10 top tips to modernise a static caravan or lodge

Because most modern static caravans and holiday lodges come pre-styled and furnished, it’s not always easy to put your own stamp on their interior or exterior design. But if your caravan is a more than a few years old and you’re beginning to feel as though your pride and joy could do with a makeover, it could be time to spruce things up a little.

Top 10 tips to modernise a static caravan or lodge

There are a number of things you can do to bring an older static back to life. With the help of refurbishment specialists, CnC Park Home Services, we’ve created this 10 top tips to modernise a static caravan or lodge guide to help get you started.

1. Spot the trends

Before you make a start on making changes, it’s worthwhile spending a little time researching what does and doesn’t work when modernising a unit. According to CnC Directors Claire and Chris, exterior cladding, constructing new walls and coating, roofing, double glazing are incredibly popular with static caravan owners nowadays. So too are conservatories, extensions, porches, insulation, verandas, decking and skirting.

In terms of interior work, we’re told that new kitchens, bathrooms and flooring are trending at the moment.

2. Know your limits

Interior work is relatively easy for any DIY enthusiast to get stuck into, but if don’t feel up to challenge there are a multitude of companies which provide this service so it could be worth speaking to a professional if you want to guarantee that the work is carried out correctly.

Top 10 tips to modernise a static caravan or lodge

Internally, static caravans are usually made of hardboard and ply wood, and they use aluminium on the exterior, so the work you’re able to do could very much depend on the materials you’re faced with.

3. Start with interiors

Replacing the kitchen or bathroom inside your unit doesn’t have to be expensive task; in fact you can usually pick up units and worktops for a bargain price at local DIY stores. Be careful when buying shower units though, those you see in statics and lodges tend to be smaller than the standard size. For ‘caravan’ style showers, it’s best to look online.

You can also source soft furnishings online too. If you’re looking for a high quality finish, CnC recommends replacing your current seating upholstery, cushions, curtains, etc with made to measure upgrades. Subtle changes such as a new colour scheme, fabric type or texture could also help breathe life back into your unit

4. From the ground upwards

You can make changes to your unit’s flooring relatively easily nowadays too. CnC Director, Claire explains, “Carpets, lino and even laminate flooring can give a wonderfully fresh feel and are always worth replacing when modernising your static home.” 

5. Consider upgrading exteriors

Most statics situated on holiday parks tend to have aluminium exteriors, but this doesn’t mean they must remain this way forever. Switching to vinyl cladding is fairly easy to do and as well as completely transforming the overall look of the caravan, it also helps to insulate the unit and adds to its weather proofing properties – it’s maintenance free too!

Top 10 tips to modernise a static caravan or lodge

6. Upgrade windows and doors

Although the odd bit of DIY is encouraged here and there, it’s recommended that you leave windows and doors to the professionals, especially as they tend to be built specifically for the unit.

Chris advises, “Windows needn’t be replaced unless they’re ‘blown’, damaged or show condensation. Blown windows occur when the sealant between two panes of glass comes away to let air and moisture in. Adding new rubber seals on openings will lengthen the life span or windows, as will having double glazing fitted. If you’re looking to make more substantial changes, you could change the size of the windows or add in patio doors to bring the outside in.”

Of course double glazing is a popular upgrade with owners who plan to use their caravans for longer parts of the year including winter months.

7. Make the most of outdoor space

Adding a veranda to your static caravan or lodge is another way to bring it up to the 21st century. Many consider verandas a luxury but if you have the outdoor space to play with and your park permits installation, they offer great practical benefits!

Top 10 tips to modernise a static caravan or lodge

“A lot of owners have verandas fitted along the length and short side of their unit for extra living space and ‘Al Fresco’ dining in the summer months,” explains CnC Director, Claire. “Verandas can be of a composite wood style or wood decking type. Composite wood has the benefit of being maintenance free and lasts longer but it is the more expensive option, whereas wood decking tends to be cheaper but usually requires annual maintenance.”

Top 10 tips to modernise a static caravan or lodge

8. Splash out on a new roof

Nothing screams old unit quite like a damage or decrepit roof, so if you’re looking to make the ultimate home improvement or you want to completely transform your unit, you might want to think about installing a new pitched roof.

CnC advises, “Always ensure roof tiles are lightweight and that they’re the right type for your unit.”

