DIY Skirting for RV: A Must-Have Knowledge

Installing skirting around your RV can provide many benefits like protecting the underbelly from weather and critters, insulating tanks and pipes from freezing temperatures, and helping regulate interior temperatures. While you can hire an RV company to install skirting professionally, doing it yourself is an affordable DIY project for many RVers. This is why to make things convenient for you, in this post, I’m presenting the ins and outs of DIY RV skirting. All you need to do is take a few minutes and read the post till the end.

So, without delaying any longer, just get into the details!

DIY Skirting for RV

What is DIY RV Skirting and Why Use It?

DIY RV skirting refers to materials you can install yourself around the bottom exterior of your RV to enclose and protect the underside. Skirting serves several important purposes –

a) Insulates tanks, pipes, and underbelly from cold outside temperatures

b) Creates a barrier to keep out rodents, insects, and other pests

c) Helps stabilize interior temperatures for more comfortable living

d) Makes your RV more energy efficient and can reduce propane use

e) Gives your RV a neat, finished look

DIY RV Skirting

Source: togorv

With proper DIY skirting materials and installation, you can reap all these benefits at a fraction of the cost of professional installation.

Types of DIY Skirting Materials You Can Choose From

There are many options when it comes to DIY skirting materials for RVs. Each has pros and cons to consider with regard to cost, durability, insulation value, and ease of installation.

Wood Skirting

Wood like plywood or lattice can be an affordable and attractive skirting choice. The main downside is that wood can warp or degrade more quickly than synthetic materials when exposed to moisture and weather. Proper sealing and ventilation are key. So –


Affordable option

Attractive natural appearance


Prone to moisture damage/warping

Requires extensive sealing

MDF Skirting

MDF (medium-density fiberboard) offers a smooth, uniform look. Like wood, it needs ample sealing and ventilation to prevent warping from moisture. Durability may be less than wood long-term. So –


Smooth, uniform paneling


Durability issues over time

Still vulnerable to moisture warp

PVC Skirting

PVC is a lightweight and waterproof material. It’s easy to work with using basic tools to cut custom panels. Over time though, PVC can become brittle and damaged if struck. Lifespan is usually less than a decade. So –


Lightweight material


Easy to cut and install


Grows brittle over time

Easily dented which affects the appearance

Vinyl Skirting

Vinyl is one of the most cost-effective skirting options. It’s flexible, waterproof, and easy to install and remove. But vinyl tears more easily than other materials when removed or reinstalled. Durability is moderate and it requires ample support. So – 


Extremely affordable

Flexible for custom fitting

Removable and adjustable


Tears easily when manipulating

Moderate lifespan under harsh conditions

Lattice Skirting

Prefabricated vinyl lattice is an affordable option that allows for ventilation. It’s light and easy to work with. But its open-air design provides less insulation and weather protection than solid panels. So –


Allows for ventilation




Less insulating than solid panels

Less weatherproof

Can appear messy over time

Plywood Skirting

Plywood is durable and modular, making customization easy. With proper sealing, it stands up well to moisture and weather. But it requires more cutting and assembly than other rigid panel options. So –


Very durable option

Customizable panels


More cutting and assembly work

Heavier to install

Foam Board Insulation Skirting

Rigid foam insulation panels have very high insulating value. They are moisture-resistant and easy to install. Long-term durability is more limited though and foam requires ample bracing and supports. So –


Exceptional insulation value

Moisture resistant


Long-term durability issues

Requires substantial bracing

Plastic Skirting

Plastic foundation wraps and sheets are inexpensive and effective at sealing out drafts and pests. But they offer less structure and dent easily. Without solid framing, they can appear shabby looking over time. So –


Extremely inexpensive

Effective for sealing out drafts


No structure or reinforcement

Easily damaged decreasing lifespan

How to Make a DIY Skirting for Your RV?

Installing your own custom skirting is a straightforward project you can tackle on a weekend. Here’s the comprehensive procedure right down for you –

Materials Needed:

Skirting panels cut (plywood, plastic, etc) 1″ smaller than the measurements

Furring strips 1″ x 2″ x 8′

Weather resistant 3″ exterior-grade screws

Flexible sealant/caulk

Reflective insulation (optional)


Level RV and deploy all stabilizers

Measure skirting perimeter accurately accounting for obstructions

Purchase panels to fit (Allow 1″ clearance when sizing panels to avoid straining)

Installation Steps:

Step 1: Mark and mount furring strips horizontally using screws to secure them. Space 12″ apart around the entire base.

Step 2: Prepare skirting panels with drill holes to align with furring strips.

Step 3: Hold panel to furring strip, insert 3″ screw through from behind into strip, then repeat screws 12″ apart.

Step 4: Cut filler panels to size and attach above with more furring strips wherever gaps exist.

Step 5: Apply flexible sealant inside all seams and joints between panels. Smooth with a putty knife for a waterproof seal.

