Are pop-up gizmos waterproof? (15 tips for rainy days)

In this blog post, we will answer the following question: Are pop-up gizmos waterproof? We will discuss the benefits of pop-up gizmos but also give you a few essential tips for camping with a pop-up camper when it’s raining. 

Are pop-up gizmos waterproof?

Yes, pop-up gizmos are waterproof and they protect your camper from moisture, rain, snow and ice (if you like camping in the mountains in winter). The many advantages of pop-up gizmos are that they:

  • Are completely washable;
  • Keep the camper dry no matter the weather;
  • Protects the pop-up against dirt, dust and UV rays;
  • The protective cover consists of several layers in order to protect the camper as well as possible from any possible damage;
  • A financial advantage above all, since the resale price of a camper, is assessed according to its equipment but also its general condition. The better it is stored, the better it will sell in terms of speed of sale and value!

The many benefits of pop-up gizmos

There are many camper covers and tarps currently on the market. The best of them allow moisture to evaporate and are tough. Some even have zippers that allow you to enter the vehicle without having to remove the protective sheet. Others are tailor-made. 

Covering your pop-up camper during the winter has its advantages and disadvantages. Here are a few…

Advantages of pop-up gizmos

Without a doubt, a tarp protects your vehicle from the elements. In areas where it snows, it prevents water from melting accumulated snow from entering the camper through the solder joints. Leaves, pine needles, branches and the like will also not find their way inside. In the spring, your vehicle should, in principle, be as clean as the day you covered it. Lots of commercial tarps like this help protect your camper in the winter.

Disadvantages of pop-up gizmos

On the other hand, it is sometimes difficult, even dangerous, to put up a protective canvas. Indeed, you have to climb everywhere on the camper, including the roof. In addition, mould sometimes forms under canvases, especially tarpaulins, due to the condensation that occurs in the spring when you wait too long to remove them.

Finally, PUGS, unless properly installed, sometimes hold up very badly because they tear or get blown away.

How to choose the right pop-up gizmo for my camper?

Material and protection. Among the different camper van covers made from different materials on the market, choose one according to the type of exterior elements to which your camper is regularly exposed.

For example, if you are always travelling in summer or in hot climates, you should give priority to an RV cover with superior UV protection. A polyester camper cover would be ideal for hot climates.

That said, you need to get yourself a cover that can repel all other outdoor elements, including rain, snow, and wind, so you can travel smoothly all year round in any weather. For example, while UV protection is your main buying factor, be sure to choose one that is treated with a waterproof coating to protect against moisture.

Additional features. It may be advisable to purchase a tarp that offers some useful additional features. A ventilation system reduces wear and tear from swelling in windy conditions and also allows moisture to escape.

In addition to the air vents, the zippered panels are very handy as they allow you to easily get in and out of your camper or inspect specific parts and components without removing the entire tarp.

Cut. Remember, a well-fitting waist is absolutely essential. Your cover must be adapted to the dimensions of your camper: not too loose for better protection against the elements (the wind in particular) and not too tight for easy installation.

Keep in mind the dimensions of your camper, bike port included, when making your purchase. The measurements you will need are:

  • Length: starting from one bumper to the other, and possibly a bike rack
  • Width: measure both front windshield and rear bumper;
  • Height: from the bottom of the wheels to the top of the roof.

Even the best RV tarps deteriorate over time. However, proper maintenance will extend the life of your tarp.

  • Repair any damage as soon as visible: minor tears in the canvas can turn into huge holes if you don’t close them in time. If you notice any damage, repair it as soon as possible.
  • Remove anything that can accumulate: A lot can accumulate on the tarp in the open, straining the tissues. Thus, remove leaves, snow, dust and others regularly.
  • Fold and store your tarp: when not in use, keep the cover in its storage bag after cleaning and drying it well. Sometimes you can ruin your tarp by carelessly putting it away.

Essential tips for camping with a pop-up when it’s raining

Your pop-up camper is not waterproof and if it also has a tear or two in the canvas, you may find yourself in an unfortunate situation. Of course, if you prepare well, rain or snow will not interrupt your vacation!

