV. Storing your prized possession in a sturdy, enclosed space will protect it from the elements and keep it in tip-top shape.

Protect Your RV from Theft

Motorhomes go missing. While statistics are hard to come by (stolen RVs get lumped into automobile theft), anecdotal evidence suggests it’s a prevalent problem throughout America.

Contrary to popular belief, RVs rarely disappear from the campground. The bad guys would instead target isolated rigs with minimal witnesses. A rig stored on a suburban driveway or unsecured rural plot could prove all-to-tempting for a would-be RV thief.

Theft isn’t the only threat. RV break-ins occur far more frequently than GTM (Grand Theft Motorhome).

To keep weight down, RV manufacturers use flimsy materials that burglars can easily smash through. It could take a robber as little as seven minutes to clear out your RV and scurry off with thousands of dollars of loot.

But if you invest in a lockable indoor storage suite with 24/7 CCTV surveillance, the chances of theft or break-in are virtually zero.

Convenience

Have you ever tried backing a 40-foot fifth-wheeler into a narrow driveway from a busy inner-city street?

Any RVer will find it a panic-inducing ordeal. Even small RV owners with spacious suburban plots can have trouble getting their toys in and out of home storage.

Sadly, many part-timers don’t hit the road as often as they’d like because they don’t want to deal with the pressure of parking it at home. While high-tech gizmos like motorized trailer dollies can streamline the process, home storage is still one heck of a hassle.

What’s more, most RVers don’t live anywhere near their favorite campsite or lake. Navigating your cumbersome rig through inner-city traffic is a surefire way to start your weekend getaway on the wrong foot.

However, if you invest in a good RV storage facility, you’ll get wide drive-through bays for hassle-free parking. The best options lie outside dense urban areas and close to popular natural attractions—no more negotiating tricky left turns in bumper-to-bumper traffic.

Maintain Your Curb Appeal

Our home is our castle. We spend massive wads of cash and countless labor hours honing its exterior aesthetics, toiling away on the landscaping, and fine-tuning the façade. Perfecting your curb appeal is no easy feat, from slated stone driveways to extravagant letterboxes and immaculately manicured shrubs.

And there’s nothing like a big ol’ RV parked out front to ruin the look.

Think the RV doesn’t diminish your curb appeal?

The folks next door won’t necessarily agree. A nosy neighbor could take offense to your ‘unsightly’ rig and report you to the HOA. Most HOAs have strict rules governing what you can do with your exterior, and they are not afraid to dish out hefty fines.

In any case, your spouse probably doesn’t want an RV clogging up your limited driveway space. It’ll make parking tight for your everyday ride and inhibit pedestrian access to your front door.

The easiest way to protect your curb appeal and avoid HOA headaches is to park your RV in an external storage facility.

Adventuring can be tiring, but keeping your toys secure shouldn’t be. Protect your pride and joy from harm with one of our hassle-free storage units.

Key Features to Look for in Indoor RV Storage Facilities

We’ve covered why it’s worth storing your precious rig indoors. But what makes an RV storage facility great?

Keep an eye out for these key features.

Security and Surveillance

Sure. You could save some coin by storing your RV in Farmer Joe’s barnyard from Craigslist. But will she be safe?

A reputable RV storage facility has perimeter fencing to keep the wrongdoers at bay. Don’t settle for a low, scalable wall. A fully-enclosed lockable suite keeps other facility users away from your rig and provides extra protection should a burglar break-in. Plus, it eliminates the possibility of someone accidentally backing into your RV.

Easy parking access’s importance depends on your RV’s size and your confidence behind the wheel. If you’re nervous about maneuvering a big rig through a cramped lot, insist on something more spacious. Small RV owners—or seasoned long vehicle-driving veterans—will feel more comfortable negotiating a tight space.

While on-site water and electricity offer convenience, they’re not 100% essential. Most campsites have water refill points, and there are ways to maintain your batteries without electrical access.

