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Recreational vehicle in winterFor someone who camps regularly during the summer, RVs are not only an investment, they can feel like part of the family. That’s why you’ll want to take the necessary steps when storing a recreational vehicle to ensure it has many more summer trips to come.

The 4 Best RV Storage Tips

When winterizing your recreational vehicle, there are a few important tasks you don’t want to overlook:

  1. Take necessary precautions to combat mold and mildew
  2. Plan ahead to stop pests
  3. Consider tire protection
  4. Choose a storage unit carefully

Now, let’s explore each of these tasks in more detail.

  1. Take Necessary Precautions to Combat Mold and Mildew: Discovering that mold and mildew formed over the winter can put a damper on your summertime travel plans. To prevent mold from forming, check the seams and seals on your vehicle before storage. Any breaks in the seams or seals can let moisture inside. Moisture in an enclosed vehicle is a breeding ground for mold and mildew, resulting in costly damages. To further combat moisture, consider installing vent covers and leaving your rooftop vents open. When storing an RV over the winter many people assume they are best off using the night time shades. Instead, consider utilizing the translucent day time shades that still allow light to penetrate. Mold and mildew thrive in areas that are moist and dark. Allowing sunlight to enter your RV will prevent mold and mildew from forming even if moisture is present.

  2. Plan Ahead to Stop Pests: Once mice get inside of an RV, they can cause all sorts of damage. The best way to prevent damage caused by mice is to stop them from entering altogether. Mice will crawl in any vent or pipe they can squeeze into. Plug any hole you find with steel wool or canned foam. To ensure all holes have been plugged, wait until it is dark and turn all lights on in your RV. Any hole that lets light shine through, (under your RV, on the sides and top) should be plugged. When cleaning out your RV, remove anything rodents can use to nest with. This includes any towels, paper towels, card board, blankets and toilet paper. Many newbies will make the mistake of leaving mouse traps inside their RV in an attempt to discourage rodent invaders, but this leads to a greater issue. A mouse carcass left in a mouse trap for extended months will not smell good in the spring.

  3. Consider Tire Protection: If you’re parking your RV outdoors, place plastic or wood below the tires to help prevent premature aging or cracking of the rubber. You can also buy tire covers to protect the tires from damaging UV rays that will lead to tire damage.

  4. Choose a Storage Location Carefully: Thieves will see an RV as an attractive target. Be critical of the location you are storing your RV. Thieves are lazy and will look for easy prey. If you are storing your RV in a location that doesn’t look secure, thieves may notice. Be cautious of parking your RV on a friend’s farm or in a shed. Even the most watchful friend may miss a burglar trying to enter your RV, costing you thousands.

Consider Professional RV Storage for Your Camper or Motor Home

At ezStorage, we have designed our facility with the safety of you and your RV in mind. Our RV storage options include state of the art video surveillance, gated key code entry and onsite managers. Our aisles are wide and well-lit, perfect for maneuvering a RV. The RV storage units at ezStorage will keep your RV out of the winter elements, and ready for more camping adventures. Find a location close to you, or contact ezStorage today!

Santa Claus delivers presents to young children living in povertyThe holiday season is quickly approaching. For most families, this means making Christmas cookies and shopping for the perfect present for family members. For some families though, the holidays aren’t so sweet. Sadly, every year there are kids who are unable to receive presents for Christmas due to financial restraints in the family.

The Making of Toys for Tots

Toys for Tots was started in 1947 by Major Bill Hendricks when his wife was unable to find a place to donate a homemade doll for needy children. That year, collection bins were placed in front of movie theaters and over 5,000 toys were collected to be donated to needy children. In 1948, the United States Marine Crops officially adopted Toys for Tots and help to expand it nationwide. 1948 was also the year that Walt Disney became involved with the organization. Toys for Tots had a special place in Walt Disney’s heart. He personally oversaw the making of the charity’s logo that is still used today. Before 1980, both new and used toys were collected by Marines to be passed out at Christmas time. After 1980, only new toys were collected. This change was made to the Toys for Tots policy because many felt that donating a used toy to be passed out to young children living in poverty sent a message of being a second-class citizen, and not one of hope.

