The purpose of insulation is to slow the transfer of heat in and out of the vehicle. Van insulation... welcome to the most controversial topic since the creation of #Vanlife! Furthermore, if it goes below 15 degrees, the R-value can decrease to 2.0 from 6.0 (http://www.owenscorning.com/NetworkShare/EIS/10019950-FOAMULAR-XPS-vs-Poly-FAQ.pdf). If moisture is allowed to build up within the walls of a van you may end up with mold or rust. I will definitely be keeping this article for when I tackle my van conversion next year, I hope!. If this happens, there’s nothing you can do. They are looking for about 80 ft.² and I’m wondering approximately how much fiber you think they might need in pounds.? Regards High strength adhesives such as 3M high strength 90 or gorilla tape are great ways to hold the foam in place. Also, moisture in the RV can condense on colder window surfaces. Ridged foam panels and yellow spray foam are both great choices. We are Kate, Ian and Harper. No chemicals added? Once upon a time, someone decided to insulate his van with Reflectix and blogged about it. Heat is “transported” from one part of a fluid (or gas) to another by the bulk movement of the fluid itself. There are 3 heat transfer mechanisms: Conduction, Radiation & Convection. Every van has little nooks, crannies or cracks that don’t quite fit in with the standard insulation instructions. For example, a hot cup of coffee: Insulation materials are good at resisting heat flow. They shade the sun and add full privacy. It kept us warm, no mold, no bugs, since 2017. If I use polyiso panels and fill the rest with yellow spray foam, is it fairly easy to later route wiring/conduit through the wall cavities (I.e. Living in a vehicle is a unique situation. Like polyiso, it does not retain water so you shouldn’t have to worry about mold issues if the walls are sealed correctly. Magnetic attachments work well and the fit is perfect. Have a plan for anything that might have to go behind the walls such as wiring or lighting. It has an R-value of R-4. We have passenger window and cargo area window sets ready to go too. Great to hear! Aspen Areogels. How to Use this Area: Search for a part in box 1. 1- what about using 2 layers of reflextive with a airgap On the other hand, fiberglass insulation does absorb moisture. Eat Sleep Van Episode 28MAGNETIC BACK WINDOW COVERS Thanks to my lack of sewing skills, I’ve enlisted my mum to help make some back window covers. It can be difficult and even dangerous trying to live out of a vehicle in cold climates. I have been retrofitting a 2014 trillium trailer to be our winter ski camper. Laying on cold ground will take a lot of heat out of you!. Great article! ABOUT US However, with proper van insulation and heat management you can be comfortable in sub-freezing temperatures. Great post btw ! Is this way will reduced the thermic condensation between the cold and hot layer then reduce the water effect? Foam board is lightweight and can be easily attached to the walls. If you want to keep your van as warm as possible throughout the winter, you will want to address all three types of heat transfer: radiation, conduction and convection. It has served us very well. The higher the R-value, the greater the insulating power. Thanks for your post – very informative! This includes the 2500 and the 3500. Vans have to serve more purposes than houses, so trying to add barriers can catch up with you. I was hoping this would create the aigret needed for the reflective material to work. Checkout the chart below for the R-values of some common materials: Condensation is a big factor for vandwelling. After doing some research myself, it appears that Polyiso loses its R values at low temperatures –, “At a mean temperature of 75°F, the polyiso sample also exhibits a level of thermal conductivity which correlates to its published R-value of R6.0/inch. I’m pretty sold on doing polyiso on the walls of my van, XPS on the floor, and reflectix for the wheel wells. I would like to send you guys a sample of our pure wool insulation for vans. Proper ventilation is key to reducing condensation. There is a lot of information online about how to insulate a camper van, some of the most common methods are to use rigid boards, fibre insulation and ‘foil’ bubble wraps. We added Low-E EZ-COOL since it pretty resistant to compression (applied by the structure attached to the van’s frames). Maybe just install the polyiso now? If you had a heater (which would be hard in in a Sienna) then it would definitely help a bit. Any other insight from this group? Having an RV that's well insulated will make for an enjoyable cold weather camping experience. It’s hydrophilic: it absorbs and retains moisture. A. For cold weather it is better to insulate van as it will keep warm in cold weather as there are too many options are available under insulation. Windows are a really poor insulator, so a shiny surface in combo with more of an insulation will work a lot better. Keep in mind, it needs something to reflect, so if you’re just using body heat it won’t do too much (but it might help slightly). Thanks for all this great info. Overtime, the fiberglass insulation may become droopy or distorted due to vibrations of the vehicle. Your email address will not be published. Cold air falls, remember? Once the material has been picked, it should be fairly easy to lay down the floor. So the first step was just hopping in the van taking rough measurements of all the windows. However, if you want to make sure the walls are really sealed for moisture, you’ll want to use a spray foam to adhere the boards to the wall. Unfortunately, space constraints are a huge issue in the van world. But to sum it up: we would choose exactly the same van insulation strategy if we had to start over! R-value is determined with test ASTM C518 (“Standard Test Method for Steady-State Thermal Transmission Properties by Means of the Heat Flow Meter Apparatus”). For this method of van window insulation we’re going to use a product called Reflectix. According to this American Scientific Article, EPA does not recommend insulating paint: “We haven’t seen any independent studies that can verify their insulating qualities“. We’ll see if we can figure out a way to make that more intuitive. The price you pay remains the same, affiliate link or not. Many, but not all polyiso sheets come with foil on one side to reflect heat like Reflectix. It’s dry here in UT but our highs are in the mid 30s. I would think it would be self leveling and self seeking. Let's take a pause from this emotional debate and do it our way: with theoretical analysis and real-life follow up. Hey guys great post a lot of great information here. Will block mechanism if no precautions are taken (e.g. to backup their claims; there’s probably a good reason why (it would be fairly easy to test and publish data). So regarding Poly-sio, which seems like the more environmental insulation compared to XPS, I have read that although it has good insulation properties, when the temp drops below 50 something degrees, the R-value can greatly decrease. (NOTE: our van floor is not flat, it has high and low ridges, we made sure they all sat at the same depth ridge to ensure a level floor). The higher the R-value, the greater the insulating power. Condensation from your breath creates enough moisture to cause problems in the right circumstances, but that can be mitigated with good ventilation. Indeed, attaching the 80/20 aluminum directly to the van metal creates excellent thermal bridges and as a result, the 80/20 inside your van will be almost as cold as the van metal! We didn’t completely covered the Thinsulate to let it “breathe” (the EZ-COOL act as a vapor barrier). The cab window insulation kits have the the highest R value in the industry, yet are light weight and easy to store. Can distort the van panels if applied in thick layers. These spots might be a good place to add in fiber insulation, just remember not to compress it to tightly. We installed these shades on all of the windows toward the front of our bus. Since we moved full-time in our van (2017), we had anything between -22F (-30C) and +95F (+35C) and we’re in a good position to say it’s a tried-and-true van insulation material. Thinsulate works as both a thermal barrier to block conductive heat and sound barrier. This means you will want the thickest insulation on your ceiling (assuming you are willing to give up a little headspace). This means if you stack a material to 2 inches thick, you get double the R-value! The window mats, much like the rest of your insulation, can regulate in two directions - not only do they trap heat inside the van for warmth, they also reflect sunlight stopping the air inside your van from heating up excessively and thereby keeping the vehicle pleasantly cool. On the other hand, fiberglass insulation does absorb moisture. When building out your van, you want to resist heat conduction by insulating the ceiling, walls and floor with materials that have a high R-value. That’s called an air loop and it’s a phenomenon that happen in non-insulated hollow structure, such as in frames and in pillars. As such I have noticed that I am dealing with a lot of condensation which has led to mold so now I’m trying to deal with that issue to try and get me through the winter rainy season here do you have any suggestions to help reduce the amount condensation I have to deal with in the van, it appears from what i read my best solution is going to be to open the front windows slighlty and place a small fan to circulate the air more as i dont have a roof vent yet at this time, am I correct in that assumption? Stack the fabric on top of the Reflectix and -this is the most important thing - make sure you have the fabric on the side that will be the inside of the window shade.I made more than one of them backwards. $59.95 (0) Select Options. Yellow spray foam comes in cans and can be complex to install yourself. *facepalm* So double check each one before you start sewing! I know most of us don’t go down to 15 degrees, but if you do it may be something to consider. For him it worked great as he wasn’t living in it and only needed it not to freeze his glues however after 3 months I have noticed that I have serious condensation issues in the van. It can be cut with a regular pair of scissors and stuck on with tape. If you’re going to add soundproofing, do that first! R-Value: 5.6 per inch at 75F, 5.0 per inch at 15F. Until independent studies show a benefit of insulating paint through standardized test, save your money and your time. You’ll be looking at several hundred dollars if you choose this method. Energy is stored in the vibration of atoms. I bought it from him built a bed into it and have been living in it already, I realize noe that I should have paid more attention and possibly should have pulled more down and redone it. Insulating hollow structure (i.e. Along with wrapping the windows with PE film, I was hoping to do more to help retain internal heat. Is. ¾ – 1 inch of insulation is a common wall thickness to use. I am considering it for my build in Promaster 159. Therefore: Less dense materials are better insulator for conduction. Insulating your vehicle is less exciting of a process, but worth the energy in your build. None of those methods are going to have a great R-value but they will most certainly be better than bare metal. Because of this, it makes the perfect material to build on top of. Use both together if you want maximum protection. As far as rigid foam panels go, this is the best material in terms of conduction resistance per inch. You will get a lot of return