Can I put a tarp over my RV while living in it?

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Old 03-30-20, 01:53 PM
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Can I put a tarp over my RV while living in it?

I know there are vents out the roof (2004 Forest River Cardinal 32ft fifth wheel). Although I will not be using the A/C. Can I set, say, some milk crates on the roof, to create a space, and lay the tarp over them, so that it hangs down either side? It has two slideouts and I was told that they will leak, so I want to use the tarp to protect them. (I can't afford a carport.) Thank you for advice, it is my first RV and I want to get it right.
 
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Old 03-30-20, 02:15 PM
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Without understanding your situation, I offer some suggestions. Leave the slideouts in. Move the slideouts in when rain is predicted. Have you verified the slideouts leak? Have you contacted the RV manufacturer? When did you purchase the RV in reference to being told the slideouts will leak in the rain? .
 
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Old 03-30-20, 02:24 PM
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Thanks beelzebob. Unfortunately, since I will be living in it, I can't just move the slideouts for rain - and also, I live in Seattle, there is rain most days : ) As far as leaking goes, the dealer warned me that all slideouts can leak if they are exposed to enough rain. So I figure a tarp could help, I just want to figure out how to put it over the top so that there is air space for whatever vents need it.
 
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Old 03-30-20, 03:55 PM
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Make your own carport. Get a tarp 3-4 times as wide as the RV. Hang the tarp from a rope tied between 2 trees. Support the 4 corners of the tarp so the tarp extends above and beyond the slideout. Supporting the 4 corners will be a challenge. Maybe you can find someone selling a plastic covered hoop style greenhouse that you can disassemble and reinstall at your location.
 
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Old 03-30-20, 04:15 PM
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I would find it hard to believe if your city codes would allow this. They generally don't allow RV's to be lived in permanently except in designated lots, camping areas, or certain mobile home courts and even then, tarps (like FEMA tarps) are only allowed because they are temporary. If you live with it like that for very long, my bet is it will draw unwanted attention from unhappy neighbors and/or city officials.

If it doesn't leak, there is no problem. If it does, it get it fixed instead.
 
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Old 03-30-20, 04:38 PM
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Consider installing awnings over the slides. Some RV's already have them.
 
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Old 03-30-20, 04:48 PM
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I've seen many campers with roll out awnings attached above the slide-outs. When you slide it out the awning unrolls with it and protects the top of the slide out. The ends are open so they won't keep all the water out but they will keep out most.

If you don't have the budget for buying slide out awnings you can do something similar. Instead of tarping the whole RV you can just do the critical area above the slide-outs.
 
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Old 03-31-20, 03:58 AM
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The vents on the roof are there for a reason and It would be unwise to cover them.
Not sure what vents you have but there are vents on campers that allow venting of the microwave, fridge and other appliances where heat and combustion are removed.
There are also vents for plumbing which a assist drainage and vent sewer gasses.
It would be a really good idea to stay away ffrom covering the whole roof.
 
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