Here are our tips for successful camping with a pop-up (no matter the weather):

  1.  Check everything before going out: camper, pop-up gizmos, awnings, the canvas … Check that all the materials are waterproof and that they are in good condition: you don’t want to discover under the downpour that the double roof of the camper has various gaps.
  1. Take more camper covers than usual. One of them can be used to sit outside when the ground is already wet. Another can be used to keep the interior dry.
  1. Choose a camping site near the bathrooms. Walking around the campsite is always pleasant, but it is a little less so in the downpour.
  1. First of all, observe the space. The previous step to planting the camper is to examine the irregularities of the terrain to avoid possible puddles or pools of water. In addition, you should place the entrance door in the opposite direction to the wind.
  1. Don’t be in a rush to start driving. When you get to the pitch, watch the sky, check the forecast and wait for the right moment to set up camp. It is always better to wait for the rain to breathe.
  1. Set up the camper as best you can. All fabrics should be as taut as possible to prevent water pockets from forming and ending up draining. To do this, he tightens all the perimeter ropes popularly called winds.
  1.  Don’t touch the sides of the camper when it rains. Avoid leaving any clothing or sleeping bag in this area. It is easy for them to end up getting wet.
  1. You need to ventilate. Even if it rains, you need air to circulate inside the camper to avoid condensation inside. If you don’t, you will see that it is as if it were raining from within.
  1. Don’t forget the plastic bags. They are perfect for protecting clothing, electronics, and footwear.
  1.  Footwear is essential. The best thing is that it is waterproof and breathable, and at the same time easy to remove and put on. You should always leave your footwear under the awning unless you want to muddy the inside. 
  1. Don’t forget your raincoat. It’s obvious advice, but sometimes we forget the most important thing. Waterproof does not mean warm. There can be very rainy spring days when it is quite hot.
  1. Bring plenty of socks. There is nothing more annoying than having wet feet.  Wear synthetic clothing. Cotton clothes take longer to dry. Use materials that retain less moisture.
  1.  Dry all material before storing it. This is especially important with pop-up campers. I have seen many of them covered with fungus or rotten from humidity. If you can’t dry them at the campsite, try to do it when you get home. If you don’t, you will be in for a nasty surprise the next time you want to use it.
  1. Animals. We enjoy camping with our pets, but you should know that this will complicate the task of keeping the interior of the camper clean and dry.
  1.  Observe nature. If the intensity of the storm permits, go for a walk and watch everything glisten after a downpour. There is nothing more beautiful than a rainbow. Enjoy the adventure!


Protective covers are particularly used during the cold and rainy seasons. Make sure to clean the camper well before putting it in the garage so that no dust can get inside. 

Our final tip is to check the roof of your pop-up camper regularly, not only to keep your feet in the water after a downpour but also to prevent (again) mould problems. These, in addition to being harmful to your health, could decrease the value of your camper if you eventually want to sell it.

Please let us know if you have any questions, comments or suggestions on how to improve this article. 

FAQ on Are pop up gizmos waterproof?

Are pop up gizmos worth it?

Yes, pop-up gizmos are completely worth it. Protective covers are particularly used during the cold and rainy seasons. Make sure to clean the camper well before putting it in the garage so that no dust can get into the camper. 

Do you store a pop-up caravan with the top up or down?

The correct way to store a pop-up caravan is with the top down to prevent sun and wind damage. Extreme temperatures and adverse weather will affect a pop-top caravan more than other RVs and campers. 

Should I store my camper water tanks empty or full?

You should store your camper with empty water tanks. If you leave water in the tanks for a long period, your tank is likely to fill with viruses and bacteria that can affect health. 

What are the best brands of camper covers?

If you know for sure that a particular tarp is perfectly compatible with your camper and wallet, buy it without worrying about its manufacturer. However, as with any other purchase, it is strongly recommended that you purchase your tarpaulins from reputable brands such as Hindermann, Roc Line, Tyvek, 1PLUS.

How much are pop up gizmos? 

Pop up gizmo prices vary from $30 to $239, depending on the size and model you need. Pop up gizmos care covers specially designed for pop-up campers, tent trailers or hybrid trailers. Many campers will tell you that pop up gizmos are the best acquisition. 

Other FAQs about Pop up campers  that you may be interested in.

Is a pop-up camper considered an RV?

How do you fix a hole in a pop-up camper canvas?

How do you keep a pop-up camper from sweating?