A guide to touring caravan storage
Unless you’re fortunate enough to be able to use your caravan all year round, your vehicle is likely to be off the road for at least several months of the year, typically through the winter. When it comes to storing your touring caravan, there are a number of options.
Storing at home
For many owners this is the cheapest option and also means you have unrestricted access to your vehicle. It makes carrying out regular maintenance easy and if you are fitting new parts or equipment, you can do this in the months the caravan is off the road. It also means you can keep your eye on the caravan throughout the year. Those are some of the plus points. On the other hand, unless you are able to store your caravan in a barn or large shed, it will be exposed to the elements, although a good caravan cover can offer some protection. A caravan is fairly bulky and will take up a large part of your driveway, and you may also be in breach of the covenants of the property, depending on your circumstances. Finally, when you’re on the road with your caravan, eagle eyed burglars may note its absence and guess there’s no one at home.
Open air sites
Paying to store your tourer at an open air site is another option and is generally inexpensive depending on facilities, many still have CCTV and other security measures like alarmed fencing. Your caravan will be secure, but will be exposed to the elements and you may only have access by prior arrangement or during the day. If considering an outdoor site, try and find one that offers hard standing, rather than in a field, as this is better for the wheels, suspension and undercarriage.
Sites offering undercover storage in large barns, warehouses, or bespoke facilities, are likely to be more expensive, but also one of the most secure options. The site may benefit from CCTV and other security measures and you’ll have the peace of mind of knowing that your caravan is sheltered from the weather. Some sites will offer to park and retrieve your caravan, which is helpful if you don’t like manoeuvring the caravan in and out of tight spaces. Such sites tend to be on industrial estates, or on the outskirts of town so again, access can be an issue.
Caravan site storage
If you find a site that you intend to use for regular holidays, you could think about siting your vehicle there out of season. Most sites will offer this facility, but costs can vary. That said, as a regular visitor to the site, you may be able to negotiate a good rate with the site owner. Some owners live on site all year round which is good for security; if not, your caravan could be vulnerable to opportunist thieves who sometimes target caravan sites in winter.
Ask a friend
If you have a friend or relative who has a barn or large outdoor storage facility, you could come to an arrangement for storing your caravan when not in use. Before doing this, make sure you check with your insurance company that the vehicle will be covered in the event of accidental damage, fire or theft
A few pointers on storing your tourer
If you’re storing your caravan outdoors, there are a number of ways you can protect it from the weather:
• Invest in a breathable caravan cover. These are widely available and offer excellent protection.
• Secure the caravan with cargo straps across the roof and attached to wooden stakes to anchor the vehicle to the ground and prevent it being turned over in the wind.
• Wind down corner steadies onto wooden blocks to keep the caravan level.
• Rest the caravan on axle stands to take the strain off the suspension.
• Replace the wheels with winter wheels or older wheels while the vehicle is not being used.