It’s that time of year again. The sun is shining, the birds are chirping and the flowers are blooming. Spring has finally sprung and it'll soon be time to hitch up your caravan. What better time for a spot of spring cleaning? Spring is a season of rebirth and renewal, so why not extend that to your caravan too, keeping it in great condition and ready for those last minute getaways.
Clean away those leftover winter blues with our handy caravan cleaning and maintenance tips below. Please note these self-checks do not replace the need for an annual caravan service by properly qualified experts, such as our approved caravan workshop. Always check your caravan servicing handbook for any specific advice, best practices or guidelines it may offer.
01Protect the outside of your caravan from the elements by using specialist cleaners and polish. Always use fluids recommended for caravans, as some chemicals may cause damage to surfaces and seals. Pay particular attention to removing any signs of green or black mould. We recommend cleaning with Fenwicks Caravan Cleaner and Black Streak Remover, followed by a polish with Fenwicks Bobby Dazzler.
02To help preserve the exterior of your caravan and ease the chore of cleaning, you may wish to buy a breathable caravan cover. When choosing a caravan cover it is important for it to be breathable, soft enough not to damage the caravan surface and tough enough for longevity. We recommend Maypole caravan covers. Before fitting a cover it is essential that the surface of your caravan is clean and dry.
03Vacuum clean and wash down the interior of your caravan throughout. As well as getting everything clean, this is a great way of checking you haven’t left anything untoward or perishable in a cupboard or seat base. Use cleaning products and detergents specifically designed for caravan use, rather than normal domestic cleaning fluids, as these may cause damage to surfaces and seals in a caravan. Make sure your fridge is empty, then wipe clean with a solution bicarbonate of soda.
04Open and close all windows and doors in your caravan, including cupboards and lubricate the hinges. Check the window seals for any signs of damage such as cracks or condensation. Check that curtains and window blinds operate smoothly. For blinds with any kind of spring mechanism, it’s best to leave them open, otherwise the springs are gradually stretched over a period of time and subsequently fail to work efficiently.
05Leisure batteries are often the first casualties of long periods without use. If your caravan has been stood for a while, remember to charge the battery before you plan to use it. A caravan battery should not be left much more than six weeks before charging, and a lesser period if the battery needs to remain connected to operate a security system. Choose from a range of battery chargers in our accessories section.
06Check your caravan tyres for any signs of perishing, cracks in the sidewalls or suspicious bulges. Any tyres showing signs of damage should be changed immediately, even if the tread isn’t worn. More often than not, caravan tyres need to be replaced because of deterioration due to age, rather than tread wear. If you notice any damage, get it checked by a professional prior to travelling. Check the tyre pressures and pump accordingly.
07Check the handbrake and make sure your wheels are free running when unbraked. Ensure the handbrake operates freely by pulling and releasing the lever several times. If it feels like it could seize, or is difficult to take off, apply a lubricant to the mechanism. When storing your caravan, the handbrake should be left off to prevent sticking. If you do this, caution should be taken if there’s any chance of your caravan moving.
08If you have a caravan awning, check that there are no parts missing and that it is not damaged before you leave. It’s better to find out at home than when you’re pitched onsite. Regardless of the material, all awnings should be cleaned periodically using warm water and a soft brush or sponge. Expecting windy weather on your next getaway? We offer a selection of storm poles and tie-down kits. Look after your awning, and it will look after you.
09Rain has a way of getting into light fittings and electrical connections, so check your road lights are working correctly before you leave, and look for signs of corrosion or damage. Regularly clean the plugs and spray them with a moisture repellent to prevent problems. Problems with your electrical plugs? Choose from a range of couplers, mains leads, splitters and convertors in our site electrics section.
10Finally, arrange to book your caravan in to your dealership where they will carry out its annual service, checking the electrics and mechanical elements as well as habitation area including the gas and water systems. Our approved workshop team are experienced in the servicing, repair and maintenance of caravans and we take great pride in our work. Find out more on our caravan servicing page and contact us to make a booking.