Caravanning is an awesome hobby that can help you explore some breathtaking places and meet great like-minded people. Caravans are a perfect way to create a new adventure, go anywhere you’ve wanted and still enjoy the comfort of your home when you get there. If you’re a first-timer at this activity, preparing your caravan properly can make a big difference between a great trip and the one you’d rather forget. Here are the things you need to make sure you’ve covered before you get on the road:
Check the essentials
As with any hobby, some items for caravaning are essential, while other can be purchased over time for extra comfort. It is important to have a detailed plan, especially if it’s your first caravanning trip. Make a checklist and stick to it, and start preparing for your trip a few months in advance. Prepare stuff like a fire extinguisher, wheel chocks, caravan jack, towing mirrors, extra coolant etc. Stock your toolkit and bring extra parts because a conventional toolkit won’t be sufficient. Pack a few extra light bulbs, fuses, jumper cables and nuts.
Make the caravan squeaky clean
If your caravan was off duty during winter, now’s the time to get it in top shape. Remove dirt from interior and exterior because it will prevent deterioration. Make sure to update your caravan cleaning equipment because it’s going to save you a lot of time and effort. After that, you can dust, hoover and polish away. Another aspect to be aware of are pests. If your caravan was exposed to the environment, make sure to check for ant infestation, spider webs, eggs or other animals. Check every corner and arm yourself with a can of AndRid or something similar.
Make it safer
Check all windows, doors and seals of your caravan and make sure they’re watertight. It will keep your caravan from damage and make your trip safer and enjoyable. You can do that by simply hosing down your caravan and checking if there’s any leakage. You should check for damp regularly because if it appears, the damage to the caravan is permanent. Musty smell and mould are clear indicators. Last, but not least, check your tyres. Look for warping, cracking, bulging, and check tyre pressure.
Prepare water system
After long periods where your water system hasn’t been in use it’s always advisable to take the time to flush it out and check for leaks. Connect to a water supply and leave your taps and shower to run for a few minutes before leaving the system primed and under pressure – it’s a method that will ensure you to easily identify problems. If the caravan was exposed to longer periods of cold weather, check under the caravan for frost damage.
Check for gas supply
All the gas bottles and hoses should be checked for damage before you travel. Smells will give it away, so keep your nose sharp for any gas shells. And don’t forget to always turn your gas off at the bottle before traveling.
Before setting off, take the time to close all windows, doors and cupboards within your caravan and check if all items are correctly stowed away for the journey. Once everything is packed up, check if the caravan is correctly linked to your vehicle – as a simple test, use a jockey wheel to raise the back of your vehicle up a few inches, and then put it back down. Check if your insurance is up to date and that you have a valid MOT certificate and driving licence with you for the trip. Ensure that your side mirrors give you a clear view of the rear unit and drive safely!
After reading this, setting up your caravan will be a breeze. Just make sure that everything for the trip is set up properly because the safety of you and your family is a top priority. Once you set off, take extra care! Be mindful of traffic behind you, and use slow vehicle turnouts where possible. Towing something as huge as a caravan takes getting used to. Also, pay attention to fuel consumption. Now pack up and go have some fun!