RV security should be top of mind both when your rig is parked in storage and when you’re set up at a campground or on public lands. Safety is important at all times, including when you’re not physically near your RV, like when you’re hiking or visiting nearby areas. While most campgrounds are fairly safe, you want to take extra precautions when locking up your rig.
Change Your Locks
The first RV security item to check off your to-do list is to change your door locks. Then consider changing your RV exterior storage bay locks as well. Most RVs use the same CH751 lock and key, which means that most people will have the same key for storage bays, no matter the make or model. When locking up your cabinets, they may not be as secure as you think. Using a product like RVLock will keep your personal belongings safe with custom-cut keys and locks that you can easily install to replace the original locks.
You can also change your RV door lock to a keyed-alike lock that works with your storage bays. Having only one key means one less item to keep track of on the road. Even better, you can upgrade your RV locks to have a keypad entry so you have a backup keyless option. This upgrade reduces the number of keys to keep track of while also improving RV security.
Don’t Let Your RV Get Towed Away
If you have a fifth wheel or a bumper pull trailer, you should consider installing hitch locks to make the trailer more difficult to steal. Locking your RV’s towable connection is critical when storing your RV and adds a level of extra security when leaving your RV unattended. It may not 100 percent prevent theft, but it makes your camper more difficult to quickly hitch up and drive away with. Here are a few examples of hitch locks that we recommend:
Protect Your Belongings
Another important element of RV security is having a self-installed security system. These systems are straightforward to install and some use WiFi to connect to a mobile app that alerts you if a door opens. Some security system brands that work well in RVs are SimpliSafe, Ring, and Aqara.
With an on-board security system, you’ll know if someone is entering your RV unexpectedly. When the alarm system is armed, it makes a loud sound if an exterior door is opened, which is especially comforting at night. Families will also appreciate the chime feature when a door opens, so you can keep track of when the kids are going in and out of the RV.
These types of security systems can cost anywhere from $150 to $500 depending on what sensors you add. We like the Aqara system as it works with smart home assistants (Google Home, Alexa, etc.). Not only does it provide RV security, but you’re also getting smart home automation, water leak detection, and more, all in one system.
While most security systems can operate offline, they work better when connected to the internet using a WiFi connection. A reliable hotspot that can handle constant uptime will keep these systems connected when you’re not in the RV.
Storing Your Rig Securely
If you store your RV for the winter, consider using a self-storage facility that has video surveillance, keypad access, and high fences. While more expensive, peace of mind is worth it for many. If you decide to store your rig outside of a self-storage facility, consider picking a location close to home where you can check on it every few weeks. When storing your rig for the winter, make sure you lock all doors and storage bays with your upgraded RV lock system. Use wheel chock locks, and if you have a towable trailer, use a hitch kingpin lock or coupler lock for added security.
Most storage bays use the same CH571 lock, which comes with a universal key that unlocks everything but your main door. Some newer RVs have moved away from this, but not all, so you should check. As for RV door locks, they vary greatly. The year, RV type, and door shape affect how the locks work. In most cases, the locks can be updated, but check with your lock provider before placing an order.
The best RV door lock is the one that you feel most comfortable with. Most newer RV models come keyed-alike, which might work fine for you. Do your research and pick the option that best suits your needs and lifestyle.
First, stay in places where you feel comfortable; if you have a bad feeling, keep driving. For additional security measures, you can add a self-installed security system.
You might not need robust home security features if you don’t live in your RV full-time, but make sure you have the right tools and measures in place to safely secure your rig to the level that you feel comfortable with.
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