How To Clean A Roof Top Tent – Easy Step By Step Guide

It’s clear the roof-top tents are better than a conventional ground tent. The absence of dirt, mud or large amounts of sand on and in the roof makes it simpler to maintain. However, this isn’t to claim that roof-top tents do not require cleaning regularly.

In order to clean the roof of your tent, you must remove your mattress, wash your mattress’s cover then clean the bottom of the tent, which is typically enclosed with the mattress. Also, you must clean the fabric of your tent, which can be accomplished by airing it out or by the watering down process.

I will provide more detail regarding how best to clean the roof of your tent (RTT) and the reasons you should wash your RTT and also what could result if you do not! These are actual examples I have learned from others or observed myself by using the RTT!

The result of not properly drying or cleaning your RTT can lead to mildew. If it does begin to germinate, it could be quite a challenge to get rid of it completely. Following the step-by-step guide, we’ll dive into the best ways to stop and eliminate mildew in an RTT!Photo taken by Kanan J Best

Step-by-Step Cleaning Guide

  1. The simplest step you can do for “clean” your RTT is by simply blowing it dry each time you use it. This can help to prevent unpleasant smells from lingering within the RTT. This will also allow you to get rid of any dust that has accumulated during your camping adventures. This is the most non-invasive and efficient. The process of airing your RTT out must be performed regularly to ensure it stays in good condition.
  2. Depending on the frequency you make use of depending on the amount you use your RTT or the type of use you do with it every season, it’s an ideal idea that you give your RTT a thorough clean. The first step to take is to clean the bedding. Remove all bedding and mattress pads from the RTT. The mattress cover can be removed by removing it from the zip and placing it in the washing machine. It is possible to dry your mattress cover, but be sure to adhere to the directions in the label.
  3. Then, I recommend watering the RTT thoroughly. This will aid in cleaning the fabric and rid it of dust accumulation. If you notice any marks or stains on your tent, you may make use of a soap and water solution to wash them away.
  4. Take a towel and a cleaning solution to clean the interior and outside of your tent. Sometimes, dirt or food could accumulate between the base and mattress which is why cleaning the area can keep your tent fresh. If the poles that compose part of the tent’s frame are exposed, it is possible to whack them down too.
  5. When you have the softshell RTT The PVC cover is quick to collect dust as well as bugs and mud. It is not just important for your tent to remain clean , but taking off the cover every time isn’t the best time. Clean the cover by hosing it off and then scrubbing away any dirt wherever it is required.
  6. The task of cleaning your ladder a simple but important task especially if you have an inclined ladder. Dirt builds up in the tracks that slide down, making it hard to slide open and close! Telescoping ladders can easily wash it down and it’ll be clean and free of problems with performance.
  7. The roof top tent as well as the other components of it to completely dry before reassembling and packing it away. If you put the tent when it is wet or damp, mildew may start to develop. The dark and unpleasant substance is evident when just looking at it however, it will be even more noticeable due to its smell. Once it’s there, it’s nearly impossible to get eliminate.
  8. In order to complete the cleaning process to prepare your RTT take everything back into the tent like it was prior to! You now have a fresh and clean tent that is ready for an extremely rough camping season!

How Can I Remove Mildew From The Top of A Tent On The Roof?

It is unfortunate that removing mildew is an issue that I have seen RTT owners seeking opinions on. It’s a lot easier to do than it is done, however there are is a few tricks that can be used to resolve the issue.

Mildew is a common occurrence when you put away your tent after it has become wet or damp and fail to close it up again to dry it. The tent you have packed and wet for longer than 48 hours may cause mildew to develop.

To eliminate mildew, apply the solution of water and soap to scrub the fabric wherever there is a lot of it. Allow your roof top tent to dry completely before you do any other work. If you want to do a more difficult solution, apply vinegar and lemon juice solution on the infected areas. Then, you can water the tent once it is dried.

The last alternative is to apply the bleach and water solution to eliminate the mildew. However, I’m going to advise you that this method will probably cause irreparable harm to the RTT by creating discolored and stained spots across the cloth. It’s a trade-off as you’re hoping to remove the odor of the mildew.

Each step I propose is becoming tougher than the one before. Mildew is extremely difficult to eradicate, therefore doing each step and taking your time in the process will give you the greatest chance of successful results. Although it can be a bit tedious, as simple as it might be, it’s far better than spending thousands of dollars for an all-new RTT!

The most effective way to stop mildew is to simply blow out your RTT when there are indications of water accumulation in the mattress or fabric! If you’re not able to perform this right following your camping excursion ensure you take it care of whenever you can.

Roundup of How To Clean A Roof Top Tent

The frequency at which you have to clean your tent will differ dependent on the amount you utilize it and what conditions you use it in. If it’s extremely turbulent and lots of dust gets blown into and around your tent, then you might be required to clean it after your trip. However, if you’re camping out with snow on your property, blowing out the tent will do the trick!

Cleaning your RTT regularly can prolong its lifespan and will prevent unnecessary damage to your camping gear. Roof tents are incredibly easy to maintain compared to the ground tent. Like any other item or equipment you’re concerned about, they must be maintained to an degree.

I offer this advice to try and stop the posting of another question on a forum or Facebook page about how to remove mildew or get rid of their RTT in a proper manner!

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David Meyers

David Meyers

Hello, I'm David, and I am an outdoorsman with over 20 years of experience hunting, camping, and backpacking around North America. I love writing, reading, and contributing here at Dens Camp Guide.