The accessories that you equip your caravan with is actually what makes it your home. Caravan accessories also shape the nature of your caravanning holidays, which is why they need to be in working order at all times. While all caravan owners have their unique preferences when it comes to caravan accessories, there are certain accessories that find a home in almost every modern caravan. Here are some of these important caravan accessories that you need to look after, and introduces you to how to do the same.
1. Fire Extinguisher
A fire extinguisher is a very important component of your home-on-wheels. Because the safety of your caravan and its occupants and accessories can actually depend on a functioning fire extinguisher, it is extremely important that you inspect the extinguisher before all your upcoming trips. The fire extinguisher must be securely mounted, and not overdue for a service. Check the date of the last service on the body of the extinguisher. If it’s approaching – or older than – five years from the present date, get in touch with your service provider. While you’re at it, it won’t hurt to check that your smoke alarm is working, and that your first aid kit is fully stocked.
Your caravan’s battery (or batteries) are in charge of powering all your appliances, gadgets and power consuming knick-knacks during your caravanning trips. If you’re putting your caravan in storage for an extended period of time, your battery should be completely disconnected, moved to a dry, accessible place (like your garage for example), where it can be charged every few weeks. Before leaving for a caravanning holiday, you should check that the battery is fully charged. If you’ve charged it and it appears to be dead, take it to a service centre to check for leaks or any other damage as a replacement may be required.
3. Portable Toilet
Cassette toilets must be cleaned and drained on a regular basis. Ensure that you’re using the right chemicals in the flush tank and the waste tank. Another important exercise involves inspecting, cleaning and lubricating all seals in the cassette, as well as the valve blade that seals the toilet from the waste tank below it. Use a silicon lubricant for the latter, and avoid using petroleum jelly. If you’re putting your caravan into extended storage, leave the valve in the half-open position to prevent it from getting stuck in the closed position.
While caravan refrigerators don’t generally need a lot of maintenance, they do need cleaning from time to time. Thoroughly clean the inside of your refrigerator, freezer or icebox. When placing your caravan in storage, keep the refrigerator door ajar and place a dehumidifier within the caravan to prevent mould formation or odour build-up. Before leaving on your next trip, inspect your refrigerator’s door seal for any gaps or cracks.
5. Water Tanks
Caravan water tanks, especially those containing drinking water, must be thoroughly cleaned between trips. Drain out your water container, clean it, and allow it to dry completely before placing your caravan in storage. This will prevent mould formation. In fact, all systems containing water (hot water system tanks, etc.) must be subjected to this exercise on a regular basis.
And don't forget, all appliances, gadgetry and electronics in your caravan will require a few basic maintenance measures, which will be outlined in their user manuals. Look after them like you would look after the furniture, appliances and accessories at home, to always be ready for an impromptu caravanning getaway! Keeping up to date with your caravan accessory maintentce will ensure you don't have to replace them before their estimated shelf-life is up. Oh, and so that your next trip goes without the hiccups. Happy Camping!
DISCLAIMER* Please note, this advice is general in nature and we strongly recommend consulting the product manual and where relevant, a professional installer.