First Time Buyers

Aug 2, 2020
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Hi,

We are First time buyers and have found a caravan that we would like to buy. However, the tyre looks old and has cracked a little on one side. I guess I have two questions:

1. Is it reasonable to ask the vendor to replace the tyre before buying. It is a trade seller, not private.
2. If they won't change it, how much does it cost to change a tyre on a caravan. Looking for an average price of course as it obviously depends on size.

Thank in advance.

Mike.
 
Nov 11, 2009
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Hi,

We are First time buyers and have found a caravan that we would like to buy. However, the tyre looks old and has cracked a little on one side. I guess I have two questions:

1. Is it reasonable to ask the vendor to replace the tyre before buying. It is a trade seller, not private.
2. If they won't change it, how much does it cost to change a tyre on a caravan. Looking for an average price of course as it obviously depends on size.

Thank in advance.

Mike.
It should be changed if it looks as you describe. How old is the tyre as shown on its sidewall date stamp. I would expect the seller to change it, but it raises the question what is the other tyre's age and condition as well as the spare. I change caravan tyres at 5 years from makers date. Advice is never go beyond 7 years, but 5 is most frequently recommended. Unlike car tyres van tyres do not wear out they degrade through too little use and storage as you have seen. Like car tyers you can get budget mid range or premium. I steer clear of budget for any vehicle and on the caravan I use Hankook Vantra LT, but a cheaper option but still okay could be GT Radial Kargomax ST4000 or 6000. Look at the existing tyre sizes and web search. Also DO make sure that the existing tyres are the correct Load Index as this is critical, so it should be shown on the makers label near the door, or in the Owners manual. I had van which had the correct size tyres but too low a load index.
 
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Aug 2, 2020
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It should be changed if it looks as you describe. How old is the tyre as shown on its sidewall date stamp. I would expect the seller to change it, but it raises the question what is the other tyre's age and condition as well as the spare. I change caravan tyres at 5 years from makers date. Advice is never go beyond 7 years, but 5 is most frequently recommended. Unlike car tyres van tyres do not wear out they degrade through too little use and storage as you have seen. Like car tyers you can get budget mid range or premium. I steer clear of budget for any vehicle and on the caravan I use Hankook Vantra LT, but a cheaper option but still okay could be GT Radial Kargomax ST4000 or 6000. Look at the existing tyre sizes and web search. Also DO make sure that the existing tyres are the correct Load Index as this is critical, so it should be shown on the makers label near the door, or in the Owners manual. I had van which had the correct size tyres but too low a load index.
Thanks for the speedy response.

I am new to this but we went to a large specialist so I would HOPE that they check the load index. I won't be taking it for granted though.

They service every caravan before it goes out and do a handover so I would imagine it would be picked up in that. I'll be asking the question though.

Thanks for the advice!
 
Jul 18, 2017
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The dealer should be changing both tyres if they are 5 or more years old. In addition, the dealer should give the caravan a complete service and also do a damp check. If dealer refuses to change tyres, service or damp test, run away!
Remember that if you purchase from a dealer you are covered by the Consumer Rights Act 2015 and if there is anything seriously wrong with the caravan, within the first 30 days you can reject the caravan and do not have to give the dealer an opportunity to repair. After the 30 days and within 6 months you need to give the dealer ONE chance at repair before rejecting the caravan.
Good luck with your search and do not rush into anything as the same layout will be available at other dealers.

However another question is what driving licence do you hold, B or B+E? If only a B licence remember you should not exceed the gross train weight of 3500kg. It may also help if you could update us on the vehicle to be used for towing the caravan, i.e. model, auto or manual and what sort of caravan you are considering? :)
 
Nov 11, 2009
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Thanks for the speedy response.

I am new to this but we went to a large specialist so I would HOPE that they check the load index. I won't be taking it for granted though.

They service every caravan before it goes out and do a handover so I would imagine it would be picked up in that. I'll be asking the question though.

