Checking For Damp In Used Caravans

One of the most important tests that you can complete on a used caravan that you are interested in buying is for damp (or water ingress if you want to get technical). This is because damp is a caravan owner’s worst nightmare – it can be repairable but, in many cases, it isn’t or just isn’t worth the time and money it would need. By ensuring that a used caravan is damp free before you buy it, you could be saving yourself from a lot of problems in the future.

There are a number of reasons that damp could form in your used caravan, including:

  • Owners neglecting to drain the water out of the boiler when putting the caravan into storage over winter. The pipes will expand due to cold and frost and this can cause them to split, allowing any water to leak out.
  • Faulty seals around the windows and roof, which allows water to seep into the van when it rains.
  • Cracks in the bottom of the shower or gaps around the basins, shower and toilet. This will allow water from the facilities themselves to soak into the caravan’s walls and floor.

Unfortunately, damp can occur anywhere in a used caravan, so it is important to ensure that you check absolutely everywhere. A smell of a wet towel that has been left for a while is usually a good indicator that damp is present, but many sellers will air the van out prior to an inspection, so you cannot rely on scent alone. Look for lumps, bumps, stains and mold on the various wall panels, as well as for discolouration on panels around windows, sinks and taps. A springy or spongy floor is also a good indicator of damp in a used caravan.

If you are able to buy or borrow a damp tester, this will be your best bet of ensuring that the caravan you are looking at is definitely free of damp. You will find these devices at most caravan and camping supply stores, and they really are invaluable when it comes to buying a used caravan.

Another way to spot possible problems with damp in a used caravan is to check it over for new or mismatched wallpaper, paint, linoleum and carpet. Quite often, this is a good indicator that a dodgy repair or cover up job has taken place. If a caravan damp repair is not undertaken by the proper professional, the damp will return.

Not only will damp problems eventually ruin your used caravan, it can pose significant health risks, especially for people who have skin allergies, asthma and arthritis due to the germs and bacteria living in the mold. Even though damp can be repaired, it is rarely ever worth it.