You’re almost ready to start camping and the final step is to close the RV door. But it’s not closing. So what can you do? We researched some possible solutions for this predicament, and here’s what we found.
Take note that the steps to repair an RV door that fails to close properly often depend on the cause of the issue. In particular, ensuring that the door in your camping vehicle stays shut might require you to go through procedures like realigning it or replacing its locks.
Continue reading as we talk about the possible reasons why your RV door isn’t closing in greater detail. We’ll also discuss some solutions you may want to check out to make sure your RV’s door stays closed. Without further ado, let's get into it!
Why Is My RV Door Not Closing?
Before repairing your RV door, it's important to know the main reason why it's not closing. In this section, we listed some possible reasons for this main concern to help with your troubleshooting.
The constant rocking and swaying actions happening as you drive your RV over different terrain may cause its door to become misaligned. Take note that misalignment of an RV door can occur in different areas, including its corners and sides.
If the RV door becomes misaligned, some of its sections might catch into its frame. Also, slamming the door or pushing it aggressively can cause additional issues to the assembly such as scratching and ruining the vehicle’s paint job.
If you have a hinged RV door, you may want to check if its screws are loose. Aside from the hinges coming off from their attachments, the screws may wiggle out of their holes because of the vehicle’s erratic movements.
The screws on an RV door may also become loose because of frequent use. Otherwise, the screws used on the door have qualities that aren’t up to par.
You may replace the screws with better-quality models. Another option is to invest in a door retainer catch that may help reduce the frequency of this concern, particularly if you're not leaving an RV campsite for extended periods.
Also, you can check out our post on the best RV door holders to know your options. We also tackle when and how to replace these assemblies in that post.
If you can close the door but it fails to stay shut, perhaps its locks are at fault. Inspect the locks for any signs of harm. It might be that someone broke into your RV recently. It can also mean that the lock corroded because it doesn’t have adequate weather protection.
How Do You Fix A Camper Door That Won't Close?
After identifying the cause of your camping vehicle’s door not closing, you should follow the correct procedure to fix that issue. In this section, you’ll learn some possible solutions to use so the fixture will close and stay shut when needed.
Correct The Alignment
First, assess the areas on your RV door that need the adjustment. Sometimes the only part that you need to realign is the striker plate. If so, follow these steps to complete this relatively DIY-friendly job:
What You’ll Need
- Philips screwdriver
- Loosen but don’t remove the screws on the striker plate.
- Adjust the striker plate according to your previous assessment of the situation.
- Tighten the screws, but don't overtighten them to prevent stripping.
- Close the door to test if the problem persists.
You can also watch the video below to see how one person was able to fix their RV door using the steps mentioned above:
Replace The Lock
You may need to consult your RV’s owner’s manual or the vehicle’s manufacturer to help you with this operation. It’s because certain RV door lock models may require unique steps to remove and replace them properly.
Still, here's a look at this procedure to help give you an idea of how to complete this project:
What You’ll Need
- Replacement RV lock
- Phillips screwdriver
- Flathead screwdriver
- Unscrew the deadbolt assembly from its mount.
- Slide the new deadbolt into its bracket on the RV door.
- Hold the deadbolt assembly to prevent it from moving while screwing in the strike plate.
- Install the lock’s plastic cover that goes on the inside of the RV door. Make sure to pay attention to the orientation of the cover to avoid running into issues with the fit.
- Close the RV door and lock it to test the new assembly.
Also, watch this video for a visual guide on how to complete this task:
How To Make Sure RV Door Stays Closed?
Install an RV door closure kit if you have difficulty keeping this fixture shut. This assembly will help pull the door shut while maintaining an even distribution of force and tension.
Installing this kit is a relatively easy job, which often follows these steps:
- Loosen the bottom screw of the RV door’s top hinge. Then, attach one end of the door closer to that fastener.
- Tighten the screw to secure that part of the closer.
- Measure about 9 inches from the bottom screw of the top hinge and mark it. Drill a small hole in that marked area afterward.
- Attach the other end of the closer to the drilled hole.
Watch this video to see how to install this kit on your RV door:
How Do I Stop My RV Door From Rattling?
Keep in mind that failing to fix a rattling RV door can be the precursor to serious concerns, such as the fixture falling out of its frame. This racket may come from poor lubrication. So adding a small amount of WD-40 may help reduce or eliminate this noise.
However, it’s important to mention that WD-40 isn’t a lubricant but a water-displacing solution. Although it has some lubricating properties, you may need to ensure that the hinges and screws on your RV door won’t accumulate dirt. Otherwise, WD-40 can catch those particulates, transforming them into gunk.
Watch the video below to gain additional insight into using WD-40 on a rattling RV door:
How Do You Replace A Door On An RV?
If you tried other solutions, particularly those mentioned above, and your door still doesn’t close properly, you may need to replace the fixture. Take note that continuing with this operation typically requires you to purchase or make a door that’s compatible with your RV’s door assembly.
Also, don't forget to practice safety for this procedure. For instance, request help from an assistant to hold the stepladder while you're on it. That person can also help with the heavy lifting, especially since some RV doors might be quite heavy.
After completing the necessary preparations, here are the steps to replace a door on an RV:
What You’ll Need
- Phillips screwdriver
- Flathead screwdriver
- Utility knife
- Plastic putty knife
- Butyl tape
- Silicone sealant
- Rubber mallet
- Replacement RV door
- Unscrew the drip cap retaining screws from the top of the RV door. You may need to climb a stepladder for this step.
- Use the utility knife to dislodge the door’s silicone seal.
- With the flathead screwdriver, pry the drip cap away from the door frame.
- Unscrew the gutter rail screws and use the panel remover to take out the left and right snap trims if installed before.
- Carefully break the caulk surrounding the door with the plastic putty knife.
- Slowly take out the old RV door and place it in storage.
- Apply butyl tape to the screw track frame’s side of the new RV door.
- Place the new door into the vehicle’s door frame. Make sure that the fixture is flush against the frame and the floor.
- Install screws wherever necessary to secure the door into the frame.
- Reinstall the removed snap trim and secure it in place with a rubber mallet.
- Attach and secure the drip cap to the gutter rail.
- Apply silicone sealant at the top of the drip cap and the bottom of the door’s threshold.
- Screw the floor sweep into place and test the door if it opens and closes as intended.
Watch the video below to learn additional details to help you complete this RV door replacement project properly:
If you want to know how big an RV door is, read this post: How Big Is An RV Door?
Remember to troubleshoot your RV door first before proceeding with any repair or replacement procedures. Don’t hesitate to ask for help if needed, especially if you need to carry heavy objects to complete the job like a replacement door. After completing the process, don’t forget to test the RV door’s functionality to ensure it closes properly.