A Beginner’s Guide to RV Skirting Solutions: Attachment, Materials & More
There are many benefits to installing RV skirting, which is why more and more owners are opting to skirt their vehicles, especially in winter.
Not only can you increase storage space beneath your RV by adding skirting, but you also add valuable undercarriage protection by having the skirt in place.
Furthermore, a well-placed skirt will help keep your RV warmer in winter, and cooler in summer.
Essentially, if your RV is lived in and stationary for any period of time, skirting should be a high priority.
In this guide, we will look at how RV skirting works, the different types and materials that are used to do it as well as the pros and cons of each method.
So if you are ready, let’s get to it.
How does RV skirting work?
The principle is very simple. By adding material on the outside of the RV from the height of the undercarriage to the ground, you prevent air (either cold in winter or hot in summer) from penetrating the underside of the RV.
This also means wind, rain and debris does not reach the vital components of your undercarriage. The skirting essentially blocks this off by guarding the underside of the RV from the elements.
The barrier that it creates also makes for a convenient space to store items. By ensuring that there is an opening within the skirting, you can have access to space beneath your RV.
With a simple lock, this area is then inaccessible to would-be thieves, meaning belongings such as inflatables and outdoor toys and accessories can be kept safely under lock and key without taking up valuable cabin space.
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Types of RV Skirting Solutions
There are various options when it comes to fitting skirting to your RV.
From store-bought aluminum channeling that is mounted to your RV (which the skirt then attaches to), to DIY options made with canvas, hammer and nails.
And a whole lot more in between.
Let’s now take a look at each of the methods in detail.
1. Buttons and T-Snaps Attachment
One of the most common approaches to RV skirting with a number of brands catering for it is the button or t-snap system.
As the name suggests, this method utilizes buttons and turnbuckle style snaps in order to attach the skirting to the side of the RV.
In most cases you will need to have the buttons professional fixed to the side of your RV at the base, however this is a simple procedure that the majority of dealerships will be able to undertake.
The skirting then lines up and clicks into place with relative ease.
- Looks great
- A common method of RV skirting
- Easy to install
- You will not get an airtight fixture with T-snap skirting
- When the skirt material gets worn or contracts in cold weather, lining up the snaps can be difficult.
2. Channel RV skirting Attachment
We briefly mentioned channel RV skirting above. This involves having an aluminum channel/groove fitted to the lower outside wall of your RV.
The top of the skirt then slides into the channel and is fixed firmly into place.
- A very robust fixture that creates an airtight lock along the length of the skirt.
- The skirt material can expand and contract without detriment to the integrity of the fitting
- The skirt is easy to slide in and out of place.
- Not as common as snap style attachments meaning the choice is more limited.
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3. Suction Cup RV Skirting Attachment
Another method of attaching skirting to the side of your RV is via simple suction cups.
The system is self explanatory; the top of the skirt is fitted with small suction buttons that can be pressed against the side of your RV in order for attachment to occur.
- Very easy installation, no drilling of holes into the side of your RV
- You can do this one yourself without the help of professionals
- Easy to pull away the skirting when no longer needed
- The least secure method of attachment we have covered
- Bad weather can cause the suction cups to move or fall off
- Not a secure method if you plan on storing belongings beneath your RV
- Cups do not attach to curved surfaces very well
Attaching the base of the skirt to the ground
Once you have settled on a system of attaching the top of the skirt to the side of the RV, there is then the important issue of firmly fixing the base of the skirt to the ground.
In challenging weather conditions you need a method that will remain firm otherwise your skirting will end up flapping around and could even end up flying away or at the very least become damaged.
You also need a secure fitting at the base so that the temperature moderating properties of the skirt remain true, (i.e keeping out the air beneath your undercarriage) as well as it providing a means to safely store your gear.
There’s a number of methods of attaching the base of the skirt to the ground. Let’s take a look.
1. Strap ground attachment
The strap system is probably the most common method of attachment. It is also one of the easiest to implement.
The system simply utilizes straps that are fitted to the side or base of the skirting that are then held in the ground via metal spikes similar to camping and awning pegs.
You can then manipulate the skirt around the edge of your RV in line with the potentially varying ground height.
- Very easy to use and install
- It enables the skirt to work on different ground levels
- Prone to coming unattached in very windy weather
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2. Loop ground attachment
This method of ground attachment relies on the skirt having small loops along the base.
Much like a tent awning, you then drive stakes through the holes into ythe ground.
The system works similar to the strap method described above. It also makes it possible for the base of the skirt to fit the flow of the land.
- Easy to install
- Adjusts well to varying ground height
- More secure than the strap method, (more stakes are used)
- The number of stakes around your RV can be a trip hazard
3. Chain ground attachment
Rather than straps or loops along the base of the skirt it is also possible to utilize chains.
This is more of a bespoke method however meaning you will need to do some DIY on the skirt in order to attach the chains, or locate a brand of skirt that already has them in place.
- Chains are heavy and will keep your RV skirting from moving once fixed to the ground
- Chains are durable and will last you a long time
- Not such a common method meaning you might need to retrofit your skirt with chains via a bit of DIY.
- Heavy & difficult to move and transport
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4. D-ring or Grommet style attachment
It is possible to buy skirting that has a series of D-rings or grommets placed every few feet along the length of the material.
These are also placed at varying heights in order to combat the problem of inconsistent ground levels.
- Adjusts well to different ground heights
- Versatile and secure
- The different attachment heights makes it easy to get it wrong, i.e you can end up with slack skirting.