27/06/2014
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Guide to summer caravan care

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Caravan maintenance and repairs aren't just for the winter


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It’s often tempting to assume that caravan care and maintenance is something that can be safely relegated to the quieter months of winter, but the simple truth is that there’s always something to be done if you want to keep your second home in perfect working order. Specialised Covers have put together a guide for caravanning in the good weather.

Carry out regular basic checks

If you’re using your caravan regularly throughout the holiday season, it’s all too easy to just assume that everything is in full working order – particularly if you’re in a rush to get away and your mind’s on other things.

Unfortunately, such complacency can often lead to equipment failure, or leave you stranded without adequate gas or electricity – not a situation that anyone wants to find themself in!

Stay prepared and carry out some very basic checks on your vehicle whenever you plan to travel. The regulars to check are:

Check the caravan towcar's road lights• A test of your towcar’s road lights, to ensure that they are working properly, and are actually increasing your visibility – While carrying out a road-light check, you should also take care to ensure that your lights are clean, and not covered by any mud, dirt or grime.

• A test (both visual and kinetic) of the leads and pulls used to tow your caravan, to ensure that there is no damage that could potentially weaken your connection in transit.

• A quick visual test of your tyres, to ensure that they have not cracked (this is particularly important if your caravan has been left stationary for long periods of time).

• A smoke-alarms test, to ensure they’re in working order.

Check the caravan's breakaway cable• A quick test to see if your battery is fully charged – although it’s  unusual, some older models of battery are prone to power-leak, and it’s always best to double check before you set off.

• A visual test to verify the good condition of your breakaway cable and fastenings.

• A quick check to ensure that all door and window latches are working correctly, and to ensure that all door/window seals are fully operational.

• A test of your caravan’s jockey wheel and handbrake, to ensure that both are functioning correctly.

• A quick test of all your internal appliances, and your gas, to ensure that everything is working properly before you reach the campsite…

Keep an eye on it

The majority of these checks ought to be carried out every time you intend to use your caravan, but some, such as the tyre check, need only be done at the beginning of the holiday season, when you’re taking your caravan out of storage and beginning to gear up for travel.

In addition to these simple checks, you should also make sure that you always have plenty of supplies (food, water, etc) and also ensure that you have up to date caravan insurance coverage.

For more choosing and buying advice, visit the Caravan Buyers' Guide.


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