Time for an RV Wash: How to Wash Your RV

Summertime! If it’s time for a road trip, then it’s probably time for an RV wash. Did you know that washing your RV is different than washing your car?

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An RV wash is essential if you want to keep the motor home in pristine condition. But, washing such a big vehicle can be intimidating because you can’t take it through a car wash as you’d do for a sedan. It’s important that you know how to wash your RV beforehand. That includes knowing the right cleaning products to use.

Cleaning Tools

Using the correct cleaning supplies will ensure you don’t damage the exterior of your RV. Generally, use nonabrasive cleaning tools. An effective way to clean your RV and not leave any damage behind is to use the hose.

If the hose can’t remove stubborn dirt, you can use soft mitts and brushes to scrub off the tough spots. It’s tempting to use a pressure washer to remove stubborn stains. But, chances are, this method could damage the tires and paint.


Cleaning the roof can be the most difficult or easiest part of the whole process. While you can walk on some RV roofs, you can’t do that on others. Be sure to check with the owner’s manual before climbing to the roof.

RV roofs are made of two types: fiberglass and rubber.

Rubber roofs are shared among the RVs of the 80s and 90s. Usually, motor homes with rubber roofs have black streaks along the roof. At times, the black streaks may run down the camper’s sides; that’s grime.

Fiberglass roofs are easy to clean. You can clean the roof using the same cleaner used to clean the rest of the recreational vehicle.

The RV Body

Usually, RVs come with three major exteriors: metal, fiberglass, and painted metal. Each exterior requires a special type of brush or washing solution. Always, read the manufacturer’s guidelines on how to clean different exteriors.

Metal Bodies

Often found on older motor homes, they consist of steel and aluminum. The best way to clean them is to use a pre-wash for removing most of the grit and dirt. Afterward, you can use non-abrasive cleaners, mitts, and soft-bristled brushes to clean them.

Painted Metal Bodies

Treat them like you do your car. Clean the body using standard car wash cleaners and soft-bristled brushes.

When using a high-pressure washer to clean metal bodies, keep a distance. This is because water from the washer can get between the vehicle’s seams.

Fiberglass Bodies

These bodies are common with modern RVs. The recommended method for cleaning fiberglass is a wash-and-wax product. This is because this product offers both cleaning and protection.

If the fiberglass has decals, don’t use a pressure washer as it could peel them off.

If you’re looking for an RV with a lighter body, you may want to check out this Airstream for sale.

Wheels and Rims

RVs come with three types of wheels: painted rims, chrome rims, and aluminum wheel covers. Any essential products for cleaning wheels and rims will work. But, each wheel type requires its own maintenance.

From time to time, remove aluminum wheels to check for any rust indications. Chrome rims are easy to scratch. So, to keep these rims shiny, don’t use abrasive cleaners or hard bristles.

RV Wash

In sum, if you would like your RV to serve you for long then should give it a regular wash. At times, you may not have time or the right tools for the RV wash. In that case, search for “RV wash near me,” and you’ll find helpful information.

Do you have an RV? They’re a super fun way to travel! I’d love to hear your stories!

It is not always possible for me to respond to each blog post comment. However, I absolutely do read them all, and if you’d like to address something specific, or have a question for me, please don’t hesitate to email me at Kristen@theroadtodomestication.com. I will respond to your email as soon as possible! Thank you for visiting the blog!

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