James Stanbury

See other accessory reviews written by James Stanbury

If you need a cheap and cheerful compact clothes airer for your motorhome, check out our Kampa Universal Clothes Dryer review to discover the pros and cons

Overview

How do you get your towels dry after a shower during motorhome holidays? If you're among the happy band of winter sunseekers and fair-weather motorcaravanners, it's easy. You can just drape them over the wing mirrors to dry in the sun until you're ready to drive away. But what can you do on rainy days, and those atmospheric mornings when a sea mist rolls in? 

We think that the right clothes airers should be part of everyone's touring kit, and so we have selected a group of rival products for testing. What we're looking for are clothes airers that perform the task quickly and efficiently. They need to be light in weight, yet robust enough to cope with the rigours of life on the road. The best clothes airers offer plenty of drying space for their size. They should also pack down small to fit into a motorhome locker or under-seat storage area. What's more, they shouldn't cost too much, should be easy to use, stable in the wind and possible to use inside the 'van when we're driving along as well as outside if the weather's good enough when we stop.

To find out which are the best camping accessories for motorhome touring, we regularly carry out group tests of outdoor gear, gadgets, such as dashcams, and more. For our group clothes airer test we have compared the Kampa Universal Clothes Dryer AC0600 costing £9.99, the Kampa AC0290 at £11.99, the Quest 4-Arm Rotary Airer at £29.99 and another portable rotary washing line, the Vango Clothes Drier at £35.

The Kampa Universal Clothes Dryer AC0600 is a great little airer for less than a tenner. At first glance, this airer seems to address the prime weakness of rivals, which is that they have fiddly side clamps that should be adjustable but are too fiddly to budge. By contrast, this Kampa Universal Clothes Dryer AC0600 has plastic arms that are durable and a doddle to position over a door, over a window-sill and then use at home over the bath or a balcony. Nevertheless, the arms don’t actually work very well.

All over-door and window-sill airers like this one half-hang and half-rest against the vertical surface from which they are hung. Some rival airers, such as SunnCamp FN9600, have side rails that stick out further than the final drying rail and also have plastic feet to protect the surface they balance against. However this doesn’t happen on the Kampa AC0600. Instead, the rear rail is effectively the back support, which prevents it from being used to hang laundry from. Losing 60cm of potential hanging space from that final drying line is somewhat annoying because it means that the total amount of laundry capacity is just three metres of hanging space. SunnCamp's similar looking £4.25 airer offers at least four metres of room for drying and airing.

Technical specs

Capacity3m of laundry hanging space
Size60cm x 23cm approx
FittingAdjustable mounting
MountingArms hook over door, window-sill, bath, balcony, radiator

Verdict

At just £9.99 the Kampa Universal Clothes Dryer AC0600 is worth including in your motorhome touring kit. It offers just enough drying space to make sure you can get your towels dry after a morning shower and freshen up a few small items of washing. If you prop the washroom door open in transit you can leave the washing hanging from this airer while you drive along.

We've awarded the Kampa Universal Clothes Dryer AC0600 a four-star rating for motorhome holidays.

Conclusion

Pros

  • Low price
  • Compact to store and use
  • Easy to position
  • Fits over doors and window sills in the 'van

Cons

  • Only 3m of hanging space
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