Useful checklists for caravans
When you start caravanning there seems to be a thousand things to do – though after a couple of trips most of it comes naturally. Join the Club to benefit from support and advice from experts and like-minded individuals.
In the meantime, however, here are some checklists to help you avoid missing out something vital.
Hitching up checklist
You can print out this checklist to use when you next venture out with your caravan.
Here we list many of the things you’ll need to do when you head off with your caravan. You might even consider laminating your checklist if there’s a chance of rain...
When you leave home the first couple of points may already be covered, but you’ll need to remember them when you leave a campsite.
- Turn off the gas at the cylinder
- Empty the fresh- and waste-water containers and clean out any toilet cassette in an appropriate place
- Check the caravan’s windows and roof lights are closed, internal doors and cupboards are closed, loads are safely secured and the external door is locked
- Check the caravan handbrake is on and chock the wheels if you are on a slope
- Lower the jockey wheel and lock in place
- Raise the corner steadies
- Check the caravan’s noseweight
- Adjust the hitch height so it goes above the car’s towball
- Remove the towball cover on the car’s towball
- Reverse your car to the caravan
- Secure the hitch on the towball
- Check the link by using the jockey wheel to raise the car by about an inch to make sure it is properly coupled
- Stow the jockey wheel
- Connect the electrical plug(s) and the stabiliser system, if it’s fitted, making sure the cables will not drag or pull as the car turns
- Attach the breakaway cable or secondary coupling
- Release the caravan handbrake and remove any chocks
- Check the road lights and indicators are working
- Pull clear of the pitch and check the area for anything left behind
Uncoupling and setting up
Once you’ve reached your destination you’ll need to unhitch. Again, you can print this out to take with you on holiday.
- Release the stabiliser if you have one
- Position your caravan on the pitch, using a ramp under the wheel(s) on one side if it needs levelling
- Apply your caravan handbrake
- Chock the caravan wheels if you are on a slope
- Lower the jockey wheel and lock it in position
- Disconnect the electrical plug(s) and breakaway cable or secondary coupling from the car
- Pull up the hitch-head lever and use the jockey wheel to raise the caravan hitch from the towball
- Drive your towcar away
- Replace the cover on your car’s towball
- Adjust the level of your caravan front and rear with the jockey wheel
- Lower the corner steadies
You’re now ready to climb inside your caravan, but there are some final preparations you may want to make before you can really relax.
Depending on the complexity of your unit, they may include:
- Connecting the mains power cable to the caravan and on to the hook-up point, checking the residual current device (RCD) is working correctly
- Turning on the fridge
- Collecting fresh water
- Positioning the waste water collector
- Adding toilet fluids
- Turning on the gas
- Turning on the water heater when you’re sure it’s full of water