Although maintenance procedures for caravans, trailers etc. are mostly common sense and follow the same principals as other vehicles, the following points may assist in covering areas which may otherwise be overlooked.
Starting at the front of the caravan, the following points should be especially considered:
- Check that the coupling is effectively lubricated and that head and shaft rotates freely (apply grease through nipples).
- Adjusting screw and nut should not be frozen in head and should be adjusted to stop ball from rattling (oil adjusting screw shaft by turning coupling upside down. Lightly grease inside coupling head where it fits over towball).
- Backing stop should move freely.
- Ensure free movement of all parts.
- Master cylinder cap should be in good condition to prevent moisture entering reservoir.
- OR 3. Fixed
- Check operation of spindle and screw nut.
- NOTE: On all couplings, trigger lock on handle should be moving freely and in good condition (oil regularly).
- Check for rust or corrosion where base plate fixes to A frame.
- Hand brake level should move freely and should travel approx. 15mm when correctly adjusted (adjust with turnbuckle).
- Check condition of brake cable and pulleys.
- Should have no visible signs of rust or cracks at fixing point and should be long enough to reach towbar chain hook and allowing for concerning.
- Handle and wheel should turn freely (if lubrication is needed, squirt oil under handle to travel down shaft).
- Wheel should spin on axle freely.
- Check clamp and clamp bolt for easy operation (apply oil to thread if necessary).
- Should be checked regularly for rust and stress fractures, particularly outriggers and all cross member fixing points, A frame, springs and spring hangers and stabilizer legs.
- Check for signs of movement around spring hangers, shackle plates and bushes, U-bolts and fish plates.
- Check jack legs for ease of movement and ensure handle is in good condition.
- Check step for cracks, rust and ease of operation.
- NOTE: Surface rust should be removed by sanding or with a wire brush and metal surface then painted with an anti-rust paint.
- Lubricate door lock and hinges with light oil (CRC type).
- Check condition and operation of annex roller and cabin hooks.
- Door lock tongue and striker plate should be regularly checked for signs of wear.
Wheels, Rims & Tyres
- Check rims for buckles, cracks or other damage after each trip.
- Check tyres for signs of excessive wear from under/over inflation or wheel alignment problems.
- Bearings and oil seals should be inspected and repacked regularly and definitely before any proposed long trip.
- Brake shoes should be checked for signs of uneven wear and drums for any marks which may indicate early signs of brake deficiency.
- Hydraulic lines should be checked for signs of leaking.
- If electric brakes are fitted – drums should be cleared of sand/gravel deposits to prevent excessive wear on magnets.
- NOTE: Operation of all braking systems should be regularly checked for signs of wear or fatigue in wires, clamps or connections.