Do Your Research

As the RV lifestyle continues to blossom, storage facilities are sprouting up to meet demand. But not all companies are reputable or offer good value for money.

Here’s how you can sort the wheat from the chaff:

  • With a written list of your top priorities on hand, browse the internet to identify appropriate facilities in your preferred area.
  • Compare the facilities with your priorities and shortlist the top three contenders.
  • Examine their monthly rates and read through online reviews to gauge who’s offering the best value for money.

Consider Premium RV Storage

If your extravagant rig is your true pride and joy, and it’s worth forking out for extra protection. Budget storage facilities expose your RV to theft, break-ins, and catastrophic weather events.

A secure, enclosed unit in a premium facility will remove the stress of separating from your favorite possession. By investing a little extra each month, you can rest assured your toy will be just as you left it when it comes time to play.

Also, premium storage units are more convenient. Wider driveways and pull-through units make parking your vehicle easier than ever. Not to mention all the extra amenities designed to make your life easier.

Sure. You could save some coin by storing your RV in Farmer Joe’s barnyard from Craigslist. But will she be safe?

A reputable RV storage facility has perimeter fencing to keep the wrongdoers at bay. Don’t settle for a low, scalable wall. A fully-enclosed lockable suite keeps other facility users away from your rig and provides extra protection should a burglar break-in. Plus, it eliminates the possibility of someone accidentally backing into your RV.

The high-tech storage haunts have a comprehensive WiFi-enabled security camera system with 24/7 monitoring. Much like a witness, a CCTV system provides a powerful deterrent against would-be robbers

Finally, evaluate the lighting. Not only does a well-lit facility deter lawbreakers, but it also makes parking your RV less stressful.

24/7 Access

There’s not much point in putting your RV in storage if you can’t access it when needed. Whether fishing pre-dawn bass or returning late to maximize leisure time, around-the-clock access can be a huge boon.

The best RV storage facilities provide access through a custom-built cell phone app. Instead of memorizing a pin code and activating a keypad, you can use a secure app to obtain remote access—it’s a convenient, high-tech solution.

Easy Parking

As we know, a significant pro of an RV storage unit is stress-free parking. But not all facilities are created equal.

Look for a spacious complex with ample room to maneuver your RV. If the turning circle feels a tad tight, parking will become arduous, and you could ding your rig.

Good lighting helps simplify the parking process. Ensure your designated area is well lit—nobody likes backing up a rig in the dark. Innovative storage facilities use motion sensor floodlights.

Although not strictly a deal-breaker, it’s worth considering the door type. Roll-up doors don’t require any clearance outside the storage suite. However, this benefit is redundant in an RV unit because the exterior must remain clear. A well-planned facility will install outward swinging doors, which are more user-friendly and provide extra room inside the unit.

Electricity

Whether you’re rocking old-school AGMs or light-‘n’-easy lithium, you’ve spent a sizeable sum on your RV battery bank.

To keep your investment in good working order, you must maintain the batteries at an appropriate state of charge. Let the voltage drop too low or climb too high, which could cause irreversible damage.

Of course, you can’t top them up with solar when parked indoors. Therefore, the safest option is to use a trickle charger (AKA smart charger) to maintain a steady-state of charge. This is why our premium storage solutions include electrical access.

As you can see, a high-end storage facility will boast a whole host of nifty high-tech features to make life easier and safeguard your RV.

But do you need them?

The more bells and whistles you receive, the higher the monthly premium. If budget is a top priority, you should think carefully about what you need.

Here’s how to choose the perfect RV storage unit for you.

Identify the Location You Need

‘Location, location, location,’ as they say in the real estate game. Although you don’t need waterfront views, a strategic location is crucial for the weekend warrior.

Choose an inner-city facility, and you’ll lament having to tow a big trailer through peak hour traffic. Find a bargain-basement complex way out in the boonies, and you’ll waste precious hours (not to mention gas) every time you take your rig for a spin.

