Cover4Caravans » What’s a motor mover?

What’s a motor mover?

Although touring caravans are designed with weight considerations in mind, there are still situations where you might find it difficult to manoeuvre. A motor mover is designed to give you just that little extra help, such as when:

  • space is restricted and the caravan needs to be unhitched from the car – manoeuvring it into position may be quite tiring if you need to pull and push it backwards and forwards to find just the right position; or
  • you need to align the wheels precisely so that a wheel lock may be used to provide that extra level of security for your caravan.

Principles

Motor movers work on the principle of providing power to turn the wheels of the caravan to move it backwards and forwards and turn it in tight spaces. The power typically comes from the caravan’s own battery and the work is done by clamps which fit against the tyre.

Generally, the motor mover is simple and easy to operate through the kind of remote control device you might use with a television set.

What to consider

If you are thinking of investing in a motor mover, here are a few points you might want to take into consideration:

Cost

  • generally speaking, the simpler the design the cheaper the cost of course – this might range from a few hundred pounds to more than a thousand;
  • the amount you are prepared to spend may also have a bearing on the ease of use of the device, although creativity in engineering design may have a greater impact still;

Weight

  • if you are going to be travelling with the motor mover on board, ready for action when you get to a site, take into account its weight – which needs to be added to the payload of the caravan;

Clearance

  • the devices typically hang below the underside of the chassis to some degree, so this affects the available clearance from the ground;
  • the terrain over which you are likely to be manoeuvring the caravan may have various humps, bumps and potholes, so good ground clearance needs to be maintained;

Location

  • when fitting a motor mover it is important to do so in a way that does not interfere with the design of the caravan’s chassis and its jacking points and spare wheel carrier in particular;
  • if your caravan has shock absorbers fitted, the location of any motor mover also needs to take this into account;
  • when choosing the position for fixing such a device, you might want to remember that the further forward of the caravan’s axle it is, the greater the affect on the noseweight;

One axle or two

  • twin-axled caravans are more difficult to manoeuvre than single-axled trailers, so your investment in a motor mover may prove all the more worthwhile;
  • the problem is that it is typically more difficult – and more expensive – to fit movers to twin-axled caravans;
  • one solution is to apply the powered device to the wheels on just one axle and using the jockey wheel to lift the other wheels on the axle above the ground;
  • the more expensive option is to fit motors to the wheels on both axles;
  • whichever solution you choose, though, you might want to bear in mind that twin-axled caravans are always going to be more difficult to turn and manoeuvre than single-axled versions.

A motor mover is a relatively simple device that may help manoeuvring of your caravan in tight spaces – or simply to relieve you of the effort in pushing and pulling it into place. Before making such an investment, however, there are a few considerations you might want to take into account.