Thanks for the advice!
The dealer that allowed car tyres to be fitted to my caravan when it was five years old was a main dealer for the brand. I checked them before accepting it back from service and let them know that I would not be taking the van away. They used a local tyre depot who didn't seem to know anything about caravan load index. Take nothing for granted.
 
May 7, 2012
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If the tyre is cracked then it is not roadworthy and it would be an offence to take the caravan out on the road. There is no legal alternative to the dealer fitting a new tyre. If he will not do it he is irresponsible (to be polite), so then wonder what else is wrong and walk away.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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However another question is what driving licence do you hold, B or B+E? If only a B licence remember you should not exceed the gross train weight of 3500kg. It may also help if you could update us on the vehicle to be used for towing the caravan, i.e. model, auto or manual and what sort of caravan you are considering? :)
Not quite right. Cat B only licence looks at the combined MAM not exceeding 3500kg. You need to know the MAM or GVW of the car and the MAM or MTPLM of the caravan. This is not the same as the GTW of the car. Added together they must not exceed 3500kg. Its a very important difference.
 
Jul 18, 2017
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If the tyre is cracked then it is not roadworthy and it would be an offence to take the caravan out on the road. There is no legal alternative to the dealer fitting a new tyre. If he will not do it he is irresponsible (to be polite), so then wonder what else is wrong and walk away.
Unfortunately a cracked tyre is not a MOT fail unless the steel beading can be seen. Agree if they will not repalce it, walk, no run away!
 
Jul 18, 2017
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Not quite right. Cat B only licence looks at the combined MAM not exceeding 3500kg. You need to know the MAM or GVW of the car and the MAM or MTPLM of the caravan. This is not the same as the GTW of the car. Added together they must not exceed 3500kg. Its a very important difference.
You are repeating what i said?
 
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Unfortunately a cracked tyre is not a MOT fail unless the steel beading can be seen. Agree if they will not repalce it, walk, no run away!
But caravans aren’t MoT’d that’s why some sellers can get away with selling an unsuitable Caravan. But again MoT is only valid at the time of issue.
 
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Aug 2, 2020
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The dealer should be changing both tyres if they are 5 or more years old. In addition, the dealer should give the caravan a complete service and also do a damp check. If dealer refuses to change tyres, service or damp test, run away!
Remember that if you purchase from a dealer you are covered by the Consumer Rights Act 2015 and if there is anything seriously wrong with the caravan, within the first 30 days you can reject the caravan and do not have to give the dealer an opportunity to repair. After the 30 days and within 6 months you need to give the dealer ONE chance at repair before rejecting the caravan.
Good luck with your search and do not rush into anything as the same layout will be available at other dealers.

However another question is what driving licence do you hold, B or B+E? If only a B licence remember you should not exceed the gross train weight of 3500kg. It may also help if you could update us on the vehicle to be used for towing the caravan, i.e. model, auto or manual and what sort of caravan you are considering? :)
Thanks. Its been damp checked and they told us they would service it and hand over.

License is cat B so this is withing limits of the 85% recommendation and the max weight of the train.

We are looking at a Bailey gt60 500/5.
 
Nov 11, 2009
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Thanks. Its been damp checked and they told us they would service it and hand over.

License is cat B so this is withing limits of the 85% recommendation and the max weight of the train.

We are looking at a Bailey gt60 500/5.
Your limits for a Cat B licence have absolutely nothing to do with the 85% guide or kerbweight. Do you know the GVW if the car and MTPLM if the caravan. Adding the two together must not exceed 3500 kg or your outfit will be illegal.
 
Aug 2, 2020
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Your limits for a Cat B licence have absolutely nothing to do with the 85% guide or kerbweight. Do you know the GVW if the car and MTPLM if the caravan. Adding the two together must not exceed 3500 kg or your outfit will be illegal.
I get that. But I was saying that the MTPLM fits in to the 85% guidance AND the MAM stated by the manufacturer when combined with the weight of the car. And both are under 3500kg.
 
