It’s February and it is a great time to evaluate what equipment we have and for creating a punch list for the coming camping season.
I suspect our fellow camp trailer owners may be doing the same tasks! (Those who garden are also looking at seed catalogs right now too!)
Just this past year, two of our friends have purchased or are in process of purchasing a bumper pull travel trailer for themselves. While we had truly hoped they were joining the vintage Avion owner family, they decided to purchase more contemporary rigs. We wish them well and tons of wonderful miles of travels and hope we can camp together in the future!
One of the tips we would like to share with any and all travel trailer owners (motorhome owners can skip this blog entry! LOL) is how to KEEP YOUR TRAILER SAFE FROM THEFT!
I belong to many, many facebook sites and there are a few FB pages that specifically cater to sending up alerts to recent thefts of camp trailers. It seems that the theft of especially vintage trailers is on the rise in the USA because of their popularity and growing value. If you do not currently subscribe to any of those site, I suggest you at least join one. Who knows, while you are tooling down the road some day you may be able to help return a stolen rig to its rightful (and very distraught) owners! You also may learn some valuable tips on how NOT to be premiered in the next new theft alert!
My husband Kevin is notorious for using YouTube and other means to carefully and methodically research RV products. After much research, we purchased what is known by many in the know as “the most bullet-proof anti-theft hitch lock out there”. It is made by Proven Industries, a USA based, family business who offer a LIFETIME GUARANTEE on their products. (no, we do not receive any incentive or endorsement perk from them)
Word to the wise!!!! The traditional hitch lock that simply sends a large bolt-like pin through the hole in your hitch clamp or the kind that fits into just your ball socket with a bale type that goes over your hitch tongues are NOT going to stop thieves.
No matter how big the pin, how great the padlock. Case in point- we had one of those MasterLock U shaped locks on our hitch two winters ago. This is the kind that has a ball that fits into the underside of where your hitch ball normally goes then the U shaped lock goes over the top of your hitch tongue. When we went to get her out of the winter storage garage about 40 min. from our house, we realized we had forgotten the key to the pad lock. Kevin simply used a hammer and within about 40 seconds had busted the deadbolt U shaped thing off and removed the lock. Literally it took about two swipes of the hammer. Please do not be a statistic!
Proven Industries is the manufacturer of what is considered the Cadillac of the hitch locks and it is made in the USA and the customer service and reputation of the company is stellar.
In going to their site you will see that you must select the right lock for YOUR rig. All hitch configurations, coupler sizes, etc. are NOT alike! If in doubt, call them like we did especially for vintage rigs. They know their product and can direct you to the right fitting product for your needs.
Check out their demo video’s to see the strength and effectiveness of these hitch locks. Well worth the $$$.
A few other tips we can offer to you for keeping your rig safe are—-
- Pull down your shades during the day if you are away so that it is not so obvious there is no one home. Ditto at night if you are away from your trailer.
- When you are in camp, but maybe somewhere out hiking, at the pool or walked into town, back your tow vehicle right up to or broadside to your locked hitch ball so no one can drive right up to your hitch.
- Install trailer wheel locks (operate like a scissor system) in between your tires if you have a dual axle system.
- Put a tire lock on your tow vehicle. (see fellow bloggers Long Long Honeymoon (AS owners) and the TriMax lock they recommend). On our list to purchase this year!
- If you get a Proven Industry lock system try to also lock your safety chain ends also into the lock area.
- Install an aftermarket deadbolt on your door(s). Factory trailer door knob locks are notoriously poor. Especially on vintage trailers (many brands) the doors have been known to fly open as you are on the highway- resulting in lots of $$ to repair (that is if it was not left by the side of the road a mangled mess).
Hope you have found this blog article helpful. We would welcome your suggestions, comments and any tips you have for preventing theft of your trailer.
PS: We will be doing a post soon on LED light replacements (save money, reduce in cabin heat and save 12 V battery life!) so keep watching and reading!