While traveling in an RV can provide the best of both worlds — a home and mobility — it can present unique security challenges. Should owners protect it like a house or a vehicle? The short answer is both. The long answer is that it depends on the type of vehicle and how they use it.
Either way, here are some basic RV security tips and tools to share with RV buyers before the spring and summer travel seasons:
1. Change the Locks
This might seem like a common sense one for people buying their RVs preowned, but it’s important even for new vehicles and trailers. Many buyers, especially first-time owners, are unaware that the majority of RV locks are keyed the same. This means that if you don’t replace the locks on your doors, cargo box, and hitch, your RV is vulnerable to theft. Make new locks a top priority!
2. Install a GPS Tracker
Many people think of GPS as theft recovery, not theft deterrent. In fact, both are true. Vehicles not driven every day spend much of their time in storage or parked unattended. A GPS tracker can alert owners if the vehicle leaves a designated area (storage facility, RV park, the driveway), and then help recover it. It can also help quickly locate the vehicle in a crowded campground or park, just as it helps dealers locate inventory on a full lot.
3. Buy a Safe
It's common good practice to not leave valuables in a vehicle while traveling. But if the vehicle also serves as lodging, where they you stash their stuff safely? Advise investing in a fireproof safe that can be bolted securely to the vehicle to hold important documents, emergency credit cards, and any small valuables that have to be left inside. (Bonus tip: People traveling with valuables should first make sure their insurance policy covers them.)
4. Consider a Security System
Who doesn’t love a good gadget? There are countless security devices suitable for RV use, including cameras, security lights, motion detectors, electronic locking devices, and door and window alarms. RV owners can buy full systems or customize individual pieces to their needs. An additional consideration for RV security is the monitoring method — owners will want to know any Wi-Fi or cellular data requirements and capabilities and make sure their travel style supports them.
No one wants thoughts of theft to put a damper on their road trip relaxation. Preparing ahead of time can provide peace of mind for the next adventure.