Maintaining Your Casita

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You've made your decision, written a check, and now your new Casita travel trailer sits in the driveway or back yard, waiting to give your family years of enjoyment. So, what next?

One of the first things you'll want to do as a new RV owner is to go over the maintenance needs of your particular unit. Even high-quality brands like Casita require maintenance to keep them running efficiently. Plus, performing routine maintenance will help you avoid costly emergency repairs down the road.

Casita maintenance falls into two basic categories: routine and preventive. Let's look at some of the tasks you'll need to perform in each category.

Routine RV maintenance includes tasks you do at scheduled intervals. Most warranties for travel trailers require the owner to inspect certain systems and structural components regularly and report any defects to the dealer in order to obtain warranty work. This means you should schedule inspections of window seals, LP regulator pressure and structural seams during the warranty period in order to keep your travel trailer warranty intact.

Because travel trailers don't have an engine, much of their maintenance falls under preventive rather than routine. Preventive maintenance is designed to identify and address potential problems before they arise. Let's look at some common preventive maintenance tasks for travel trailers:

. Grease wheel bearings
. Check brakes
. Check taillights/brake lights/backup lights
. Replace air conditioner filters
. Test refrigerator in both A/C and propane modes
. Check water level of batteries
. Test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
. Inspect condition of awning fabric
. Check generator engine and filters

This list is by no means exhaustive. Consult with Casita for a complete checklist of preventive maintenance items for your unit.

Of special concern to Casita owners is maintaining the fiberglass shell. One of the most important steps you can take in this regard is not to park the trailer in the sun for long periods of time. Although the exterior is coated with a glossy finish, this won't last forever. And once fiberglass is exposed to the elements, it doesn't take long to deteriorate. If you keep your Casita covered, be sure to use a breathable fabric to avoid trapping water against the surface of the trailer. This also can cause the finish and, ultimately, the fiberglass to deteriorate.

Another area of concern specific to Casita is water leakage above the door and windows. To avoid this, inspect the seals regularly. Use caulking to re-seal any small holes or open patches that develop.

With a Casita or any other travel trailer, remember that you must maintain your house batteries. These are the deep cycle batteries that provide power for your interior lights, microwave and other needs. These lead-acid batteries are not sealed, maintenance-free units like car batteries commonly are. You will need to monitor your batteries. fluid levels regularly . every month or so. If necessary, add distilled water to bring the fluid level to within 1/8. of full. If you plan to put your travel trailer into storage, remove the batteries, top off their fluid, charge them, and place them in a cool, dry place. Remember that stored batteries constantly are discharging, so monitor the fluid and charge levels regularly to avoid overly discharging them or allowing them to freeze.

When winterizing your Casita, here are a few things to keep in mind. Thoroughly clean the inside and outside. If possible, park your travel trailer under cover. Otherwise, cover it with a breathable fabric to protect it from harsh winter elements. Inside, remove all food products to avoid attracting insects and rodents. Leave all cabinets and drawers open to air. If your Casita model includes a fresh water system, be sure to empty it. You might consider using an RV antifreeze product designed to keep the system from freezing. Make sure the refrigerator, if included, has been disconnected and cleaned out. Prop it open to avoid unpleasant odors.

Maintaining your Casita travel trailer will bring you and your family years of enjoyment. And, you can rely on your Casita dealer to perform any maintenance you don't want to do yourself. To find an authorized Casita dealer for maintenance or service, just click .Casita RVs. now, and we'll forward your request for information.