Interested in towing a caravan? This guide will help you do it safely

Before hitting the road towing your caravan, it is essential that you familiarise yourself with all the basic safety requirements, as well as the rules of the road governing the use of such vehicles. Today we're going to take a look at everything you need to know before getting on the road.

So what are the basics?

The first thing you need to know is whether or not the vehicle you are going to use for towing your caravan is up to the job or not. Using a vehicle that is not able for towing a caravan can have seriously dangerous results, so for the safety of you and others on the road, you need to make sure you get this part right.

Ideal vehicles for towing caravans will have a long wheel base (distance between the front and rear wheels) and a short overhang (distance between the rear wheels and the tow bar). This ensures that the vehicle will have sufficient control over the caravan at all times.

It is very important that your tow bar is correctly installed and is suitable for the task at hand. A tow bar that is poorly installed, or not suited to towing a caravan can be exceptionally dangerous. If you are unsure about your tow bar, speak to a mechanic before towing anything.

The Caravan

Your caravan should weigh no more than 85% the weight of your towing vehicle when it is full. Caravans in excess of this weight percentage can prove to be hazardous, and can get out of control a lot easier.

Your caravan will also need to display your towing vehicle's license plate, as well as having indicator lights, brake lights, a fog light, two reflective triangles and a license plate illuminator.

Anything else?

We strongly recommend getting in touch with your insurance company to make sure that you are fully covered while towing a caravan. While the vast majority of policies do cover this, it is always better to make sure in advance.

You also need to be aware that the speed limits are different for vehicles towing a caravan in the United Kingdom. On motorways you are not allowed to travel in excess of 60MPH, while on all other roads the maximum is 50MPH (except where the road's speed limit is lower).

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