RV Mice – Learn How To Get Rid Of Them For Good!

If you haven’t had RV mice problems so far, consider yourself very fortunate. Chances are that somewhere down the line you will face having to deal with these unwanted guests.

And it’s important to understand that having mice in your RV is not just irritating or a nuisance. No, they can really do some serious damage to your RV quickly.

This is because mice chew on almost everything in an RV. They love to chew on pipes, wood, clothing, furniture and paper goods of any kind.

But for some reason they seem very attracted to electrical wiring.

So just think about how much expensive damage to RV wiring can be done by mice behind your RV’s walls. Or even in your engine compartment if you have a motorhome.

This kind of damage can cost thousands of dollars in RV repairs. And of course, a lot of frustration and irritation as well.

So this article will help you devise a plan to eliminate RV mice issues as much as possible. Let’s get started!

Video on getting rid of RV mice
Watch my video on getting rid of RV mice by clicking the image above

Disclosure: Please note this post may contain affiliate links. This means – at no additional cost to you – I earn a commission if you make a purchase using our affiliate links. I only link to products and companies I use and feel comfortable recommending. The income goes toward supporting the free content on this website

How To Prevent RV Mice

RV mice problems are most prevalent while an RV is in storage. This is because mice are looking for food and shelter. And your empty RV is just what they need to make a cozy home.

And since humans aren’t around, it seems to be the perfect place for them to set up shop for a while.

So the first action to take against having mice in your RV is to put prevention measures in place to keep them out. After all, it’s a lot easier to keep them out in the first place than have to remove them afterward.

Prevention Steps To Take

So here are the steps to take to prevent a mice infestation:

  • Look under your RV and try to plug up any holes or gaps that you can find where they might get entry. Remember they can get in with just a 1/4 inch gap. So push steel wool into the gap and then seal it further with expanding foam.
  • Remove all food when in storage other than canned food. They can even chew into plastic containers so remove anything other than what is in a can.
  • Many RVers have used strong scents and smells to keep them out. Scents like peppermint oil soaked cotton balls, Irish Spring soap bars, mothballs, and even dryer sheets. You may have to experiment to find the right combination for your area, but many have found these to be effective. Just remember to replenish and renew the scents often.
  • Predator pee has also been used to good effect by some RV owners. Especially bobcat and coyote pee. Mice recognize the scent of their predators and usually vacate the area.
  • LED rope lights under the RV at night has also been effective for some RVers. It’s well known that mice don’t like well lighted areas, so they seem to avoid RVs with lighted underbellies.
  • If you have an RV motorhome, keep the hood open when stored. This lets light and drafts into the engine compartment and mice will probably avoid nesting there.

Click here for expanding foam

Click here for predator pee granules

Click here for predator pee spray

Click here for LED rope lights

(These are affiliate links for the product on Amazon. It does not cost you any extra to buy the product using my affiliate link if you choose to do so)

Full-time Travel And RV Mice

If you are a full-time RV traveler, you are less likely to have to deal with mice in your RV.

This is because mice would rather be in an area where humans aren’t around. And since you are on the move, that can also be a deterrent to them setting up long-term living arrangements in your rig.

But that doesn’t mean that it can’t happen if you are a full-timer. We have had to deal with mice ourselves on one occasion.

So you need to have a plan not only to prevent RV mice, but also to remove them if necessary.

How To Remove RV Mice

Here are a few methods that have proven to be effective in getting rid of mice in your RV:

  • Mice killer or poison has proven to work against a mice infestation. The only caveat is to remember that mice can take the poison back to their nest behind the RV walls and die there. That means they are out of your reach, and the smell can be pretty bad for a while.
  • Glue traps have also been good mice control products. You put bait on the pad and when the mouse steps on the pad to get it he gets stuck there. He can’t go back to his home behind the walls. But you have to be vigilant about checking the glue traps regularly to dispose of them.
  • Humane mouse traps are another way to try to catch mice and remove them. And if done right, there is no real harm to the mouse. They are baited into a plastic container where they are trapped. They have food and air holes to breathe. But again, you must check the traps regularly to remove the mouse before he dies.
  • The good old-fashioned spring loaded mouse trap is by far the most effective way of eliminating an RV mice infestation. So if things start getting out of control because the mice are breeding rapidly, it may be your best choice overall.

