How to be fire-safe in your RV

RV Fire Safety Tips

RV life is certainly a simpler, more compact, and more exciting way of living. Some considerations are involved with RV life, as are different considerations for a permanent location. RVs are not built the same as a foundation home, as you already know. RVs are built by hand for maneuverability. RVs are not built for long-term living, but, of course, many RVers successfully live in them full-time.

One of the important considerations when staying or living in an RV is fire safety. While most RVers never have to experience such a terrible event, fires do happen much more frequently than we would like. In fact, between 2018 and 2020 U.S. fire departments recorded over 4,000 RV fires resulting in 15 deaths and over $60 million in property loss. With statistics like these, it’s worth putting in a little extra time and effort to be safe and sound in your RV.

Here you’ll find some of the most important guidelines for good safety practices.

Have a plan

The first rule of fire safety in an RV is having an escape plan that everyone knows and practices.

Your family should practice unhooking any hitch that the RV may have (RV, fifth-wheel, or trailer) and know exactly where and how to use the escape window (two are better, one front and one back). They also need to be able to locate and function all fire extinguishers.

If you are boondocking or are staying some distance away from civilization, check out your GPS location and the cell phone signal coverage in advance, and bear in mind that fire departments are not as numerous as camping places.

Prevention is key

Installing a fire suppression system and having a minimum of three fire extinguishers means that you will be well prepared if the worst happens. Also, consider having a tire monitoring system that will alert for a brake fire and an engine suppression system. If you do a lot of mountain driving, both of those will put your mind at ease.

The same can be said about smoke and carbon monoxide detectors as well as a propane leak detector if your rig uses propane.

That said, propane use has its own set of safety measures along with its great practicality, especially for boondocking.  Take the time to understand how a propane system works.

Pay attention to the electrics and appliances

Changing the way you use electricity in your RV will also reduce the risks of a fire outbreak.

  • All electrical cords and connections are potential fire starters if worn or damaged so checking them regularly is a good idea. Also check your pipes, gas cylinders, fittings, and connectors.
  • Store flammable materials in cool, secure spaces. This applies to the location of anything combustible and your stove, heater, and 12 volt lights. It’s worth being far more cautious in an RV than elsewhere.
  • Be careful not to overload electrical outlets. It’s good practice to use vents and exhaust fans when cooking and never leave a space heater unattended. Also, keep an eye on the refrigerator, which is the most common cause of an interior fire.
  • Never run a generator inside as it emits dangerous fumes. Generators should also be refueled only after a cooldown and exhaust pipes angled away from the rig and separated from anything combustible.

Developing good safety habits and inspections will not only mean a safer RV for you and your family, but they will also save you money in the long run.

At Mountainbound Custom Storage and RV Park near Mountain Home, ID, you will have access to our on-site concierge service with professionals who will be able to carry out inspections and refer you to any repair or upgrade services you may need. With our onsite staff, extensive security measures, and a serious variety of amenities, you will be getting the best of the best from a smart park unique to the RV world. Call or email us for more details.

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