Top 10 tips to modernise a static caravan or lodge

9. Speak to the professionals

Like CnC Park Home Services, there are businesses out there that specialise in interior and exterior modernisations. Pay extra attention to those that have been trading for a long time as they will have a better understanding of what’s involved when refurbishing a unit. We’d always recommend speaking to your park operator first as they may have approved contractors who can do the work.

10. Bear in mind the age of your unit

Generally owners won’t embark on modernising units under five years old. However, if your unit is not that old and if you intend to make fairly major changes, we’d always recommend checking if the alterations will have an impact on your manufacturer’s warranty. Bear in mind also that some parks have upper age limits for caravans – make sure you don’t spend huge amounts on renovating your caravan only for the park to say it has to be replaced in one or two years.

Speak to your insurer

If you have recently modernised your static caravan or lodge and you’re not sure if an increase in the property’s value could affect your insurance, keep all receipts of work carried out and have a chat with your insurance provider to see how to revalue the unit on your policy.

Share your top tips! 

If you’re in the middle of a refurbishment project, or you’ve recently tried your hand at static caravan DIY, we would love to hear from you. Share your stories, hints, tips and progress updates right here on the blog and join the conversation!

77 comments on “10 top tips to modernise a static caravan or lodge

  1. I would like the outside of my static caravan upgraded with cladding can you tell me who does this type of work thank you

    1. Hi Patricia,

      I know that CNC Park Home services do offer that service for static caravans. Click here to view their website or call 0800 334 5566

      Many thanks

      Lucie

    2. Please can you let me know where we can purchase vinyl cladding for a static caravan.
      Many thanks, Sue

    1. Hi Nanette,

      Give CNC Park Home services a call, they maybe able to point you in the right direction, phone 0800 334 5566 or click here to visit the website.

  2. Just reading your articles, we own a static caravan which we live in on private land but are struggling to find an insurer, as most only want to insure vans on holiday parks, it would be a great help if you can point us in the right direction, or recommend anyone
    Yours hopefully Tom

    1. Hi Tom,

      We often refer customers with similar circumstances to an insurer call CBI, they maybe able to help you. Click here to visit the website or call 01492 534 524. I hope this helps 🙂
      Many thanks

      Lucie

  3. Something you haven’t mentioned but something we have considered is replacing the fixed sofa’s with modern free standing ones. However, once removed we do not know if the walls will need a make over too. What do you think?

    1. Hi Alan,
      I’m afraid we wouldn’t be able to advise on that, you’re probably best speaking to Claire and Chris at CNC Park Home Services, I’m sure they’ll be able to advise you. See here for details.
      Many thanks

      Lucie

      1. We replaced our built-in setting with free standing 3 and 2 sets sofas I rang Willerby who were more than helpful and explained what to do I did it myself with no problem just make sure you measure the sofas you are buying that they come through the door of caravan

        1. Hi. I have also purchased a Willberby caravan but upon ringing Willerby they were most unhelpful. Could you tell me what they advised you.

          Thanking you

          1. Hi Alan
            Just wanted to say I replaced the fixed seating as soon as I bought the caravan when it was new as they looked horrible and were uncomfortable so I purchased leather 2 seater and 3 seater and they are so comfortable have to admit they take a little more floor space as they are deeper but I like home comforts.

        2. Hello,
          I have just purchased a Willerby Aspen and would like to replace the fixed corner settee i have tried to contact Willerby but no reply could you please advise how you carried out your refurbish
          mick gough

    2. Hi we also have a fixed seating issue …our van is a carnaby belvedere 2004 2 bed
      We have fixed seating we want to remove … how and can we do this and does it affect the insurance with you ?

      1. Hi Joanna
        We don’t have any close relationships with any refurbishment companies but you could ask your park operator if they have any contacts.
        Belfield Furnishing Group are a supplier of soft furnishings to manufacturers for new caravans but also specialise in refurbishment of units for individual owners.
        Here’s a link to their website: http://www.belfieldupholstery.co.uk/caravans.html
        Make sure if you order free-standing furniture that it will fit through the cararvan doors and don’t forget to reflect the value of any freestanding sofas and chairs in your contents sum insured on your static caravan insurance policy. Removing the fixed seating will not affect your insurance but could affect your warranty.

  4. I’m looking to replace all the single glazed windows, along with two doors on an older static caravan. Can anyone offer advice as to a reputable and reasonably priced company to undertake this task ?
    Thanks

    1. HI Alec,

      We’d suggest speaking to your park operator in the first instance – they should be able to recommend a reputable company. If that doesn’t work, search for companies in your area on Google – or even Twitter.

