With the weather getting colder and winter fast approaching, it’s time to start planning how you are going to protect your holiday caravan.
Holiday caravans are less insulated than houses and residual water can easily freeze, causing pipes to burst, water to escape and damage to your boiler and holiday caravan.
With only a few weeks to go until the cold really sets in, now’s the time to remind yourself of the simple precautions you need to take to ensure your static caravan or lodge remains fully insured.
The conditions of static caravan and holiday lodge insurance policies for winterisation do vary from insurer to insurer, however for Leisuredays policyholders we request the following precautions are taken:
Between 1st November – 15th March whilst your park is closed for winter:
- Turn the water off at the stopcock Drain down and winterise all equipment in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations
Between 1st November – 15th March whilst your park is open, whenever unoccupied:
- Turn the water off at the stopcock
- Turn on all taps and the shower to let all water out
- Flush toilets, ensuring all water is drained from the cistern
You may also want to consider the following precautions:
- Set the central heating system to avoid frost damage
- Check anti-freeze levels of sealed central heating systems – these should not be drained
- Drain the hot and cold water system of combi boilers as per the manufacturer’s recommendations
- Ensure exposed piping is adequately lagged
- Add a small amount of antifreeze or salt to remaining water in the toilet, sink, bath and shower traps
- Leave external water drainage plugs open
By taking these actions you are ensuring that you minimise damage to your holiday caravan and your policy protects you.
- Turn off water at the stopcock to prevent a burst pipe or leak becoming a disaster
- Set the heating to avoid frost damage
- Drain down – Open caravan drain plugs, turn on the taps and shower, flush the toilet and remove residual water from all equipment. Consider asking your park for a professional drain down using compressed air
Rather than provide detailed technical advice on how to drain down and prepare for winter, we suggest you to talk to your park, who will be well versed in draining down.
Other winterisation tips include:
• Unplug any electrical devices including large white goods.
• Remove any bedding, clothing or soft furnishings from the caravan or lodge completely or store them in a place where air can circulate to avoid damage from damp or mould.
• Prop open all internal doors and cupboards, and slightly pull out all draws to encourage air to circulate.
• Remove or hide from view any valuable items such as Televisions or Hi-Fi’s. Then leave curtains open so that any would-be thieves can see such items have been removed.
• Completely empty and clean any fridges or freezers and leave switched off with the door slightly ajar. Remember to drain any ice or chilled water dispensers built into your fridge.
• Ensure external vents are clear of debris
• Remove any food stuffs which might attract vermin (mice etc).
• Close and lock all external windows and doors.
• Lubricate door hinges and window locks with a dab of petroleum jelly to ensure they open smoothly when you return.
Have we missed anything? Let us know your tips for winterisation.