How to Solve Common RV Problems

Imagine hitting the road on a long-awaited vacation in your RV. Your family is excited and you can’t wait to start making memories. But, before you get to your destination you notice something isn’t quite right. This could be the thing that ruins your trip. Or, if you’re familiar with the common RV problems, it can be something that you take in stride.

RVs are pretty much a house on wheels. That means that they can run into problems the same way that your car or house can. It can either be something that catches you off guard and stresses you out. Or, it can be something you learn about so you can take it in stride. Whether you are just contemplating buying an RV or if you’ve been traveling in one for years it’s good to know how to solve the common RV problems. That way you can enjoy every trip that you have planned.


Issues with your heating and cooling

The ability to control the temperature in your RV is one of people’s favorite things when they upgrade from a tent to an RV. You no longer have to spend nights sweating in the summer or freezing in the fall or winter. You can camp all year round because you have the luxury of an HVAC system working for you. And, it’s all good, until it isn’t. If you notice problems with your heating or cooling there are three things that you can easily check on your own:

  1. Air filters – It’s important to change your air filter at regular times because it helps keep the air clean that you are breathing inside your RV. And, it’s also important because when the air can’t flow through the air filter because it’s clogged with gunk then it can be hard on your system. You may notice that it isn’t working properly or seems to be struggling.
  2. Thermostat – While it seems like the problem is with your HVAC system it could really be with your thermostat. A simple DIY way to test your thermostat is to detach the thermostat and bypass it to see if your system kicks on. If it does then you just might need a new thermostat.
  3. Freon Leak – Freon is what’s in your AC system to cool the air. If there is a leak you will notice ice deposits around the unit itself. Sometimes you can remedy the situation temporary by adding freon. Or, if you can find the leak you can repair the place that it’s leaking from.

Issues with the plumbing

Another luxury that RVers love is having their own bathroom to use. That means we don’t like it when problems pop up with our plumbing. If you find that you are experiencing a clog in your pipes you can try to remedy them the same way you would a clog at your house. Start by pouring boiling water down the drain. If that doesn’t clear it then try a flexible wand to see if you can clear the clog.

If you aren’t getting water coming in the problem could be as simple as not having enough water in the tank. That sounds simple enough, but it’s always best to check the easy things first. If that’s not the problem then it could be from a kink in the supply line, clog in the line, or an air leak in the plumbing.

If the problem still isn’t fixed it could be a problem with your water pump. Many times fixing it will just involve replacing a part, instead of the whole thing.

Related: Don’t Let Your RV Trip TankEverything you need to know about RV tanks.


Issues with the slideouts

Everyone loves slideouts because they provide more space inside the RV. However, any time you have moving parts you have on more area that could have a problem down the line. If you find that you’re not able to move your slide-out double check the lock arms. You’ll also want to make sure that your RV is level to make it easy on the mechanisms. It could also be because of a blown fuse or problems with the wiring.

Issues with the hot water heater

If you aren’t getting hot water there are two things you want to check right off the bat. The first is to make sure you turned the valve back on after having it winterized. The second is that you aren’t drawing hot water to another sink or faucet in the RV.

After that, you will want to see if there is a problem with the water heater itself. If it’s making a whining sound that is high pitched, it could be an issue with the heating element. This usually means there are deposits building up within the water heater. You can also check the pilot light and the thermostat on the heater.


You spot a leak

It’s important to regularly check your RV for leaks because if they go undetected it could mean water damage which can be costly to repair. Correct any leaks right when you find them to avoid having larger issues to deal with down the road.

Electrical problems

The first thing to check if you are having electrical problems with your RV is the breakers or fuse system (depending on the age and model of your RV). After that, you can check your outside power source. The problem could be not with your RV but with the source of power.

Remember, that just like with your house or car the best way to avoid having problems with your RV is to keep up on the maintenance. It’s always easier to keep something working properly than to fix it once it’s having problems. If you have questions or need to have your RV serviced you can contact the service department at Sky River RV.

PASO ROBLES  | 805.226.9292
2525 Theatre Drive
Paso Robles, CA 93446

In Beautiful Wine Country, a short drive from Bakersfield and Fresno.

PISMO BEACH | 805.779.7700
444 So. Dolliver
Pismo Beach, CA 93449

With all of its RV parks and famous Sand Dunes and Beaches.

ATASCADERO | 805.462.2164
1200 El Camino Real
Atascadero, CA 93422

Halfway point between Los Angeles and San Francisco and right off the 101.

Back to top