What to do When Using Seasonal Vehicle Structures

RV ShelterWinter is now approaching and many who go boating, fishing, or camping in the warmer months have put their seasonal vehicles in storage. With a few options for storing seasonal vehicles on the market, the best portable options are to use a boat or RV shelter. Much like portable garages but designed with appropriate dimensions, these seasonal vehicle shelters can cover such a boat or RV for several months. As a vehicle shouldn’t be left outside and boat wrapping methods may lock moisture inside, which can lead to mold forming, a structure that shelters but allows air to circulate offers the best protection.

When setting up a boat or RV shelter, these can be placed anywhere on your property. The shelter, unlike a carport or portable garage for everyday vehicles, should have all-around protection. More specifically, this means that the shelter not only needs to have a polyethylene canopy roof but also side and back walls. A zipper or roll-up door should be in front. If the vehicle didn’t come with side walls, a back, or front door, these can be bought separately and attached to the galvanized steel frame. After the shelter has been set up and anchored into the ground, the vehicle can go inside and stay for several months.

But, at this point, the care for the seasonal vehicle isn’t done. When storing a seasonal vehicle, it needs to be checked periodically. As these shelters should have zipper or roll-up front doors, you can unzip or roll up the door and go inside the shelter to check for any small animals that could have gotten inside and to check for any mold or mildew that formed on the surface. While the latter doesn’t happen often because air is allowed to circulate somewhat, small animals like squirrels or mice might have found their way into a boat and will need to be removed.

Why Use a Seasonal Vehicle Shelter?

Seasonal vehicles, as explained by their name, can only be used for certain parts of the year. Whether you go camping with an RV or smaller camper or prefer to go boating, any of these vehicles need to be put in storage. For some who own a brick and mortar garage, this is a no-brainer, as a boat or camper will fit in the garage. But what do you do if you don’t own a garage? One option is to put up a portable storage building for your shelter. Such dealers as Portable Garage Depot and Shelters of America make portable storage sheds specifically designed for these buildings, including RVs with a longer body and additional height.

Some might argue that leaving your vehicle outside exposes it to the elements. Of course, this is actually leaving your vehicle outdoors and not fully protected by a shelter. Any portable shelter for a seasonal vehicle consists of a galvanized steel frame and a polyethylene canopy. The canopy, which covers the roof and all sides, is made from heavy-duty polyethylene and is treated to be UV resistant, waterproof, and rot and mildew resistant. But, as some air is allowed to circulate under the canopy, moisture doesn’t get trapped under the shelter, as it does with shrink-wrapping a boat, and the vehicle won’t have dry rot, mildew, or mold build up on its surface.

These structures, essentially, can be stored anywhere on your property and can last through rain, wind, and snow. Some structures, however, are better for more extreme weather conditions like snow. If your area experiences large snowfalls, a rounded roof shelter is better for long-term protection of your boat, RV, or other seasonal vehicle, as the snow or water will roll off the roof instead of building up on top. With full protection on all sides, weather, including UV rays and water, generally stays away from the vehicle. But, as animals can come in, checking on the vehicle occasionally is a good idea.

When to Use a Boat Canopy

In many parts of the country, boats are necessity for industry, such as fishing, but boats are even used as seasonal and vacationing vehicles. But what should you do when it’s too cold to go for a boat ride? One option that many do is to put the boat in some kind of storage. When looking into storage options for a boat, the possibilities are several, with some claiming to be better than others. The basic four basic types of storage for a boat are often putting it in a garage, tarping it, getting it shrink wrapped, or storing it in a boat canopy. While both tarping and shrink wrapping a boat are temporary and may lead to dry rot or mildew under the cover when in storage for several months, what do you do when you don’t own a garage?

As a portable shelter has several options for use, one is to use it as a boat shelter for the several months when the boat is in storage. Boat shelters are designed like a portable garage, with a galvanized steel frame and a polyethylene canopy. In the case of many boat shelters, the canopy surrounds the vehicle on all sides. When you want a shelter to keep out the elements, boat shelters are treated to be waterproof, UV resistant, mildew resistant, and rot resistant. In many cases, the polyethylene canopy on these shelters is also fire resistant. In addition, as the canopy keeps out the elements, the structure still allows for air circulation, so mildew and dry rot won’t form on the vehicle while in storage.

Keeping your boat in storage during the colder months is important to have it last for several years. When not covered properly, the UV rays can fade the paint and make some plastic parts crack, while water can accumulate on the surface and cause mildew built up – not to mention small animals can get to the vehicle and make it their home. While the boat is in storage, check on it periodically to see that no small animals have found their way inside and that no mildew has built up on the surface. As most boat canopies have a zipper or roll up front door, the boat can stay in the shelter in this case.