We all enjoy those warm Spring and Summer days in our RVs, but when the colder weather comes and we winterize our campers, we should all be aware that mold and excess moisture can creep in occasionally, and need to be treated; not ignored, otherwise permanent damage can arise.
Mold and mildew appear when there’s damp in your RV, combined with poor air flow, and normally form during the times when your travel trailer is in winterized and/or in storage. Excess humidity is the prime cause of fungal growth. The other things of course is that mold and mildew can be the cause of some potentially serious health problems, for instance, they can create respiratory issues, and make asthma and allergies much worse.
Molds can be stubborn and tough to get rid of, and once they take root in your RV, they have a devastating effect on any resale value. For these reasons, we’ve pulled together some ideas on how to keep your camper fungus-free. Use as many of these methods as you can; it will make you RV experience much more pleasurable, safer, and give your trailer a much longer life span for you to enjoy.
Preventing RV mold: some hints and tips
- During storage: In the Fall, when you winterize your RV, find a cover that will protect it from the elements while still allowing it to breathe and vent. Specialized RV tarps can be priced a little on the high-side, they’re your a great investment and one of the best prevention methods to avoid mold.
- Inspect regularly: Give your RV the once-over on a regular basis, especially while its in storage over the winter. Check cupboards, drawers, piping, roof and ceiling, and upholstery to ensure there’s no moisture build-up. Also check walls, ceiling, floors, windows, and doors for cracks or gaps in the seals that could let moisture in. If there is moisture, clean it up; if there are gaps, block or fix them.
- Dehumidify: Dehumidifiers reduce the moisture inside your RV, helping to keep it free from mold. If you have power to your unit, a small dehumidifier will do the job nicely, but if you’re unhooked, desiccant dehumidifiers like Dry-Z-Air will also get the job done – they use specialized crystals to keep moisture at bay and require no electricity; we recommend using one for every 1o’ of your camper, but remember to change them regularly.
- Use good ventilation: Mold can occur due to condensation that has never been able to dry out. Open windows and vents to get the air flowing if weather permits. Remember that an unventilated bathroom is the perfect habitat for mold and mildew as it’s a damp environment, so open the door during storage to ensure the room stays dry.
- Use a fan: To keep air moving throughout your RV, run an oscillating fan. This will keep air moving and enable humidity to be dispersed, avoiding condensation buildup.
- Wipe wet surfaces down: If you see condensation on any of your RV’s surfaces, wipe it up right away, especially before going into storage, and when you check it during the off season too.
If you do find moisture-related fungi forming in your RV, ensure you thoroughly clean the area – and indeed the entire unit – to remove any spores. You can invest in an air purifier so others don’t breath-in spores until the mold has well-and-truly gone. But remember, prevention is always the best mold fighting technique, so try and make that your highest priority.
If you have problems with moisture or mold in your RV, get in touch with Tri-Crown RV and we’ll be happy to help and advise you on the best way forward.