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RV Security Tips to Protect Your Stuff

Published on January 4th, 2022
This post was updated on May 19th, 2023

RVers are the best people you’ll ever meet. But today’s sad reality is that anything left unlocked might be stolen. These RV security tips will secure your stuff and give peace of mind wherever you travel.

auto thief in hoodie and gloves
Here’s how to keep your stuff away from RV thieves.

RVs are homes on wheels. Inside each one are many of the things that stick houses hold inside. And thieves know it. Keep reading to protect your belongings and the RV itself from RV criminals.

Keep Your Stuff Safe with these RV Security Tips

Where there’s a will, there’s a way if an RV thief wants your stuff. Three main entry points make it easy for a criminal to get it:

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  1. Your RV door
  2. Any RV window
  3. And your RV’s locking cabinets

Let’s dig into the details about motorhome security and trailer theft prevention that can keep your stuff safe. The best place to begin is your exterior cabinet locks.

Get Rid of the CH751 Cabinet Lock

CH751 key for rv storage compartments
Beware! CH751 locks are on most RVs

Did you know that almost all popular RV exterior cabinet locks are the same? It’s true! Many RV manufacturers use the exact same keyed locking device on exterior storage compartments.

You’ll often find RV cabinets with the CH751 lock on moderately priced travel trailers and fifth wheels. In some cases, motorhome security is lacking too. Even some expensive RVs have outside storage compartments using the CH751 lock.

Dishonest people who want to steal your stuff can easily get copies of the CH751 lock key. How do they get them? At any RV dealer’s parts department. RV thieves can even order CH751 keys on eBay, for about $2 a piece.

How to Secure Your Exterior RV Storage Compartments

Keeping thieves out of your RV’s exterior cabinets is easy. Get new locks. This easy RV security tip that gives peace of mind at a low cost. Many lock manufacturers sell RV exterior cabinet lock kits on Amazon to retrofit your RV exterior cabinet locks without the CH751 key.

Beef Up Your RV Door Security

deadbolt lock on an rv
RV deadbolts are easy to break open

Ever notice when an RV salesperson escorts you around the lot, they always have the right key for any rig you’re interested in? One reason is that RV dealers usually have a pass key for any RV door’s lower lock. Only a handful of RV lock manufacturers exist. Each can supply pass keys to anyone who wants to access all of the locksets the company makes.

RV doors are built with weak security. The only unique lock on your RV is the deadbolt. Unfortunately, that alone offers little protection. Those deadbolts are physically very small locks, at about 1/4”x1/2” in size. And the lock barrel only extends into the receptacle by about ¼” inch or less. With a decent sized screwdriver and wedge, RV thieves can easily pry it apart, just enough to pop the door open.

Upgrade Your RV Door Locks for More Security

Keyless RV door lock
Choose a keyless RV door lock deadbolt instead.

Again, breaking an RV door entry lock is an RV crime that’s easy to prevent. Upgrade your RV door locks with a better deadbolt. Better yet, install a keyless entry RV door lock.

Upgrade RV Window Security

RV window locks also have weak RV security. Those little plastic latches are easily bypassed. Just pry them slightly open to separate the two sliding windows. Once the latch pops past it’s groove, the window is free to open. Anyone can crawl in and unlock the RV door.

RV window security bar
Use window security bars when you’re away.

For better RV security, carry a sturdy wooden dowel or a window security bar to prop inside the RV window sill when you’re away.

More RV Security Tips to Save Your Stuff

It’s natural for travel trailer and fifth wheel owners to disconnect their trailer at a campsite, then go exploring. But if they don’t have an RV hitch lock installed, RV thieves in a pickup with the right hitch receiver can back up, hitch up the trailer, and take everything inside, and the trailer too!

For total RV trailer security, install an RV hitch lock

Reese Trailer Hitch Lock
Lock your trailer hitch.

Affordable RV hitch locks exist for travel trailers and fifth wheels.

Secure small valuables in an RV Safe

Amazon Basics RV safe
Small RV safes can hold valuables

Sometimes you can’t avoid keeping valuables in the RV. If you are concerned about keeping expensive electronics, jewelry and cash on-board, get small home safe. Big or small, RV safes can be bolted to the RV in a way that makes it impossible to remove and carry away. Another innovative way to stash valuables is a trailer hitch safe.

Upgrade RV Insurance for Total Peace of Mind

Not even the best RV security systems are fool proof. For total peace of mind, add extra personal property replacement coverage to your RV insurance policy. In a worst case scenario, at least a good RV insurance policy will help cover the cost of your RV gear that was stolen.

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Nothing will stop a determined RV thief from stealing your stuff. But you’re least likely to be the victim of an RV crime if you make it harder for someone to break in. Upgrade locks, use window bars, stash valuables and always have enough personal property insurance coverage just in case the worst happens.

This post may contain affiliate links or mention our own products, please check out our disclosure policy here.

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