Used Motorhomes Bristol - Jargon Buster

Posted on January 14, 2019

Used Motorhomes Bristol - Jargon Buster #

If you are new to the world of buying motorhomes then it can all get very confusing. It can seem as though there is an endless ocean of different ranges, capacities, colours, manufacturers all with enough added features to make even the most level of heads spin. In just over a decade Newport Caravans has gone from serving clients in predominantly South Wales locations to attracting clients from over the bridge and beyond due to our excellent reputation for customer service, vast stock and inclusive aftercare packages. Consequently, many individuals looking for used motorhomes in Bristol have opted to make the short 40-minute drive to our extensive showroom just off the M4. We welcome enthusiasts of all ages and experience so if you are finding your feet why not take a look at our handy used motorhome jargon buster.

Awning #


An awning is an extended piece of material that is used to create an extended outside space. There are generally two types of awning. Drive away awnings are essentially a free-standing tent-like structure which is commonly used as a second room. Many people opt to use drive away awnings as a motorhome inner-porch where they can store muddy wellies, coats and other bulky items without dragging them into the main vehicle.

On the other hand, a canopy awning is attached to the motorhome and extends out with support from two legs. This type of awning is used to create a shaded area for sitting just outside of the vehicle. As one of the main dealers of used motorhomes in Bristol and South Wales, we offer a great selection of awnings at our accessories shop which can be found on site as part of our 20,000 square foot Newport showroom.

Cassette Toilet #

This most common form of chemical toilet found in many caravans and motorhomes. When a cassette toilet is flushed, water from the motorhome’s main water supply is used and along with the waste, is flushed into a cartridge hence the term “cassette”. While the waste is stored it is broken down and neutralised by a strong concoction of chemicals usually introduced in tablet form. The easily accessible cassette can then be emptied at many motorhome parks which have special dumping stations. Most cassettes have a special venting mode where the nozzle is securely fitted onto a dumping tank and the waste is then disposed of making the process clean quick and easy.


A CDP stands for Chemical Disposal Point and is an area specifically designated for the emptying of waste from a motorhome toilet. It is very important that waste from any kind of recreational vehicle is disposed of at a CDP because of not least hygiene issues, but the harm that can be caused by emptying such strong chemicals into the environment. Some toilet chemicals contain formaldehyde which is very toxic and should not be emptied anywhere by a clearly defined CDP.

Leisure Battery #

Many first time buyers looking for used motorhomes in Bristol and South Wales get confused between leisure batteries and vehicle batteries but the difference is simple. Leisure batteries are (in the absence of an electrical hookup) the source of power used to run small appliances such as kettles, lights, TVs, fridges etc whereas the main battery is used exclusively for starting the engine. Whilst the main battery is designed to deliver sudden bursts of high current, the Leisure battery delivers a lower moderate current for a longer period of time.


You’ve been driving all day and your leisure battery is nearly depleted as the the rest of the family have been in the back watching TV boiling the kettle and using up all the power. Electric hookup points are found at campsites and usually appear as sockets in a ground post. They provide a 240-volt/10amp output which you can use to run your appliances and recharge your leisure battery whilst you are static. One thing to be aware of however is that each EHP is fitted with a circuit breaker which will trip out if you plug too many appliances in.

Coach-built #

A coach-built motorhome is a vehicle that has been specifically built on a wide pre-manufactured chassis but does not include the driver’s cab. You will often find the sleeping arrangements overhanging into the driver's cab.


Otherwise known as the Maximum Technically Permissible Laden Mass, this abbreviation refers to the maximum weight capacity of a motorhome inclusive of vehicle weight, equipment and passengers. You should be aware of the maximum weight limit when buying a motorhome so it is important that you do not go over this figure as you could damage the chassis of your vehicle or end up with a fine if stopped by the authorities. You can usually find this on the chassis plate or on the users manual. We would always recommend that before embarking on a trip that you load up and pay a visit to a weigh station to make sure you are not exceeding your MTPLM. At Newport Caravans we understand that different customers will have different usage intentions for their vehicles which is why we offer a variety of used motorhomes with many different weight capacities.

Cab #

A cab or “cabin” is the area at the front of the vehicle containing both the driver and passenger seat. Cab features can vary depending on the model you select including extra air conditioning, built-in satellite navigation. Some motorhome models have driver and passenger seats that can swivel a full 180 degrees to face inwards thus integrating the cab with the main lounge area.  

Berth #

If you are looking for a used motorhome in Bristol then the many motorhome buying guides will always advise that you establish the desired berth of the vehicle you want. Berth simply refers to the number of people a motorhome can sleep. Obviously, if you are looking to take a five-strong family on camping holidays then you will need a vehicle with a high berth. There are many berth configurations but they mainly centre around having fold-out single beds in the living space, one read double bed or overhead/over cab bunks which are positioned along the vehicle’s roof.   

Need more answers? Visit Newport Caravans For Used Motorhomes Near Bristol #

The world of motorhomes is an exciting one but you need to make some decisions wisely. With the ever-growing ocean of available information online sometimes you need to speak to the experts in the flesh. At Newport Caravans we have been guiding customers towards their perfect motorhomes for just over a decade and have won accolades from a host of bodies including the Practical Caravan awards along with glowing testimonials.

We are a 35-40 minute drive from the centre of Bristol and our showrooms are staffed with passionate experts who can offer valuable advice no matter where in the decision cycle you may be.   

If you have an idea about a motorhome, browse our website today and filter either via berths and/or price.

To speak to a member of our friendly sales team call 01633 843 066.