Don’t be fooled. Despite any sales pitch you may have heard touting maintenance-free-this or no-worry-that, Your RV will require regular care and maintenance!!!!
If you still have doubts about the validity of this statement, or you just want to believe in magic, check out a few used RVs. Most over 10 years old will show signs of water damage. Even many of the newer models will have some damage. This common damage is just one direct result of poor or no maintenance. The good news is the damage is entirely preventable. So, why does this happen?
The answer starts with the sales process. Many RV salespeople are unknowledgeable or unwilling to point out what needs to be done. Often it is out of fear that the truth may ruin a sale. The result is over-promised product performance and/or warranty coverage.
“No RV is maintenance free. Period.”
A prime example of over-promising is the roof material. Warranty coverage for the main roof material component is often 12 years or longer and the material component is promoted as maintenance free. While this may be true for the roof material component itself, salespeople infer it is a maintenance- free roof structure and the entire structure is covered by a 12-year warranty against any defects.
THIS IS WRONG! The truth is, only the component material (the roof layer) is maintenance-free and covered by the warranty. The roof structure is not. The sealants are not. Labor to repair it often is not. The warranty is usually limited to free replacement material. The labor costs are on you. Subsequent related damage is on you. Most of the expense ends up being yours!
All RVs are affected. How many RVs have you seen without roof vents? TV antennas? Plumbing vents? Or other roof-mounted items? Each of them required a hole in the roof material (not covered by the 12-year warranty). Each of these items now requires sealant maintenance. The owner, however, has been convinced that there is nothing to worry about and therefore does nothing since the RV roof is maintenance-free and has a 12-year warranty! This is a recipe for an expensive disaster (and quite a headache). Don’t let it happen to you!
How do you protect your RV investment?
All RV owners should budget at least 2% to 4% of their RVs purchase price for annual maintenance expenses. Read your RV owner’s manual for specific maintenance recommendations and follow the suggested maintenance schedule. Don’t risk your RV investment by ignoring required maintenance. Your RV’s maintenance is your responsibility. Maintenance is to your RV what an oil change is to your car…without it, bad things will happen!!!
Think about it…have you ever driven a maintenance-free car? (No oil changes, tire pressure, tune-ups, tire rotation, inspections, brakes, etc.?) Ever lived in a maintenance free home? (No furnace cleaning, window caulking, chimney sweeping, deck waterproofing, driveway sealing, etc.?) Ever owned maintenance free appliances? (No cleaning, adjusting, servicing, failures, etc.?) How many things have gone wrong on any of those items in your lifetime? How much hassle was it to get them fixed? How much did it cost?
Maintenance & repair are part of life. Service support is required. Make it a part of your decision.