Happy Easter: Happy Safe Travel’s
Camper Trailer Maintenance
Don’t forget your Camper Trailer & Caravan Maintenance before you head out for the Easter break or school holidays.
- Check your trailer plugs & lights
- Anderson Plug
- Battery or Batteries
- Brakes – Adjust if needed
Make sure the pins on the 7 pin plug have a small gap between them. Also check the wires have a solid connection to the plug terminals – you’ll need to remove the plastic housing to check this. Check the trailer with another vehicle to confirm if it’s an issue with the car or trailer. If your trailer works with another car, it points to an issue with the plug on the back of your vehicle. You can confirm this by putting a multi meter on the socket pins. Put the black lead on the earth (white wire) and the red on the relevant pin (left, right, tail, or brakes), whatever isn’t working. You should see 12V on the meter. Refer to the plug diagram to determine the correct pins. You can clean the plugs with brake cleaner, but don’t spray with WD or similar products as the dirt & dust will stick.
Anderson plugs are quite robust but they should always be treated with care. Avoiding dropping the plug into dust or mud and don’t leave it where it can be stepped on. Visually check the contacts from time to time to ensure a reliable connection every time you use it. If mechanical damage does occur, it should be checked for any insulation breakdown or shorting out before use.
In a caravan or camper trailer, where they have either a battery that requires charging or a fridge that operates off a 12V supply, an Anderson Plug is essential. Some 12-pin plugs do offer the same service but can only take a maximum cable diameter of 6mm.
Both your fridge and battery charge are highly voltage dependent. A 10 per cent voltage drop at 240V AC will barely register but if you’re running on 12V DC, the battery won’t charge properly and the fridge will start to have problems, especially if it’s a compressor. Battery charging voltage should be around 13.9- 14.5V DC.
Ideally, you should keep your trailer plugged into a 240V socket when not in use. You can do this using an Ampfibian 15A adapter which is available from our store. The adapter enables you to connect your trailer 15A socket to a standard 10A household 240V inlet using a 15A power lead. This keeps your camper batteries at 100% and provides protection from electric shocks, thanks to its residual current device (RCD), which can be caused by faulty wiring or appliances connected to your camper.
Another way to help protect your batteries is to set a low voltage alarm to warn when batteries need to be charged. It’s easy for batteries to go flat. Either you forget to plug your trailer in after a trip or someone removes the power lead to use the 240V socket and forgets to plug it back in. Or maybe when camping, you’ve endured a few days of overcast conditions with limited solar charge and the batteries have run down. The alarm can also warn of a failure in the charging systems, such as the Anderson plug shorting out if left unconnected, to drag on the road.
In the Redarc Battery Management System (where fitted), simply press and hold the up and down arrows on the display consecutively for a few seconds, then scroll through to Advanced Settings, select and scroll through to “Low Voltage Alarm”. Set the voltage to 12V or 12.2V, not the default 10.5V, which is dead flat. 12.2V is around 60% charge. Any lower than this and you run the risk of damaging the batteries and reducing their life.
We have just received 2 new Pioneer Onyx’s in the hire fleet, just in time for Easter & the School holidays.
Very happy hire customers get to take out the new Pioneer Onyx’s for their very first run. There will be many happy memories and great adventures to follow.
Book your next weekend get away or your great adventure: www.hireacampertrailer.com