10 great tips for winter caravanning

Don’t let a touch of frost stop you from enjoying a wonderful winter caravanning trip. With the right preparation, caravanning can be enjoyed all year round. Here are our top tips for a winter caravanning holiday.

1. Keep dry

It’s going to be cold, it’s going to be wet, and it’s going to be muddy. Pack clothes that can be worn in layers to keep you warm, and that are easy to get dry. It is not always necessary to bundle up in heavy coats and jumpers. Layering under a good waterproof jacket can make a difference.

 Keeping warm is just as important as keeping dry. We think for added warmth at night, you might want to increase the tog level on your duvet and pack a hot water bottle.

2. Maintain your battery

Make sure that your leisure battery is fully charged. Engine batteries typically tend to fare well in the winter but leisure batteries can sometimes fail due to cold weather. Often it can be because of the age of the battery, but most of the time it’s when the temperature drops very low. Thankfully, there are steps you can take to prevent this…

Some things you could try are to leave your leisure battery on a trickle charge from a solar panel, or take it out completely and store it at home for the winter. If you do choose to store it at home, make sure you top-up charge your leisure battery every 4-6 weeks to prevent any issues. It might even be worth packing a spare leisure battery just in case. You’d be surprised how quickly you can use a battery when the weather is chilly and you rely more on electric appliances. 

3. Plan ahead

You should plan your winter caravanning trips so that you can explore interesting locations that are not entirely weather-dependent.

winter caravanning

Since it gets dark early, try and arrive on site whilst it’s still daylight. You’ll probably also have a lot of stuff in your caravan that you definitely won’t need in the winter, like outdoor chairs or a BBQ.

4. Get up early

Make the most of the short daylight hours! Get out early, and go for a walk along the beach or explore a local town. After you’ve done that, you can always find a nice pub or cafe for a break and some food.

5. Clean before the winter

After a long, cold winter, you’ll be raring to get back on the road in your beloved motorhome. So, make sure you give your caravan a good ol’ clean before you’re off on your winter caravanning adventures. Take the time to thoroughly clean the inside of your caravan. It is possible for forgotten crumbs or unseen spillages to become mouldy if left unattended. A buildup of dirt, air pollution, and tree debris can compromise the bodywork of your caravan, making it more susceptible to deterioration. Therefore, part of your routine when cleaning the caravan for winter should be to wash it thoroughly using a non-abrasive caravan cleaning product.

6. Stay safe on the road

Travelling in a caravan or motorhome during the winter can be hazardous due to icy, wet roads. This means that correctly inflated tyres are a must. It’s also a good opportunity to check the tyre’s date of manufacture which can be found on the sidewall in a four-digit (month and year) format.

7. Keep insulated from the cold

Woolly jumpers and coats will keep you warm and dry during the day, but on those cold, long nights, you need heating. Most modern caravans have excellent energy ratings and come with double glazing as standard. But there’s always room for more adaptions, should you feel you require added insulation for warmth. The use of plastic sheeting on existing windows will provide additional protection from the elements, and foam mats on the floors will keep your feet warm. We also recommend using insulated screens and keeping the blinds and curtains closed to retain heat.

8. Prevent your pipes from bursting

You don’t want water to freeze in your pipes and cause them to burst, so keep them at temperatures above freezing point. Always take the time to drain down the hot water and inboard tanks, as any residual water could freeze and cause the pipes to burst. It’s also a good idea to turn the taps to an open position to allow air to be released.

9. Bring your steps in

Bring your caravan steps inside at night so that they don’t frost or ice up overnight. If you would prefer to leave them outside, apply anti-freeze or rock salt to prevent them from becoming slippery. Try and remember to do at least one of these things to prevent a potentially hazardous situation in the morning.

10. Consider getting an awning

Putting up a caravan awning can be worth the effort to provide not only an extra place to store winter clothing and boots but also to reduce too much cold air coming through the caravan door when you open it. Consider investing in one if you’re planning regular caravan holidays in the winter months.

The porch awning is a good solution since it is smaller, and if the roof is slanted, you can better deal with heavy snowfalls.

If any of our tips were helpful to you we’d love to hear about it. If you have any tips you think we missed, let us and our other readers know in the comments below. Happy winter caravanning!

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