Why? To make sure that your caravan is in tip top condition and ready to hit the road as soon as you come back for it. Just because your caravan won’t be going anywhere while it’s in storage, doesn’t mean you should leave any required maintenance until you come back to pick it up. Otherwise it may not leave the storage shed after all.
So here is a super quick checklist of things to do before you close the roller door:
1. Check Tyres
Do a quick once over on your tyres. This means checking the tread, maybe swap around the tyres as well as inflating them all (including the spare). Make sure your caravan is ready to leave the storage shed when you come back to get it by making sure your tyres are in optimal condition.
2. Clean The Interior And Exterior Thoroughly
Give your entire caravan a big clean on the inside and outside. With plenty of cleaning products specifically for caravans you won’t risk the paint work or any seals. While you’re giving it a thorough clean, it’s a good idea to keep an eye out for any mould build up or water leakages you may have otherwise missed. When you have finished cleaning, leave the cupboards open so they have plenty of time to ventilate.
3. Remove All Food And Perishables
This one goes hand in hand with cleaning out your caravan but it’s often overlooked. Remove all food items (including condiments and sealed items) so bugs and other animals don’t have any reason to venture inside your caravan. You also don’t want to return to a mouldy infestation in your cupboards.
4. Unplug And Secure Any Electronics
One of the main causes of caravan fires is faulty electrics so ensure you do a once over before leaving it for long periods of time. Make sure all power points aren’t exposed to the weather, disconnect any power leads, and store all cords neatly (remove all kinks). It’s also a good idea for an electrician to give your caravan a once over as well and it’s especially important for them to inspect your pins. Making sure your caravans electrical wiring is in order is important when it comes to keeping your family safe and sound when you’re on your next getaway.
5. Caravan Covers For Storage
If you don't have the luxury of parking your travelling investment under cover then it is important to invest in a high quality cover. There are a number of UV protected and good quality covers on the market backed with a 3 year warranty. Do not buy cheap when it comes to Caravan Covers. Check out our top choices here.
If you have an onboard toilet then don't forget to empty and clean all your cassettes or waste tanks. The last thing you need is a nasty surprise waiting for you when you are ready to use your van again. There is a variety of cleaning products that are essential to keeping your toilet and waste storage clean and sanitary. Check out the variety of chemicals and cleaning products we have available here.
7. LPG Gas
When travelling it is reccommended you always have your Gas bottles turned off however when storing your caravan it is important to double check all gas bottles are tightly turned off. If you are disconnecting them entirely then ensure you have capped your bottle. This isn't only to prevent leaking, it will also keep nesting bugs out too. If you can it is advisable to keep your gas bottles away from direct sunlight for extended periods of time as well.
8. Water Tanks
The last thing you need is to get to your caravan site ready to unwind only to find you haven't changed your water in your tanks from your holiday 6 months ago. It is a topic of debate as to whether you fully drain your tanks and dry them for storage or fill them up and leave water in them. There are reasonable arguments for both sides. Emptying the tanks and not ensuring they are completely dry may cause bacteria to grow due to oxygen and moisture in a dark tank. If you can guarantee to let your tank fully dry out with no water, then emptying it is ok. Filling your tank will never allow you to get 100% full with no air bubbles either, so you need to keep that in mind if choosing to keep your tanks full. Air bubbles will form and may cause bacteria to grow too.
It is always recommended to refill them right before departure or once you arrive at your destination to have fresh clean water ready to go. You can also perform half yearly tank cleans using a flushing agent such as the CAMCO Taste Pure Water Freshener. This will help keep algae, mould and other harmful bacteria at bay
Your caravan or motorhome is one of your prized possessions so checking you have adequate insurance cover when travelling is important, so is making sure it is covered where you are storing it too. Check you are covered for damage while in storage as well. Asking these questions at the start, saves heart ache at the end should anything arise.
Doing these quick things will mean your caravan will be just how you left it when you come to take it out of storage. You can also take some photos beforehand so you have something to compare it to when you do come back for it in case anything significant happens while it is locked away.
DISCLAIMER* Please note, this advice is general in nature and we strongly recommend consulting the product manual and where relevant, a professional installer.
Batteries?What about the caravan batteries? Do you disconnect them? Do you put them on charge while waiting for next journey?By: Donna Roberts on 26 June 2023
Hi Donna, there are a few variables when storing your caravan batteries. The biggest variable is whether they are lithium or AGM. It would be best to contact the manufacturer of your battery to discuss the best way to store your battery to ensure it keeps its healthy life.
Water in tanksYes keeping your tanks full with no air in the tank will stop all the nasties, I always top up my tanks at the park I am staying at before I depart and providing the water is of good taste . Once home I empty My tanks , flush them out and re fill them. Before my next trip I empty and refill before departure I don't believe in travelling with empty water tanks.By: Tony Brown on 22 June 2023
Hi Tony, this is also a great suggestion. Thanks for reaching out
Storing Water in caravan tanksI live in a rural area. We store our water in plastic rainwater tanks for years, half full, full or nearly empty. It is subject to the sun shining on the tank, hot weather, cold weather whatever. The water in my plastic caravan tank is no different, probably better protected from the elements and better sealed. I leave whatever water is left after a trip in my tank, I then drain and refill for before the next trip. No problems. I also use rainwater which doesn't have the chlorinated protection of town water. So, I don't think it makes any difference if it is full, half full or empty.By: Phil Dennis on 20 June 2023
Hi Phil, that is great feedback thanks for letting us know.
Water tanksI have always been told to fill the water tanks with fresh clean water as a tank with no air or light will stay free of mould. Plus it prevents any plastic from going brittle. Drain and fill again before first trip.By: Gavan on 19 June 2023
Hi Gavan, thanks for your feedback, we have adjusted the guide to best reflect the choice you have. We hope this helps
Water tankI was told to leave water tank full for storage as that will stop the algae buildup in tank.I have done this since 2013 and have had no problems with algae and smell from tanks.I always fill them through a water filter cheersBy: Leigh Davis on 19 June 2023
Hi Leigh, thanks for your feedback, we have adjusted the guide to best reflect the choice you have. We hope this helps