Step 6: Run caulk beads along every exterior edge seam between panels and the RV body.

Step 7: Install reflective insulation by securing to back of panels using adhesive or furring strips. The shiny side should face the RV exterior.

Step 8: Perform visual inspection looking for light gaps. Add additional caulk, sealant, or filler panels anywhere gaps appear. All edges should be fully sealed.

Step 9: After 1-2 days, return and add another layer of sealant/caulk over the initial application for an extra waterproof seal.

Be sure to take exact measurements, allow slight clearance in sizing, securely attach to furring strips, caulk thoroughly, and double-check for even minor gaps. Careful attention to detail ensures your DIY RV skirting solution will deliver maximum insulation and weatherproofing benefits.

Is the Procedure Applicable to All Types of DIY Skirting Materials?

The installation process remains largely the same regardless of the DIY skirting materials used. The main differences come down to the ease of cutting and fitting rigid versus flexible paneling, as well as the fastening methods required. Proper planning, measurement, and installation techniques ensure success across all material types. 

Solid panels typically require more cutting and customization for a tight fit. Flexible materials like vinyl sheeting can be quicker and easier to install. The most important steps are properly measuring and planning your panels, securing the skirting tightly to furring strips, caulking edges, and sealing any voids or gaps. 

Taking time to do this right ensures your skirting solution is secure, protective, and attractive for years of use.

Benefits of DIY RV Skirting

Installing your own custom skirting provides many rewards over hiring an RV technician. Beyond significant cost savings, you can take pride in adding a custom touch and function to your RV. And you gain the experience to maintain or modify your skirting as needed. Additional benefits like temperature regulation, pest protection, and an insulated underbelly make DIY skirting a smart upgrade for any RV owner. In short, DIY skirting provides RVers –

a) 50-75% savings over professional install

b) Ability to customize panels and appearance

c) Experience in facilitating maintenance/adjustments

d) Ongoing benefits like temperature regulation and pest protection

How Expensive Is It to DIY Skirt an RV?

The cost to DIY skirt an RV can vary widely depending on the dimensions of your RV as well as the skirting materials you select. Basic options like vinyl sheets and plastic foundation wrap can skirt even very large RVs for less than $300. These provide an inexpensive project cost but have a comparatively shorter lifespan before requiring replacement. In the mid-range, materials like unfinished plywood, PVC panels, and MDF boards run between $1-3 per square foot. With these options, you would expect to pay around $400-600 to skirt the average 25-30 foot RV. 

Going for rigid foam insulation panels increases both materials cost and insulating performance considerably, with project budgets averaging $600-800 for high energy savings over time. Finally, you have the highest quality but also priciest options like prefinished plywood or tongue and groove boards that can also take extra time to cut and assemble. These cost from $1.50 up to even $2.50 per square foot. A large 40-foot fifth wheel could require well over $800 here. 

The overall investment in skirting materials does pay dividends though through 5-figure lifetime savings on propane or cooling costs. So determining your target budget and anticipated years of use helps narrow down the optimal DIY skirting materials choice.

What If Your RV Comes With the Arctic Package?

Some higher-end RVs come equipped with an arctic package from the factory. This typically includes a heated and insulated basement storage area and tank heaters. While helpful, even arctic package RVs can still benefit from skirting to protect the entire underside from weather and pests. DIY panels can supplement factory insulation as seasons and temperatures dictate. They provide an extra layer of insulation and stabilization of interior temps.

How to Monitor Your RV Skirting Over the Winter?

It’s important to periodically check your DIY skirting for any issues, especially during harsh weather. Make sure panels have not come loose and are still securely attached. Check for signs of pests or water intrusion like mold. Clear any accumulated debris like leaves or dirt that could harbor insects. Re-caulk any gaps in seals that appear. A quick visual inspection during winter and after storms ensures your skirting is protecting your RV properly. Make any repairs immediately as needed.

Common Related Questions

Do I need skirting if my RV has a heated underbelly?

Even with a heated underbelly, adding skirting provides an extra layer of insulation and protects the rest of your RV’s underside from weather and pests. So it’s still highly recommended for insulation cost savings and to safeguard vulnerable components.

What thickness of skirting panels is best?

For the lower portion of skirting, use minimum 1/2” thickness panels like plywood. For the upper flexible filler panels, 1/4″ products like luan plywood or plastic sheets will conform well to seal gaps.

What’s the best way to secure skirting panels?

Screws offer the most secure attachment to furring strips or framing. Nails alone can loosen over time. Use exterior-grade screws long enough to firmly anchor panels.

Final Thought

Installing custom, DIY RV skirting is a budget-friendly project that pays dividends through insulation savings and protecting your RV investment. With proper planning, materials, and installation, you can add a custom skirting solution adapted to your specific RV. Taking the time to measure precisely, seal thoroughly, and check periodically ensures your skirting will provide maximum benefit and enjoyment of your RV for years to come.

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