Unable to winter prep our caravan in storage - advice

Mar 2, 2018
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Hi all
We store our caravan in an indoor storage facility on the caravan site we use which is 100 miles away. We normally use the caravan once a month except when the site closes in January and February.

This year due to lockdown and travel restrictions we last used it in September. We were planning on going away in October and November but lockdown hit.

It looks like as we are in Tier 3 and the caravan site tier 2. We still cant visit as we hoped in December to do the winter prep. All we usually do is remove the battery, open all cupboards etc and put moisture traps down.

My concern is as we haven't been able to do any of these things the caravan is going to be sat in the indoor storage barn. I'm guessing the battery will be knackered by next year? Should I be worried about moisture getting on the cushions etc and causing mold or am I overthinking this?

I know we all have more important things to be worried about in 2020. But as Im still fairly new to this caravan lark I wondered if I'm worrying about nothing!
 
Jun 16, 2020
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Does your van have any drain on the battery, ie alarm. If not, leaving it on should not be detrimental except batteries bill drain naturally all on their own.

I also open cupboards and stack cushion to get better air flow around them. But I don’t think either are absolutely critical.

Moisture absorption is, arguably, useless in a modern van which should have lots of ventilation as you are just drawing out of the attosphere.

You might have to take a hit on the battery, but that can be offset against a 200 mile round trip.

Particularly as you are storing indoors I think, on those matters, you should be OK. But have you drained the water?

John
 
Nov 4, 2020
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Are you talking past tense here ? Or future or both ? The only issue could be the battery as above , I take it you don’t tow it much as you use the same site ? I would not worry too much , you will be able to go see it in December , take the battery out and bring it back with you then charge it at home with a cheap charger for a leisure battery
 
Jan 3, 2012
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If you can get to it in december
Open all the cupboards, fridge door and wardrobe and open your taps and mixer
Stack your cushions up so there beter air circulation
Put the moisture traps down
Like what Jclougie about the battery does it have drain ie alarm you might have to take hit have you pull the yellow lever up under the bunk to drain the water .
 
Mar 2, 2018
28
1
1,535
Does your van have any drain on the battery, ie alarm. If not, leaving it on should not be detrimental except batteries bill drain naturally all on their own.

I also open cupboards and stack cushion to get better air flow around them. But I don’t think either are absolutely critical.

Moisture absorption is, arguably, useless in a modern van which should have lots of ventilation as you are just drawing out of the attosphere.

You might have to take a hit on the battery, but that can be offset against a 200 mile round trip.

Particularly as you are storing indoors I think, on those matters, you should be OK. But have you drained the water?

John
Thanks John and others for the reply. The caravan is a 2018 avante 550 so not very old, hence my worries! There is no alarm and I’m happy to take a hit on a new battery if I need to. My worry is more damage to furniture if I can’t get down to move cushions etc due to lockdown restrictions.
sounds like I may be over worrying if I can’t get down again until March at the worst.
 
Jan 3, 2012
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Where you store the caravan at the site you use did you leave a spare set with them and then they could sort your caravan and stack your cushions .
 
Mar 14, 2005
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You do need to get to the caravan as soon as you can to settle it for winter storage, but you already know this.

You tell us the caravan is in a barn. I assume this means its not exposed to rain/snow which is great, and even typical draughty barns will provide quite a measure of protection from the typical British winter temperatures, so frost damage is only likely in the most severe of weather, and so far I don't think the UK has had anything cold enough for long enough to worry about.

With regards the battery, lets hope it hasn't been totally discharged, though proper leisure batteries are better than car batteries at surviving low charge levels.

As for mould etc, provided the caravan was put away dry, and the ventilation panels have not been obstructed, so there is some air flow through the caravan, Coupled to teh fact its under cover so its less likely to see strong direct sunlight, there is a reasonable chance you wont have a mould problem.

I suggest that as soon as you can get to the caravan, do so, and ensure the water systems is full drained, battery removed so it can be charged, and open doors and draws, lift beds so the air can freely circulate.

If the caravan is dry, then there is no point in installing any form of moisture capturing devices. They will have zero effect becasue the air is constantly exchanging with the outside.
 
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May 7, 2012
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As long as the water is drained you should be reasonably safe. The battery is a risk, but provided it is not supporting an alarm and the master switch is off, it should be safe if it was reasonably charged before you left it. You would be surprised how long some take to drain when left.
We have left ours with cupboards and drawers closed before we were advised to leave them open and nothing happened.
I agree that the moisture capsules are not going to be of any use in the caravan as it has ventilation built into it and basically any drying does not work as more damp air is then entering.
 
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Jan 3, 2012
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We have never left our cupboards and drawers wardrobe, door fridge door closed always open same as the cushions we always stack them to let the air circulate but the water has to be drained and taps up ours is under a breathable cover..
We put Kontrol moisture traps around our van you be very suprised how much water there is in we change them every 2 months . for a refill
We have done this for the past 31 years
So far our caravans have been damp free.
 
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Jun 16, 2020
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We put Kontrol moisture traps around our van you be very suprised how much water there is in we change them every 2 months . for a refill
It where is the water from? Put said traps outside and they will also collect a lot of water.

The trapped moisture is sticky, if it overflows there is a danger of damage To furniture. When I used to put them out they went onto trays.

