How to Keep Cool in the RV During the Summer

how to keep cool in the summer: male swimming at pool

Summer is the best time to go out and enjoy adventures in the great outdoors. However, it can get a bit too hot during the summer season and it can be a bit difficult to stay cool in your RV. You can avoid this by planning ahead of time to make sure that you are comfortable inside your RV during the hot summer seasons. There are plenty of tips and tricks such as parking your rig in cooler places, choosing cooler locations, and so much more that you can follow to make sure that you are cooled during the hot summer months.

1. Check The Spot Where You Are Parked At: Choose A Shaded Location

Hot days call for summer travel, but the increasing temperatures make it even harder to do so. States like Texas and California reach temperatures as high as 91-97 degrees Fahrenheit in places like Sacramento and Fresno. So it is very important where to park your RV because the location helps a lot in keeping your RV cool.

Make sure to choose a shady spot and park your RV so the largest windows receive the least amount of full sun If you are camping in a campground, look for a spot with a lot of trees and shade so that your AC or whatever cooling system you use in your RV would not be overworked. 

Naturally, parking in shady spots will keep your RV cooler. Also, check where the direction of the sun is coming from, so that you can angle your RV to the cooler side, away from the sun’s rays.

2. Drink Plenty of Water As Much As Possible: Keep Hydrated!

Naturally, the summer season would keep us thirsty and parched even when we are inside the RV. It goes without saying that drinking a lot of fluids and water would help you keep cool during your stay inside. You have to drink an eight-ounce glass of water per day, as it is the general rule, but it depends on people’s individual factors such as age, lifestyle, weather, and gender.

Drink more water when it’s hot to replace all the lost moisture and water inside your body. Drink water, fruit juices, and tea and not soft drinks or sweet drinks as it might keep your body warmer thanks to the sugar content and carbohydrates it has.

3. Clean And Maintain Your AC Or Cooling Devices

Clean your dirty filters regularly especially if you keep on hitting the dusty trails and roads regularly. Dirty filters make it difficult for your AC to work efficiently. Clean them with a handheld vacuum cleaner or wash some filters with soapy water to keep them clean. Having good airflow is a must in your RV to keep the insides cool.

Check the dust and grime buildup in the areas behind and around your fridge and stove, where you do most of the cooking. Inefficient airflow makes heat flow back into the RV so make sure to maintain your cooling devices regularly. If you want to know more about the best roof vent for your rig, here is an article that I have written for you.

4. Use Your Fans: Effectively Day And Night

Remember that moving air is much cooler than air that is still, so make use of the oscillation features of your fans. During the daytime, get the fans pointed right at you, and in the evening, point your fans facing out the windows. Doing so blows the hot air out and draws the cooler air inside your RV.

Air is cooler outside of your RV at nighttime rather than at daytime so make use of the natural cooling effects of the nighttime air to your advantage. Also, open your windows for a much more effective cross-breeze, especially at night.

5. Cook Outside Your RV As Much As Possible

As much as possible, do your best to cook most of your meals outside. Whenever you cook inside, the heat being generated does not come out quickly and it is much harder to dissipate. It just increases the high internal temperature.

Cook your meals outside, either over the fire or using a camp stove outside. Of course, do your best to prepare the ingredients in the most sanitary way possible but cook the meals outside.

You can also invest in a portable grill so that you can cook more outside in the shade. This way, you will be able to capture the essence of camping outdoors rather than preparing and cooking everything inside. If you want to know more about RV kitchen accessories that you should have, here is an article that I have written for you.

6. Swim And Play In The Water: The Best Way to Cool Down

Nothing makes a summer trip outside much more memorable than swimming in the water, be it in the ocean or a river or a lake, or even a small brook or stream. Take the time to explore the natural cooling solutions the great outdoors has in front of us all. 

Go swimming, boating, river floating, canoeing, kayaking, and so on. If you are in an RV park, chances are some of them offer boating and swimming amenities for you and your family to enjoy. However, if you are not on campgrounds or RV parks, you can purchase a foldable pool for the family. You can go swimming whenever or wherever you like.

7. Go Towards Places With Cooler Temperatures

You can change locations whenever you want because thanks to technology, your RV is mobile. Go to cooler places to avoid getting stressed over hotter temperatures. It is highly recommended to go to places like the areas in the Pacific Northwest, like Oregon, Washington, and the Bay Area too.

These places are famous for being relatively cool the whole year, so you will not have any worries about being too hot and bothered inside your RV while staying in these places.