Toys for Tots Today

Today, Toys for Tots has delivered 18 million toys to over 7 million children living in poverty or a less fortunate situation. But the impact of a toy goes beyond just a holiday present. A child living in poverty has dangers of psychological issues resulting from seeing little hope for a better future. An unused toy is a simple message of hope and the potential for a more positive future.

How Does Toys for Tots Work?

Local campaigns are put on by either a Marine, a member of the Marine Corps League Detachment or a member of a local community organization, usually a veteran Marine. These campaigns are coordinated annually from October through December in over 700 communities nationwide. Whoever is the designated Coordinator for that location is in charge of planning, organizing and conducting the campaign in their community.

Toys for Tots Drop off Locations in Maryland, DC and Virginia

If you are looking to help the Toys for Tots campaign through a donation, visit the Toys for Tots site to locate a Toys for Tots drop box near you, or simply make a monetary donation. ezStorage is proud to have partnered with Toys for Tots over the last 10 years by donating storage units year-round and participating in toy drives. If you live near the Bel Air, Westminster, Bowie, Gaithersburg or Odenton ezStorage location, consider dropping your items off at the main office of our storage facility.

Thanksgiving is the time to give thanks for family and friends while enjoying a wonderful meal. For some families though, Thanksgiving isn’t so joyful. The day isn’t filled with gravy, stuffing, a mountain of turkey and planning out the best Black Friday routes, it’s spent trying to find food at a shelter. This year, consider donating food or money to one of the organizations listed below.

Donate Thanksgiving Dinner to One of These Organizations

So Others Might Eat

So Others Might Eat, or SOME, was founded in 1970 by Father Horace McKenna, S.J. What started as a small soup kitchen, quickly grew into an organization that provided additional resources to those in need. So Others Might Eat is holding a 2017 Thanksgiving Basket Drive for those in need. The organization is asking for Thanksgiving baskets filled with items like canned sweet potatoes, string beans, cranberry sauce, instant mashed potatoes and macaroni and cheese. To donate one of these boxes, contact donations@some.org. If you are unable to purchase the items for the Thanksgiving basket, consider making a donation instead.

St Augustine Catholic Church

Every year, the St Augustine Catholic Church works hard to ensure families in the DC area have a proper Thanksgiving dinner. Last year, the St Augustine parishioners were able to provide a turkey with sides to over 600 families. This year, the St Augustine Catholic Church is looking for volunteers to help pack and prepare the Thanksgiving baskets, as well as donations of turkeys, Thanksgiving sides or simply monetary gifts to be used to purchase the food.

D.C. Central Kitchen Thanksgiving Food Donations

Every year, DC Central Kitchen provides 5,000 Thanksgiving meals to transitional homes, shelters and rehabilitation clinics in the DC area. The meals consist of a turkey dinner as well as traditional Thanksgiving sides. This year, at least 400 whole turkeys are needed to prepare the Thanksgiving meals. Other items, such as canned green beans, apple sauce, cranberry sauce and spices are also needed. If you are unable to give a food donation, consider giving to the D.C. Central Kitchen through a monetary donation.

Cornerstones Hope for Tomorrow Today

Cornerstones strives to help those in need of food, shelter, housing and childcare find the resources they need. Every year, Cornerstones holds a Thanksgiving Basket Food Drive to help provide meals for almost 1,000 families. Examples of items needed in the Thanksgiving Food Drive boxes include canned veggies, instant potatoes, rice, snacks, dessert boxes and a gift card to purchase a turkey.

Are You Looking for Another Way to Give Back This Holiday Season?

We strive to support organizations that make a difference in our surrounding communities. Over the last 10 years, we have supported the Toys for Tots campaign by setting up collection boxes in our indoor storage facilities. We have also donated storage spaces at our Maryland locations, Bel Air and Westminster, used year-round by the organization. This holiday season, consider supporting the Toys for Tots mission and donating a toy to our Gaithersburg, Bowie and Odenton ezStorage locations.

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