Whether you’ve been staying in a campground or boondocking on public land, when it’s time to leave, you have to prepare your travel trailer for the journey. While getting the trailer ready is not a complicated procedure, there are steps that must be taken in preparation for your trip. Use these tips as a checklist to make sure you’ve done everything that needs doing before you hit the road.
#1 Lower everything on the roof. Bring down antennas. Close vents.
#2 If you’re at a campground, disconnect utilities. If you have a hose hooked up to the sewer, dump your black and grey water tanks one last time, then put away your sewer hose. Unplug your electrical connection and put away the cord. Unhook your water hose from the city water connection and from the trailer as well. Be sure the hose is drained and put it away.
#3 Retract your awning completely.
#4 Pull in all slides.
#5 Pick up and put away any equipment (rugs, chairs, tables, grills, tools, hoses, etc.) you have outside.
#6 Consider dumping contents of fresh water tank if water will be easy to replace at your destination. Especially if you are close to your maximum weight, you might want to travel without the extra pounds a tank full of water will add.
#7 Make sure stove and oven are turned off.
#8 Make sure all faucets are turned off.
#9 Make sure all interior and exterior lights are turned off.
#10 Make sure heater and air conditioner are turned off.
#11 Close windows.
#12 Latch interior cabinet doors and close drawers securely.
#13 Put away anything sitting on counter tops, tables, or floors. You don’t want any objects sliding, flying, or crashing while the trailer is in motion. We find storing larger items in the bathtub or on the bed keeps them secure during travel.
#14 After all chores are done inside and everyone has exited the trailer, close the exterior door(s) securely and lock up.
#15 Move steps to the travel position.
#16 Hitch trailer to tow vehicle. (If you need more information about hitching a trailer to a tow vehicle, read my post “Hitched.”)
#17 Connect stabilizers and install sway controller. Made sure all components are in their proper positions and all pins are installed.
#18 Plug in cord that controls trailer’s lights.
#19 Check inflation of trailer’s tires. Add air if necessary.
#20 Remove chocks from wheels.
#21 Walk around rig and tow vehicle for a final inspection. Are any belongings outside the trailer? Are all utilities unhooked? Are all windows and vents closed? Is the awning retracted? Are all antennas down? Is the campfire dead out? Are steps secured for travel? Is campsite clean? Make sure everything is picked up, put away, closed, latched, and ready to go.
#22 Check lights on the back of trailer to make sure all are working properly. Check running lights, brake lights, right turn indicator, and left turn indicator.
There! You’ve done it! You’ve gotten your travel trailer ready for the road. You can start your trip confident that you’ve taken care of everything that needs to be done before you begin your journey. For tips on general trip preparation and how to get your tow vehicle ready to go, see my post “10 Things to Do Before You Hit the Road.”
If you have RV experience, what tips can you offer for getting a travel trailer or fifth wheel ready for the road? Please leave a response in the comments below.
I took the photos in this post.