8. Improve On The Insulation Of Your RV

Having better insulation on your RV has a lot of good things. It helps you to use your vehicle more comfortably in winter and also keeps you cooler in the summer seasons. You have to add more insulation whenever possible to the inside of your vehicle. 

Regular maintenance is also key for better function of the insulating devices and making your trip more comfortable especially in the warmer months.

9. Awnings Help You Be More Comfortable Too

It is strongly suggested to add an awning to your RV. Not only does it give you a shady and covered area outside but you can also use it to reduce the amount of light and heat from the sun that goes inside your RV through your windows.

These are designed to expand your living space and provide more shade coverage necessary. You can also use your awning to add more space to your RV spot by using several awning accessories available.

10. Make Use of Vent Fans, Evaporative Cooling, And Portable Coolers

Portable Air Conditioners. Many RVs have roof-mounted air conditioners already, it helps to have a portable unit with you when you travel in your RV. It can replace or supplement a roof-mounted unit without having to spend a lot of money to install it.

Small in size compared to normal air conditioners, these are designed to cool your RV and are also much more portable thanks to the wheels with them. Also, there is no need to climb onto the roof when you need to fix your AC. This saves you more time and effort in doing so. Some portable RV air conditioners also work as dehumidifiers, which can be a huge bonus, especially to campers who live in humid locations.

A recommendation for a portable AC is the Black + Decker BPACT10WT Portable RV Air Conditioner. Priced at $379.99, its compact 10,000 BTU unit is meant to cool spaces up to 250 square feet in size. It also provides exceptional performance at an affordable price range.

It includes adjustable fan speed and a Sleep Mode, which allows you to sleep more comfortably inside your RV without dealing with its noise. It also has three separate modes: cool setting, fan setting, and dehumidifier setting.

It reduces electricity consumption, which allows you to save more money. Also, there is no need to empty the water bucket on this unit, thanks to its hose adapter installed at the back of the unit.

Evaporative Coolers. Not everyone knows what a swamp cooler is but this offers a lot of benefits for RV campers. Also known as an evaporative cooler, it uses the evaporation of water to cool the air by using a fan to blow air through a wet pad to create a cooling effect. It does a great job cooling space, especially in dry and hot places.

However, they are not as effective as air conditioners because they cannot cool extremely hot or humid spaces so this should be treated as a supplementary device and not replace the AC in general.

By using this, electricity bills will be reduced because it will not use a lot of electricity on your RV. It can also be run using a generator or solar power, offering environment-friendly options, especially to nature-conscious campers. It is also relatively easy to maintain and repair if necessary.

A recommendation for an evaporative cooler is the homelabs Evaporative Cooler. Priced at $399.93, it is well-loved by the customers all over. It features a super simple design that is easy to use and maintain.

Its built-in timer helps ensure the cooler is never left running for too long. A visible and audible water level indicator is also there to help ensure you refill the 10L water tank when the time comes. Lastly, it is also lightweight, which makes it ideal for RV travel and the remote control gives you comfort to control it wherever you are at home.

Roof Vents. These are considered essential for camping in RVs in general. It helps regulate the temperature inside the RV and also helps remove the smells and smoke while cooking. It is a total must-have for circulating fresh air while sleeping, and it makes your RV living much more comfortable than ever.

For this one, we recommend the Maxx Air 00-07500K Deluxe With Remote. It is loaded with a lot of useful features and is designed to fit all standard 14” x 14” RV roof openings. It has a smoke-colored lid that provides a rain shield over the fan. It also includes a ten-speed motor for optimal airflow control. Lastly, it comes with a remote and a built-in thermostat to control the temperature inside the RV.

11. Personal Recommendation: Have A Supplement

Most RVs are built with air conditioners so it won’t hurt if you have a supplement just in case the heat gets more unbearable. Regular maintenance of your roof-mounted AC and vent fans is also helpful because if you can maximize the use of these cooling devices, you’d have maximum satisfaction inside your RV for your trips.

Having regular maintenance on your cooling devices helps reduce the electricity costs since they do not use a lot of electricity to cool the inside of your RV. Boost the cooling capacity of your air conditioners by having a supplementary device and maintain the good status of your existing cooling devices.


It is really important to maintain your existing cooling devices in your RV so that they will last longer. It will also help if you stay hydrated, choose cooler places, and invest in supplementary cooling devices to make your RV living much better in the warmer months. Traveling and living in an RV during the summer season is hard, and the coronavirus made it even harder. That being said, it is going to be a fun and memorable experience for everyone if you would be responsible enough and follow the guidelines for everyone’s safety and protection. Responsibility and cooperation are keys to a safer future.


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