With spring right around the corner, it’s time to do some spring cleaning. Most RV owners that use their rigs frequently or full time have scheduled interior cleanings daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly while in use, and no two schedules will look alike. But there are a few areas even the most seasoned RVerscan sometimes forget about. When it comes to tidying up, Harvest Hosts has your back because we’ve compiled a list of the most commonly forgotten areas on the interior of an RV.
Ceiling Air Conditioner Vents
Maintaining the air conditioner vents at least yearly is the best way to prevent future problems and costly repairs. Dirt, dust, and debris can become clogged and shorten the life of the unit. When cleaning the vents, be sure it’s on a day when the temperature isn’t too hot since the unit will need to be powered off during the short duration of cleaning. Just to be on the safe side, disconnect power to the unit by flipping off the breakers before starting.
For the indoor ceiling AC unit, unscrew the four screws and carefully pull down the cover. Wash out the openings of the plastic cover with warm, soapy water. Then do the same with any other exposed parts, being careful not to saturate the areas where the wires connect. There should be at least one foam filter in there. If you use your rig full time or anyone in the group tends to have allergies or asthma, it is best to replace the filter with a higher quality one. Alternatively, clean the stock filters in warm, soapy water by repeatedly ringing out the dirty water and rinsing it with fresh water. Lay these out to dry for about thirty minutes after wringing them out well.
Once you remove the filters, the air conditioner evaporator and condenser coils should be exposed. Carefully brush these off with a cleaning brush and use compressed air if necessary. These can easily be bent and crushed, so proceed with caution and a light touch, no elbow grease necessary.
Vent Covers and Vents
Any vents and vent covers in the RV need TLC as well. This is especially important for the vents close to the floor or any intake vents. Dirt and debris can enter these more easily than through the ones on the ceiling. Most vent covers can be carefully removed with a flat, standard screwdriver, but some may need to be unscrewed. Once the vent cover is off, clean it in warm, soapy water, and set it aside to dry.
The circular vents in the ceiling can be removed by carefully prying them off with a standard screwdriver. These also contain foam filters behind them that can also either be replaced or thoroughly rinsed out. The vent covers also need to be washed in warm, soapy water and set aside to dry.
The exhaust fan vents need to be removed with a Phillips screwdriver in order to be cleaned thoroughly. Once removed, use warm, soapy water and a cleaning brush to wash away any debris from the screen, and wipe away dirt on the fan blades. When cleaning out the actual vents, use a long duster to reach up and clean out any dirt. If the duster is reusable, it may need to be rinsed or shook out between uses depending on the age of the rig and the last time the vents were cleaned.
If the lights in your RV are the original factory ones, then they don’t require much cleaning. Carefully snap off the cover and gently wipe it out with a damp cloth. Occasionally small bugs and dust can settle in here. While cleaning out the covers, go ahead and replace any burned out bulbs. If the RV has been renovated, simply remove any light covers and dust the bulbs.
Inside Cabinets and Drawers
Having windows open and exhaust fans blowing in the rig can let in dust and debris from the outside. When cleaning cabinets or drawers, remove all items and wipe with a biodegradable and food-safe cleaner with a cloth. Any cleaner used in cabinets that hold dishes, cooking utensils, or silverware should always be cleaned with a food-safe cleaner, and biodegradable soap and cleaners, like Mrs. Meyers, are better for your grey tank, which is made of plastic.
Sliding windows open and closed can result in a buildup of dirt that should be cleaned out frequently, depending on how often you travel. The same goes for crank windows or even ones that push open and close. This will ensure a tight seal on the windows and that the track or hinges operate smoothly. Depending on the type of window, this can be done with a duster, a damp cloth, or some compressed air. While this is technically about cleaning the interior of the RV, it doesn’t hurt to check the window ledges from the outside as well for a different angle on dirt buildup.
Screens in RV windows receive a lot of use during the warmer seasons. Your rate and pace of travel is indicative of how often the screens need to be cleaned. These can be wiped with a damp cloth with warm, soapy water, and compressed air can be used to dislodge any debris stuck in them. Don’t forget the screens on the door too!
Curtains and Window Valances
This is where a vacuum with a hose can come in handy. Vacuuming the curtains and valances is great for regular cleaning, but if they can be taken down, it’s best to wash them every few months, depending on how often the RV is used. They can be hand washed in the sink or in a bucket, or thrown in the washing machine. Be sure to check the washing instructions on the tag first. If the curtains have been replaced with shades or blinds with slats, these can be dusted or wiped with a damp cloth to remove dust and dirt.
Dinette cushions are actually large pieces of foam covered in upholstery. As we learned earlier from the vents, foam can trap lots of dirt and dust. Check the dinette cushions in your RV for a zipper. If they are removable, cleaning should be a breeze. Simply unzip the cushion and either hand wash it or use a washing machine for the cover. For the foam piece, it’s recommended to spray it out with water, wring it out, or repeat until clean. Allow it to air dry before re-assembling. This is the perfect opportunity to reupholster your cushions if that has been on your to-do list. If the cushions at your dinette do not unzip, then you can easily spot clean them. Do not soak the cushion with the cover on it because it cannot be properly dried and can develop mold and mildew.
So what do you think? Are there any areas on here you’ve forgotten to clean or haven’t cleaned in a while? Don’t worry, we won’t tell anyone!
Is there anything we should add to the list? Let us know in the comments below.
Learn More About Harvest Hosts
We promise not to spam you!