Christmas is well on its way and the cold season is already here! So, let’s discover together the best way to prepare for a winter trip, with a few tips and tricks we can use both before and during our journey.
Before setting off
Giving your Ducato-based motorhome a once-over before every departure is an essential step you should always take to ensure you enjoy your next trip without a care in the world.
Especially in winter, when we find ourselves travelling in areas with sub-zero temperatures, it’s always better to be safe than sorry!
The hydraulics system is undoubtedly the part you need to keep the closest check on; ensuring you have insulated all the pipes as effectively as possible is always a good idea, especially when making long stopovers. Ideally, completely emptying your water tank would prevent it from freezing during the night, but for grey and black waters, you can find specific anti-freeze products that will help ensure your system works correctly, even at temperatures well below zero.
Obviously, as well as carefully checking the hydraulic system, you’ll also have to perform all the routine checks you normally make before every departure. Particular attention must be paid to the battery which will be used much more than in the summer months, especially at low temperatures. After all, we don’t want to risk a power failure on board, do we? Monitoring our average consumption so that we can also keep an eye on when we need to charge the battery, could save us from having to make unwanted, annoying stops along the way.
Another tip that you might take for granted, but shouldn’t underestimate is that during the winter months you must have winter tyres fitted, or always have snow chains on board!
Once we’ve checked our Ducato-based motorhome thoroughly, it’s time to get ourselves ready for our trip! Naturally, warm clothes and a sleeping bag are useful, if not essential items for our winter trips. But we are bound to enjoy our next on-the-road experience even more if we also prepare our itineraries and stops, and research the camp sites on our route in advance.
On the road
In attention to paying close attention to the road conditions, it’s always a good idea to keep a watchful eye on your heating system! Of course, who doesn’t love a warm, cosy environment? And if this isn’t reason enough to keep your heating on, maybe you’ll change your mind when you learn the benefits it affords in terms of consumption. In fact, if the heating is left on constantly, our motorhome consumes less energy than it would if you were to turn it on and off regularly. And these benefits also stretch to the water system: keeping the internal heating system on will also help maintain the temperature of the pipes constantly above zero, so helping to prevent them from freezing and possibly from bursting.
Once we’ve arrived at our first destination, especially if we plan to spend the night there, it is always advisable to take a few minutes and implement some precautions so that both our Ducato-based motorhome and all its passengers are comfortable and safe.
Dampness, for instance, can be one of our worst enemies at night. As well as significantly affecting the temperature inside the vehicle, it can also cause condensation and even freeze the air vents, so resulting in problems for the entire system. To prevent this, we can either choose to buy specific small dehumidifiers, or cover up the air vents to prevent infiltrations.
The basic idea is to stop the cold in its tracks as soon as possible, and if we can do this before it enters the vehicle, we’re on a winner. The best solution would therefore be to use a full outer thermal blackout cabin cover. Alternatively, you can set off on your winter trips all the same, but protect the cabin from the inside, even if this will certainly prove less efficient.
Using indoor rugs will also keep us sheltered from draughts and currents of cold air, enabling us to always keep the temperature inside our Ducato-based motorhome under control. Not to mention that, the feeling of comfort you get with a plush rug underfoot as you watch the snow falling outside from the window, is indescribable!
One last winning idea, even if it is no less important than the previous ones: when leaving our Ducato-based motorhome parked outdoors, cover the underside with a canvas cover. This will help prevent the bodywork from erosion caused by the elements, and safeguard the mechanical parts of our four-wheeled friend!
This short guide on how to effectively prepare for our winter adventures has come to an end. By following all these tips, our next trip on board our beloved Ducato-based camper will hold no surprises and we’ll be ready to enjoy every moment of the journey to the full.
See you soon, motorhome owners!