21 Jun Top 10 Must-Have Caravan Accessories
Owning a caravan makes the entire process of going on a holiday quick and easy. And the easier it is to get away, the more often we can go, right?
With almost everything you need to create your home away from home included as standard these days, often all you need are a few added extras to finish it off, and to truly make it your own.
In this article, we’ll give you our pick of the 10 must-have accessories that will help you get the most out of your caravan adventures and make life on the road not only more comfortable, but also safer.
Carbon monoxide detector
If your van is fitted with gas, you’ll definitely want to invest in a carbon monoxide detector. This is especially true if you are using any form of gas heating. Carbon monoxide is a real danger because it is odourless and transparent, and can be fatal if left undetected. For this reason, you should also ensure that your caravan has adequate ventilation, and if you experience tiredness or headaches when using your gas appliances, have your system checked by a qualified gas certified caravan fitter.
Although many caravan manufacturers use fire retardant materials during production, this does not mean to say that your caravan cannot catch on fire. Accidents happen. And having a fire extinguisher on board is a must. Certain fabrics you add yourself, such as curtains, cushions, and bedding may be highly flammable. Cooking mishaps could result in a fire danger. So when it comes fitting out your caravan, it is better to be safe than sorry, no matter how small the risk may be.
Deep-cycle 12V battery
A 12V deep-cycle battery system is a great way to supply power to your caravan when you are without access to a mains electricity supply. Depending on the size of your setup, a deep-cycle battery can provide sufficient power for lights, a radio, small appliances, chargers, a small TV and kitchen equipment. If you have a deep-cycle battery, it’s best to fully charge the battery, then disconnect it from hard wired appliances if your caravan is not in use for prolonged periods of time to prevent it from accidentally being discharged.
A Quality Water Filter
In a country as large as Australia, safe travel means making sure you always have enough drinking water. While access to water in the cities may be easy; the ability to locate a reliable source of drinking water in regional areas can be difficult. And if you can find water, often it will be from a questionable source, like a bore or river. That’s why having a quality water filtration system fitted to your caravan is essential. Water filters not only remove contaminants and protect your plumping, but can also remove harmful microbes, bad tastes and odours from your drinking water. The best solution is to use an inline pre-filter water filter to remove contaminants from the water before it enters your caravan’s plumbing. And a carbon filter fitted under your kitchen sink to remove bad tastes, odours and smaller particles.
While you may be going away to escape all of today’s modern technologies, mobile WiFi can do more than simply connect you to Facebook. Being WiFi enabled allows you to discover the best things to do in the area you are in visiting, stream your favourite TV series via your smart TV, provide optimised GPS navigation, and keep the kids entertained. It is true that there is nothing better than a few days respite from technology, but a mobile WiFi box can actually enhance your holiday rather than hinder it.
Caravans can become an easy target for thieves, especially when you consider how many personal belongings you will take with you on longer trips. Many of us travel with a TV, valuables, cameras, cash, a laptop or iPad and other electronics inside that can tempt those who are on the lookout for an easy win.
At the very least, it’s a good idea to have a door and window alarm system fitted. If you have a mobile WiFi box, then you can set up a motion detector CCTV camera that is connected to your mobile phone. This is not only great for monitoring your caravan security, but also a great way to check in on your pets if they stay inside in the air conditioning while you’re in town exploring.
Fresh and Grey Water Storage Tanks
When we travel, we need to carry water. And when we use water, we need to store the waste somewhere. Which makes the addition of a fresh and grey water storage tank an invaluable upgrade. One you’ll use on every trip! Especially designed for Australian conditions, and colour coded for easy identification, installing a fresh or grey water tank will extend your ability to travel ‘off the grid’, and with new regulations coming into play requiring travellers to contain their grey water; the addition of a water storage tank could even save you from a hefty fine.
Basic Tool Kit
As hard as you may try to keep your caravan in tip-top condition, there will come a time when something decides breaks. Having a well-stocked toolkit will help you fix any problems quickly. Perhaps it is a window that has come loose, a door that won’t lock, or problems with the plumbing. Having the basics such as a selection of screwdrivers, a hammer, electrical tape, washers, screws, super glue and a shifter can mean the difference between effecting a repair, or being stranded on the side of the road for hours.
Caravan Awning and Steps
There is nothing better than sitting outside in the warm evening air to watch the sun set in summer. Or by a warm fire in winter. If you want to maximise your outdoor space, then an awning is the way to go. Not only does it provide shelter from the elements, but can also double as an outdoor kitchen area. Awnings are easy to fit to the caravan and can help you enjoy your outdoor time, whatever the weather. Steps are also an important consideration for safety to prevent falls.
No holiday would be complete without a good old-fashioned barbie. While not all campsites allow them, the majority of them do and there is nothing that screams caravanning and camping more than grilling up sausages outdoors. There are many types of barbecue available ranging from compact unit that uses disposable bottles, to 240V electric, LPG gas, and charcoal cookers. If you are going away for longer than a week at a time, then any of the latter three will work better.
While some of these are obviously more important than others, if you truly want to make the most of your time away, then they all work together and alone for a safe, secure, and relaxing vacation. For some, having a power supply is vital, whereas others may prefer a more natural approach. Regardless of your preference, by adding these ten caravan accessories, you will be fully kitted out and ready to hit the road at the drop of a hat.