The popularity of caravanning is changing, so too is the type of caravans we are buying. We are moving away from the smaller pop up vans and heading toward the full “home away from home” style caravan. With the larger caravans brings the problem of storage, as no longer will they fit nicely under the carport, and not all of us have the luxury of custom-made garage to house your rig.
When storing your caravan whether it be in the garage / carport or out under the stars, there are a few simple things we can do to ensure that everything is in good working order when you get it out again for the next big adventure.
Many vans are stored outside in the weather because there is no way they can fit in a garage or carport and this is not the end of the world. If storing your van outdoor, invest in a good cover with waterproof top and breathable sides. Leaving it out in the elements will simply destroy anything rubber – even tyres will age under UV, so too will your decals. While Caravans are built and designed to be outside and used in the sunlight, fittings are easily damaged by long term daily exposure.
A good cover will also help prevent the ingress of moisture as nothing will dampen your spirits like a dirty, wet caravan. It is always a good idea to leave a few vents open to maintain some air flow while not in use to avoid any nasty smells.
If your caravan’s tyres are exposed to the sun, then it’s a good idea to have them covered also, as they will damage easily from UV rays. Even better still is having them lifted off the ground as this will prevent flat spots from forming. If you are unable to jack the van up, consider turning the wheels, every six to eight weeks, to alleviate any problems, and ensure pressures are correct, as tyres do not like standing around on the same piece of tread for long periods.
Looking after your battery system is a must when you’re not using the van. If parking under cover or putting a cover over your van, the solar panels won’t be putting power into the batteries and they will discharge naturally over time. A great option is to fit an Anderson Plug to your van which will allow you to then connect a portable Solar Panel (with its own regulator), to keep your batteries topped up.
Another way to keep your batteries topped up is to run a power cable out to the van for half a day, once a week. There is nothing worse than getting ready to hit the road and finding you batteries are dead.
Looking after your caravan, showing it a little TLC even when stored for long periods of time, will ensure that it is good to go whenever the need for a quick getaway arises.
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