You’ve got the interior of your RV right where you want it, having added all the best upgrades and modifications. From the latest RV GPS to an upgraded RV sofa sleeper to custom-built kitchen cabinets, you spared neither time nor expense when it came to making your rig your very own.
So why should things be any different when it comes to your RV’s exterior?
Learning how to maintain your RV’s exterior to keep it clean and in good, working order is one thing — and an important thing, too! Here are our guides to cleaning and maintaining your RV’s exterior surfaces and awning canopy.
But whether you drive a camper trailer or a Class C motorhome, almost every rig can benefit from a few essential exterior RV upgrades. In fact, some of the best and most amazing RV modifications we’ve seen have nothing to do with upholstery or cabinets, or even the high-tech gadgets we use to make our navigation and camping experiences more efficient.
So without further ado, here are some of the best exterior RV upgrade ideas we’ve come across for your upcoming remodeling project.
RV Exterior Improvements Guide
Which RV remodels are most worthwhile, and what remodeling supplies will you need? We’re here to help!
1. External LED Lighting
Want to make your RV’s exterior literally shine?
Although many rigs come equipped with exterior and awning lights, if you drive an older model, they may not be long-lasting, high-efficiency LEDs. It’s a small up-front investment that will easily pay for itself over time, since LEDs have an expected lifespan of 50,000 hours on average!
Plus, bright exterior lights aren’t just pretty to look at. They can also increase your safety, both when you’re coming back to a dark campsite after a long day of adventuring and while you’re fast asleep inside. For one thing, you won’t trip over your outdoor camping chairs, and well-lit rig isn’t one that burglars are likely to target!
2. Fixing RV Trim and Moldings
Water leaks are one of the leading causes of RV damage and can easily turn your rig from a vacation getaway mobile to a soggy, expensive-to-fix mess. So getting ahead of the problem by repairing any old, cracked-looking exterior RV moldings and trim, especially around your camper door and other moving parts and seams.
Looking for a quick fix until you can take the time to do a proper upgrade? Dicor sells this excellent Seal-Tite corner tape which will keep water out in a pinch. But don’t delay on making proper improvements. Trust me, redoing your moldings is a lot easier (and cheaper) than dealing with internal water damage after the fact!
RV Modifications and Upgrades
Here are some more clever RV modifications and upgrades for you to consider.
3. Always-Connected Sewer Hose Modification
Hate having to disconnect and reconnect your sewer hose every single time you need to dump your tanks? We love this upgrade idea from Love Your RV, which connects the sewer hose permanently with your waste tank and makes for easy dumping every single time — no more need for that once-a-week decoupling nightmare!
This is an especially good upgrade for squeamish RVers who don’t want to get stranded up… well, you know where without a paddle.
DIY RV Upgrades
Feeling handy? Here are some DIY exterior RV upgrades to try.
4. Installing Fiberglass Siding
If you’re not a big fan of washing your RV’s exterior often, installing fiberglass siding is one of the best RV upgrades you can make. That’s because slick, smooth, pristine-white fiberglass doesn’t hold onto dirt as well as the matte aluminum your RV might feature.
A ten-foot roll of fiberglass siding will cost you a little more than $200, and can be found in either bright white or black if you want to give your rig’s exterior an edgy twist! Although this is one of the pricier RV aftermarket upgrades, you won’t have to do it more than once, and it’ll really lower your maintenance time in the long run. And when compared to the cost of professionally painting an RV exterior… well, you might even say it’s a bargain!
RV Performance Upgrades
Some of the most essential RV upgrades aren’t necessarily the flashiest. These modifications will increase your rig’s performance in the long run — which is a worthy investment, we think!
5. RV Suspension Upgrades
Your RV’s suspension system is important — especially if you drive a hefty Class A diesel pusher (or, on the other end of the spectrum, if you’re trying to keep your weight ratio right in a compact travel trailer).
On that note, Trailer Life has an excellent guide on all you need to know about upgrading a variety of different types of RV suspensions, whether your rig features leaf suspensions, tandem- or triple-axel systems.
Depending on the exact design of your RV, there are a lot of RV suspension upgrade devices ready-made for relatively easy installation, like the MORryde SRE2-733 SRE4000 Suspension System, the Lippert 279688 Equa-Flex Suspension Upgrade Kit for Tandem Axle 6K – 8K, and the MORryde UO12-016 Heavy Duty Shackle Upgrade Kit, CRE3000 / Stock / Equaflex 2.25″ Shackles for Tandem Axles. Always consult your RV’s user guide or owner’s manual before tackling any major structural component replacements or upgrades, and if in doubt, check with a professional to ensure you’ve got the right modification device for your rig!
From relatively simple changes like external lighting to bigger investments like new exterior siding or suspension systems, exterior RV upgrades are one of the best ways to prolong your rig’s lifespan and continue camping in a safe, comfortable rig for many years to come. Depending on your current budget and available time investment, you can easily take on a small and simple project — or get more serious by hiring professional help or taking on a multi-week remodeling project.
Either way, take your time and do what you can; it’s your rig, after all, so you’re the boss. Happy upgrading, campers!
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