Wednesday, July 2, 2014


Dear Dr. R.V. Shrink:
My husband is obsessive compulsive when it comes to grooming. I’m not talking about his hair. It’s our motorhome. If it is not shining like a new penny, he is out there scrubbing on it, polishing it, and spraying everything from roof to rubber seals with some magic juice he carries with us. Is this normal behavior? Do all RV owners spend so much time tinkering? He says it is just “pride in ownership.” Let’s hear your two cents worth.
--OCD in B.C.

Dear OCD:
RV and boat owners are in the same club. It’s called the “Scrub Club.” To be a member in good standing you have to spend a good portion of your time maintaining your investment. As long as it does not interfere with other activities you enjoy together, I think it is very normal behavior. You should be happy that you have a partner that enjoys maintaining your rolling abode. Just the habit of going over the rig to clean makes him aware of many other things that might need attention. It also familiarizes him with your unit. If he were at home he would be doing home maintenance. This is your home on wheels and it is exposed to many deteriorating elements as you travel around the country. Just keeping bug juice off the front of a rig can be a full-time job. Leaving dried carcasses there will eventually deteriorate the finish. I am going to assume the magic juice he uses is a product like Aerospace 303 or Armor All. It has to be done often, but it is like putting SP 40 sunblock on your rig. It protects gelcoat, plastics, rubber seals and more. It also keeps the suicidal insects from sticking too badly. It is unwise to wax over decals, so his magic juice protects them and gives everything else a nice shine. The downside is, it needs to be applied often. A busy mind is a happy mind, so unless it is interfering with your schedule, stop fretting about it. Embrace his enthusiasm, it is slowing the depreciation on your investment and keeping your husband happy and healthy doing what he seems to enjoy.
--Keep Smilin’, Dr. R.V. Shrink


Camille Carnell Pronovost said...

Chris, Why is it unwise to wax over decals? What product SHOULD I recommend to my customers?

Thanks in advance, Camille

Anonymous said...

IMO, "Cleanliness is next to foolishness".
You might say I'm an "entomologist",
(who carries his collection of many bugs, from many states), on the front cap of his coach.
'96 Safari

Anonymous said...

I did not buy my RV as an "investment". I bought it to use anyway I want and maybe even get it a little scratched up by some bushes in old, but free, Forest Service campgrounds. I hose it off a coupla times a year and enjoy the heck out of it. I do not plan to drive it in any parades, but will probably wax it when I sell it and if it is worth a little less at that time, I will figure that the cost was well worth not having to worry about keeping it pristine for the next guy.

Anonymous said...

yucks! I appreciate my man and is cleanliness. It not only feels good to have our 2007 Diplomat that we live in "full time" look good, but it gives him a little exercise. There is rarely a time he is out there doing something that he doesn't have someone come over and start talking. He has had many nice conversations, learned several things and enjoys being outside instead of always inside when we are home. He is not a couch potato. We have visited all but four states and have spent many hours enjoying other campers because of "his cleaning or tinkering on something". No bugs stay with us long and I love taking pictures while we drive down the highway through clean windows. I appreciate his efforts.

Anonymous said...

Congratulate your husband for taking such great care of the Diplomat, I share your enthusiasm and love the relationship we rv'ers have.

Happy camping,


Jerry X Shea said...

This is so easy. First, good for your husband. Second, most guys that grew up in the Northern states, drove on dirt roads because they lived on a farm, spent over half the year driving in snow, slush and rain and most likely did not wash his car every weekend - no one did. Then you have guys like me, raised in Southern California in the 50s &60s. No way would a teenage or 20s something guy ever get caught driving a "dirty car" at any time of year. After it would rain, you wiped down your car and drove a clean car. The next time you are in a RV park, look at the tires and wheels a d license plates of those motorhomes. Dirty tires and rims will be on a coach from the north. Armoral tires and clean rims will be on a coach from the southwestern states. Check it out.

Ellen said...

Ah! Methinks the dear Shrink is himself a lover of wiping and waxing and polishing :)

Seems to me that anyone who spends too much time poking waxy Q-Tips into RV crevices probably need another hobby. I'm with Mrs. OCD in BC. Cleaning the rig when it needs it is one thing. Cleaning it to have something constructive to do is just sad.