Keep You & Your RV Safe from Theft – Tips by LATCH.IT
Although living in an RV full-time can be an exciting and rewarding lifestyle option, it also has its own special concerns. One of which is theft. Whether you’re camping in commercial campsites or boondocking in the wilderness, it’s crucial to take precautions to ensure your safety, your belongings, and your mental well-being.
Here are some suggestions to help you stay safe from theft while living full-time in a RV:
Always be aware of your surroundings. Here are some things to ask yourself:
- Are there suspicious-looking campers in the area?
- Are there adequate security measures at your chosen campsite such as CCTV cameras, security personnel, or gated entrances?
- Does the camping site have good lighting that can somehow prevent the occurrence of theft?
- Are there routine inspections being carried out by local law enforcers?
This may take an “extra mile” of research, may seem like overkill, and borderline “paranoia” for some. But it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Be overly cautious when boondocking or parking in isolated areas. If you see or experience any suspicious activity, report it to the authorities immediately. Remember to always trust your instincts and take the necessary steps to protect yourself, your property, and your peace of mind. Trust your instincts, if something doesn’t feel right, then it probably isn’t.
Keep a low profile and your valuables out of sight.
- Avoid drawing attention to yourself by being discreet about your valuables.
- Keep jewelry, electronics, and other expensive items out of sight and out of reach.
- Refrain from discussing your plans or itinerary with total strangers.
Secure your RV and never let your guard down.
Shocking how RV campers can be so meticulous in choosing a very secure campsite but somehow become complacent when parked in other areas. Staggering statistics show that theft happens mostly outside of the campgrounds such as in private residences or in restaurant parking lots. So, it’s important to be vigilant even in seemingly safe places.
Install high security locks on all your doors, windows, and compartments. Needless to say, keep them locked whenever you are not inside. Did you know that most, if not all, RVs come from the dealer with default door (OEM) locks and CH751 keys that are known to be in possession and easily accessible by others. This means your keys may not be unique to you and someone such as your neighbor could easily access your camper. To ensure your security, you can simply purchase RV door locks and compartment locks online that are high security and include keys that are unique to you. You can choose from several mechanical and/or keyless variants to suit your needs. For 100% peace of mind, make sure to purchase your locks only from reliable brands.
Consider installing a security system such as a dashcams, motion detector, and loud alarm system that goes off when any of the locks or doors are forced open.
Another common thing is Trailer theft. Yes, it’s not just small items that thieves go after. More often than you think, entire trailers get stolen too! One hack that wise RVers do is to have redundant obstacles that can deter the thieves from having a quick win. These are just some of the contraptions that make it difficult for thieves to succeed are:
- Locking lug nuts (for wheels)
- Receiver lock (for your hitch)
- Hitch pin lock
- Wheel lock
- Coupler lock
Apply these solid deterrents and thieves would be at their wit’s end and will conclude that it’s not worth the effort to run away with your trailer. Of course, we never want this to happen. But to prepare just in case trailer theft ever happens to you, it would be best to have a GPS tracking system installed. This way, there’s a big chance of recovering your trailer.
Make your trailer kind of offbeat or extraordinary.
This tip may be contrary to the 2nd advice which is to “keep a low profile”, but this is an option that a few RVers apply. They make their trailer look distinctive, deviating from the usual paint or design of all factory-built units. Making it look different means it can easily be spotted when stolen, and this discourages thieves. It’s also your prerogative to make it look rough or less valuable. This is all in the territory of making it look less enticing for the thieves.
Prevention of theft is challenging because thieves can be insistent on their goals. But enough security measures can repel opportunists (and may go elsewhere to find some other “low-hanging fruit”). Don’t let the thought of them stop you from fully enjoying your RV life. Follow these tips and you can still have peace of mind leaving your trailer while having a good stroll over the woods or having a good meal in a famous diner.
As an RV family, we truly love exploring and finding new places to set up camp. In 2016, after having a rough time finding reliable RV products, we decided to make our own. We were so happy with how it helped us achieve the security and reliability we were looking for. Because of this, we wanted to share that peace-of-mind feeling with the entire RV community, and that is when latch.it was born. We have seen first hand how important it is to feel safe and secure while on the road, so we’ve poured every ounce of our hearts and soul into creating only the best RV essentials. Nothing makes us more happy than seeing a fellow RVer safe and happy while on the road.
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We had our trailer stolen. In less than 4 hours from discovering it gone, we were driving home with it. Thanks to the Apple AirTag we had hidden inside, we had an address to provide to the police who then had eyes on it in less than an hour. I DO NOT work for Apple but highly recommend some sort of device like this. The police said they have been able to recover so many items (motorcycles, cars, bicycles, etc.) because of “tags.” Incidentally, we were so lucky – very minimal damage and loss.