Caravan Security. It’s possibly a little known fact that by law, you don’t need caravan insurance. Unlike a car, where the law dictates, that if you drive a car, the car must be insured at least to 3rd party protection. So, for example, if you have a crash and it’s your fault, at least the other driver will get their car fixed on your insurance.
For a caravan, insurance is not needed, you don’t have to insure it. If you don’t have your caravan insured, you don’t need any security devices. Oh, hang on, this is going to save me a fortune right? £300 a year insurance, a few hundred quid on caravan security devices, it all adds up.
But wait, car insurance will also cover theft, what about if a caravan gets stolen and it’s not insured. Well, you’ll have to buy a replacement yourself!
Caravan Security- Insurance Companies
Once you insure your caravan, the chances are the insurance company will insist you fit security devices. Usually a wheel lock, but possibly a hitch lock as well. Your insurance company will let you know what they need you to fit to ensure your insurance is valid.
We recently changed our security lock on our wheels, but first checked with the insurance company that it was on their “approved list”. We actually changed from Alko wheel locks to a Nemesis Ultra. The reason we did this was purely for ease of fitting. On a twin axle, Alko wheel locks can be rather troublesome and time-consuming, to say the least.
It seems more and more insurance companies are insisting on Alko chassis wheel locks, these devices have a lock on the wheel that secures to the chassis. More on these later, but they are pricey, especially if you have a twin axle as well as being a pain to fit two of them
Protect Your Investment
Whether it’s a 15-year-old £3,000 caravan or a top of the range, brand new £35,000 caravan, it’s always someone’s pride and joy. No matter the value, in monetary terms, they’re far more valuable to the individual in a way only a fellow caravanner would understand. To say they are part of the family would probably be overstating things a little, wouldn’t it? In any case, they certainly become an “extension” to our home. Our “home from home”, wherever we travel in the world, we’re only ever a short distance from home.
So, with all that hard-earned cash, time, effort and love we put into our home from home, we need to do all we can to protect it.
Although we should be mindful not to get obsessed or paranoid, we can do some things to at least put your mind at rest, if not to stop some would-be caravan stealer pinching your wobbly box! (Oh and keep the insurance company happy!)
Something we’ve always done, over the years, is that when we stop at a service station to have a rest, or walk the dog, or have a brew, we never leave the caravan unattended. One of us always stays with it. Part of the small print in your insurance policy could well be not to leave the caravan unattended when travelling for more than a certain time. I never knew this until I was answering questions online for an insurance quote. There was a question, something like.
“When leaving your caravan unattended do you fit a hitch lock”. Well, as we never leave it unattended, so I answered “No”. They wouldn’t give me a quote online. So I rang. In the end, they said, ok, _if_ you ever left it would you fit a hitch lock, and yes, I would. In hindsight, I should have just answered yes, I wasn’t being bloody-minded honest.
Caravan Security Devices
The best way to deter a thief is to fit security devices. Naturally, these don’t guarantee someone won’t steal your caravan, but it might put off an opportunist. There are several manufacturers that specialise in caravan security products, Purpleline being one. Of course, you don’t have to buy everything from one manufacturer, shop around for best deals. You might even find some secondhand on eBay
What are these security devices I speak of? Well, here’s a little list of the main ones….
This is a lock that goes onto the hitch. The idea of having a hitch lock is that with it on it can’t be hooked onto a car’s tow bar. You can also get hitch locks that stay on whilst travelling. With a hitch lock already on the car/caravan when towing, you could stop for your coffee, even at night time and not have to worry about fitting the hitch lock. This means the caravan is locked to the car, so can’t be removed. We have one of these but haven’t used it for that purpose
- Length: 156 mm.
- Height: 194 mm.
- Width: 191 mm.
- Weight: 4890 g.
There have been a lot of discussions regarding whether or not it’s a good idea to leave the hitch lock on whilst travelling. Some have been designed to work in this manner, but some people aren’t happy with a lock attached to the caravan whilst towing. Not all hitch locks can be left on the car / caravan, only those that say they can. Most are just used to prevent the caravan being hooked onto a car.
- Extreme Reliability with the twist proof latch
- Extremely durable 4 mm hardened steel body
- Certification according to SCM MPO3 and Sold Secure Gold.
- Fits both with and without coupling.
- Complete with carry pouch and features a safety ball.
Chassis (wheel) locks
As mentioned above, we had Alko wheel locks (AKA chassis locks). These fit onto your wheel and attach to the chassis with a bolt, hence making the caravan unmovable.
These differ from the above in that they don’t bolt to the chassis and therefore can be easier to fit. You don’t need to line the wheel up with the chassis mount. We now use Purpleline’s Nemesis Ultra wheel lock, as for us it was easier to fit.
If you have your caravan at home on the drive, you could look into fitting a security post. This would prevent the caravan from being moved. One insurance company insisted I have either Alko wheel locks, or different locks and a security post fitted! I didn’t want either, so I got a quote elsewhere.
- Sets into concrete
- Padlock included
- Dimensions: 15cm x 13.5cm x 75cm
- Weight: 4.9kg
Caravan Leg Locks
These prevent anyone from bringing the stays up. This means the caravan wouldn’t be able to be towed away easily. We don’t use these, after all, you can have too many devices. It’s important to find a balance between security and convenience. As a bit of an update, I did buy one with our new caravan. It was OK, but you need a seperate “bolt” to unwind it. You first unlock the lock with a key, then attach something else to your drill, or whatever you use to unwind that one stay. It’s a bit of a pain and a few times I couldn’t easily locate it. Just imagine if you lost the additional bolt that goes in it to wind up the stay!
See the issue I have with the leg lock here :
Heavy Duty Wheel Clamps
More like typical wheel clamps rather than a specific caravan security device. Offer good value, you could buy one for each wheel cheaper than some other devices. Good visual deterrent.
Caravan Secure Door Lock
Some additional security can be added to the caravan door.
- Additional security for caravan and motorhome doors
- Easy to install
- Locks doors
- gas lockets
- garages etc
I’d recommend getting the best security device your budget allows. As with everything in life these days, there are standards, of course, and there’s always more than one. However, they at least give some guidance and are tested to a certain level.
Sold Secure is one such body, it makes sense to have a look at devices that are “Sold Secure”
SCM European Security Standard Approved is something else to look out for when buying security devices.
Any devices that are “Sold Secure” or “SCM” approved have at least had a certain level of testing.
Security At Storage
It’s also important to ensure anywhere that you store your caravan is secure. If it’s in storage, or you’re considering moving your caravan to a secure storage yard, here’s some things to look out for :
*Last update on 2023-11-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API