05 August 2007

Caravan Accessories – How to Spot the Best Used Caravans for Sale

There are hundreds of things a person can look for when shopping around for used caravans for sale. Age, obviously, fitments, the usual stuff – but what about caravan accessories? Checking out the extra items available with each van is one good way of working out whether the thing has been well looked after – and, of course, whether or not the asking price represents good value for money.

Think about it this way. All caravans come with standard fittings but no accessories – so no awning, no extra large water butt, and no sack trolley for the chemical toilet: no chemical toilet, for that matter. The more of these caravan accessories one can gather into the whole selling price of a second hand van, the better one's bargain: and the more likely it is that previous owners have been good to their vehicle.

Why? Why should the quality of used caravans for sale depend on the amount and state of the accessories one gets with them? Well, obviously to an extent it doesn't, in that it's perfectly possible to find a thoroughly decent second hand caravan with no extras. However. The presence of extras, and well looked after ones at that, suggests two things: first, that the previous owners knew what they were about (there's a certain hidden snobbishness in caravanning, which suggests that only people who know what they are doing know what accessories to buy); and second, of course – if the things are in good nick it suggests that the previous owners were the kind of people who looked after their van.

Caravan accessories are slightly peculiar beasts, it's true – and it does take a person that knows about caravanning to pick the right ones. So any used caravans for sale with good accessories – i.e. the really useful stuff, like awnings, bike racks and water butts – have come from prior owners who knew what they were doing. If the owners knew what they were doing, it's highly likely that they were the kind of people who can spot and fix a potentially fatal leak (for example) before it becomes a problem. And so on. In very basic terms, properly useful caravan accessories could well equate to excellently preserved second hand vans.

Looking at used caravans for sale, if one doesn't really know much about caravanning, can be a daunting business. There's so much to choose from – so many lengths, so many types and so many berths - tourer, single or twin axle? How wide? Single or dual door? In a sense, just using the existence of caravan accessories as selection criteria, is as good a way as any to cut the field down. If one knows very little about caravans then one has to trust one's seller anyway – so why not narrow one's search by looking only at the vans that comes with some useful accessories?

Any way one slices it, buying second hand anything can be a lottery. When it comes to used caravans for sale, or caravan accessories, for that matter, the best tactic is the same as that for any other second hand vehicle. Buy from a dealer. Go private, and all the well kept accessories in the world won't help you any when the whole thing falls to pieces.

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