When To Open RV Vents? Everything You Need To Know

For adventurers and those who like camping, RVs serve as their home away from home. There is no argument that RVs can make camping a lot easier. But to get the most out of it, you need to learn how to optimize the living conditions inside the vehicle.

One of the many quirks of camping in a trailer is understanding when to open RV vents and when to keep them closed. It appears that many people do not understand or fully appreciate what the vents in their trailer do. Well, all that changes once you go through this article.

In this article, we will help you understand the exact purpose of RV roof vents and give you a clear guideline on when you should open or close the vents to maximize the airflow inside your motorhome. So, without further ado, let us get started.

How Do RV Roof Vents Work?

There is no hidden secret or mechanism to RV roof vents. Their one and only purpose are to ventilate your portable home. Remember, the RV has a closer resemblance to a house than to a vehicle. And the roof vents of your RV act the same way as the windows in your house.

The roof vents in your RV ensure proper airflow whether you are cruising down the road or parked in the driveway. If the insides of your trailer get smelly or feel suffocating, opening up the roof vents will help clear the air and get rid of the bad smell.

How Do RV Roof Vents Work

In most cases, the roof vent of your camper looks like a small hatch that you can open up manually using a crank. However, you can also find some modern vents that open up using electricity these days. The principal concept, in either case, is pretty much the same.

There is also a filter or screen that goes over the vent to prevent bugs from getting in through the opening if you have the vents open. You can also attach a small fan near the opening to ensure better ventilation through the opening.

When To Open RV Vents?

As we said, the main purpose of RV vents is to ventilate. So, the rule of thumb is to open your vents whenever you need to ventilate the air inside. Here are a few good examples of when you should open the vents in your trailer.

When To Open RV Vents
  • If you are parked at a camping spot, it is best to turn the air conditioner off and open up the roof vents. That way, the insides of your RV will get fresh air moving in and out of it through the vents.
  • When you are cooking inside your RV or boiling water, you want to open up the vents on the roof. That way, the smoke that builds up as you cook will get vented right away, keeping the interior smoke-free.
  • If it is raining outside, you should keep your RV vents closed. Otherwise, rainwater can easily get inside your trailer and ruin your belongings.
  • Some people take their RV camping and often keep their dirty laundry inside the trailer. If you have dirty laundry and the vents in your RV are closed overnight, it will become extremely smelly by morning. So, you should either keep dirty laundries in a closed compartment or open up your RV vents.
  • If you have installed an air conditioner in your trailer, then you want to keep your vents closed when you have it running. However, if the inside of your RV is excessively hot, you can open it up to let out the excess heat before truing on your air conditioner unit.
  • When you are storing away your RV in the garage for a couple of months, it might be a good idea to keep the roof vents open. That way, the interior of the RV will remain fresh thanks to air circulation inside the garage. Otherwise, the next time you take your RV out, the air inside will feel heavier.
  • If it gets too hot inside the RV and you do not have an air conditioner in your trailer, opening up the RV roof vents will help make the interior cooler.

How To Open RV Vents?

It depends on the type of RV vents you have installed in your camper. Typically, most vents in RV open manually using a crank. But if you have an electrical vent, there should be a button nearby that opens it automatically.

How To Open RV Vents

Should I Keep RV Vents Open Or Closed In Winter?

While opening up the vents in your RV during summer is a great idea to save money on the air conditioner, during winter, it is a whole other thing. Depending on where you live, the temperature can get pretty harsh on winter nights. And keeping your vents open when it is freezing outside is not a great idea.

Should I Keep RV Vents Open Or Closed In Winter

Typically, you should keep your vents closed if you are driving down a highway on your RV. But if you are cooking inside, then you should open the vent about halfway just to let out the steam. Since the camper will likely be parked at that time, you should be protected against cold.

Final Thoughts

The rooftop vents in your RV serve the essential function of keeping the insides of your camper cool. Without opening the vents every now and then, the air inside will start to feel toxic and suffocating.

But keeping the vents open all the time is not ideal as it can make the insides of the RV quite dirty. But if you know when to open up the vents and when to keep them closed, your overall experience with the trailer will improve drastically.

We hope our article on when to open RV vents could enlighten and enrich your camping experience. Good luck.