How to tow a caravan

Hobby Hobby http://www.hobby-caravan.de - © Hobby Caravan

If you want to connect a caravan to your car, be prepared that driving with such set is different than driving only a car.

Before traveling with a caravan, take into account some important information, for example, that if you have a driving license category B, you can tow only some caravans.

Prepare well for towing

The law provides two solutions. The first allows you to drive a unit, in which the car of any weight (ie up to 3.5 tons) is accompanied by a caravan weighing up to 750 kg. This doesn’t mean that you cannot drive a heavier caravan. However, if you choose this second option, the entire set must weigh no more than 3.5 tons, and the weight of the caravan cannot exceed the weight of the car that tow it.

Take into account not only the rules, but also the fact that the car must have a sufficient power to be able to pull a caravan on flat a ground, as well as uphill. So if you have a car of about 50-60 hp or less, try to find possibly the lightest caravan.

If you already know that you have a set that’s right for you, focus on your luggage. It’s best to put heavy objects in the car, and the lighter in caravan. The heavier contents may be kept in floor compartments (if there’re any) or just above the floor, well secured. It’s important, because the contents of the caravan cannot move around during sudden braking or turning.

Overtaking just when necessary

Getting into the car with a caravan, don’t expect that this set will be going in the same way as the car. If you set off for such a trip for the first time, try to be very focused while driving, so that at any second you’re be able to track the caravan and react accordingly.

The caravan is not fully integrated with the car, so it will behave specifically when turning and reversing. To learn how to properly control it, drive slowly and carefully, and overtake other vehicles only if necessary and if you have plenty of time and space for such a maneuver.

When overtaking other vehicles, especially large, the force of attraction will be pulling you in the direction of those vehicles, but after you have passed them, if you do this maneuver too quickly, you may fall out of the route in the opposite direction.

If someone would overtake you, make a way for him, as soon as you can.

Watch out on turns

When driving with a caravan, gain speed very slowly and reduce gears earlier. Also try to keep a bigger distance from the vehicle before you, so to have a longer braking distance.

Take wide turns. If you turn left, try to drive as close to the right edge of the lane as possible and when turning right, on the contrary - stick to the left side, what will guarantee that the right lane will fit not only your car, but also the caravan.

When driving try to keep the whole unit in a stable position. However, if your caravan fall into a sway, brake firmly, consistently pushing the brake pedal (without cadence braking). Long braking will activate the brakes of the caravan, which will help to stabilize it. If the swinging will be repeated despite driving at a moderate speed, it could mean that the load in the caravan was arranged inappropriately.

If you need to reverse (eg when parking) it would be best if you ask your passenger to get out and guide you properly from the outside. Once you learn it, it won’t be necessary.

When you will follow these rules and, above all, will be very careful and mindful, you should easily and safely reach any desired destination.

Translation: Karolina Strzałkowska

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