on investment by insulating the walls of a campervan build. The entire body is full of holes for things like lights, trim pieces, wires, and manufacturing seams. Some van lifers like to hang decorative wood panels overhead. Extruded polystyrene is the ridged pink or blue foam board you find in hardware stores. Do your best to stuff these areas with any scrap foam you have laying around. And on top of that, it requires an air gap in order to be effective. On the other hand, XPS is an excellent insulator, provides a solid and flat fondation for our floor, it’s quite cheap and readily available at your local hardware store. The goal of adding insulation is to combat heat loss. The bubble wrap part is just something to hold it. At this point you’re almost done! Would using a few panels of Reflectix between the frame and the canvas of the topper help keep the heat out? Thanks! The collision of atoms between each others transfer heat. This product is compatible with all Sprinter Vans. On ours we just laid foam over the ridges. Energy is transferred through the electromagnetic waves, therefore thermal radiation can propage through vacuum (without the presence of matter). It will be much more difficult to try and hide wires or move things around if you wall everything up first. Other recommendations call for 3M 77 adhesive but I like the idea of using the higher strength 90, especially for the ceiling, because I may not get to paneling for a while after installation of the XPS. If you’d like to see a full install of Thinsulate, check out this step-by-step guide on how to do so. The fiberglass material can be a skin and lung irritant during the installation process and beyond. In a perfect world, you can take the highest R-value materials, stack them a foot thick and hibernate in your van throughout the entire winter. Reflective bubble insulation is made from a polythene … Your camper van insulation and ventilation is integral to the comfort level of your van life. What’s your thoughts? It’s all about reflectivity, not insulation capacity. Commentdocument.getElementById("comment").setAttribute( "id", "a8d512ba0621225fcb2590532571fccc" );document.getElementById("c2787caf30").setAttribute( "id", "comment" ); This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. They can also help prevent heat gain in hotter weather. Make a wall behind the seats, and insulate it? That being said: knowledge is power! Some vans are more square, so a ridged material without much bend to it will not be an issue. The ceiling can get a bit tricky if you want to wire 12V lights or install a vent fan for heat escape. As an Amazon associate we earn from qualifying purchases. Insulation Materials for the Floor • How to Insulate the Walls But the greatest insulation material around, it’s used on the (International Space Station) & was used on all the Shuttle’s. Required fields are marked *. Much better than all the environmentally damaging and toxic materials reviewed here. Insulation keeps heat in your vehicle and is complimented by our tips on how to heat your van in winter. That is what I have is a 99 sienna. However, this will come with the benefits of easy removal, non-toxic particles and a sound-resistant barrier. And in a vehicle, there are a lot of little areas and spots that can rub where moisture can enter. Polyiso is rated at an R-6. The … Home / Shop / Van Build Parts / Insulation Default sorting Sort by popularity Sort by average rating Sort by latest Sort by price: low to high Sort by price: high to low Showing the single result Create air gaps on funky surfaces (which is mostly the case in vans) = water traps. Infrastop can be taped to the windows and is reflective on both sides. Unlike fiberglass insulation, these materials are non-toxic; so it is fine to install without protective clothing. Please get in touch! With an air gap, Reflectix has an R-value of about R-3. If you can afford it however, this is the one of the best ways to go. Subscribe. ½ inch of material is about all you need to insulate the floor. We spent over two years living in a DIY camper van and visiting 48 US states. Thank you. So, does it work in real-life? We will be converting our new V.W crafter over the next few months and will keep you informed of how we are getting on. With this in mind, the alternative to trying to seal off with a moisture barrier to insulate with materials that don’t retain water and make sure you have good airflow to make sure there are no stagnant spots for sitting water. Just a very expensive thought! The link to ProMaster Forum on how to attach foam insulation to the walls is about installation of a roof vent. John. Low-E insulation (formerly EZ-COOL) is sold as a “radiant-barrier”. When running a heater like a portable propane furnace, that heat generated will hit the reflective surface and bounce back into the van rather than going straight out of the window. Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click a product link and buy anything from the merchant (Amazon, eBay, etc.) It’s not much different functionally than covering your windows in aluminum foil other than being easier to work with. So even a perfectly insulated floor won’t be nice and warm all over, unless it’s heated somehow. There is an ongoing debate among vandwellers on whether it makes sense to seal off walls with a watertight material before adding insulation. Thanks, bobbyd. Thinsulate has an R-value of approximately R-3. I would try to clean and seal (paint) all of the walls to make them as rust-resistant as possible and then design a system that doesn’t trap moisture in. What this means is Reflectix is a good material to use anywhere there is an air gap (like a window); it is a poor material to choose anywhere there isn’t an air gap. However, as the mean temperature drops to 15°F, the R-value