      Many thanks

      Lucie

      1. Take a look around your park for people who have already had the work done, and ask them. Personal recommendation from a satisfied customer is far more valuable than a park-suggested outfit.

    2. Hi we have a 2012 willerby caravan and have taken the fixed seating out and put our own corner unit in and table and chairs, I have be told from others that it makes the structure weak I don’t think it does but can you confirm that my Caravan is safe

      1. Hi David. without knowing the specifics of your model we can’t advise on the effect of making alterations. We’d strongly recommend you contact Willerby Customer Services before making structural alterations to your holiday home as they will be able to give you more information. You can reach them via csenquiries@whh.co.uk or 01482 780150. The Willerby Customer Service team will need to know the serial number of your holiday home when you call – if you don’t know what this is you can see instructions on how to find it here: https://www.willerby.com/contact?tab=007b393c-41f0-4a07-bd80-235a06226417#0f611074-599c-4cd9-b48f-18dd9e0d45b9

  5. We have an Aspen static with a corner settee and would like to change it. Can you recommend a company who makes settees etc to measure.

    1. Hi S Hobson,

      Give The Caravan and Boat Seat Cover Company a try, click here to go through to the website.

      Thanks

      Lucie

  6. I have a static van in the Peak District. Can you recommend a local company that could fit double glazing please

    1. HI Celia,

      We’ve found Lodge Farm Leisure, see here for details.

      They’re based not too far from the Peak District in Nottinghamshire. Failing that, you could be best speaking to your park operator.

      Many thanks

      Lucie, Leisuredays

  7. hi we got a willerby cottage 2000,but seating is so uncomfortable .have replaced cushions ect but still uncomfortable .could we replace are corner seating for a 3 pice .and could we do it are selfs many thanks

    1. Hi Mary
      Thanks for getting in touch.
      If you feel competent to do the work without causing any lasting damage to the caravan structure, you’d be welcome to have a go. It might be worth speaking to a refurbishment specialist first to get their advice on what can be done to your caravan. Don’t forget to reflect the value of any freestanding sofas and chairs in your contents sum insured on your static caravan insurance policy.
      Thanks
      Craig

    2. you can do it your self and its much nicer we have a two seater settee and two armchairs its great more comfort

  8. Looking to refurbish a bathroom with shower and sink, anything more specific than searching for ‘caravan style’ showers on the net ? Am based in east sussex, can I go and look at any products ?

  9. Hi, we have just purchased our fist static in Kent. Would really like to put new curtains, carpet and flooring in, seat covers are ok.

    Also is it possible to change the interior wood or paint it?

    Thank you

    1. Rachael
      We’d suggest getting advice from a specialist on the changing the wood or which paints to use.
      Thank you

  10. Is it possible to put a porthole window into an internal fire door. Our static has a very dark, windowless corridor and it needs light from somewhere, any ideas? Also is it possible to fit underfloor heating, as we do not have central heating in our willerby Westmorland?

    1. Hi Rachel,

      Many thanks for getting in touch. I’ve heard back from Chris at CNC Park Home Services, who tells me they he and his team would be able to simply cut out and install a window in the corridor rather than interfering with a fire door. They would then insulate the floor from under the chassis. Can I ask where you are based? Chris informs me CNC service the whole UK. Click here to visit the website.
      Many thanks

      Lucie

  11. I have just bought a 2001 Willerby salisbury. I have put down new flooring but i want to paint the walls inside. Ive been told painting the interior will devalue the van. Is this true? any comments welcome

    1. Kenny, I wouldn’t worry too much mate..please don’t be offended by this but your 2001 caravan is probably worth next to nothing so do what you want to it…You may be shocked at at how much a site owner will give oyu for your carvan

  12. I own a Cosalt Sandhurst static van. It’s about five years old. There are several external scratch marks that I would like to paint over. However, after doing research the company doesn’t seem to exist. How can I source the correct paint. My husband and I are experienced in DIY

    1. We would say speak to the park or the manufacturer on that one. I’m sure it will be something you can replace or repair.

  13. Hi,

    Do you have the details of any companies that would replace or completely reupholster lounge and dining seating who would cover Northumberland? Many thanks.

    1. Steve

      Have you tried asking your park operator. They will usually have a list of approved local contractors. If the park operator doesn’t please let us know.

      1. Hi Craig,

        Yes I asked, but he wasn’t really sure. There a maintenance guy he recommends for jobs such as bathrooms etc, but not replacement/refurbishment of seating.

