The strategy for cleaning a motorhome should be to start with the dirty jobs, then move to the more refined jobs and conclude with some finishing operations. Here is the 9 step guide to a full cleaning operation of your vehicle:
2. Wheels and Tyres
3. Door Shuts
4. Body Clean / Shampoo
5. Interior Cleaning
6. Tar Spots
7. Body Polishing
8. Glass / Acrylic Windows
9. Finishing Jobs
Engine: If you like to keep your engine and compartment clean, tackle this first. Note any instructions provided in your vehicle handbook and cover electronic components with plastic. Ensure the engine is both cold and switched off. The procedure is to use cleaner, agitate with brush and then rinse with water. Pressure cleaners can cause engine damage.
Wheel and Tyres: Ensure wheels and brakes are cold. Attend to one wheel at a time and complete fully before moving to the next wheel as some cleaning agents should not be allowed to dry onto the wheel. Use a leaning agent, agitate with brush and hose off with water. Attend to the wheel rims, covers and then the tyres.
Door Shuts: Use a grease remover on door shuts and wheel arches.
Body Clean / Shampoo: Use a purpose designed caravan cleaner or shampoo product. For stubborn marks like algae marks, streaks, bird lime etc use a more industrial type cleaner such as an engine cleaner – agitate with brush and rinse with water.
Interior: Use upholstery products and follow instructions to clean fabric seats and cushions. Use a small area or cushion rear to test to see if it will cause discolouration. Ensure all windows are open for ventilation when cleaning the interior. If possible dry cushions externally in dry sunny or breezy conditions.
Tar Removal: Use a proprietary tar removal product such as Auto Glym to remove any tar spots before commencing any body polishing.
Body Polish: Check to see the most appropriate polishing agent for your body material. If an aluminium type surface, either stucco or dimpled, it’s best not to apply any polishing agent as this can damage the paint applied to aluminium surface. However on all other surfaces use a standard vehicle polishing product and use as per instructions, being careful to avoid black plastic components.
Windows: Note the difference between your vehicles glass and acrylic windows and never use a cleaning product on the incorrect window type. Be particularly careful with your acrylic windows as these are easily scratched. These windows must be cleaned with an acrylic window cleaning agent only. Typically they are to be sprayed on to the window and removed quickly with a paper towel.
Finishing Jobs: All black plastic components such as mirror housing, door handles and bumpers can be revived with a bumper cleaner. Finally address the tyres with tyre dressing treatment to give your vehicle that showroom look.
Whether preparing your vehicle for a sale or you just want to be the smartest looking vehicle in the park, the tips above should help you the clean and maintain your motorhome.