RV renovations are a great way to add new character to your rig. Whether you’ve got a brand new RV or a 25-year-old one (or an 18-year-old rig, like ours 😁), DIY RV renovation ideas can really make the space your own, giving your home on wheels a whole new feel.
In this post, we’re not talking about full camper remodels / RV remodel ideas but easier renovations to renew your RV’s feel. Some are super simple, and some require a bit more DIY competence. But all are worth considering to rejuvenate an older rig.
RV Renovation Ideas to Give Your Rig a Lift.
- 1.1) Recover RV Seat Cushions
- 1.2) Upgrade Lighting and/or Light Fixtures
- 1.3) Update Faucets
- 1.4) Paint the Cabinets
- 1.5) Replace Flooring
- 1.6) Cover Old Countertops
- 1.7) Give Walls a Makeover
- 1.8) Upgrade Your RV Bathroom’s Vanity
- 1.9) Create a Decorative Backsplash
- 1.10) Replace an Old Toilet
- 1.11) Replace Old RV Window Coverings with Updated Shades
- 1.12) Replace Valances with Curtains
- 1.13) Add Colorful New Throw Pillows and Blankets
- 2) Have You Made Some Simple RV Renovations in Your Rig?
- 3) Free RVing Tips, Tricks, Reviews, Giveaways & More
RV Renovation Ideas to Give Your Rig a Lift.
We’ve been traveling, living, and working on the road full-time for almost 20 years. Even though we bought our current motorhome new 18 years ago, and have kept it in great shape, we’ve done lots of things to renew various areas of our rig over time.
Like any home, upgrading an RV’s interior from time to time is good to keep things fresh, inviting, and fun!
So, here, in no particular order, are 13 ideas for renovations that you can complete on your own, many without too much time or expense, that’ll give your RV a lift.
Recover RV Seat Cushions
Recovering old RV seat cushions can make a big difference in the appearance of the interior of any RV.
Over time, RV furniture can get dingy and worn. Covering original seat cushions with a bright new material can really give an RV a lift.
You don’t have to go full-bore like we recently did — replacing our motorhome captain’s chairs with brand new ones — to get a big improvement.
Upgrade Lighting and/or Light Fixtures
In any RV that uses incandescent lighting, upgrading to LED lighting is one of the first DIY projects any RV owner should take on.
Not only do high-quality LED light bulbs use far less power, but they also river off a fraction of the heat that incandescent bulbs produce.
In addition, old light fixtures can really date the interior of any home, and an RV is no exception.
If you have a look at our post on 12V LED lights for RVs, you’ll see what a difference switching to M4 LEDs made throughout our entire RV.
In that post, you’ll also find videos that’ll give you visual examples of the changes brought about by our switch to high-quality LEDs, and you can see exactly what we did and how we did it.
Don’t forget to take advantage of the RVgeeks coupon to save some $$!
We’ve replaced virtually all of the incandescent, fluorescent, and halogen bulbs in our RV with high-quality M4 LEDs. In addition to the power savings while dry camping, we haven't had a single...Show More
We’ve replaced virtually all of the incandescent, fluorescent, and halogen bulbs in our RV with high-quality M4 LEDs. In addition to the power savings while dry camping, we haven't had a single LED bulb fail since upgrading.
Check out our M4 LED videos here
Use the discount code listed here to save 5% on your entire order!Show Less
The faucets that come in RV kitchens and bathrooms can be very basic.
In addition, they can get old and dingy over time. You may also find that newer faucets on the market are more useful. For example, we wanted taller bathroom faucets, with more space underneath to make using them more comfortable.
We also replaced our kitchen faucet, allowing more clearance for pots underneath, and with a pull-out sprayer.
All three of our new faucets (one in the kitchen and one at each of our two bathroom sinks) are now a much higher-quality brand than came with our rig (we switched from Delta to Hansgrohe).
Updating kitchen and/or bathroom faucets is generally a relatively inexpensive and easy update. But it does require some comfort level with plumbing.
The good news about working with RV plumbing is that it’s almost always PEX, which is easy to work with. The other thing about working on the plumbing system in an RV is how easy it is to be sure the water is turned off. Just disconnect from city water and leave the water pump off!
See our post on faucet replacement and watch the following video as we replace the faucet at our main bathroom sink.
Paint the Cabinets
It’s amazing what a coat of paint can do!
If your RV cabinets are dark and/or dingy, a fresh coat of paint can really do wonders for the space.
Professionals generally recommend painting with high-quality enamel paint with a stain blocker, primer, and sealer.
We’d suggest going with white to help keep the place bright! We chose maple cabinetry for that exact reason. It’s so much lighter and brighter than oak, cherry, or other dark woods.
But if we ever had an RV with dark wood (or decided to update our own cabinets), we’d surely go with white paint.
This may be a bit more daunting, but new flooring can make such a difference.
Many older RVs have carpet… old, stained, dingy carpet that has seen better days. If you buy an older RV with carpet, you may want to consider ripping it out and adding quality vinyl plank flooring that’s easy to keep clean by sweeping and mopping.
