Many caravanners find the use of a motor mover makes the task of manoeuvring their caravan for hitching up, placing on site and moving around a storage area so much easier.
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The most popular and generally the most effective type of mover is the axle-mounted type, which consists of a frame bolted to the caravan chassis with a 12V electric motor and roller assembly at each end. Using the caravan leisure battery, the rollers operate against the individual caravan tyres to give full manoeuvrability of the caravan, all operated via a remote control unit. Others work at the hitch of the caravan, moving it from the front.
There are a multitude of companies offering various motor mover systems at different prices so it's worth asking a few questions to find the right one for you, such as:
- How much will it cost?
- How long is the warranty and what after-sales service is provided?
- Are spares and service agents readily available?
- How much does it weigh?
- How easy is it to use?
- How much will my ground clearance be reduced by?
- Will I need to upgrade my battery to power it?
- Will it affect access to the jacking points and spare wheel?
- Will it cope with the weight of my caravan, especially if it's a twin axle?
We'll also look at other miscellaneous issues and the use of movers not permanently fitted to the chassis.
Budget price movers are available but there are many corners that can be cut to reduce costs. Some use a less powerful motor or roller construction, which gives poorer performance, particularly when the tyres are wet and cold. A cheaper cost may also be reflected in poor availability of spares and after sales service, along with a short warranty period. Overall an inferior design may give rise to poor ground clearance and increasing susceptibility to corrosion through a poor paint finish.
Some companies offer the cross actuation bar (see Ease of Use below) as standard and for some it's an optional extra. You will also pay extra for electrical engagement of the drive rollers on to the wheels, so do compare like with like and look at the technical specifications when considering different cost options.
It's always worth checking up-to-date publications to see if a manufacturer or dealer has an offer on, as a promotion can make a premium product more affordable.
Several companies offer five-year warranties and this could be seen as displaying a manufacturer's confidence in the quality of its product. Other manufacturers offer extended warranties for a fee, although this extension may be an insurance-backed warranty, so read the small print before signing. Ask what service is available if you have a problem when away from home and check what is covered under the warranty.