With Spring just around the corner, it’s time to get all the brush away the cobwebs and get your caravan or camper ready for the next season just in time for the warm weather.
Often regular trips mean all things like water tanks and battery monitors remain functional, clean, and ready to go with very little maintenance between holidays. Whilst you don’t need to have a caravan serviced regularly like your car, there are a few things that need a bit of TLC when your beloved caravan or motorhome has been put away for an extended period to make sure you have all your gear working when you really need it! Here are a few ways you can keep your family safe (and happy) when you hit the road next time.
Open all the doors and windows for a through-air out and check the seals and flyscreens for cracks and holes. If your van has been stored for longer than 4 months, dampness and mould can get inside the van and build up. Moisture eaters like happy hippos or damp rid are an easy-to-use and cheap option to prevent mould from damaging the internals of your van whilst in storage. Just make sure to remove them before you hit the road.
Camp BBQs are one of the most used kitchen appliances for every single camper – so checking and maintaining your BBQ equipment is a must after long-term storage. Once you have checked the lines and bottle for areas that may have degraded and you are confident there is no visible damage to the bottle or gas pipes you can check for leaks. An easy way that every camper can do this at home is by using a mix of soap and water. Begin by connecting the gas pipes to a BBQ or similar so you don’t have excess gas coming out in your area. Turn on the gas bottle slowly and pour the soapy water mix over the bottles and lines. If there is a small leak, the soapy water will begin to bubble around the holes you may not have otherwise seen with the naked eye.
No bubbles = Good to go. Of course, if you have any other concerns please see a licensed gas fitter prior to using damaged gas appliances.
Turn on all electrical appliances and lights to ensure the cables are in good working order. Again, dampness can get into electrical lines or inlets/outlets so ensuring these are in good working order will prevent any unnecessary burdens down the road. The consequence of having unserviceable electrical can make for a very unpleasant trip – even a complete turnaround if your fridge/aircon or lighting is not functional. No one wants to drink warm beer!!
Be sure to check the electric brake and battery monitor too. Laws can vary from state to state and a serviceable breakaway controller and remote monitor are required by law in NSW.
Lastly, check the brakes and driving lights are all in good working order.
Most likely (hopefully!) the fridge and pantry would have been cleaned out prior to storage so a quick clean and re-stock is all that’s needed making sure to include your favorite camping snacks. Giant Marshmallows and campfire popcorn are some of our favourites!!
Flush any water tanks with fresh water and if there is any remaining odour Milton's bleach will kill just about any nasties left in the tank. You can then flush with a mix of baking soda and water to remove the bleach taste before filling with fresh water.
Now you have a beautiful fresh caravan all set to head off on the next adventure. So what are you waiting for?