New RV owner or a good old pro, everyone needs a refresher for the winter months. Driving in the snow and winter is never a fun trip, some people just store their RV and wait for the summer months to come, or they just head south to get away from it all. Snow comes unexpectedly and can get you anywhere; this is when you must already be prepared. If you take the time to prepare your RV for the winter season before you leave home, then you won’t be caught off-guard, and you’ll be able to enjoy the white winter wonderland around you. Always remember though if it gets too nasty or you feel uncomfortable you can always pull over and enjoy safety.
Invest in Snow Chains
Getting stuck on a road covered with snow and ice can happen to you whether you are driving a motorhome, fifth wheel, travel trailer, or a small car. But with your set of snow chains, you will be ready to traverse these roads with little problems. You should have snow chains on hand when traveling in the winter because you may always find yourself unexpectedly stuck and stranded and having chains will help you get out and to a safe stop.
Have a filled Tank
Having fuel in your gas tank can be vital to surviving if you get in a worst-case scenario. Never let your tank go under half full and always know how dare your next stop may be. You should also have back up jerry cans for any emergency!
Know How Rear-Wheel Drive Works
Most cars are now front wheel drive, and people have gotten used to regaining control while using front wheel drive. Motorhomes though are rear-wheel drive and using these new tactics can get you in trouble. When you get in a slide, things get scary quick, while you may be used to driving out of skids to regain traction doing this with a rear-wheel drive vehicle may worsen the situation. Just take everything slow and carefully giving plenty of room to you and the other drivers. Remember to read up on how rear-wheel driving is different.
Know How Motorhomes & RV Trailers Handle Differently
Sliding off the road can cause a lot of damage, even more so to your motorhome. Getting towed out of the ditch will come at a price, but the twisting and stress of the skid may cause structural damage and be an expensive fix. When you are towing on ice covered roads, you are in prime jack-knife conditions. The trailer is pushing you out of control even though you have tire chains, the trailer will take you where it wants.
Use your Best Judgement
GO SLOW and take your time. Doing everything from braking to steering slowly and steadily will minimize any skidding and will create a safer ride. You should also always use your low beams; this will reduce reflection off the snow and give you the best visibility.
When RVing in the winter make sure to bring emergency items, some ideas are listed below:
• Tire chains
• Cash for unexpected fees or emergencies
• Extra blankets
• Extra warm clothing
• Sleeping bags rated for zero degree temperatures
• Weather band radio
• 5 gallons of drinking water in heated storage space
• A “white gas” camping stove (does not require propane)
• Gasoline-powered generator
• Extra propane tanks
• Extra food
• Solar charging panels are good for re-charging house batteries
Have safe travels and remember to always be on alert! From your friends DakotaPost.