Go! Drive and Camp Camp Guide - - Do It Yourself -

Charge it. Bat­ter­ies aren’t cheap and need to be looked af­ter. Charge them reg­u­larly and keep it charged, even in win­ter or at other times when you’re not us­ing your car­a­van. They should prefer­ably be charged once a month, for 24-48 hours.

Power trip. Check the elec­tri­cal con­trol sys­tems, en­sure they’re in work­ing or­der, and en­sure they’re able to recharge the bat­ter­ies. Test all the switches. If the lights don’t work, there could be a prob­lem with the bulb, the wiring or the con­nec­tions. Check that the in­side and out­side lights work.

Gas 101. En­sure there isn’t any wear and tear on gas pipes and con­nec­tions that could leak.

Take a shower. Check the shower sys­tem and all the taps and make sure that it works prop­erly. Also test that the geyser works. Test­ing, test­ing. Now test the fridge, lights and other elec­tri­cal ap­pli­ances in the car­a­van. If the bat­tery doesn’t im­me­di­ately have enough have enough life in it, wait un­til it’s fully charged, then test th­ese again.

And an­other test. Test the fridge-freezer with both 220 V and 12 V as well as with gas, es­pe­cially if it’s been switched off for a while. If it leaked, the cylin­der will need to be re­filled.

Down to earth. The elec­tri­cal sys­tems in many car­a­vans are not earthed, es­pe­cially not for 220 V. We rec­om­mend that you in­stall an earth leak­age sys­tem, be­cause it’ll be no fun if a surge at the camp­site fries your fridge – and all be­cause you don’t have a sys­tem like this in place. Spikes in the cur­rent are com­mon where the sup­ply is patchy, and when you’re tapped into a gen­er­a­tor. (Or to cer­tain nu­clear power plants, like Koe­berg. – Ed.) Pre­ven­tion is bet­ter than cure, so make sure your car­a­van is prop­erly earthed.

Long-dis­tance power. In­spect plugs and ex­ten­sion cords for any pos­si­ble dam­age. Wa­ter works. Check if the wa­ter pump works. Open the taps to see if the wa­ter flows. Check if there are any leaks at the pump, taps or pipes. On, off, on... Check for cracks in the plas­tic over in­di­ca­tor and brake lights.

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