For many caravan enthusiasts and owners, the winter months see the caravan confined to the driveway or garage to wait for summer. This unfortunately means that many caravans do not receive any maintenance or inspections over the winter. This increases the risk of caravan damp due to a lack of ventilation and an increase in condensation, which can build up over winter and is often not discovered until spring.
Caravan damp is a common issue for many caravan owners. If a caravan is over 10 years old, there is an 80% chance that there will be damp somewhere within the structure. This comes with a multitude of problems, including expensive damage and the potential health risks to those with pre-existing lung conditions.
If your caravan has been in the garage or on the drive all winter, then now is the ideal time to check your caravan for damp ahead of your first adventure of the year. Checking now will also allow you to take the necessary precautions to avoid dampness in the future, so read on to discover how to get your caravan in the best condition for the year ahead.
How to avoid damp
Damp in a caravan is caused by an increase in moisture and begins as musty spots of mildew which grows into larger damp patches. Steps to take to avoid damp building up in your caravan include:
- Regularly cleaning and vacuuming the interior of your caravan. Staying on top of the amount of moisture in your caravan will keep the surfaces and walls dry.
- Simple actions such as drying clothes outside the caravan, using an extractor fan or keeping windows and doors open will reduce the amount of moisture built up in the caravan.
- It is particularly advisable to regularly open the doors and windows during the winter to ventilate the interior.
- You may also wish to purchase a dehumidifier to significantly reduce the risk of damp in the caravan.
- If you have the space available, you can also leave large bowls of salt inside the caravan, particularly over winter, as this will draw the moisture out of the air and furnishings and will prevent mould.
Particular care should always be taken to ensure that windows and doors do not experience a build up of condensation. As cold surfaces, windows encourage condensation and many windows have a vent to avoid this.
How to treat caravan damp
If you are unlucky enough to find damp in your caravan this year, then acting quickly to treat it will prevent it from turning into mould and damaging the structure.
- To start, make sure that your caravan is completely dry. You may want to use a dehumidifier for the best results, as well as removing soft furnishings and bedding.
- Fill a spray bottle with a mixture of 1 tablespoon of clove oil and 1 litre of water and apply to the damp areas. After 20 minutes, remove this mixture by gently wiping with a cloth and leave to dry. You can also use a mould spray for this step.
Damp around the caravan window
Whilst caravan windows are not completely sealed in order to ventilate caravans, if you discover damp around the caravan window, it is important to quickly dry these areas out by ensuring that the window is fully open to encourage proper ventilation. Using a handheld window cleaner or placing a dehumidifier near to the damp are the most advisable ways of removing excess moisture.
If you frequently see condensation on your windows, despite taking precautions to avoid dampness, then it is advisable to replace your windows. Double-glazed caravan windows will be more effective than older windows at avoiding condensation, as they do not get as cold as other windows. New double glazed windows will also retain heat, filter noise from outside and improve the energy efficiency of your caravan, making them a worthwhile investment.
Don’t risk finding a damp caravan when the touring season arrives. Please click here to view our full range of caravan windows, and if you need any advice on finding the perfect windows, our experienced team are always happy to help.