John
 
Mar 14, 2005
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We have never left our cupboards and drawers wardrobe, door fridge door closed always open same as the cushions we always stack them to let the air circulate but the water has to be drained and taps up ours is under a breathable cover..
We put Kontrol moisture traps around our van you be very suprised how much water there is in we change them every 2 months . for a refill
We have done this for the past 31 years
So far our caravans have been damp free.
I hate to see people wasting money doing something when there is no practical benefit from it.

There may be a short term benefit from using a moisture trap for the first few days of storage, but long term there is absolutely no additional benefit due to the exchange of air with the outside through the fixed ventilation provided.

The only exception would be if your caravan has water leak which is raising moisture levels. In which case it makes more sense to spend the money to get the leak fixed, rather than reducing the evidence.

Manufacturers of moisture traps will play on the fear of humidity and as such for long term usage they fall into the same category as tyre bands, an answer for a problem that in reality does not exist.
 
Nov 16, 2015
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We store our van in a barn, towards October, when putting into storage we lift cushions and open doors, just incase we cannot get out again, been caught out with hospital appointment etc. We used to use moisture traps, yes they collect a lot of water, the more you place down the more they fill up. They are just drawing it from outside. I spilled one emptying it, on the carpet, its acid totally ruined the carpet , so dont use them any more, and no damp in the caravan. 👍
I have left a battery once for over 6 months and although it had gone down to 10 volts, it revived.
 
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Jan 3, 2012
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It where is the water from? Put said traps outside and they will also collect a lot of water.

The trapped moisture is sticky, if it overflows there is a danger of damage To furniture. When I used to put them out they went onto trays.

John
Hi John the salt is at the top on the Kontrol moisture trap and water we find is in the bottom next time at caravan i will take picture on my camera by the way we put three of those in one at front one in the middle and the end washroom room
our van is 12 years and it dampfree touch wood
 
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Jan 3, 2012
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I hate to see people wasting money doing something when there is no practical benefit from it.

There may be a short term benefit from using a moisture trap for the first few days of storage, but long term there is absolutely no additional benefit due to the exchange of air with the outside through the fixed ventilation provided.

The only exception would be if your caravan has water leak which is raising moisture levels. In which case it makes more sense to spend the money to get the leak fixed, rather than reducing the evidence.

Manufacturers of moisture traps will play on the fear of humidity and as such for long term usage they fall into the same category as tyre bands, an answer for a problem that in reality does not exist.
Hi prof JohnL This is our preference we have used them for 31 years and all of our caravans were dampfree Also we have never had a water leak either
Touch Wood .
 
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Mar 2, 2018
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I feel very reassured by many of these replies. Also learned a lesson and Ill pull cushions away from walls between visits just in case I can't get down again in the future.

I always open taps and drain valve when we leave so I think the only gamble if I cant get down in a few weeks is hopefully just the battery but It may be ok given others' experience.

I really do appreciate the replies and many have given me food for thought.

Especially regarding moisture traps.
 
Jan 3, 2012
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I feel very reassured by many of these replies. Also learned a lesson and Ill pull cushions away from walls between visits just in case I can't get down again in the future.

I always open taps and drain valve when we leave so I think the only gamble if I cant get down in a few weeks is hopefully just the battery but It may be ok given others' experience.

I really do appreciate the replies and many have given me food for thought.

Especially regarding moisture traps.
Hi No problem hope we have help
 
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Oct 21, 2020
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Being quite fortunate to have our van on the drive, I keep it plugged in (hot water off and drained) but heating on very low and an oil filled heater ticking over.
We usually van all year round and at weekends quite often use it as a quiet reading spot if my 2 offsprings have friends over.
Bit different with coved however.
In 25 years of caravanning we have always done this with no ill effects.

Kev
 
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Jul 18, 2017
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Pointless using moisture traps as a waste of money as they do nothing to keep the caravan dry. If no alarm or tracker then battery should be okay for the duration.
 
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Jan 31, 2018
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We have never moved cushions in any caravan. Never had an issue and frost damage won't be an issue so it's only tyres and battery that could flat spot and flat.
 
Jan 3, 2012
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Pointless using moisture traps as a waste of money as they do nothing to keep the caravan dry. If no alarm or tracker then battery should be okay for the duration.
Hi That your Preference but not mine we have use them for 31 years and all of my caravans have been dampfree Touch Wood
Kontroll Moisture Traps for caravan motorhomes and boats
Absort up to 1L
keep unwanted moisture & Condensation under control
Protects Wallpaper Fabric and soft Furnishings
 
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Mar 14, 2005
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Being quite fortunate to have our van on the drive, I keep it plugged in (hot water off and drained) but heating on very low and an oil filled heater ticking over.
We usually van all year round and at weekends quite often use it as a quiet reading spot if my 2 offsprings have friends over.
Bit different with coved however.
In 25 years of caravanning we have always done this with no ill effects.

Kev
I suspect your pockets will be a little lighter:p
 
Jan 17, 2010
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Another thing to be aware of when storing in a barn is mice ! They love nice warm caravans and can do alot of damage.
 
Jan 3, 2012
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Another thing to be aware of when storing in a barn is mice ! They love nice warm caravans and can do alot of damage.
When we had the seasonal van we had to put mesh inthe front box with been a Adult Park a farm site when it was put into caravan storage into the barn one mice had tried to get in but did not succeed
 
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Jan 17, 2010
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Where we store ours a couple picked up a brand new van and there storage pitch was next to the only barn on the storage site, they parked it up and returned the next day with one of thems parents to show them there new toy! The mice went in first night and made a nest in one of there cushions! They were l
 

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