One of the first caravan security measures you should look at is a hitch lock.
They usually consist of metal box that fits over the coupling head and makes it impossible to attach to a tow-bar. You should look into the type appropriate for your caravan by asking a dealer.
These are very popular security measures and relatively cheap, though they are mainly deterrents and will not stop a determined thief for long.
It’s not recommended to use hitch locks whilst in transit, as this could compromise handling and is potentially dangerous.
It’s a good idea to look for hitch locks that are resistant to dust, water and rust and strong enough to resist drilling. A hitch lock is a simple but essential piece of kit.
One of the next things you should invest in is a wheel lock. There are two types worth considering; a chassis wheel lock and a standard wheel lock.
The chassis wheel lock is a fairly recent development and offers superior security. These fit onto the wheels and chassis. You will need to check what lock is suitable for your caravan as they only work with certain chassis. It is well worth considering the extra investment because of the high standard of security it offers.
Chassis wheel lock features to look for are anti-pick locks and a high number of security combinations. Some manufacturers also provide a key registration service so, after registering your lock, should you lose a key, it will be straightforward to replace.
Otherwise, a standard wheel lock fits over the wheel and clamps it in place, preventing it from rotating. These come with various added security measures like additional locks to cover the tightening device, so it’s well worth shopping around and finding the best wheel lock for you. They should, however, be robust enough to prevent a thief using saws or drills to remove it.
A wheel lock is another vital piece of security equipment so you should look for a high quality one. Check to see if a lock has an award for its security or if it’s been recommended by a security authority.
Anchoring device and security posts
Another simple and effective caravan security measure is an anchoring device, which does what the name suggests. It is an anchor which drops from the chassis and into the ground making it almost impossible to move.
A security post is a permanent fixture to which you can hitch your caravan. If your caravan will be parked up or in storage for an extended period of time it may be worth investing in one that is set in concrete.
Another method of ensuring the security of your caravan is to fit a proactive tracker. This tracking device can alert you if your caravan is unexpectedly moved. Either you or the control centre can then keep tabs on its movement using satellite technology and contact the authorities.
Although a pricier security measure, this could be a worthwhile investment especially for expensive caravans. Usually caravans with a tracking device can be returned home with very few problems although the responsibility does often lie with the owner.
The tracker alarms can also be automatically triggered if the power is cut. However, if your caravan is unused for a long time the battery powering your tracker could run out making your device useless. Some trackers have a feature that warns you when the battery is getting low.
It is a good idea, like with many security devices, to check whether the tracker has received any recommendations or security awards.
Some insurers may offer up to a 25% discount on caravan insurance if you have a proactive tracker fitted.
Other security measures
It’s also important to secure windows and doors to prevent thieves from breaking into your caravan. There are various types of locks and alarms so it’s worth shopping around. Many alarms can be turned on only when you need them to save power. There are other similar devices such as handles which swing across the door, preventing it from being opened or obscure the lock.
You should also ensure that your Caravan Registration and Identification Scheme (CriS) vehicle identification code is marked on your chassis and windows and that the code is registered with the CRiS database.
If your caravan is stolen, thieves will often do all they can to remove the codes so it may be a good idea to mark the code in an invisible marker somewhere on the caravan. You should also retain these codes for your own reference and make note of where they are marked on your caravan.
It’s also a good idea to look into storage sites for when you’re not using your caravan. The security of these sites is the most important factor so it would be good to look around and find the best place, even if it’s not the cheapest.
For added peace of mind you could look for site’s that have police approval. Also, the Caravan Storage Site Owners’ Association (CaSSOA) provide Bronze, Silver and Gold ratings for their sites, which can help identify the more secure sites.
Investing in caravan security is worthwhile not least for the peace of mind it provides you with.
Have fun and stay safe.