Click here for Tomcat Mouse Killer

Click here for mouse glue traps

Click here for humane mouse traps

Click here for old-fashioned mouse traps

(These are affiliate links for the product on Amazon. It does not cost you any extra to buy the product using my affiliate link if you choose to do so)

Conclusion

If you find that you start to have an RV mice problem, don’t panic. But don’t be complacent either.

You need a plan of action to get them out of your RV as soon as possible. And then, do your best to prevent them from coming back.

The suggestions in this article have been proven over time to be very effective. But some work better than others.

The key here is not to waste any time doing something to remove the mice from your RV. So choose your plan of action and start putting it in place as soon as possible!

Learn About The Top 5 Tips For Buying A Motorhome

Before you can think about buying a motorhome, let’s identify what a motorhome is. It’s an RV that has an engine and drivetrain built into the RV.

In other words, a motorhome does not need to be towed to go somewhere. It can travel down the road under its own power.

So what kind of RVs could be classified as a motorhome? Class A, Class B, Class C, and Super C RVs certainly meet those criteria.

That’s a lot of RVs to choose from. So how do you know which kind of RV will be best for you and the way you like to camp?

The tips I’m going to share with you will help you know whether or not the RV you are looking at is in good shape. Whether it has major issues that need attention or not.

But before you implement the 5 tips in this article you need to do some work in advance.

Watch the video entitled "The Top 5 Tips For Buying A Motorhome"
Watch my video on the Top 5 Tips For Buying A Motorhome

Buying A Motorhome – Advance RV Knowledge Needed

Yes, before you start getting serious about any one RV, get to know RVs in general. That means that you need to visit dealer lots and RV shows for a while.

Go through as many different kinds of RV motorhomes as possible. See what the differences are between the various motorhome classes.

Try to decide which class of motorhome will fit your needs and your budget. Then decide whether buying a motorhome that is new or used will be your best choice.

The more motorhomes that you walk through and investigate, the more knowledge you will gain about them. And pretty soon you will get a feel for the kind of motorhome that you feel fits your situation best.

Take your time in this stage. Don’t rush it. Even if it takes several months or even years, that’s OK. Getting to know the various motorhome classes is vital to making a good decision.

Tip #1 – Get To Know The RV Living Space

Once you have decided which motorhome class fits you, it’s time to look at individual RVs. And one of the most important considerations in any RV is – how does the living space work for you?

In general, there are only so many ways that the living area can be designed in an RV. And not everyone likes the sames layout.

So is the kitchen big enough for you? What is the location of the kitchen? Is the sitting area located in a logical place? How about the bedroom, is it laid out the way you like?

When it comes to the furniture in the motorhome, is it comfortable? It’s a good idea to lay on the bed, sit in the chairs and on the couch. See if you feel at home in that RV.

One big consideration is the bathroom. Is the toilet in a convenient place? When you sit on it, is it relatively comfortable? Is there enough storage space in the bathroom?

Then check out the shower too. Go ahead and stand in it to see if you have enough room to move around comfortably. Is it tall enough for you?

Note the position of the TV. Is it in a spot where it can easily be viewed from the sitting area? Or do you have to crane your neck to see it?

All of these considerations should be done before buying a motorhome. That way you will know whether that particular motorhome will meet your daily needs.

Tip #2 – Check For Water Intrusion

Water damage is the biggest threat to the life of a motorhome or any RV. It silently enters and weakens walls, ceilings, and floors.

If it goes on long enough, the motorhome will start crumbling from the inside. At that point, major repairs that are very expensive have to be made.

So it’s critical to try to stop water intrusion in its tracks as soon as it appears. Of course, prevention is the best course of action in this case. But you are looking at an RV that someone else has maintained now.

The best place to start to see how well the motorhome has been maintained is often on the roof. Look carefully at the roof material itself. Is there evidence of rips and tears that have not been repaired?

What about the sealant. Are there any gaps in the sealant that can be seen? Is the sealant old, brittle and cracked?

Now make the same examination on the sides, front and rear of the motorhome. Do you see areas where sealant is cracking, drying out, or even missing?

