So, what do you need to start caravanning? Our guide should help.
First things first, you’ll need to check when you passed your driving test. If it was before 1 January 1997 you’ll be able to tow. If it was after that date, you’ll only be able to drive a vehicle up to 3500kg and a trailer (caravan) up to 750kg behind it. So, if you want to tow a heavier caravan you’ll need to pass an additional test. For more information, head over to the Camping & Caravanning Club information page.
There are various devices on the market which can help to protect your caravan.
- Hitch lock
- Wheel clamp
Check out this useful guide to Caravan Security Devices for more information.
Your car insurance will usually provide third party cover for towing your caravan, so would cover any damage to other cars if you had an accident. However, you would have to pay for any damage to your caravan, so make sure it’s protected against accidents, breakdown and theft with adequate insurance.
Extend your living space with a caravan awning. Our guide to caravan awnings may help you choose.
Caravan motor movers allow you to easily manoeuvre your caravan into position whether that be into a driveway, storage or touring pitch, or even hitching up. This guide gives more information.
You’ll need to have a container suitable for collecting water to bring back to your caravan. An Aquaroll is a great option which can be rolled along the ground.
Waste Water Container
Waste water, or ‘grey’ water needs to be collected by a waste water container, which plugs into your caravan waste drain points. Wastemaster is a popular brand.
Whilst most campsites will provide EHU (electric hook up), it’s still useful to invest in a leisure battery so you can power your fridge, heater and lights. There are several types of leisure battery, and all have their pros and cons, so make sure you do your research before you purchase. This guide to leisure batteries is very useful.
Power your fridge, heating, gas cooker and shower with gas. Bottles are typically butane or propane and come in 6kg or 7kg bottles. Butane gas is ideal for the summer months, but for winter, propane is better as it’s unlikely to freeze in cold weather.
To connect to an EHU, you’ll need a mains lead which costs around £50. Make sure it has an IP44 rating which indicates the level of protection given to sockets from water penetration.
Don’t forget to pack some portable steps to make getting in and out of your caravan a whole lot easier.
Corner Steady Jack
When you pitch up you’ll need to lower your corner steadies. Wind them down with a corner steady jack.
Reduce unpleasant smells, break down all the nasty stuff, and keep your toilet working effectively with toilet chemicals. Pink chemicals are added to the fresh water tank to keep the flush clean and provide a nice aroma. Blue or green chemicals are put into the waste tank and break down waste matter.
If you’re towing a vehicle wider than your car, you’ll need towing mirrors. You can buy stick on towing mirrors, strap on towing mirrors or bracket style towing mirrors. Prices range from around £15 to about £150.