You have experienced and seen a lot with your caravan. At some point, however, the time will come when your trusty travel companion has to go into hibernation.
Whether parked in the barn of the nearby farm, in your own garage or outdoors - your caravan has to spend the winter somewhere.
If the caravan has to be parked for a few months or even years, you may be asking yourself the following question:
Is a rv protective cover useful or even necessary for the winter? Caravan protective covers are useful equipment for every caravan owner. Caravans parked outdoors in particular are exposed to UV damage, water or environmental toxins. With special tarpaulins, the negative effects, especially for the paint, are reduced enormously.
In fact, we consider caravan covers to be one of the most sensible investments when it comes to maintaining the quality and longevity of the trailer.
Without a protective cover, not only the outer skin is damaged. The resale price of your caravan also drops dramatically! Ultimately, this has to do with the fact that the appearance plays a not inconsiderable role when selling a used caravan. Who wants to buy a caravan that doesn't look very trustworthy?
It is therefore very important to treat your caravan with care after the season and to provide it with a special protective cover. If you don't heed this advice, repairing the damage will cost you far more money than investing in a suitable tarpaulin.
But what consequences do you have to fear without a protective cover?
When does a camper cover make sense?
In short, every caravan and camper needs a cover. Even for campers that are parked under a roof, it is worth buying a good protective cover: the vehicle stays clean and is not permanently exposed to external influences.
As we will show later, however, it is only worth investing in a good quality case. Those who save at the wrong end are often better off without a cover. An inferior cover hood could damage the paintwork, for example. What is important, we show today in the purchase advice below.
What are the dangers of improper parking of the caravan?
Wintering your own caravan doesn’t sound particularly complicated at first.
Empty the tanks and clean them if necessary, clean the interior, rid campers of annoying odours, dispose of leftovers, lock and secure with an alarm system - done.
But it's not that easy after all!
There are actually a few dangers and pitfalls when it comes to safe trailer winter storage.
When you park your caravan outdoors, there are a number of possible scenarios in which your vehicle can (and will!) be damaged.
Are you a homeowner? Or have you ever found an item you thought was lost outside in the garden after a very long time? Then you know what we're talking about. Mother Nature isn't exactly kind to things that have been sitting around for years!
The following dangers threaten a caravan without a special protective cover:
- ice and snow
- (acid rain
- UV exposure from sunlight
- Storms and parts flying around as a result
- Damage from sand and sandstorms
- bird droppings
- tree sap
If these dangers exist long enough because the trailer is wintering outside, the effects on the paintwork and structure of the vehicle are serious:
Scratches, moss, dust, corrosion and UV damage are the usual consequences.
The outer protective layer usually consists of a glass fiber coating, which can oxidize over the long term and is therefore vulnerable.
This process can be observed. First, the paint or varnish becomes more matt than before. The fiberglass layer weakens and eventually provides little protection from the elements. Once this is done, the rest of the hull is vulnerable as well. Ultimately, this is to be avoided!
Once the damage has reached this stage, it can be difficult or expensive to restore it to its original condition. Specialists usually charge a lot of money for this complex work.
Without protective cover for caravans: drastically reduced sale price!
Another unpleasant side effect: the resale value of your caravan drops significantly. It becomes a lot harder to sell a vehicle that is showing signs of wear and tear. In any case, you get a lot more for a used caravan that looks perfect and has little damage.
In addition, every potential buyer will also consider the entire look. Once your trailer has lost its original shine and polish, it doesn't do well for an acceptable retail price.
The well-preserved paintwork in bright white is a sales argument, especially for light-colored caravans.
Without a cover, it becomes far more likely to spend significantly more time cleaning the camper just to maintain the status quo.
So you see - a good caravan cover prevents many problems before they can occur.
Tarpaulins for caravans are therefore a sensible investment, no matter what you plan to do with your caravan!
Stay away from cheap all-purpose tarpaulins from the hardware store
Before we get to the things you need to consider when it comes to choosing the right tarp, do yourself a huge favor and steer clear of cheap hardware store tarps.
