Setting out on your maiden camping trip in your new hybrid camper is so exciting. But it can also be pretty scary, especially if you haven’t towed before.
Looking back at my first towing experience. I was so nervous – sweaty hands and sleepless nights contemplating it! How do I turn corners? Will I be able to park it? How will the car handle it? And don’t even get me started on backing! But it wasn’t as bad as all that!
Here's a few things you need to know, and you'll be towing like a pro in no time!
Towing tip - Towing a camper wider than your vehicle can be very stressful and fatiguing, especially on narrow outback roads. They also have limited visibility down the sides of the camper requiring extended side mirrors for your car which limits your off-roadability Ideally you want a camper with a track width and body width as close to your car as possible. The added advantage of a hybrid camper is that you don't need those extended mirrors. Read more about camper width in our "Hybrid Camper vs Caravan" blog.
Camper Safety Checklist:
- Check tyre condition and pressure
- Wheel nuts are tightened to 110 foot pounds
- Suspension bolts are tightened to 190 foot pounds
- Stabiliser legs are raised and locked in place
- Coupling and safety chains are correctly fastened
- Electrical connection is secure and lights/stop light/indicator lights are working
- Hand brake is released
- Jockey wheel is secured
- Gas is turned off
- Internal lights are turned off
- Steps are properly stowed
- Slides, drawers and doors are secured
- All windows are closed and secured with the blinds in the open position
- External doors locked
- Check your mirrors are properly adjusted
- Final inspection
On the Road
Remember that the camper will affect the performance of your vehicle, whether you’re accelerating, braking or cornering. Slow down, take your time, enjoy the trip and stay safe. Here are some key towing tips to keep in mind:
Several years ago, what should’ve been a simple pullover and re-entry for oncoming traffic nearly ended in tragedy. I had to re-enter the road more rapidly than I’d anticipated due to an upcoming culvert. The camper’s wheel got caught on the lip of the bitumen and the camper began to sway uncontrollably. Thankfully we got out of it pretty lightly. We ended up in a paddock with a little barbed wire tattoo down the side of the car, but no one was injured. Safe to say that’s an experience I don’t want to repeat.
Finally, as they say, knowledge is power. If in doubt, get skilled, there are heaps of towing courses out there. As an experienced tower I’ve picked up lots of great tips and ideas from the courses I’ve done.
Whether touring the outback or just chilling at the beach, our range of hybrid camper trailers are designed to make your camping experience as easy and stress-free as possible.
Check them out at your nearest Modcon RV showroom. We’d love for you to stop by. Click here to get in touch with us today.