I laughed when our friend Spoonie once referred to us as homeless without jobs. We are not homeless! Just houseless. But one thing is certain, home repair days don’t last nearly as long in the trailer as they didback in our 3,800 sq. ft. stick house.
And I don’t recall where Rene heard this, but another thing is certain about living full-time in an RV. Everything comes loose. Oh, how true that is. But with a little routine maintenance and thoughtful repairs, taking care of chores around your home on wheels can be quick and easy.
We actually let a number of chores add up until I undertook my first full Honey Do day. My most important task for the day, however, was to repair the various cabinet door hinges in our Arctic Fox trailer which have come loose. One of the things that persuaded us to choose our 24′ Arctic Fox over all the other trailers we researched was their superior construction and use of real wood cabinet doors. These solid doors are very nice, just obviously heavy. A number of the screws in their hinges have become loose and stripped in just the couple months we’ve been on the road.
But I came up with a solution to fix the RV cabinet hinges for good. By replacing the 3/4″ wood screws that apparently loosen easily with small machine bolts and nuts, we are assured that even if they do come loose again I can tighten them down without any further damage to the wood. The bolts that fit in our hinges perfectly are #6-32 x 1 1/4″ machine bolts. Their nickel color means you can’t even notice them as any different.
For each hinge that had come loose, I removed the screws and drilled a small hole through the cabinet wood. I then inserted the bolt through the hinge and cabinet and attached the nut from the back and tightened them down. At just 98¢ for a pack of six nuts and bolts I believe this is the most efficient and cost effective way to repair loose RV cabinet door hinges! We purchased a few extra packs so we have them for future repairs. We’ll just need to get a few longer bolts for the large closet doors if and when they come loose since there are thicker structural pieces of cabinet wood behind those hinges.
To avoid such repairs in the first place, make it a point to regularly check any screws and connections in and around your RV. Tighten your battery cables, tighten screws in your door hardware and cabinets, and check all your plumbing connections.
Other items on my Honey Do list for the day were to:
- Repair our spare waste tank rinse hose with a female hose mending kit ($2.95 – cheaper than a new hose and much less annoying than getting sprayed every time we hooked it up!)
- Replace the plug on our custom extension cord for the generator with one of adequate amperage rating ($9.50 – much cheaper and better than waiting for the under-rated one to have a meltdown!)
- Replace the o-ring that blew out of our waste dump hose during the RV toilet drain obstruction debacle. (Used rubber adhesive I had in the toolbox.)
- Replace a broken brake light bulb on the truck after a nice local informed us it was out ($1.59 – much cheaper than an out-of-state ticket!)