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RV Entry Door Locks: How to Install, Troubleshoot, and Replace RV Door Locks

Updated: Jul 3, 2023

Learn how to replace travel trailer door locks, fix broken RV door locks, replace outdated camper door locks, and more.

RV with door

Whether you own a Class A motorhome or a campervan, your RV entry door locks play an important role in keeping your rig safe and secure. Ask any RVer who has been locked out of their rig because of a faulty door lock (happens more often than you think) and they will tell you the importance of a good RV door lock. Here is a guide to help you install, troubleshoot, and replace your RV door locks.

Types of RV Entry Door Locks

RV trailer door locks come in two basic types. You have your standard RV door locks with deadbolts and latches and the newer keyless RV door locks with keypads and fobs.

Mechanical RV Door Locks

RV mechanical door locks feature a standard handle lock and a deadbolt. The handle lock helps keep the latch or knob from opening and the deadbolt slides in when the door is locked by sliding in a chunk of metal through the door to the frame. Most Class A, B, and C RVs and travel trailers come with mechanical door locks when you first buy them.

rv lock with deadbolt

RV Keyless Entry Door Locks

You can also install keyless RV door locks on your rig. These locks come with a digital keypad and key fobs that are set up so you can open the RV door with a single click. The mechanism of keyless RV door locks is the same as that of mechanical locks, the only difference is that you don't have to manually open and close them. You can also find wireless RV door locks in the market that can be connected to your phone (or smart device) via Bluetooth and operated through it. Keyless door locks work on batteries.

RV keyless door locks

RV Entry Door Lock Replacement

All RVs and campers come with a factory lock installed when you buy them. However, if you want to upgrade your RV door lock or replace it here is how to do it.

  • Use a screwdriver to remove the screws from the back of the existing lock on the door

  • Remove the screws from the strike plate on the side of the door

  • Remove the strike plate from the side of the door

  • Remove the front and back portions of the existing handle (they should come off easily)

  • Clean the cutout area as necessary before installing the new lock

RV Door Lock Replacement (Mechanical)

Keyless RV Door Lock Replacement

RV Entry Door Lock Cylinder Replacement

Troubleshooting RV Door Locks

Just like all other components of your motorhome, RV door locks can also break down and need to be repaired or replaced. Here are some common travel trailer door lock issues and how you can solve them.

How to fix a loose RV door latch?

The latch on RV door locks can come loose due to changes in temperature and wear and tear. A loose door latch can make it difficult for the deadbolt to lock in position so the door may not be fully locked even if you think it is. This means the rig door can be opened easily even when locked and may even open when you're driving.

To fix this problem:

  • Check the screws and bolts that mount the latch to the door frame

  • Tighten any screws that are loose

  • Replace screws that have become misshapen or have rusted

  • If this doesn't fix the problem, replace the door lock

How to fix an RV door latch that doesn't close properly?

The latch on your RV door may not close properly because the catch in the lock on the door isn’t aligning properly with the latch in the door frame. This can cause your door to not close properly and even not close at all.

To fix this problem:

  • Check the position and tightness of the strike plate/bolt mounted in the door frame

  • Ensure that the strike plate matches up with the catch in the door lock

  • If it doesn't, either adjust the door hinge so that they both match or realign the strike plate

How to fix an RV door that locks automatically?

Sometimes a failure or misalignment of the mechanism in the door lock prevents it from operating correctly, hence locking the door automatically. This can happen due to regular use and wear and tear.

To fix this problem:

  • Remove the screws from the back of the lock to see if the actuator inside is bent

  • If it is, use a pair of pliers to bend the actuator back up to the proper position

  • Reassemble the lock

  • If this doesn't solve the problem then replace the lock

How to fix an RV door lock with a sticking deadbolt?

Misalignment of the strike plate and the deadbolt inside the lock can cause the lock to stick and make opening and closing the RV door a hassle. This can happen if you install a lock that isn't the right size for your rig.

To fix this problem:

  • Unscrew and readjust the RV door striker plate

  • Lubricate the door lock and deadbolt mechanism

  • If that doesn't work then make the striker plate hole higher and deeper with a file to make space for the deadbolt to slide in

  • Replacing the door lock with one that is the right size is recommended

How to fix a broken RV door lock?

Let's face it, RV door locks break; it can be due to wear and tear, changing weather, or just a low-quality locking mechanism. A broken RV door lock can basically malfunction in any way; the lock may not open from the inside or outside the RV or you might not be able to lock the door entirely.

The only solution for fixing a broken RV door lock is to replace it with a high-security RV door lock. You can refer to the lock replacement guides above to see how to do just that.

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