How much weight can you put on a touring caravan roof?

Putting extra weight on the roof of your caravan is quite a controversial topic within the caravanning community as people always seem to have very different opinions. Some people think it is very unsafe to stand or walk on the roof of your caravan as the weight can damage your caravan, and you are also at risk of slipping and falling off the roof, which can lead to severe injuries. Other people argue that it is safe to stand on many caravan roofs, such as the Bailey Alu-Tech models, as they have been designed with a more robust construction that allows you to add more weight to the roof. You may want to stand on your caravan roof for cleaning purposes, or you may want to add a roof box to your caravan to store extra things. Whatever the reason for adding extra weight to your caravan roof may be, it’s vital to ensure that you know how your caravan will react to this added weight.

The amount of weight you can put on the roof of your caravan depends on which caravan you have. Unfortunately, this is not a figure that manufacturers list on their websites. This is because most UK caravans are not designed to have extra weight placed on their roof. On the other hand, some continental caravans can take this extra weight. These caravans usually have a ladder attached to their rear that allows you to climb up to the roof. This indicates that the caravan can take extra weight on its roof. In this blog post, I’ll be looking into the idea of standing on your caravan and the possibility of having a roof box for your caravan.

This blog post will discuss the following:

Weight on your caravan’s roof

Cleaning the caravan roof. Image from:

As mentioned above, there are often conflicting opinions regarding standing on your caravan roof. I used the Practical Caravan forum to reach out to experienced caravan users and ask what they thought about standing on the roof of their caravan. The majority of the users who replied explained that standing on the roof of your caravan is very dangerous. It could damage the roof of your caravan and can be quite hazardous as it can easily lead to injuries. These users explained that some manufacturers, such as Bailey, have stated that it is safe to stand on the roof of your caravan. In this case, you could stand on the roof if you want to. However, if the manufacturer of your caravan has not explicitly stated this, you should avoid it. User ‘ProfJohnL’ explained:

“Not all caravans are Bailey’s, and not all caravans are built the same way. It is not advisable to stand on a caravan roof, not only might it damage the roof, there is the risk of slipping and falling off, an even greater risk if you are using cleaning products.”

On the other hand, some users argued that it is safe to stand on the roof of your caravan as modern caravans can handle the extra weight on their roof. User ‘Hoomer’ referenced caravans that are built with a ladder on the back that leads up to the roof of the caravan and said:

“It’s a curious attitude when manufacturers offer roof racks and access ladders to models. Slipping? You are no more likely to slip than when cleaning your kitchen floor”.

To find out more about standing on your caravan’s roof, read our blog post ‘Can you stand on a caravan roof to clean it?’.

Caravan roof boxes

Fiamma Ultra-Box Roof Box. Image from:

Another reason you may be curious about the weight limit on the roof of your caravan may be due to needing extra storage space. There are car roof boxes for storage in your car that allow you to store items inside it while travelling. Similarly, caravan roof boxes are available, the main one being the Fiamma Ultra-Box Roof Box. This roof box is designed to be used on motorhomes or caravans as it’s made from a high-quality material which is resistant to impacts and weather. It also has high UV protection to prevent deterioration and a completely reinforced aluminium structure to resist damage. It also has a watertight foam seal to protect your belongings.

Although such products are available on the market, the issue remains the same. Is it safe to be adding this extra weight to the roof of your caravan? Whether you are standing on the roof of your caravan or using your roof to hold the weight of extra belongings, it’s essential to consider your caravan’s ability to endure the extra weight. I used the Practical Caravan forum to reach out to caravan users and determine what they think about adding extra weight to the caravan roof when using a caravan roof box. User ‘Raywood’ said:

“Unless the maker says yes, then I would assume no. Not sure I know of any continental caravans that have provision although some motorhomes do. A roof box might affect the weight distribution and so is unadvisable.”

‘ProfJohnL’ then added to this and said:

“Any additional weight carried at a high level in a caravan is going to reduce the caravans stability for several reasons.

Firstly it will raise the caravan’s centre of gravity which is inherently bad practice considering the relatively low tech suspension and chassis dynamics.

Secondly it will be unlikely to allow much fore and aft load adjustment, which will limit the users ability to adjust the load to set the necessary nose load.

Thirdly, as has already been suggested some caravan structures may not be strong enough to carry much if any additional roof load.

Fourthly, caravans are significantly taller than most tow vehicles, making access to the box considerably more difficult.

Fifthly, caravans are already rather un aerodynamic, meaning the tow vehicle already has to work considerably harder to tow them. The addition of a roof box on top of a caravan would add even more drag to the outfit. It would make less difference if the same roof box were fitted to the tow vehicle, as it would mostly sit in front and within the caravan frontal area adding less drag.

Sixthly, to be able to use the roof box, you would need the caravan to be hitched. Where as if it were fitted to the car, it could have other more practical usage without needing the caravan.

Caravan roof box. Not for me, thank you.”


Whether you want to stand or walk on your caravan for cleaning purposes, or you want to add extra weight to the roof for storage purposes, there is clearly a divide in the opinions of caravan users about whether it is safe to do so or not. When it comes to standing on the roof, manufacturers such as Bailey have stated explicitly that it is safe to stand on the roof of their Alu-Tech models. However, if you do not have a Bailey Alu-Tech caravan and the manufacturer has not stated that it is safe to stand on the roof, you should avoid doing this.

The same rule applies if you want to use your caravan roof to hold extra storage. Unless the manufacturer of your caravan has told you the caravan can handle the extra weight on its roof, it is best to stay away from doing this. Instead, you could use a car roof box on your towing vehicle and use this to store extra items. Alternatively, you can contact your caravan manufacturers and ask them personally for accurate advice based on your specific caravan model.

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