06/08/2015
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Five essential safety caravan accessories

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Some things are unavoidable in life. Only the luckiest of rabbit foot carrying, four leaf clover picking, horseshoe collecting, penny finding, lottery winners covered in bird poop during a full moon can say that they've never had an accident.


When you caravan, there are a number of ways that your holiday could go awry; it happens to us all sometimes, but the good news is that you can prepare yourself for anything and take preventative measures to greatly reduce your chances of having a bad experience with the details below and this caravan security accessory guide.

The first one is pretty simple: stay on the right side of the law. Some of the advice below relates to legal issues that must be followed. The rest of it is essential information that you'd be silly to ignore. Got any more advice we should share with our readers? Get in touch and let us know what you can't do without when it comes to safety and security. The list is almost endless!
 

Towing mirrors

There are certain distances, required by law, that you have to be able to see behind and either side of your caravan when towing. The only way to achieve this level of visibility is by using towing mirrors, which attach to your car's standard wing mirrors.

There are plenty of mirrors on the market, at varying levels of 'fitability' and cost. We recommend the teardrop-shaped options, as these can be adjusted easily to fit either the top or underside of your wing mirrors, depending on your car's design.
 

Noseweight gauge

Noseweight is the force exerted downwards by the tourer's tow hitch onto the car's towball. You need a decent level of noseweight to ensure stability when towing. The law states that the noseweight of a trailer has to be at least 4% of the MTPLM, or 25kg – whichever is heavier. In practise, it's best to have noseweight in the region of 70-100kg. But you also need to stay within the limit of the car manufacturer's specific noseweight limit. This means that some cars are ruled out of towing capabilities because they can't handle the necessary nosewieght.

You can measure noseweight using a noseweight gauge, which sits in the tow hitch and you wind the jockey wheel down to get a measurement of weight. Or, you can use a stick of wood and some bathroom scales in a similar fashion, if you're careful not to damage them.

Also be wary that you need to ensure your caravan's weights are not too heavy for the kerbweight of your car, and remember that the weight your car manufacturer claims is not always safe when it comes to towing a caravan! A car manufacturer may claim that their car can tow a certain figure, but that doesn't mean that it should. What it can tow and what it can tow safely are very different things sometimes.

Think of it like this... Some towcars can probably be driven at 120mph solo, but that doesn't mean that you'd take them to that speed.
 

Security options

Whether you're at home or on holiday, your caravan's security is paramount to keeping your pride and joy safe. The only way to minimise the threat of theft or damage is to invest in a combination of caravan security accessories.

The first options to look at are hitch and wheel locks, so that any prospective theif will immediately know that they're going to have a hard time getting your tourer on the move. But with increases in technology, there are also ways of digitally ring fencing your caravan when it's in storage or seasonally sited, for example, or there are tracker options that can easily be fitted should the worst happen and your caravan goes missing.

For minimal outlay, security accessories can be the difference between ignorance and bliss, meaning that the peace of mind you're buying will keep your caravan as safe as possible no matter where it is.

Secure storage sites such as those run by CaSSOA are also a great way of stopping any unwanted attention towards your caravan while it's not being used.
 

Extra numberplate – don't forget it

This is one that's easy to forget about until the last minute. When you've bought a new or used caravan for sale and got it home, checked the weights, hitched up and you're ready to head out, you'll notice something missing at the back when it comes to checking your lights – there's no numberplate!

Take your towcar's V5 document and proof of ID to a car accessory retailer such as Halfords, or if you've got plenty of time then research some retail options online. You'll find countless places to buy from!
 

Insurance

Your caravan insurance is vital. Some people think they're the best drivers in the world and that they'd never cause as much as a scratch on their tourer. Even if that is the case (it isn't), you can't account for other drivers on the road or on site, and you can't plan for accidents. You can, however, prepare for them.

Any number of caravan insurance comparison sites are available online, meaning that you can choose your best deal by simply entering your details once. Tailor your policy to suit you. Do you need continental cover? Where are you storing it? Make sure you're covered on the road as well as on site.

For plenty of handy hits and insider info, take a look at our caravan insurance secrets guide.
 

Stay safe at home, on the road and on your pitch.

 

 


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