Keeping your RV Plugged all Winter. Quick Tips

Should you leave your RV plugged in all winter long? What are the consequences, and if you leave your motorhome connected through the winter what should you do to look after it? This article gives some basic tips to RV owners who are interested in these questions. We will focus only on the power cord and some electrical portions of winterizing!

Whether you are a full time RV’er, or an owner who likes to leave his home on wheels in storage for the season, both of you should take the time to check over this quick to-do list for your RV’s power cord and connections every week while plugged in:


Inspect the cord you will be using for cracks, cuts, or signs of burned connections.

Burned up connection on a 30A cordset...

Burned up connection on a 30A cordset… Source: http://blog.boats.com/

A cord that has cracks, deep abrasions, or cuts has the possibility of shorting out and starting a fire, or worse, electrocuting someone who happens to pick it up. (Ouch!)

Burned connectors can mean a few different things, but it is important to immediately replace the cord if you see signs of burned plastic or metal discoloration on the plug / connector.

When checking on your second home, you should always feel the cord by the plug / connector ends and make sure they are not overheating. Significant heat is a good sign the cord is not delivering electricity correctly.

Make sure your cord is free from submersion…

Keeping a power cord connection from laying in the water using a bucket

Keeping a power cord connection from laying in the water using a bucket

It may seem silly we have to say this, but please keep your cords out of submerged water. Leaving a cord underwater can deteriorate them much faster, and if you have a cut or tear in the cord you may get a little shock.

Some people like to use buckets with notches cut out to hold the cord above the ground. This may not be the most attractive option, but it is cheap and easy!

Check your RV batteries!

chassis-battery-RV-plugged-in-all-winter

RV Chassis battery picture source: http://blog.rv.net/

We can’t stress enough the importance of actually going back to your RV and checking the batteries (both chassis and engine). We recommend a short look-over at least once a week to make sure the battery fluid levels are topped off and the connections are clean. This step alone can save you over $1,000 in repairs. Like this trip to the repair shop by a forum member:

“Hope none of the rest of you learn the hard way like meĀ $600.00 worth of batteries, and $350.00 to repair the charger…”


These simple steps can help you get the most out of storing your RV for winter, without damage! Remember to always buy a cord from a reputable manufacturer that is designed for this type of use.

Until next time Rv’ers!

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