Now go inside the RV and look for water stains everywhere on the walls, ceilings and floors. Go inside the cabinets and closets and look all over for evidence of water intrusion.

Press against the walls and walk on the floors to see if you can detect any soft areas. That could be evidence of water intrusion that could be expensive to fix.

This is one of the most important inspections you can make on a motorhome. And you may be surprised to find that RVs that otherwise look fabulous may have these kind of issues.

Tip #3 – Inspect The Motorhome Tires

Another important area you need to examine closely is the tires before buying a motorhome. This is because replacement of tires is one of the biggest ongoing expenses for RV owners.

And the first thing you want to look for is the tire date of manufacture. It is stamped on the side of the tire and is represented by a four letter code.

The first two letters are the week that the tire was made and the second two letters are the year of manufacture. Why is this important to know?

The tire date of manufacture is stamped on the side of the tire with a four letter code
The tire date of manufacture is stamped on the sidewall

Many RV tire manufacturers recommend replacing your tires between 5 – 6 years after the date of manufacture. This is regardless of the tread wear. So follow the manufacturers recommendation about tire replacement.

The reason for this is that RV tires rarely wear out before they age out. They are simply not usually driven enough for major tire tread wear to take place.

Instead the sun’s UV rays and other elements often dry out the oils in the tire rubber first. Then they start to crack and there is the opportunity for a major blowout to happen.

So the best prevention for that scenario is to just replace them every 5 – 6 years. That way you are erring on the side of safety.

So if the motorhome tires you are examining are near the end of their useful life, note that. And realize that you will need to replace your motorhome tires soon after buying that RV.

It’s best to know about this kind of upcoming expense before buying a motorhome. You may even be able to adjust the price of the RV downward due to the condition of the tires.

Tip #4 – Get a Fuid Analysis Done

Motorhomes by definition have a motor and drivetrain somewhere. And many of them have permanently mounted generators too.

If the engine, transmission or generator requires a major repair, that is a huge expense. So how do you find out the condition of these components?

First, it wouldn’t hurt to have a qualified mechanic take a look for any signs of possible upcoming repairs. But there is an even better way to find out as much as you can about the mechanical parts of the motorhome.

In fact, the best way to learn about the condition of almost any mechanical engine or transmission is through fluid analysis.

This means that you simply extract some of the engine oil and coolant. Then do the same with the generator. And finally get a sample of the transmission fluid as well.

A sample fluid analysis kit
A fluid analysis kit

Then send the samples to a qualified lab to have them examined. They will send you back a complete breakdown of what the fluids indicate may be going on inside those mechanical components.

Here is a link where you can get fluid analysis kits

This is because long before major failure of an engine or transmission part, it starts to leave residue in the lubrication fluid. This residue is a clue to future probelms.

And a trained technician who examines that fluid can give you a warning before the failure happens. But the lab has to be familiar with RV components to be able to read the fluids correctly.

So be sure to have the motorhome fluids checked if you don’t have a complete history of the maintenance that has been done on these mechanical items.

Tip #5 – Get An RV Inspection Before Buying A Motorhome

You had to see this one coming, right? I mean, what else would a certified RV inspector recommend?

Seriously though, getting an inspection by an NRVIA certified inspector is one of the smartest things you can do before buying a motorhome.

The inspector will give you a complete report on the condition of the motorhome and all of its systems. You will have a full rundown on the RV from the roof to the tires.

And getting a motorhome inspection is a good idea whether it’s new or used. In fact, many new RV buyers are getting them inspected before taking delivery of the coach.

This is because so many newer RVs and motorhomes are coming from the factory with multiple defects. And the manufacturers are expecting the RV dealers to fix these issues for the customer.

When you have a certified inspector go over the RV, they can list all of those problems in their report. And then the issues can be handled under warranty all at one time.

The inspection is well worth the cost in my opinion as it can save you from major hidden repair costs if it is used. And the inspector can even perform the fluid analysis on the mechanical components as well.

