How to Install an Access Door in an RV Hatch

How to Install an Access Door in an RV Hatch
RV hatches provide a small entry to fuse panels, storage compartments or battery holding areas. Many modern RVs come with access hatches pre-installed for these areas of the rig. Replacing or installing new RV hatches is a straightforward process. Adding hatches allows better access to fuse boxes and storage.

Instructions

Difficulty: Moderate

Things You’ll Need:
  • Measuring tape
  • Marker
  • Power saw
  • Sandpaper
  • Power drill
  • Hatch door
  • Waterproof epoxy
  • Installation kit with screws, bolts and fixtures
Step 1
Measure out the dimensions of the access hatch with a measuring tape and then measure out on the door where you will install the same dimensions. Recheck your measurements by going over your markings a second time. Mark the outline and mark the areas where screws will go. Cut out the marked region with the power saw. Remove the cut piece of door.
Step 2
Sand the edges of the cut hatch hole with the sandpaper to smooth down the surfaces. Smooth the corners or the cut areas to remove abrasions or protrusions. Drill out the screw holes with the power drill.
Step 3
Place the door hatch over the hole so it lines up. Take the hinges from the install kit and starting on the upper left hand side, screw in the hinges with the screws into the pre-drilled holes. Move over to the right corner and repeat. Let the hatch hang on the hinges.
Step 4
Apply epoxy to the edges of the hole so the cut hole becomes covered with a fine layer of epoxy. Let the epoxy dry as this will ensure the hatch seal is waterproof. Test the hatch by locking and unlocking the door lock mechanism with the keys included in the installation kit. Check for smooth operation and flush edges of the door, door hatch and cut hole.

Tips & Warnings

 
Before cutting anything you have measured, go back and measure a second time. You can always change your markings before you cut. If you cut and your markings were off, you'll need to replace the entire RV door.

Article Written By Eric Cedric

A former Alaskan of 20 years, Eric Cedric now resides in California. He's published in "Outside" and "Backpacker" and has written a book on life in small-town Alaska, "North by Southeast." Cedric was a professional mountain guide and backcountry expedition leader for 18 years. He worked in Russia, Iceland, Greece, Turkey and Belize. Cedric attended Syracuse University and is a private pilot.

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