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Old 03-23-2014, 06:25 AM   #1
SandMShall
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To cover or not to cover?

I see lots of trailer covers on the market but when I pass most storage lots in our area, I see less than 2% of the trailers with covers? Who uses a cover and who doesn't? Are they a waste of money?


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Old 03-23-2014, 06:59 AM   #2
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I'm interested in this as well. I've read good things and bad things. The bad things include wear from constant wind flapping, etc. The sun at my altitude (Denver, CO) is quite punishing on things, so I'm leaning towards covering it but am not sure yet.
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Old 03-23-2014, 07:04 AM   #3
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I cover my trailer in the off season, here in the Midwest she sits unused from November to April/May so given it sits for 6 months not used I think a cover helps save it. The key to any cover is one that fits well. I had to source one from Calmark Covers to get one that fits well.
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Old 03-23-2014, 07:26 AM   #4
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If you live in an area that has windy conditions, securing an RV cover so that it doesn't flap or move about is essential. The constant movement of the cover can, over a period of time, mar the finish coat as well as abrade or wear the edges of the rubber roof. If your rubber roof has rounded edges rather than square, this is less likely to happen.

I use a cover and my experience has been generally positive. Over the years, I have learned to ensure that it is fastened securely to prevent as much movement as possible. To that end, I've "wrapped" it by using soft, pliable line which has foam pipe wrap placed at all sections where the rope/line comes in contact with the body of the RV. I have 3 such lines running around the RV from top to bottom and a single line running from front to back.

You also have to make sure that all "sharp" corners have been covered with some kind of protection such as dense foam, carpet underlay, carpet pieces, etc., to prevent wearing at those points and eventually holes in the cover.

The cover helps keep the RV cleaner and protection against UV rays. I think we get more rain than sun so UV damage isn't a huge problem here on the West Coast.

These covers won't last forever. They do get ripped and holes appear despite precautions you take to avoid them. I would consider myself lucky if I were to get 5 years out of my cover. I think we've had ours for 3 years and it is now showing signs of wear and tear and will need a few "patches" before we put it on again next Fall.

A cover is a bit of a nuisance when you want to get in and out of the RV to check things out and it also makes putting the slide out rather difficult!

You will see far more uncovered RV's than covered and probably they don't suffer from not having a cover on. How many covered RV's do you see on dealers' lots? In that sense, I suppose you could say that it is a "waste" of money but they don't appear to wash or wax them either.
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Old 03-23-2014, 08:02 AM   #5
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I will no longer cover any trailer with that uses the Filon material. Had a partial cover on ours and developed some very small bubbling on the front filon due to heat build up. The bubbling was only on the area that was covered. Now, after a couple of years uncovered there has been no change in the affected area.
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Old 03-23-2014, 12:07 PM   #6
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Cover mine during winter months. During the summer I am using it too much to bother with, but I'm also washing, waxing the paint, and protecting the rubber roof on a regular basis. During the winter, I don't deal with all of that so the cover serves as the protectant. Wax, sealants, and protectants only last a few weeks to 3 months depending on conditions, not enough to get through the winter.
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Old 03-23-2014, 01:44 PM   #7
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Cover mine during winter months. During the summer I am using it too much to bother with, but I'm also washing, waxing the paint, and protecting the rubber roof on a regular basis. During the winter, I don't deal with all of that so the cover serves as the protectant. Wax, sealants, and protectants only last a few weeks to 3 months depending on conditions, not enough to get through the winter.
What do You use?
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Old 03-23-2014, 02:34 PM   #8
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No cover here, I believe if you call keystone they would say the same.

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Old 03-23-2014, 03:19 PM   #9
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Old 03-23-2014, 04:29 PM   #10
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I invested in a cover with my first trailer. Not only did it wear out pretty quickly, but was a real chore to get it on and off, and one of the first times I used it, I noticed the rubber strips on the corners had all turned black with mildew. It was a breathable cover. No more covers for me.

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Old 03-23-2014, 05:00 PM   #11
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What do You use?
I use Dicor Ready to Use cleaner and Dicor Roof Guard protectant. I have used Protect All as well. Both are easy to use. They recommend that it is used about every 6 weeks, I tend to use it when I pull the RV out in April, will give it another treatment before late June early July before going out for the 4th, again before Labor Day weekend. Then I put the cover on when I put it away for winter. 2 gallons of each will usually get the job done for the entire season, so about $100 a year and the roof looks like new (well it is new on my new Alpine)
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Old 03-23-2014, 10:13 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by BirchyBoy View Post
I'm interested in this as well. I've read good things and bad things. The bad things include wear from constant wind flapping, etc. The sun at my altitude (Denver, CO) is quite punishing on things, so I'm leaning towards covering it but am not sure yet.

I think with our spring and fall winds, you'd probably find a shredded flapping mess attached to the trailer by a string, sooner or later.
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Old 03-24-2014, 05:05 AM   #13
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I've often wondered the same thing and the DW and I have talked about it too but like she says......you never see them at the dealers with covers on. My Dad always covered his with a huge tarp and tied it down really good for the winter months. I've always taken the PITA factor in when thinking about it...LOL In the end I've yet to cover ours.
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Old 03-24-2014, 12:25 PM   #14
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I've often wondered the same thing and the DW and I have talked about it too but like she says......you never see them at the dealers with covers on. My Dad always covered his with a huge tarp and tied it down really good for the winter months. I've always taken the PITA factor in when thinking about it...LOL In the end I've yet to cover ours.

Yeah but the dealers also leave the slides out for months on end, too. I wouldn't hold them up as shining examples of how to take care of nice things. It's just inventory to them.
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Old 03-24-2014, 03:22 PM   #15
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Yeah but the dealers also leave the slides out for months on end, too. I wouldn't hold them up as shining examples of how to take care of nice things. It's just inventory to them.
Yup! And compared to the overall lifetime of the unit, the 3-12 months it's on the dealers lot is nothing.
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Old 03-24-2014, 05:33 PM   #16
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I haven't covered up until now, but it is obvious the sun is very hard on everything. I recently bought a new trailer and am having a "Coast to Coast" carport built for this one.

Based on experience with Sea-Doos that got very mildewy if covered and just plain baked if not, I have kept my fiberglass boat with vinyl seats (bought new 6 years ago) under a carport. I put the cover on it when not used (Oct-Mar), I Armorall the upholstery once a year and I wax the hull every other year or so. Otherwise I just back it under the carport and it still looks like new.
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Old 03-25-2014, 05:06 AM   #17
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Yeah but the dealers also leave the slides out for months on end, too. I wouldn't hold them up as shining examples of how to take care of nice things. It's just inventory to them.
Very true and I'm not arguing that point. I did look on the Keystone site and I checked a few others and there is nothing on their sites saying to cover it. Now I'm not stupid either....its the same for waxing your car or truck....obvisiously it helps protect the paint.

I wonder if there are any companies out there that offer the same thing like they do for boats but for the just the roof of our campers.... the white heat shrink plastic that covers the top half of the boat is what I'm talking about.
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Old 03-25-2014, 07:01 AM   #18
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Personally I think it depends a lot on the weather in your area. I live in the Pacific Northwest where we get a lot of rain. It is because of this that moisture can buildup under the cover causing all sorts of problems. As a result I do not cover mine. However, shortly I'll be moving to southern California where there is more sun than rain. Therefore, my current plan is to cover it during the extended time periods I don't plan on using the trailer such as December - February.
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Old 03-25-2014, 09:53 PM   #19
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Rv covers will let the trailer breath, the shrink wrap will not.
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