Checks Before The Trip

Check oil, water, brake fluid, the battery etc.

Inspect all tyres carefully. If your trailer has not been used for a long time, the tyres may be soft. And remember, when towing heavily loaded trailers your vehicle’s tyre pressures should be increased to the level recommended in the owner’s handbook or on the tyre placard. If in doubt, contact your local tyre dealer

Check that your vehicle and trailer’s wheel nuts have been tightened to the manufacturer’s specifications. To tighten the nuts, use a torque wrench to the torque recommended by the manufacturer (around 90ft lb or 125Nm). Wheel nuts should then be re-tightened after each 100kms for the first 400kms and checked every 1,000kms, at six month intervals thereafter or after having your caravan serviced.

Ensure the coupling socket and ball match in size.

Check that the safety chains are correctly connected.

Check to ensure that the trailer brake and light connections are secure and that all lights work.

Check that the towing lights, number plates and registration labels of your caravan are clearly visible.

Disengage any reversing catch fitted to the trailer coupling (as used with over-ride brakes).

Make one or two test stops to check that the brakes are working properly.

Ensure that your load is properly secured.

Limit the amount of load in the boot of the tow vehicle.

Ensure that the rear vision mirrors on the tow vehicle are properly adjusted to ensure a clear view of the road to the rear of the vehicle or vehicle combination.

Ensure that the gas cylinders are properly secured.

While you are travelling ensure that the gas cylinders are turned off and that the refrigerator door is locked.

Check that the roll-out awning is stored away and locked in the travel position.

Remove the jockey wheel from its clamp and store it in the boot of the car or RV, or if it is of the swivel mount variety, lock it in the travelling position.

Check that the front and rear corner stabilisers are in the up position.

Ensure that the hand brake of the trailer has been correctly released.

Check that the roof hatches, windows, doors and stone shields are secure.

Check that the electrical cord has been disconnected and stored away.

Check that the TV antenna is in the travel position.