Conclusion

Just to review, here are the top 5 tips for buying a motorhome:

  • Get to know the living space well. Try it out as much as you can and see if you feel comfortable with the motorhome layout and furnishings.
  • Look everywhere for evidence of water intrusion that has already occurred. And then check for sealant problems that could lead to water intrusion in the near future.
  • Carefully inspect the tires for the manufacture date and for signs of drying out and cracking. If they are beyond the recommended tire life from the manufacturer, replace them.
  • If you don’t have full maintenance records on all of the engine and drivetrain components, get a fluid analysis done. This will help you know whether major component failure may be looming or not.
  • Get the motorhome inspected by an NRVIA certified RV inspector. This will help you know the overall condition of the RV better than anything else you can do.

RV Inverter Generators – The Pros & Cons Explained

So what are RV inverter generators anyway?

One thing they are not is the loud and obnoxious construction type of generator. Those may be fine where heavy construction is going on, but don’t bring them to a campsite.

If you do, you will be sure to make enemies quickly. The noise and fumes from those generators will annoy everyone around you. And you won’t like it either!

RV inverter generators are much smaller in size. And although they do make some noise, it’s very low in comparison.

And they are very fuel efficient too. They can usually run several hours non-stop on just a gallon of gas.

So these kind of generators are well-suited for use with RVs, especially while boondocking. But they may not be the best choice for RV power for everyone.

So let’s discuss the pros and cons and see who benefits most from the use of an inverter generator.

RV inverter generators - are they better than solar power?
Watch my video on RV inverter generators by clicking the image above

Disclosure: Please note this post may contain affiliate links. This means – at no additional cost to you – I earn a commission if you make a purchase using our affiliate links. I only link to products and companies I use and feel comfortable recommending. The income goes toward supporting the free content on this website

The Pros Of RV Inverter Generators

  • When compared to the cost of RV solar power, it is much less. A solar system that can run most appliances in the RV other than ACs can cost $5000 or more. An inverter generator that will run everything in the RV including an AC unit is under $1000.
  • Inverter generators can easily run high wattage devices like microwaves, hair dryers, and yes, even air conditioners.
  • They are so simple – all you have to do is plug in the RV power cord and fire up the generator. It really is that simple. The generator will adjust to whatever load is placed upon it up to its power limit.
  • They work in any kind of weather. It doesn’t matter whether it’s sunny or rainy, foggy or clear, night or day. An inverter generator will keep chugging along as long as you provide the fuel for it.
  • Inverter generators produce clean and safe power for all of your sensitive electronic devices.

But What Are The Cons?

  • Noise – yes, the noise level is much reduced when using an RV inverter generator. In fact, if you get more than 15 feet away, you may not even hear it at all. But some noise is produced. And it’s constantly there. This can be unacceptable to some RVers.
  • Weight – Especially if you choose an inverter generator that is big enough to run all your RV appliances and an AC unit. In that case, the generator will probably weigh about 100 lbs. And that kind of weight is not easily moved around. Smaller ones that will only charge up your RV batteries after a day’s use will weigh about 50 lbs.
  • Storage – you have to find somewhere to store the generator when it’s not in use. Many people use the bed of their pickup. Others use a storage compartment in the RV. But these units both take up space and add weight. So you have to plan for that.
  • Requires fuel – inverter generators usually run on gasoline. This means that you will have to bring along a supply of gas and make sure that it is stored safely. Of course, some generators can also run on propane and they are called dual fuel generators. This can be very convenient for RVers since they already carry a supply of propane with them.
  • Needs regular maintenance – all motors and engines will require some kind of maintenance and care. And that is true of these generators too. But the good news is that the needed maintenance is fairly easy to do. In fact, almost anyone can do it.

Who Should Use An Inverter Generator?

RV inverter generators are really nifty devices that bring AC power wherever you need it.

So if you like to go off-grid a lot, or boondock, an inverter generator can be a great purchase. They work particularly well for travel trailers and fifth wheels.

Many motorhomes have a generator already permanently installed. So an additional inverter generator may not be needed.

But towable RVs often do not come with an installed generator. So a portable generator can be a great addition in these cases.

However, if you spend all your time in campgrounds plugged into shore power, a generator may not even be necessary.

Another point, some RVers just cannot stand the background noise that a generator produces constantly. Even a relatively quiet one. So it may not fit their RV powers needs at all.

