Travelling with your motorhome in winter

Manda Tours in Winter

Two weeks ago we started our “Europe’s Best Christmas Markets” tour and thought it might be a good idea to write about travelling in your motorhome in winter. Even though on this tour it is not like camping in the mountains where there will be a lot of snow, there are still some challenges for the motorhome and good preparation is advisable.

Before travelling in winter, you need to perform some extra checks on your motorhome, as the weather conditions in winter are more challenging than in summer. In winter you will not only use more electricity, e.g. you will be using your lights longer and might watch more TV than in summer, but also your heating will be running constantly. Therefore, all your batteries need to be fully charged and fully chargeable and you should make sure that your heating system is working properly. In order not to run out of gas you should start your holiday with two full bottles or ideally have one refillable bottle or a gas tank, so you can top up with LPG while away. We would also recommend a Duomatic, which switches over from one bottle to the other once the first one is empty. It really is no fun having to get out of bed at night time to change bottles manually!

You also must make sure that your vehicle has plenty of anti-freeze in the windscreen washer system and radiator as you will be using your windscreen wipers more frequently and temperatures could be below freezing. Of course, your tyres should still have plenty of profile and for driving in snow or low temperatures winter tyres really are a must and in some countries required by law. It is also recommended that you put some silicone on the rubber seals on the doors to avoid freezing and last but not least put a windscreen scraper, and a starter cable in your vehicle. Snow chains are only necessary if you know there will be lots of snow where they can get you out of difficult situations.

When loading your vehicle, it is even more important than in summer that you distribute the weight correctly as it has a significant influence on the driving stability of the vehicle. Follow the golden rule: keep heavy loads as low in the motorhome as possible and evenly distributed on the two axles!

As you can imagine heating is important. Your water tanks and pipes should ideally be in the heated “cellar” of your motorhome, but if they are outside, they need to be protected by using heating foils or cables. In winter the windscreen of a motorhome is always a weak point and should be insulated with a thermal cover. If you are able to separate the drivers cab from the habitation area using a heavy curtain or blanket, you will save energy and it will be nice and cosy. As dry air warms easier than humid air try not to dry your clothes in the motorhome and open the window of the kitchen when cooking, so that steam can escape. For additional comfort you could also buy an electrically heated carpet.

If you are looking forward to some warmer weather and are  thinking of booking one of our 2019 tours, please remember that the Early Bird Discount is only available until the 31st December. Some of our tours are full or have limited availability, and as usual all bookings will be taken on a first come first served basis.