Indoor vs. Outdoor RV Storage
How should an RV or boat be stored? Is indoor RV storage the best, or is it okay to store the RV outside? What about indoor boat storage versus outdoor boat storage? This is a perennial question in the RV and boating world, and it is one that does not have an easy answer. Both options have their pros and cons. There is no one best method. The choice is ultimately in the hands of the owner.
Indoor RV Storage
In an indoor storage facility all of the RVs and boats are housed in a warehouse-like building. The RVs are usually stored in a stacking system, much like boats, only in long rows instead of top-to-bottom racks.
Indoor storage keeps an RV protected from all the elements that can damage the vehicle. Many indoor RV or indoor boat storage facilities also offer free services, such as washing the vehicle and checking the tire pressure.
Indoor storage is much more expensive than outdoor storage. Indoor facilities are also more vulnerable to fires and other disasters. A fire can wipe out every RV in the building. Many facilities are severely underinsured and some require the RV owner to carry all the insurance and the risk of storing and moving the vehicle. This is often the case even when state law specifically assigns liability to the storage facility.
It is also hard to get RVs into and out of storage. The RVs in the front of a row have to be moved to get to an RV in back. It is not uncommon for RVs to be dinged or scratched in the moving process. RVs can’t be picked up on a moment’s notice either; most of these facilities require 24 hours notice before the owner can pick up his or her vehicle.
Finally, there is also a loss of privacy with indoor storage. The facility keeps a copy of the keys because the employees will frequently move the RV. This gives them access to the contents and can lead to theft and other such misdeeds. All of these issues are why most RV and boat owner choose outdoor storage.
Outdoor RV Storage
Outdoor RV storage is by far the most popular method of storage. The RVs are generally lined up in rows in a parking lot. The same is true of outdoor boat storage.
Outdoor storage is generally much cheaper than indoor storage. The RV is usually easier to get to and is not likely to be dinged or scratched when other owners takes their RVs out. The outdoor nature of the storage facility makes it less likely that a fire will take out every RV stored there. It also makes fires much less likely. Usually an RV can be retrieved at any time without prior notice. Outdoor facilities need much less insurance than indoor facilities. Many do not keep a copy of the keys or move the RV.
The RV or boat will be constantly exposed to the elements. This could reduce its expected lifespan. Hail and high winds can also damage a parked RV. If the roof leaks the interior could be ruined.