These general purpose tarpaulins are of course tempting as they are incredibly cheap to buy compared to specialist caravan covers.
Not only do they offer your caravan less protection, they are even harmful.
Such fabric tarpaulins (made of polyethylene) are completely waterproof and therefore no longer breathable.
Especially in winter we have the problem here in Germany that the humidity is very high. This allows a fair amount of moisture to collect under the tarpaulin itself.
This moisture slowly builds up more and more and cannot drain away properly. In addition, ice forms in cold weather due to the backwater.
This has several serious consequences for the trailer:
Firstly, the air inside the vehicle can no longer circulate properly. A nightmare - not even a good dehumidifier for the caravan will help here!
In addition, the formation of rust is promoted and the longevity is drastically reduced.
Another bad consequence is the formation of mould, not only on the inside of the tarpaulin. The mold can spread to the interior of the caravan and thus cause extreme costs.
You see - the cheap hardware store tarpaulin is not a solution, but a cost trap!
How long do camper covers last? Quality matters
When choosing the right cover, the longevity of the cover stands and falls with the quality of the material. Quality covers often last for many years, while cheap tarpaulins can suffer premature damage.
You have to consider this when choosing the right caravan cover
We have now sufficiently clarified that a protective cover for caravans is useful, if not necessary.
Nevertheless, it remains to be clarified what is important when selecting the right protective tarpaulin and how to proceed.
Small purchase advice: the right selection criteria for protective tarpaulins
When making your selection, you should pay attention to various criteria. The right size of the protective cover always comes first.
How to choose a good caravan cover? Our selection criteria:
- Correct size of the tarpaulin depending on the vehicle
- Textile fabric should be breathable, waterproof, light and UV resistant
- Depending on the location and purpose, consider zippers and special functions (e.g. thermal insulation).
- Secure fastening with tension belts
- theft protection
Find the right size
First of all, you should definitely make sure that your caravan is the right size, because tarpaulins come in all sorts of sizes and shapes.
How to determine the right size of the tarpaulin:
Take a close look at the caravan vehicle documents and make a note of the length, height and width of the trailer.
If your caravan has structures on the roof (air conditioning, satellite dish), add these parts with their dimensions.
You have already determined the necessary size for the caravan cover.
What else is important when choosing
But what if you own an exceptionally large or small caravan or are simply looking for an individual custom-made product? There are manufacturers who offer unusual sizes and custom-made products for precisely these requirements.
After you have determined the right size, it is now a question of the material and design of the protective cover.
The material of the fabric consists of fleece, in the English-speaking world one often finds the reference "nonwoven".
Many of the caravan covers offer more than just the obligatory waterproofing. There are covers that offer special thermal insulation or are even offered with zippers.
When selecting such additional functions, it is very important how and where the caravan is parked.
Things to consider are, for example, the climate in which the caravan will be parked or how often you expect to enter the caravan during this time.
As always in life, there are a multitude of options for caravan protective covers, which often overshoot the mark in terms of price. You should be careful not to buy the cheapest of the cheap, because with these tarpaulins you have to ask yourself whether you can expect adequate protection.
On the other hand, you don't necessarily need a tarpaulin with particularly fine materials and special functions, even if the good price-performance alternative from a trustworthy company will do.
Where can I buy caravan covers?
Caravan tarpaulins are available in specialist shops or in various online shops for camping supplies.
RVMasking offers a good selection of different protective covers for caravans.
At RVMasking you get a huge selection with a comfortable filter system for the right size of tarpaulin.
How expensive are caravan tarpaulins?
The cost of purchasing a protective cover for caravans varies greatly and is primarily determined by manufacturer awareness, size and quality of workmanship.
The price is almost always between 100 and 800 USD, the usual purchase price is 150 to 300 USD for a usual length of 6.50 meters with an average quality of the tarpaulin.
Special extras such as zippers and tension belts drive up the acquisition costs.