Annual Spring Trailer Checks
BY RICK BURNDRED
1. Check Trailer Battery Charging via Tow Vehicle, Trailer Inverter, Solar Panels:
Remove Solar Panel fuse if part of trailer equipment. With batteries installed in trailer, note indication at battery monitor in trailer. Plug trailer connector into tow vehicle. With vehicle running, note battery monitor will read higher (tow vehicle charging trailer battery-normal).Disconnect trailer connector and note battery monitor. Plug in trailer 120V AC cord; note battery monitor will read higher (trailer invertor charging battery-normal). Remove 120 V trailer cord and reinstall solar panel fuse, battery monitor/solar monitor will read Solar Panel Charging – normal). If battery trailer monitor not giving an adequate indication use a DC voltmeter at battery terminals and note voltage when performing above tests.
2. Check Operation of Electrical Trailer Brakes:
Plug trailer connector into tow vehicle. With each trailer wheel off ground, and able to spin each tire independently, operate brake lever at brake controller and note operation of electric braking at each wheel (wheel will immediately stop).
3. Check Operation of Trailer Signal Lights, etc:
With trailer connector plugged into tow vehicle, check right/left signal, clearance lights/tail lights, backup lights, exterior outside lighting, night outside lighting, etc. If problem, replace bulb using silicone grease before inserting into socket.
4. Toilet Operation:
Lightly tap slide valve inside toilet to release. After winter storage it may be hard to operate for the first time. Holding valve open with flush handle, gently rub a Silicone grease on rubber seal.
5. Flushing RV Anti-Freeze:
Fill fresh water holding tank approximately quarter full and drain; repeat several times. Flush RV winter antifreeze from trailer water lines using trailer 12-volt pump. Starting with tapes furthest from outside tank, drain both hot water and cold water (kitchen sink, washroom sink, toilet, shower/tub.) Note: do not drain RV anti freeze from holding tanks onto lawn etc.
6. Removing Anti Freeze from City Water Hook Up:
Shut off 12-volt water pump, and drain press from lines by opening inside hot/cold water taps. At city water hook up, press in spring/button to release any trapped winter anti-freeze in this piping.
7. Freshening Water Holding Tank:
Refill fresh water holding tank to 1/2 full. Take a pitcher of warm water and add two tablespoons of baking soda (or something similar) and add this into the fresh water holding tank. Continue filling tank to full indication (note normal operation of level indication at trailer monitor). Operate taps etc. per Step 5 again. Allow remaining baking soda/water solution to remain in tank for a day or so.
8. Remove Baking Soda (Step 7) from Trailer Fresh Water System:
Repeat step 5.
9. Flushing Hot Water Tank:
At hot water tank, place bypass valves to the normal summer operating positions. Connect to city trailer water, hook up to add fresh water into hot water tank approximately quarter full (during this step open hot water tap in trailer to allow air release from tank). Drain tank via tank water drain valve (shut city water off, open high pressure relief valve to allow tank to drain). Do this several times.
10. Check Black Water Holding Tank Level Indication:
Connect city water to trailer water hook up and add fresh water into black water holding tank via toilet flush handle. Note operation of level indication, 1/3, 2/3, etc.
11. Cleaning Hot water Tank Area:
Open exterior trailer heater access door and blow area out with low air press high volume such (e.g.. leaf blower).
12. Cleaning Trailer Furnace Exterior Compartment Area:
Open exterior heater compartment and blow out area/flume with leaf blower.
13. Cleaning Exterior Fridge Area:
(*Note flame sensor location & measurement from burner before beginning this step). Per manufacturer?s manual, remove fridge flame sensor and burner. Use electrical tape to cover remaining propane piping so as not to allow any soot etc. into piping. Blow out area/flume with leaf blower.
14. Per Fridge Manufacturer Manual/Clean and Replace Burner, etc.:
Check condenser drain tube from interior of fridge to outside fridge area. To prove this, blow/suck on this tube.
15. Check Flame Sensor Operation:
With fridge calling for cooling, (burner on) open flame inspection door and blow out flame several times. Flame will be restored immediately. This indicates fridge flame sensor operating normally. If fault comes up on fridge door monitor (per manual) see RV Tech – turn fridge off then on to reset.
16. Auto Propane Switch Over Valve Operation:
Slowly turn on both propane bottles noting which bottle is presently active via ?auto switch over indicator lever?. Light one stove burner (note vent fan on). Go to propane bottle area and slowly shut off active propane bottle. System will auto switch over to standby propane bottle (red indicator up at switch over valve/check stove burner operating normally). Reopen propane bottle and operate ?auto switch over indication lever? to opposite propane bottle and repeat above. Cycle several times.
17. Check Heating System for Normal Operation:
Via trailer wall thermostat check for normal operation (cycle).
18. Check Hot Water Tank for Normal Operation:
At hot water tank switch by pass valves to normal summer operation. Make sure hot water tank full (water is coming out of hot water tap) then turn on electrical switch.Operate hot water tank through many cycles (propane shuts off ?turn on hot water tap to cause propane to come on). Cycle many times.
19. Check Fridge Auto Switch Over (Propane/Electrical):
With fridge on auto and operating on electricity remove 120V AC from trailer. Fridge will automatically switch to propane. Reconnect 120V AC to trailer and fridge will automatically switch back to AC. Cycle several times to check operation.
20. Check Normal Fridge Operation (Propane/AC):
Place ice cube tray in freezer, and several items in fridge area. Switch fridge to propane for three or four days and then switch fridge to 120V AC for three of four days. Note: Place thermometer in fridge and note operation (temp. will fluctuate several degrees-normal).
21. Air Conditioner Operation:
Per manufacturer?s instructions remove air filter and clean. Check for normal operation of air conditioner.
22. Check For Propane Leaks:
With gas-detection soap, (propane on) check all fittings for propane leaks (propane bottle storage area, stove, rear of fridge, under trailer etc.).
23. Lubricate Trailer/Tow Vehicle Connector Plugs:
Using silicone grease and Q-Tip, place a small amount of grease on both male/female plugs.
24. Tire Pressures:
Per trailer manufacturer/tire company?s numbers, check pressures including spare tire.