Caravanners have been warned to ensure their tourers are stored securely, after analysis conducted by Ripe Insurance revealed 1,625 caravans were stolen during the 2020-2022 period.

Storing a caravan is a popular option for most caravanners who aren’t towing in autumn, but this can leave tourers at risk of theft as they’re unattended.

With research from the specialist insurance company revealing the average tourer costs £17,590, John Woosey, the founder of Ripe Caravan Insurance, is providing his top tips to help you secure your caravan during the colder months.

1. Invest in security products

Having one of the best caravan hitchlocks can be a crucial piece of security. These should prevent anyone from hooking the tourer’s hitch to their car – opting for one with a bright colour could also put off a potential thief.

Another important device is a caravan wheel lock – these prevent the wheels from moving.

When you’re buying either of these, make sure they have a valid Sold Secure rating.

A caravan alarm is also worth investing in – models with passive infra-red sensors are able to detect interior movement, while tilt sensors can tell if the caravan is being moved.

2. VIN chips

Tourers will have their own unique CRiS number and a VIN chip kit uses these markings (take a look at our guide to CRiS registration to find out more about it).

Caravans that have been manufactured since 2016 will normally have been fitted with a basic VIN chip. However, if you have an older model, you can buy a chip pack – just make sure the VIN chip sticker is on display in your tourer’s windows.

This will mean that if your caravan is stolen and recovered by the police, it should be traced back to you, thanks to its VIN chip.

3. The importance of where it’s stored

If you’re planning to store your caravan at a facility, you should pick one which has CCTV and locked gates 24/7. It’s also worth aiming to visit it as much as you can, so you can keep your eyes peeled for any signs of a break-in.

Alternatively, if you are storing your caravan at home, you should make sure you park up nose first to the house and then lock it to a security post. Then take care to remove any valuables and check that the curtains are left open with no visible contents on display.

4. Lock the doors and windows

Before you leave your vehicle, ensure that you’ve locked and secured your tourer’s doors and windows. Make sure they’re working on a regular basis too, as they would need replacing as a matter of priority if faulty.

For extra security, John suggests “installing additional over-locks that cover your standard locks” – this can provide that extra peace of mind.

5. Buy a tracking device

After getting a tracking device installed, it’s worth adding a warning sticker to your tourer’s window as a thief deterrent. Having an approved one fitted could also have the benefit of potentially lowering the price of your caravan insurance premiums.

The importance of caravan protection was highlighted recently when a stolen vehicle recovery unit was used to successfully recover a Swift Challenger after it was stolen from secure storage farm.

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