We have carpet in our 2005 Newmar Mountain Aire. It’s only held up as well as it has because we have a strict no shoes or pets policy, and no kids running around. But we know it doesn’t look 100% new anymore. If we were to replace it, we would surely choose vinyl plank flooring.
New flooring can really change up a space!
Cover Old Countertops
Old kitchen or bathroom countertops can really make an older RV look worn.
Because it’s important to keep an RV lightweight, replacing old countertops with granite or butcher block isn’t generally a good option.
That’s why many RVers turn to adhesive coverings to change the look of old countertops.
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If you’re willing to take on a bigger counter renovation project, you could try something really cool and different. Our dear friends and co-hosts on The RVers, Tom & Cait Morton, did an amazing job renovating the counters (and everything else!) on their monster truck camper. Here’s their video, starting at the counter reno section:
Give Walls a Makeover
For walls, shiplap wall planks can work well.
Or, if you’d prefer to go the wallpaper route, you could use a good peel-and-stick wallpaper to lighten up some spaces with an accent wall or two!
Brightening up old, dingy RV walls can really dress the place up! Plus, it’s easy to put on and easy to remove.
- EXCLUSIVE PATTERN - To add a beachy and vintage style to your home with more warmth, blue wood contact paper is designed. Find the old wall or...
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Upgrade Your RV Bathroom’s Vanity
Upgrading your RV’s bathroom vanity can be as simple as using a peel-and-stick product, as noted above, or replacing your RV sink with a new, clean, more modern version.
Take a look at our post highlighting 5 of the best RV sinks to upgrade your RV’s kitchen & bathroom!
Create a Decorative Backsplash
A backsplash can be designed by using any number of products, including ceramic tile, peel & stick tiles (which save weight over ceramic), peel & stick paper, shiplap, metal, or cool, colorful mosaics.
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- Texture : Premium Metal Wall Tiles, natural mental design wall art for interior wall décor
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Replace an Old Toilet
Sometimes the best way to renovate a bathroom is to install a nice new toilet.
If your RV toilet is old and yellowing or has just seen better days, many RV toilets are surprisingly inexpensive, and you can install them yourself if you’re interested in a DIY project.
Both Thetford RV toilets and Dometic RV toilets offer quality toilets in several styles, sizes, and colors. Or you can go the composting toilet route and save a ton of water!
Replace Old RV Window Coverings with Updated Shades
Removing old window coverings and replacing them with shades is an RV renovation idea we recently put into practice ourselves… and what a difference it made!
That’s right, we finally replaced our old pleated blinds with roller shades, and our only regret is that we didn’t do it sooner.
For more information, check out our post on RV replacement blinds!
Replace Valances with Curtains
Old, outdated valances are found in soooooo many RVs. Removing those valances and replacing them with curtains can change the entire look of a living room or bedroom.
If you’re tired of the old dusty original valances that came with your rig, try replacing them with curtains and let us know how you like the upgrade!
Add Colorful New Throw Pillows and Blankets
Whether you want to spruce up an RV bedroom or living room, bright new colorful throw pillows and blankets can really accent a space and make it feel fun and refreshed.
And what an easy upgrade!
Looking for inspiration for RV renovation projects or even a renovated RV? Check out RV Inspiration, which is run by our dear friends Heath & Alyssa Padgett.
Have You Made Some Simple RV Renovations in Your Rig?
If you’ve made some relatively simple renovations to your RV that you’ve found especially nice, leave a comment below and share your ideas!
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Saturday 4th of February 2023
We have a TT purchased 5 years ago (how time flies). One of my upgrades was to install slide out trays in our cupboard so we dont have to reach into the back of the shelves or wonder what we left in there lol.
Sunday 5th of February 2023
Sounds like a great solution, Lew!
Monday 30th of January 2023
We own a ‘93 Newmar Kountryaire, live full time. First we took down valances and window shades, put in thermal curtains. Then we did kitchen faucet, bath sink and tub faucets, remodel bathroom walls and toilet pedestal, new sky light in tub/shower.Next remade counter top, Replaced ceiling insulation and panels and installed LED lighting. Next we are going to do vinyl flooring! Love our our Kountryaire!!! All of this can be done if you are handy with tools and great ideas!
Monday 30th of January 2023
Sounds fantastic, Kevin! Projects like these are awesome when you have a good RV with great bones! Enjoy!
Monday 30th of January 2023
All of these are great ideas. Lots of bang for your buck on some relatively simple DIY upgrades. One other (super easy) thing we did on our 2005 motorhome was to replace all the cabinet handles. Fortunately we did not need to repaint or refinish the cabinets themselves as they are a lighter maple shade and in very good condition, but the old “antique brass” (and antique/country styled!) handles looked very drab and dated. We replaced them with some much more contemporary bushed nickel handles and wow, what a difference! There were lots of styles to choose from online and in stores. Just be sure to carefully measure the distance between the mounting screws in order to match the new handles to the existing mounting holes! (Not that I messed that up the first time or anything, I’m just saying….😉😂)
Monday 30th of January 2023
That’s another great upgrade, @Tim H.! Thanks for sharing!