Hitching Up

Just bought first caravan. Please can you explain step by step the method of connecting caravan to tow hitch on car - the jockey wheel is the bit that confuses me most........

The first thing to do is to line up the tow ball on your car with the coupling head on your caravan. Once this is done, adjust the coupling head on your caravan to make sure it is the right height with the towball. You do this by using the jockey wheel, simply by winding it up or down. Then connect the coupling head on the towball and secure it in place. You can now raise the jockey wheel and lock it in place. Next connect the brake away cable to the towing bracket on the car and then connect your electric cables. Once this is done, start your car and check that all the lights and indicators are working on both the car and caravan. Make sure that all your vents and lockers on the caravan are closed and locked and that the corners steadies are secured in the up position. Once you are happy with everything, you are ready to go.

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May 12, 2013
Hitching up
by: Ray

In addition, on modern caravans with ALKO couplings there is a red button on the hitch. When the hitch handle is closed down over the towball it will then pop up to show a green rim to indicate that the coupling is secure.

A useful way of checking for older caravans is, once hitched, to wind the jockey wheel higher and higher. If the car's rear suspension also starts to lift then this is usually a good indication that you have hitched successfully. If so, wind the jockey wheel back down and return it to its stowed position.

Otherwise, there are checklists available on various caravan websites (for example, http://www.campingandcaravanningclub.co.uk/helpandadvice/gettingstarted/newtocaravans/usefulchecklists/)reminding you of the the important things you need to do. It might useful to print one of these off,laminate it and then keep it handy in the caravan.

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