Jan 3, 2012
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if you get the caravan, make sure it comes with new tyres like otherclive says make sure they are the correct ones...
Full service & damp check before handover ...
Have you checked does it come with any warranty .
Keep us updated how you get on ..
 
Aug 2, 2020
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Thanks.

I called the dealer yesterday. It is damp checked and serviced before we get it (hence the delay). They will also change the tyres and valet it and it is coming with a starter pack (gazebo, fluids, bottles etc.) minus the gas which we already have and 6 months warranty.
 
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Thanks.

I called the dealer yesterday. It is damp checked and serviced before we get it (hence the delay). They will also change the tyres and valet it and it is coming with a starter pack (gazebo, fluids, bottles etc.) minus the gas which we already have and 6 months warranty.
it sounds like they doing everything for you as a new customer Enjoy it get some breaks book ..
 
May 7, 2012
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Looks good then. Not sure if a cracked tyre is an MOT failure, I would have thought so, but that is irrelevant. The tyre is faulty and anyone using it could be charged with having an unroadworthy vehicle.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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I totally agree with Raywood, even though UK caravans are not subject MOT testing, they must still be roadworthy to be towed. A cracked tyre would be an offence.

I suspect that if a caravan dealer knowingly left a defective tyre on a caravan they sell, they could be held to have sold goods that are not fit for purpose. It is important to realise that it is always the driver of a vehicle that is responsible for ensuring it is roadworthy when it is on a public highway.

In some commercial situations the business may also be held to be culpable, but it does not exonerate the driver of their own liability.
 
Nov 11, 2009
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Here are the MoT testing guide for cars. If the split or crack goes as far as ply reinforcement it’s a fail. The tester can open up the crack/ split to aid visibility of its depth. So a caravan tyre could be examined against those criteria. But if my tyres had a visible crack they would be changed ASAP.

 
Oct 12, 2016
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on a Bailey of that vintage make sure it’s a FULL damp check not a cursory “here and there” box ticking exercise just to get you through the six month warranty. Sorry to be negative but when we were looking at caravans for a friend of mine we looked at couple of caravans, both Bailey that were reputedly dry when in fact both had extensive damp problems in the floors and round the awning rails. Above the front and side windows were other places that had high damp readings.
Remember the next time you’re going to have a damp check will be in 12 months, long out of warranty.
 
Nov 11, 2009
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on a Bailey of that vintage make sure it’s a FULL damp check not a cursory “here and there” box ticking exercise just to get you through the six month warranty. Sorry to be negative but when we were looking at caravans for a friend of mine we looked at couple of caravans, both Bailey that were reputedly dry when in fact both had extensive damp problems in the floors and round the awning rails. Above the front and side windows were other places that had high damp readings.
Remember the next time you’re going to have a damp check will be in 12 months, long out of warranty.
Some alutech models suffered condensation that led to damp floor problems.
Wonder if the 6 month warranty covers damp caused by water ingress due to a cracked plastic component IE end panels. A lot don’t cover that, so OP should check for hairline cracks or get an independent to inspect.

With a 6 month warranty nothing to stop OP buying a damp meter or getting an independent to check in month 5.
 
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Thanks for the replies.

The dealer is 3A Leisure in Carmarthen. They're the largest in Wales. So I think I am going to take most of the advice on here but put my trust in them regarding some of the issues. They state it has been damp checked and it is getting a full service before I get it. They have agreed to fix the heater and replace the tyres as part of that and they have a hand over session so I am not just sent down the M4.

As mentioned by someone, if I notice any damp coming through or I feel it needs a check, I can get someone to independently check it in 5 months. I have a damp meter so I think it only prudent to use it anyway, regardless of age of the van.

Thanks again.
 

Mel

Mar 17, 2007
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If they have damp checked it, then they should be able to show you the damp report. This basically looks like outline drawings of the caravan sides and faces with damp readings written on the various places where it has been tested. It is not unreasonable to ask for a copy of this, along with the service report showing what they have done.
mel
 

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