SURVIVING THE HEAT - A CARAVAN GUIDE TO SUMMER

 

Summer is here and you're planning on hitting the road for a well-earned, long-dreamed-of holiday. The forecast is looking HOT, so it's important you prepare your family, your car and your caravan for the heat so your holiday is memorable for the right reasons! Here is a caravan guide to not just surviving, but enjoying the long hot drives and those amazing summer destinations.

 

Air-Conditioning

Always a winner to keep everyone cool on those hot Summer days, but air-conditioning units can eat up a lot of power, so you'll need to bring your own generator, and check that your destination allows generators on-site. You can either use a household air-conditioning unit in your caravan, which is definitely more cost-effective, however if you're planning on travelling a distance, then you should investigate an RV air-conditioning unit. These specialised units comes with mounts and fittings that stop water leakage and reduce vibration during travel.

This caravan guide is all about making life easier- sometimes a trusty old fan is a safer, easier and more mobile option.

Insulation

Insulating your caravan can be a great way to add further protection from the harsh Summer sun and slow the build up of heat. Of course it has the added benefit of keeping you warm on those Winter trips, too. In Australia, the 'R' value rating system is used to grade insulation materials. In simple terms the R is used to measure the effectiveness of the material in inhibiting the transfer of heat.

 

WHICH PART OF MY VAN DO I INSULATE?

While many only insulate the walls, it's worth considering the roof, floor and windows as well, to ensure you're all cool as a cucumber. Pop insulating panels under the flooring to slow heat from entering the caravan, paint the roof with an insulating paint to reflect the sun, and tint your windows as dark as you like- there are no regulatory requirements governing how dark you can go.

 

Pop Top Caravans

Pop Top Caravans are ideal for staying cool as there are vents in the retractable skirts that keep the hot air from getting trapped in your caravan. Because of this, they don't require much in the way of insulation. Pop Tops are a great choice for those on a small to medium budget and want something on the smaller side.

 

Awnings & Annexes

ANNEXES

Annexes are basically a way of extending your caravan's footprint, and maximising your comfort. A variety of walls are available, whether you want to simply create a shady spot for yourselves or a fully sealed area.

AWNINGS

A pull-out side awning is a great way to protect you from the suns rays and allows you extra space to relax. You can get awnings custom fitted so they are right for your caravan. You can also purchase awnings for windows only, which is an economical way of adding that extra protection from the sun.

 

Other Options

There are other, simple options to keep you and your family cool on your summer caravan holiday:

1. consider parking our van in the shade, if you can score yourself a position;

2. adjust the lighting in your caravan, by replacing incandescent bulbs and halogens , which give off a lot of heat, with LEDs as they are cooler and more energy efficient.

So there you have it. Some pointers to keep you and your loved ones cool and relaxed in the Summer heat. Remember to bring sunscreen, reapply after swimming or every 4 hours, and bring hats and lots of water. It's easy to overheat so take care of yourselves and use your caravan as an oasis to the harsh elements.