Universal vs. Custom RV Covers

Universal vs. Custom RV Covers

Avid RV fans typically want to be out and about in their motorhomes or trailers as often as they could but there are times when that is impossible and adventures can only be taken a couple of times in a year. If you are one of these people, learning about RV covers and when they should be used will help your RV stay in prime condition for longer regardless of how much you take it out.

So, why an RV cover? RV covers are typically made of polyester, polypropylene, or other strong, durable, water-resistant fabrics that protect RV windows, paint and finish from weather elements and small debris. Sun rays are one of the silent enemies of RVs as they gradually damage sealants and create holes via which water can seep into the roof and cause damage from rust over time.

The winter snow is another formidable thing to keep away from your RV, especially because of freeze and thaw. If meltwater collects in seams and gaps and freezes, the pressure from the expanding water will cause the sealants to loosen over time and create entryways for water into the RV. Lastly, dirt, leaves, and other debris can cause unnecessary inconveniences, and using RV covers will keep your RV clean and ready to take out at any time.

Therefore RV owners without a solid roof under which to store them can now breathe easily as RV covers are able to protect them without the need for a storage facility or a large garage.  RV covers can be either custom-fit or universal. Let’s talk about the pros and cons of each and our opinion on the matter.


Custom-fit RV Covers

Any product with the word ‘custom’ before it has an undeniable allure. Custom-fit RV covers fit your trailer like a glove and are designed to fit its exact profile, easily encompassing features like the satellite receiver, TV antenna, air conditioner, among others. The main options available in the market are the DuPont Tyvek®, SFS Aqua Shed, and Sunbrella® custom-fit covers. As intuited before, the main advantage that comes with custom-fit RV covers is the exact fit that minimizes slack. Extra slack is associated with extra movement which can cause abrasion to the RV’s exterior.

In addition, the cover can be taken by the wind, further damaging it or the exterior. Custom-fit covers lessen these risks. Custom covers also come with a zippered opening at the RV’s entry door, which allows you easy access. These covers come with features specific to your RV model that offer extra utility and can come in handy when you need them the most.

Custom-fit covers give owners with out-of-the-norm RVs an option to protect their trailers, owners that would have otherwise been left hanging. Finally, custom-fit covers offer better protection compared to their universal counterparts as they are often made from premium fabric with quality characteristics. The main disadvantage that comes with custom RV covers is their cost which can surpass universal ones by hundreds of dollars due to the extra work involved.

Of all the good options available, Sunbrella® RV Covers tops the list. The fabric costs a little extra than the other options in the market but it is worth it because it comes with several endearing features:

·         The material is designed for use in all climates and can be stored for the long term without issues.

·         It has a long-term warranty of 5 years.

·         The material is solution-dyed, meaning the color is placed into the fibers as it is extruded. Therefore the color intensity will never be diminished by rain, wind, or sun.

·         The material is made out of acrylic, meaning it won’t harden or crack and resists moisture and mildew, unlike many other fibers.

Universal RV Covers

Universal covers are a great option to go with because they are designed to meet the protection needs of a number of RVs in a specified range of size and model. Universal covers are the go-to option for most RV owners because they offer a lot at a cheaper price. This price efficiency means buyers get many of the features associated with custom covers at a significantly lower price.

There are many universal covers to choose from but polypropylene is easily the favorite among car and RV owners. This is because this material is cheaper and works for short-term storage. Polypropylene is also light so it is easier to install, offers good protection against ultraviolet light, and is non-abrasive, moisture resistant, and breathable. The main downside to this material is that it is not as durable as the others and it is prone to flapping, unlike other heavier options.

It is crucial to know the dimensions of your RV to ensure you buy the best fit that will save you thousands of dollars and a lot of inconveniences. Measuring your camper will need two people and a laser distance meter because of the lengths involved. The most important measurements are the trailer’s length, height, and width.

To measure the length, hold the first end of the measure at the farthest protruding section of the rear bumper and bring it down the length of the RV to the farthest protruding section of the front bumper. To measure the width, measure the distance from the farthest protruding section on the right side of the RV to the farthest protruding section on the left. To measure the height, measure from the top of the exterior RV roof to the bottom of the RV’s frame.

The RV industry is experiencing tremendous growth because of the utility it offers; RVs make it possible for people to save up to 60% on holiday travel expenses. Today, over 11% of US households own an RV, over 15 million millennials own one, and around 1 million Americans live in them full-time. In addition, over 40 million Americans go RVing on a regular basis, with the activity seeing 25 million of them engage every year. With this high interest in RVs it becomes important that people understand how to ensure theirs last for a long time and using covers is one of the best ways to ensure that.


In the end, the best choice of RV cover to use depends on your personal preferences. Here are a few tips to take with you on your next RV Cover purchase. You should pick a cover that is breathable as the RV will be cooler, which will discourage mold and mildew from growing. Choose a cover made of material that will not cause abrasion to the RV’s paint or finish. Take your time on this one.

Also, covers with zippers make installation and access to the interior easier. If you want your trailer to last for long, it will be better to go with a cover that lasts for years since lower quality options will need to be replaced often. Besides, if you want a premium fabric it would be best if you went with the custom option. With that, universal covers have more to offer as they come at a cheaper price and still offer good protection against the most damaging elements. One thing is for sure, you cannot afford to not get a cover for your RV.