Gas-safe touring and how to avoid running into trouble
Gas safety is not at the top of anyone’s holiday to-do list, but with your caravan or motorhome’s gas system working hard to supply all those vital home-comfort functions; perhaps it should be. Read our short rundown of the common gas problems faced during touring, and how to stop them before they start.
When you’re out touring LPG can be your best friend. When treated with respect, gas allows you to take the luxuries of home along for the trip and enjoy hot showers, hearty meals, even chilled milk. However, gas safety can often be overlooked until something calamitous or potentially expensive demands attention.
Stamp out the causes of gas problems early on and put pleasure back at the top of your priority list.
Wear and tear
As your gas supply works hard to keep you warm and fed, it’s not surprising time takes its toll and parts will need replacing.
As key gas connection in your caravan or motorhome, the pigtail hose needs looking after. The average lifespan of a pigtail fitting is between 3–5 years as the rubber naturally degrades, meaning regular replacements are needed. Upgrade to Truma’s Reinforced Pigtail Hose and relax for a little longer knowing that it is designed to last for seven years.
After travelling over the UK’s potholed roads, jolts and bumps can loosen or fray overlooked connections and even overtightened gas couplings can cause leaks. The advice is simple; as soon as a gas leak is detected and, if it is safe to do so, shut off the gas supply immediately.
Fit the GasStop Emergency Gas Shut off Valve and leaks will be a thing of the past as the valve automatically detects leaks and shuts down the gas supply.
Carbon monoxide poisoning
More often associated with faulty household appliances and poorly ventilated houses, serious carbon monoxide poisoning can happen in caravans and motorhomes, too. Because the gas is odourless and tasteless, confined space can quickly fill with the toxic fumes without any tell-tale signs.
Keeping your vehicle well ventilated and gas appliances checked regularly are the practical step to take, but you should also fit a leisure vehicle certified CO detector such as the Fire Angel CO-9X Carbon Monoxide Detector. With an advanced electrochemical sensor to measure CO continuously and visual and audible alarms, it gives you a crucial early warning.
Damaged gas connections
Eating outside is one of the pleasures of camping and it’s only sensible to keep your barbeque away from anything flammable. Yet, connecting and disconnecting the gas supply can be fiddly and even require tools which risks damaging the coupling and hoses, and creating holes for gas to escape.
Hooking up your gas supply should be quick and easy, not to mention tool-free, so swap out your current couplings for the ingenious Cadac Quick-release Tailpiece with its 'click-in/click-out' for an instant fit and safe airtight seal.
Running on empty
Running out of gas can rank as either frustrating or utter disaster, which is made even worse by knowing it is completely avoidable. There are plenty of 'traditional' methods of checking the gas level which all involve getting your hands dirty and a certain amount of guesstimating.
Save all that time and energy by going digital with the Truma Gas Level Control Monitor and get all the facts sent directly to your phone – it will even tell you how long the remaining gas will last, so you never have to go without a hot shower again.
Always follow site safety protocols and guidelines when camping. Visit the Gas Safe Register for gas safety tips from the professions.
For your own safety and that of others, your leisure vehicle gas system should be professionally serviced and maintained. Alongside such attention though, it’s always worth giving your system a visual check and functional test from time to time, especially if it hasn't been used for a while. If anything needs upgrading or replacing you can find a range of products at the Club Shop but if you have any doubt over your competency to fit these, we suggest you seek professional help.