How To Replace A Lost Caravan Key. If you own a caravan, you may already be conscious of how much you have invested in the purchase and its maintenance. Regardless of how much you use your caravan, protecting it and ensuring its security is a number one priority.
Losing your caravan key can be quite distressing. Whether you have put the caravan away for storage for the winters and lost the keys in the process or lost them during a busy tourist season, when thefts and robberies are on the rise, your first instinct would be to replace the lost caravan key at the earliest and secure your asset.
This article offers a valuable guide on how you can replace a lost caravan key and what options you have in this regard.
Replacing A Lost Caravan Key
When we lose something, the first instinct is to look for it in every possible place. Most caravan owners tend to put their keys in the car used for towing the caravan or in a safe place in the house. However, if you have exhausted all resources and looked everywhere possible without any luck, it is likely you won’t recover them any time soon, and it’s time to think along the lines of arranging an alternative.
Usually, caravans come with a spare set of keys that can be used in case you have lost or misplaced the original ones. However, you will need a new key if you do not have the spare set either.
Caravan keys have a special key number you can provide to the local dealer to get a replacement key. However, you will need a blank key if you do not have the key number.
Depending on your caravan’s type, make, and model, you may either have a regular non-transponder key, a transponder key, or a fob key.
Caravans sold before the 2000s had non-transponder keys and had a basic design. Getting those open or replacing them is not too costly. They do not offer special security features, and getting duplicates is easy. If you have a caravan from that time, you can easily get a duplicate key and regain access to your caravan.
Transponder keys or chip keys come with a chip inside the black cover at the top of the key. A special coding machine is required to program them, which can only be done via your dealer or a trained car mechanic.
So if your caravan model is a recent one, you will need a blank fob or transponder key, which you need to have cut and coded from the dealer or locksmith.
Alternatively, if you do not want to wait for a replacement key and want access to your caravan right away, you can ask a locksmith to open the door for you, but it will, too, come at a price. Moreover, if you are stuck in the middle of nowhere with the keys nowhere in sight, you cannot wait for a locksmith.
How To Replace A Lost Caravan Key: How To Open A Caravan Door Without A Key
Here we offer a few extended tips on how you can unlock a caravan door without a key.
Firstly, have a good look at and around your caravan to see if any window is open. If yes, then you are in luck, provided the window is big enough for you to get in and open the lock from inside. In case the windows are shut, try prying the emergency window open with a tool like a flathead screwdriver to get inside.
In an instance where the door is jammed shut, you can try lubricating the lock and hinges with a silicone-based lubricant or a dry graphite lubricant to try opening it. If you regularly maintain the door and hinges, the situation can be avoided.
You can also try picking the lock on the caravan door and opening it yourself. Let’s see how you can do that.
How Do You Pick A Lock On A Caravan?
If you have a deadbolt lock, you can follow the given instructions to pick the caravan lock.
You will need a few tools to open the lock. However, if you do not have ready access to any such tools, you will have to make use of any appropriate available item, like a thin wire, paper clips, or bobby pins.
If it is your first time, it may take a few attempts and a little while before you get there. So here is how you can open a caravan lock without a key.
Whether the door is jammed or locked, first familiarise yourself with the lock’s inner mechanism and understand how it works. A standard deadbolt lock has a barrel and pins. The hollow in which you insert the key is the barrel, and the pins inside move out of the way when you insert the key and twist it.
So you need to push the pins out of the way with the tools at hand. This will allow the barrel to turn and the lock to open.
Now you need to fashion a pick and lever out of the tools of choice. Straighten the pin or wire, fold one end to make a pick, and bend the other pin or wire piece to a right angle to make a lever.
Use a little force when turning the lever to keep the pins intact. Try turning the wire in one direction, but if you feel resistance, turn it in the other direction. A clicking sound indicates that you have opted for the wrong direction.
Now use the pick to move the pins away, insert the end with the bent side face up, and move it up and down.
Apply pressure just enough to move all pins up and make sure no pin is pushing against the barrel. Once all the pins are out of the way, your makeshift lever will be able to turn the barrel and open the door.
How Do You Replace A Caravan Door Barrel?
If you want to replace the door barrel in your caravan to replace it with an alternative, here is how you can do that.
Firstly, you must measure the lock barrel’s length from the middle to the edge on each side and make sure you have the right size. Once you have the two measurements, you can add these two to assess the required barrel length.
Now remove the old barrel by detaching the fixing bolt in the centre. Now turn the key to a trivial angle so the lock is released and the barrel can slide out. Put the new barrel in position and turn the key to fix it in the right place.
Screw the new barrel in position using the fixing bolt, and once you are done, test the lock to make sure the fitting is right.
Are Caravan And Motorhome Keys Universal?
Unless you have a specialised coded lock system, you may be surprised that most caravan and motorhomes have universal keys. The bad news is that this makes your motorhome vulnerable to thieves etc. Anyone may easily be able to break into your camper and rob the valuables.
At the same time, many modern campers are equipped with coded locks. If you can get a keyless lock, you will be able to keep your RV safe and will also be able to avoid the dilemma of losing or misplacing your keys. Just keep the remote control to lock or unlock the caravan at your convenience.