Caravan Annexes

Caravan Annexes
Unfortunately no new caravans on the market in Australia come complete with an annexe, although most will have a roll out awning fitted for sun shade, and most dealers will have an annexe manufacturer that they can recommend. Some even have a display annexe available with colour choices for you to browse.

A complete annexe for your caravan allows you and your family to enjoy the comfort of a private and spacious additional living area. Walls can be added to most awnings to form the complete annexe and are manufactured from a variety of materials including canvas, vinyl, and rip-stop nylon.

Canvas Annexes
Lets look at the canvas annexes first. Most of you will be familiar with this material if you have been camping before, especially as a child. In those days canvas left a lot to be desired as a waterproof material but in all fairness it has come a long way since then, and modern canvas annexes of all shapes and sizes can be seen attached to anything from a camper trailer to the larger caravans touring Australia. It is an extremely heavy duty, plain weave cloth mad from cotton, and is particularly sturdy. It's a good choice for long lasting durability under somewhat harsh conditions.

Vinyl Annexes
Secondly there are vinyl annexes to consider. Vinyl is a unique and special form of plastic which is made from a combination of natural gas and salt. It can be enhanced to give the qualities we look for in a soft annex material or modified to become rigid as seen in plumbing pipes. It has been proven through numerous studies that vinyl is a completely safe to humans. It is easy to clean, more environmentally friendly than other plastics in the manufacturing process and is extremely durable and 100% completely recyclable.

Rip-Stop Nylon Annexes
Known primarily as a light-weight nylon fabric, ripstop nylon caravan annexes have inter-woven reinforcement threads in a crosshatch pattern integrated into its design for strength and durability, so that tears will not spread. These annexes are popular due to their extremely light weight, ease of putting up and taking down, and are usually much less expensive than their traditional rivals.

When purchasing any annexe it is advisable to check:
  • waterproof or water resistant capabilities 
  • fire resistance or rating 
  • porosity (will not allow air or water through) 
  • light, medium and heavy weight 
  • warranty or guarantee 
  • location of service or repair centres 
  • availability of spare parts 
  • ease of putting up and taking down 
  • is a floor provided / or sewn in
  • overall weight including any poles, ropes and ground pegs 
  • does it have a 'mud skirt' at the bottom so the fabric doesn't come into contact with the ground 
  • does it come with a weather proof skirt for the caravan 
  • does it have a quick zip system for opening doors and windows 
There are many, many different styles of Caravan Annexes available on the market in Australia. With this in mind it can often be a good idea to ask other caravanners what their experience has been with the annex that they purchased and would they recommend it to others. This will give you a great insight into the advantages and disadvantages of particular manufacturers and their products before you buy, and a great way to meet your neighbours in the caravan park!

Sharon Tappenden, EzineArticles.com Basic Author