Welcome to the 2015 Season :
The new season is almost upon us, with most Static Caravan Parks re-opening at some point during March. If you are not using the services of your Static Caravan Park to prepare your Caravan for hire then take a look at "Ali's Top Tips" below.
Ali (aka Als Van) is a seasoned Static Caravan Owner down on the Isle of Sheppey, Nr Kent. She prides herself on providing the very best service to her Holiday Makers. So we asked her if she could provide us with an overview of what to do and what to expect when "draining-up" and preparing your Holiday Home for occupancy :
- Before you turn anything back on - check your Holiday Home thoroughly (inside & out) in case of any leaks, or damage caused over the winter months.
- Once you are satisfied all is well: turn your stop-cock back on so you have a water supply "make sure your shower is either turned off or at least pointing to the basin". (Even if you have employed the park to "drain-down/up" for you, most will NOT turn the stop-cock back on as this is classed as an "owner responsibility!").
- Check all taps/showers have running water.
- Turn on your electricity supply. Again, some parks will do this at the main box on your Holiday Home, some won't! Check all electrical sockets & appliances are working correctly.
- Turn on your gas supply & re-light your boiler. Check that all gas appliances are working correctly & you have hot water.
- Check your smoke alarm & carbon monoxide alarms are in good working order.
- Check your fire extinguisher is in date.
CLEANING (the major task!):
- Everywhere will smell damp & a bit "stale" when you first return!
- There may have been a build-up of condensation over the winter months - open some windows & put the heating on a low setting whilst you clean!
- You may find traces of mould have appeared, this is quite usual & varies from van-to-van, area-to-area. This is easily removed from walls or appliances with a "mould & mildrew" remover spray etc. If it's on any soft furnisings, you'll usually find it can just be brushed off and if there are traces on the carpets - a hoover will usually do the trick without the need to "sponge" out.
- Clean the fridge with a mild detergent before you turn it back on. If you can pull the fridge out to clean behind/underneath it - do so!
- Clean the oven before it's first use.
- Clean the cupboards, inside & out (another hiding place for mould!) & don't forget the TOPS!
- Wash your cutlery, crockery & cookware - remember it has been stood unused for a few months!
- Descale the kettle! (Once done, you can use the descaler from the kettle to wipe around the sink & draining board!).
- Clean showers/baths thoroughly & de-scale shower-heads. (Handy tip is to put some de-scaler down the sink & shower itself).
- Flush the W.C a few times & clean!
- Clean any cupboards/units & check for traces of mould!
- Check the mattresses are in good order before putting back on the beds!
- Check the actual bed frames are all OK.
- Bedding: check all duvets, pillows & mattress protectors are in good condition (recommended to be replace annually if renting out).
- Clean all cupboards "inside & out" all surfaces etc (Not forgetting the TOPS of any units)!
- Clean the seating areas before putting the soft furnishings back in place.
- If you have it, check the pull-out sleeping equipment is in good working order.
- Clean all windows "inside & out" (don't forget the frames and window-sills).
- Winter is the ideal time to wash through any curtains, so they are fresh for the new season.
- Wash/hoover all floors & carpets "if you can: steam-clean".
- The outside of the Holiday Home will be grubby after the winter months. Your park usually has an option to get it cleaned through them, but it may be cheaper to employ an outside company to give it a good wash.
- Alternatively, invest in an extendable brush that can attach to a hose pipe and a step ladder : and off you go!
- Or, like Sharon in Towyn, be cheeky and ask another Owner to do it for her "RESULT"!
- If you do find any problems or damage on return to your Holiday Home, it is imperative to contact your insurance company ASAP.
- Take photos & speak to your insurers "BEFORE" you make any attempt to clean or rectify any issues. They will most probably need to send a loss adjustor to assess damage before a claim can be processed. They will advise you on any action you need to take.