Others have a substantial solar power system installed in their RV. And if so, they may not feel the need to have an inverter generator as well. Although having one as a backup may not be a bad idea.

If you have an RV inverter generator,
please answer this anonymous poll:

Is your inverter generator a Honda or Yamaha?
Is the noise level from your inverter generator bothersome?
Do you use a combination of solar and generator power?

Which Brand Should You Buy?

For many years, the best inverter generators have been made by Honda and Yamaha. And they continue to be excellent products even now.

But times have changed and other manufacturers have entered the inverter generator market. And many of their products are much less expensive.

Of course, that does not mean that any old inverter generator is a good buy. But it also doesn’t mean that Honda and Yamaha are the only prudent choices anymore.

Don’t get me wrong here. Honda and Yamaha inverter generators are still excellent choices. But don’t rule out others that cost as much as 50% less, just because they are a different brand.

In fact, some of the newer products in the field have Amazon user ratings that rival Honda and Yamaha. So compare wisely and choose the brand that fits your budget and needs.

What Size RV Inverter Generator?

The size of generator needed depends on your power needs. And power needs can run the full gamut between individual RVers.

But generally speaking, if all you need to do is charge your batteries at the end of a day’s usage, a 2000 watt unit will do fine. And they are lighter in weight too.

But if you need enough power to easily run all of your RV appliances and maybe an AC unit as well, more is needed. Probably 3000+ watts will be required in this case. And that means a heavier unit.

But there is another interesting choice though. This is because two inverter generators can often be hooked together to run simultaneously.

This means that their ouput is almost doubled. So you could have two 2000 watt inverters on hand.

You only use one of them when your power needs are low. But if your power requirements grow, you can run them both together through the use of a parallel cable.

Again, this is an individual choice. You may feel that having only one inverter generator that meets your normal RV power needs is appropriate. But there is always the option to add another one and nearly double your power output.

Click here for a Honda 1000 watt inverter generator

Check out a Yamaha 2200 Watt inverter generator here

Compare a Wen 2000 watt inverter generator here

View a Champion 3400 watt dual fuel inverter generator here

Click here for the Wen parallel cable that runs two inverter generators

(These are affiliate links for the product on Amazon. It does not cost you any extra to buy the product using my affiliate link if you choose to do so)

Combine Solar And Inverter Generators?

For many RVers, the perfect boondocking, or unplugged power source is not either solar or RV inverter generators. It is a combination of the two instead.

If your power needs are fairly high, you can always supplement an installed solar system with an inverter generator. This can be especially beneficial if you are camping where the sun doesn’t always shine a lot.

On the days when the sun is out in full force, the solar system can quietly handle the power needs alone. But sometimes on cloudy or rainy days, solar power is not able to keep up with power demands.

In that case, having a good old fossil-fueled inverter generator may be just what you need.

Other RVers with smaller power needs may still get the benefit of a combination of solar power and generator power too.

In this case, many RVers may choose to use portable solar panels instead of the permanently installed panels.

In the morning, they run the RV inverter generator enough to recharge the batteries up to about 80% of capacity. From there, they shut off the generator and deploy the portable solar panels.

Portable solar panel setup
Example of a portable solar panel setup

Through the day, the solar system tops off and maintains the batteries at full charge. Then battery power can be used for power needs overnight starting with a full charge at evening time. The next day, the process is repeated.

There are other ways to use solar and generator power together for handling RV power needs. You can design a system that works best for you, your rig, and the way you like to camp.

Click here for the Renogy 200 watt portable solar panel unit

(These are affiliate links for the product on Amazon. It does not cost you any extra to buy the product using my affiliate link if you choose to do so)

Conclusion

RV inverter generators are a great source of AC power when you are off-grid or boondocking.

They allow you to run all of the modern conveniences built into RVs at a very low cost. And almost anywhere. Plus, they can even be quiet enough to meet the needs of most RV owners.

So they have a lot of distinct advantages for RV use. But they are not for everyone.

So weigh the advantages and disadvantages of these generators carefully. Then choose from my recommendations above or find a well-reviewed model that works best for you.

With careful advance thought and planning you will make a good choice for your RV power needs.

Have safe and happy travels my friends!