Saturday, November 27, 2021


Cleaning RV air vents: A simple, important task to breathe easy

By Gail Marsh
I don’t know about you, but I rarely look up when I’m inside our RV. That changed a few days ago. I happened to be contemplating very deep thoughts (read: relaxing) on the sofa when I noticed the intake air vent above me. Hmm … it looked dusty. Really dusty! “Is there a way to clean that?” I wondered. Because the vent was too high to reach, I went back to the bathroom where I could easily reach the vent. Wow! This one was dusty, too!

Taking apart the air vent

Not wanting to break anything, I gingerly fingered all around the air vent. Giving a gentle pull, the vent assembly easily came down. It looked like this:

I suppose I could have washed the entire vent cover assembly, but I wanted to make sure that the foam filter got clean. So, I removed the bracket that holds the filter. The bracket is held in place by tension. I gently pushed the side brackets back as I pulled up on the top brackets and – voila! – the foam filter was free. Not only did the filter hold a lot of dust particles, but it also had a fair amount of sawdust!

I proceeded to wash the filter in warm water and Dawn dish soap. A swish-swish was all it took, and the filter was clean! (How did I know? I could see through it!) I blotted the foam between towels to dry. Then I quickly washed the plastic vent cover, too. I reassembled the unit and gently pushed it back into place.

After cleaning all the intake air vents, I felt much better. The air conditioner seemed to breathe a happy sigh of relief, as well. That’s a very deep thought. I should probably contemplate that…

Related (sort of):

Rust: How to prevent it from damaging your RV



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8 months ago

Hi Gail, quick question. Can you vacuum inside the vents as well(both heat and air) – to catch anything that is still in there? Thank you, when we get to our Moho at our seasonal site in May I will be cleaning all my vents before we head south of the border for the winter.

Last edited 8 months ago by CAREN KELLY
8 months ago

This is a good question because I’m wondering the same thing. Is there something that we can push down the air vents to clean them out completely? I don’t think there are filters in mine.

8 months ago

I have a dirt devil central vacuum cleaner. With the rug attachment on I just run the foam through the attachment. It sucks it in and spits it out the other side. I run it a few times and it’s clean. No need to wash with soap and water. I saw David Bott do this on one of his videos.

Last edited 8 months ago by Larry
8 months ago

Yeppa! I clean mine semi-annually, or when I use it more often. Mine come off pretty easy, but I usually vacuum the vent first. This saves some of the intake foam screens from dropping below. Just another maintenance item to add to your checklist.
Thanks for the reminder. I just assumed most are already doing this!