        1. Steve
          We don’t have any close relationships with any refurbishment companies.
          Belfield Furnishing Group are a supplier of soft furnishings to manufacturers for new caravans but also specialise in refurbishment of units for individual owners.
          Their website says they have a UK wide team so I’m assuming if you contact them, they will organise a visit to measure up and quote. Website: http://www.belfieldupholstery.co.uk/caravans.html
          Kind regards
          Craig

  14. Hi Craig,

    Yes I asked – he knows someone for general Repairs etc, but not seating refurbishment/replacement. So any details much appreciated.

  15. I would like to put a external door in at the back of my caravan in the spare room so it leads out to the back

    1. Hi, that seems a good idea. It’s worth speaking to your park Tom to see if they have any recommended contractors to do the work. Or maybe CNC can help. CNC Contact details are:
      Tel: 0800 334 5566 or email: info@cncparkhomeservices.com. Be careful to check if the work will affect your manufacturer warranty if the unit is still under warranty.

  16. I would like to take out an internal wall between 2 bedrooms to make one large bedroom, can i do this myself and how can i be sure that if i do this the roof won’t collapse. Are there any sites i can use to show me how to do it.

    1. We would suggest taking professional advice about that one Mrs Parkinson. You could speak to your park operator or a manufacturer for advice. A company like CNC might be better to do the work.

  17. we bought a static last year however it has no central heating or double glazing we would like to have both fitted but not sure how much it will cost it is sited on riverview in Barnard castle the van is a 2004 model do you know were we can get a estimate

  18. We have got a leak on the inside window sill but cant find were it is coming from it looks fine from the outside and how do we replace the window sill as it has started to lift any advice please

  19. Hi, We have had our static caravan since 2008 and it is now starting to look dated. I should like the interior lounge/kitchen completely refurbished. Is there a company that could help with the design etc? Many thanks for your help.

  20. Would like to have iur Willerby Aspen 2004 kitchen refurbished. Caravan sited in North Yorkshire, any ideas of a company who could do this for us.

  21. I am looking for someone to come and build me seating bases I took all mine out and took all seating and bases to charity but regret doing it so want building back please

  22. No reason why caravans can’t be done up exactly like a house. They are houses after all! I’d say start small before committing to a mammoth redecoration task. That is of course unless you’re truly fed up with the look.

  23. Is it safe too replace a fixed corner to corner seating with free standing furniture ? Will it destabilize the van hand will it effect the insurance? .

    1. Hi Jeanette, it’s best to speak to the manufacturer of your unit for advice as they will know the structural details of your caravan. It’s not likely to effect your insurance but it could effect your caravan warranty. Hope this helps?

  24. I have a 2010 Willerby Salisbury static caravan and there are some paint scratches on the exterior. Can you tell me where I would get paint (light green) to touch up the scratches?

    1. Hi Elsa
      We’ve contacted Willerby and they said they usually have this available to buy from their after sales team. If you call the team on 01482 707808 (option 2), with your caravan serial number, and they’ll be able to confirm if they have the touch up paint for your model of caravan.

  25. hi i have recently bought an abi derwent and want skirting round the van and a piece of decking altered my van is situated in staffordshire but not sure who to ask have you any contact details for companys that offer a supply and fit service. regards chris coleman.

  26. How do you fix a outside light to your static caravan it is a carnaby cascade 2014
    Thank you

    1. Hi Mr McDonald. Our advice would be to speak to your park owner. Drilling holes into the caravan to fit the light could afect your warranty.
      Kind regards
      Craig

  27. Hi I have just brought a 2017 Abi caravan and I want to put a door curtain up , how do I find out where the frame runs

  28. We would like to change our bath, after some details of how and who I can contact to find out a price

  29. Hi
    We have a 95 debonair.
    It has a tiny bath in but handy for our 2 kids.
    It has cladding on the wall too (all lovely peach).
    I was hoping to strip out and replace with another small bath and that bathroom panelling?
    I think it’s a straightforward job but husband disagrees.
    If I was careful could I do this myself?
    Not moving any pipes.
    Literally replacing.

    Thanks

  30. Hi I’m just about to start building a static from new
    What regulations do I have to abide by and who can approve my works for warranty? Thank you

    1. Hi Mick, static caravans are built to EN 1647 (non-residential) standards or BS3632 Residential Standard. In terms of warranty you are best speaking to the National Caravan Council as they are the industry experts when it comes to Type Approval.

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