Unless you’re very brave, the caravan season has come to an end for another year, and it’s time to think about storing the vehicle safely over the winter. The actions you take now determine the condition of your caravan later and how much work and expense you have to confront in spring.
One of the first things you need to do before storing your caravan for the winter is to drain the water system. Water left in the tank or the pipes can freeze over winter, expand, and cause damage to your caravan that can be costly and inconvenient. Follow the best advice below.
Start by draining the water system on your caravan completely; even a small amount of residual water can cause damage. Open all of the taps and valves and allow them to drain. Drain the internal and external water tanks and remove all the filters. Leave the system open for days.
It’s ideal if you can hook your caravan up to a 230V mains supply over the winter; this way, you can power up the internal heating from time to time and keep the leisure battery charged. Unfortunately, not every caravan owner has this luxury, so look after the battery manually.
Leisure batteries tend to die and need replacing if they aren’t used for a long period; even six months over the winter can cause irreversible battery damage. Make sure your leisure battery is full before your store it, and test it from time to time over winter to ensure it’s still operational.
If you’re storing a caravan that has gas cylinders, you need to make sure they are safely turned off and stored correctly to prevent leaks and contamination. The first thing to do is turn off the gas valves on top of the gas bottles and disconnect the regulators from the cylinders if they clip.
Gas bottles need to be stored safely and securely throughout the winter, often, you can store these bottles in their present location in the caravan and simply disconnect them, but if you intend to store the caravan in a unit, you will have to check the unit operator’s storage policy.
Another area of concern throughout the winter is the condition of the tyres. Over time tyres lose air naturally through the rubber, and when you aren’t using the caravan, it can be hard to tell whether the caravan tyres are legal or not. Of course, it’s dangerous to tow a unit with low air.
If you have an air pressure unit, it should be possible to test the tyres now and again throughout the winter; otherwise, you can use a 12-volt pump that plugs into your car and inflates the tyres enough to take you to the nearest gas station. Double check the caravan is road legal as well.
If you want to ensure your caravan is looked after over winter and in the best possible condition come spring, consider putting the vehicle into a Caravan storage near me; caravan storage provides a dry and clean storage facility for your caravan that you can check up on any time.