It’s that time of year again, the sun’s out (well sort of!), and it’s time to get your campervan ready for spring. Scrubbing brushes at the ready, 11 top tips (because everyone does 10 or 12!) to preparing your campervan or caravan for the new season ahead.
Tip 1 – Conquer the emerald green look – Having parked up the campervan (or motorhome or caravan…) for winter, it may now have a lovely dark green look about it! This can be cleaned off, easily, with a soft bristle brush mounted on a long pole, a scrubbing brush and some good cleaning products. The best cleaning product we’ve found for this tiresome job, has to be Bobby Dazzler from Fenwicks, as it shifts the winter grime in absolutely no time, meaning your arms will ache a little less!
Tip 2 – Make sure the wheels go around – Making the campervan look great is the first starting point, but more important really is the road safety side of getting the vehicle back on the road. Starting with the tyres, as campervans don’t move as often as a car, and get laid up for the best part of winter, the tyres can suffer. Tyre pressures need checking against the recommended pressure from the owner’s handbook and whilst you’re checking over the tyres look out for cracking or bald tyres. Check the inside and outside faces of the tyre and look for cracks before they get serious.
Tip 3 – Shiny lights – Keep road lights in good condition by applying a moisture-repellent lubricant which doesn’t react with the plastic casings. To check a caravan’s road lights are working, couple up your tow car, and check the lights. Whilst you’re doing this, check the couplings are free from dirt, damp or rust.
Tip 4 – Take it to the professionals – If you want the campervan serviced, spring is the ideal time, before the season really gets going. Tying this in with a habitation service (for the internal workings of the campervan) gets it all done at once, however, be warned, early booking is essential, as the workshops fill up very fast.
Tip 5 – Do an Inside Job on it – As well as taking it to the professionals, you’ll probably want to do a big spring clean inside, and re-kit the campervan with all the items you took out over winter. We’re always popping out to the campervan to bring in torches, pillows, tinned tomatoes etc!
Tip 6 – Leisure Battery – some owners remove the leisure battery over the winter period, and keep it charged up at home. Now is the time to reconnect it, ensuring connections are clean and rust free.
Tip 7 – Drain down points, Taps and Pipes – over winter, you should have left drain down points open to prevent frost damage, so these now need closing. Check over all the internal taps to ensure they’re working, and damage free. Whilst looking at the taps and drain down points, it would be worth checking the pipes and connections for any frost or damp damage, and obviously get them replaced. Running some water with a cleaner through the water system will give it a good blast, you can use Fenwicks Tank and Waste cleaner, or alternatively you can use a mild sterilising fluid. By cleaning the tanks in spring, you can enjoy a whiff free summer in the campervan!
Tip 8 – Smoke and Gas Alarms – usually the Smoke and Gas Alarms run on their own batteries and not the 12v system, meaning they should be fine, but a quick double check of these is advisable.
Tip 9 – Cooker, Heater & Fridge – these 3 essential appliances should be checked as part of any habitation test. If you are opting to look after the campervan, then you will need to ensure all of these pieces of equipment are safe and if necessary, gas compliant.
Tip 10 – Damp Checking – check your campervan doesn’t have ingressing damp, this is where water has seeped through the outer shell, into the wooden structure of the campervan or caravan. This can be costly to put right if not caught in time. A damp check is usually part of a habitation service, and the technician uses an electrically-operated damp meter. They will take readings from 50 points around the inside of the campervan.
Tip 11 – Insurance – finally, don’t forget the insurance! Make sure you check that all your necessary insurance is in place, before cruising out on your next adventure.
I think after all that spring cleaning all we can do is wish you a great season out and about, and let us know where your adventures take you at 4pointsleisure.co.uk. or tweet us at @4pointsleisure. Don’t forget to come by the website to check out our other articles.
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