How To Check If A Used Caravan Is Watertight

1 December 2016
 Categories: Automotive, Blog


When you purchase a used caravan one thing that you must check is that the van is watertight.  Even a few small leaks can lead to extensive damage to the interior of the van walls and the structure of the roof and flooring.  Here's how to make sure that your potential new purchase is free from leaks.

Use a damp meter

The easiest and quickest way to check the interior walls of your caravan for damp is by using a damp meter.  You can buy one of these devices quite inexpensively from good DIY stores or from a caravan accessories supplier.  A good second-hand caravan dealer will have a more sophisticated damp meter and will be happy to run it over the van for you.  If the dealer raises objections to doing so, it might be wise to look elsewhere.

Check around the interior of the van

It's very important to check around the inside of the van for signs of damp.  A common site of leaks is underneath the sink.  Check around the joints of all the under-sink pipework to make sure that they are all firm and well-sealed.  Problems with this pipework can be very expensive to put right so you want to be sure that everything is in order before you part with any cash.

Next, check the beds and mattresses to make sure that there is no smell of damp or staining.  Inspect seating cushions too, and have a good look behind curtains for signs of damp on the walls or on the fabric itself.  Damp smells musty, and leaks usually leave clear watermarks behind.

Open up all lockers and cupboards, including those that don't have a corresponding outside seal of the van.  Water will find its way along seams and down pipes to the lowest point, and this might not necessarily be directly associated with the outside skin of the van.

Look at wallpaper or veneer to see if any doesn't match.  This could be a sign that damp-damaged walls have been re-covered.  Press the walls and flooring to see if there are any soft areas; this could be a sign of rot.

Inspect the window seals to make sure that they are tight.  If there is any play in the frames when you apply light pressure, there's a good chance that the windows will let water through.  If you can feel a draft around the window frames, this could be another sign of a faulty seal.

When you're looking to buy a used caravan, it's important to make sure that it doesn't leak like a sieve.  Follow the tips given above to make sure that your new van is as dry as a bone!  For more information, contact local professionals like Arrow Caravans.