The ad-hoc RV explorer should store their ride close to their favorite campsite. That way, you can cruise over in your elegant, fuel-efficient car and begin your RV adventures with minimal fuss.

But for a long-term RV dweller storing a rig for multiple months, location isn’t the main priority. As you’ll only need to drive there a few times per year, you could exchange a convenient location for a lower rate.

Make a List of Your Top Priorities

Got a cheap old RV you can afford to lose?

Then a self-enclosed indoor unit with state-of-the-art security might be overkill. You’ll get lower rates if you park your ride in the open air without round-the-clock monitoring.

While 24/7 access is a nifty plus, not everyone needs it. If you can’t picture yourself leaving on an impromptu after-dark adventure, then de-prioritize this perk.

How to Prepare Your RV for an RV Storage Facility?

While a top-notch facility will keep your rig in tip-top shape, there are still a few things you need to do to prepare your RV for storage.

How to disconnect an RV battery for storage

Don’t fret if you lack access to an electrical outlet. There’s another way to stop your batteries from running flat.

Even if you turn off all your appliances, your batteries gradually lose charge. A better option is to charge them up to full and unplug them at the positive and negative terminals. Store them in a cool, dry place—batteries don’t like temperature extremes.

How to keep moisture out of RV in storage

Although indoor storage will prevent water intrusion, it won’t stop humidity. If you’re storing your rig in a humid climate, place a few moisture-absorbing tubs around the interior to prevent mold.

For long-term storage, defrost your fridge and clean it thoroughly, wiping it dry once you’re done. Leave the fridge turned off and the door wide open to prevent black mold from proliferating inside. A few squirts of vanilla essence will add a pleasant sweet smell, while bi-carb soda can help prevent odors.

How to Prepare Your RV for Summer Storage

Here’s how to organize your RV for storage in the sweltering summer months.

  • If you can’t afford to store your RV indoors, purchase a breathable, waterproof cover to protect it from UV rays and rain.
  • Close all your curtains to shade the interior, and use a reflective windshield cover to prevent heat-related cracks on the dash.
  • For dry climate summer storage, plonk a five-gallon bucket full of water in the middle of the floor—the extra moisture stops the wood from drying out.
  • Sanitize your fresh water tank and drain it. Empty your black water tank.
  • Crack a roof vent or window (not enough to let rain in) and open all your cupboards to improve airflow.
  • Position your wheels on a wide plywood plank (or jack up your rig) to avoid those dreaded flat spots.
  • Shade the tires with tire covers (a tarp will do in a pinch) to protect them from the sun.

How to Prepare Your RV for Winter Storage

Winter storage is a new beast when living in a sub-zero climate. To prepare your RV for the onset of frost, you need to take steps to “winterize” it.

  • Adopt the tips mentioned above to minimize mold, protect your tires, block UV rays, and maintain your battery.
  • Fill your fuel tank to avoid harmful condensation. Add a fuel stabilizer and run the motor for a few minutes to ensure it spreads throughout the engine.
  • Drain all your tanks (fresh, grey, and the water heater) to stop ice from cracking the pipes, and empty your black water tank.
  • Running anti-freeze through the freshwater system helps protect your delicate plumbing.

Rodents and squirrels may seek warm refuge in your RV. Once settled, they have a nasty habit of chewing wiring and creating a monumental mess. To keep mice out of your RV during winter storage, seal off any potential entry points and employ the usual rodent deterrents: moth balls, dryer sheets, essential oils, and mouse traps.

Find the Right RV Storage Solution for You

While you could save cash squeezing your rig into your driveway, home storage is a risky business. Theft, break-ins, and exposure to the elements can wreak havoc on your prized possession. Then you’ve got the headache of tight turning circles, pesky HOA fines, and diminished exterior aesthetics.

RV storage with RecNation will give you peace of mind and maximize your limited free time. Located near picturesque natural attractions, our storage facilities are secure, convenient, and easy to use. And with a broad range of indoor/outdoor lots available, there’s an option for every budget.

Be free on the road and secure at home. Contact us today.