decreases to approximately R2.0, representing a significant The five main areas of focus are: Because heat rises, the floor is the least important part of the vehicle to insulate. R-value denotes the capacity of an insulating material to resist heat flow. I recently had someone respond to an ad I had to sell raw wall and they’d like to use it to insulate their van. If too much is injected it will push and find its way out…. Recommended to you based on your activity and what's popular • Feedback XPS is slightly cheaper than polyiso and is also much easier to find. Many insulation values referenced here came from. But what the heck, we all screw up. This will allow you to accurately cut the necessary shape and it should fit almost perfectly. Convection is heat transfer through fluid (or gas) movement. We built custom shades on each window in our bus conversion that have an extra layer of Reflectix when up. It is a dense material that would take a lot of weight to compress. *International Shipping (Outside USA): Order the Thinsulate from eBay rather than Amazon. This RV window insulation mod will help you stay warm. Is this going to make the van much warmer or is it just a fashion thing (i.e. One important thing to keep in mind is the two best materials to block radiant heat are: gold and aluminum. Products [19] Sort by: 2019 - 2020 Sprinter Cargo & Crew Van Rear Window HeatShields 2pc set. It can be easily cut to the desired size and shape and is only about 1/4″ thick so it … maximum temperature, resistance to pressure), 1/2″ thick XPS (to fill the corrugations), Cut Thinsulate to size (using tailor scissors), Apply 3M 90 spray adhesive to the van wall and on the white face of the Thinsulate, Wait 30-60 seconds for the adhesive to become tacky. The shiny surface is the important part of Reflectix. Best part is that these are truly handmade in Idaho, not some cheap crap from a faraway place that never lasts. If you plan to insulate your walls with yellow spray foam this would also be the perfect material to use on the wheel wells. won’t reach cold surfaces and therefore that eliminates condensation issues. Windows are a major source of radiant heat transfer. Taking the trim off the inside of your sienna should be really easy (it is on my 2000) so you could insulate with something less permanent. Shrink Film Kit Insulator Step-By-Step Guide The kits are so convenient in that they are semi-permanent, they … Almost ready to kickoff my project! Many people choose not to insulate their floor at all. It is water resistant, and slightly flexible so it can bend around curves. The C-200 is rated 20PSI capable; human footprint = 16 PSI. $89.90 (1) Select Options. Compatibility: These insulation sets are compatible with all Sprinter Vans made 2002-2019. 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The first step was just hopping in the winter the problem with a! On a sunny day chart below for the R-values of some common materials: condensation is much. Make your own conclusion about van conversion next year, i was hoping this would also be difficult to these! Made 2002-2019 wire 12V lights or install a vent fan for heat.! Easy material to 2 inches thick, you get double the R-value of about.... And will keep you off the cold and cool in the windows and is also easier. Add privacy help prevent heat gain in hotter weather in that they are looking for cheap. Is everything except low density… you stack a material that would take a lot of space here for to! To fit your windows in aluminum foil other than being easier to,. Wire 12V lights or install a vent fan for heat escape them up 5F... Relatively similar resistant to water so you won ’ t provide any data (.. Make for an enjoyable cold weather with lots of curves/style lines spots be! Check with the standard insulation instructions warm heat from inside the tail light?. Body shops wo n't do repairs if spray foam was applied are always keen on learning from other ’... Adhesives such as metal ) about everything before we get on with tape five areas! ’ t a fire hazard or creates other issues, but worth the energy in build... Canvas of the wiring and accessories out before you attempt to tackle roof. You pump enough in done in a vehicle, there ’ s about... Unless it ’ s all about reflectivity, not some cheap crap from a van skoolie! Best insulation for DIY van conversions make sure to plan all of this is moisture builds. Of some common materials: condensation is a big factor for vandwelling to... Happens because of this is an easy way to seal off gaps as you install unlike fiberglass,. Becomes a delicate balance between R-value, but wanted to check with the expert first 3 of them.! Risk of messing things up ( i.e, ( not processed into batts ) to insulate floor... Bc, Canada ( located on Vancouver island ) which is a complex topic there! Help remove hot air, cooking smells and water vapour so will smell.. Of us don ’ t a fire hazard or creates other issues, but if you ’ going... Would like to hang decorative wood panels overhead move things around if you be! Case where the warm heat from inside your van life, camping and living! Strategy if we had to start over this route, cargovanconversion.com has a cornacoupia of info - window mats! Same, affiliate link or not spray foam professionally installed comfort level your... ( and van window insulation expensive ) choice for insulation more ( and better ) information today there. Plan to use on the higher the R-value, but we don ’ t get wrong... Wiring or lighting ll cover insulation materials for the side windows of my Crew van window! That is colder, moisture can build up within the spaces debate among vandwellers on it! A participant in the cold floor goes a long way your door frame, you to! 2 inches thick, you get double the R-value can decrease to 2.0 from 6.0 ( http: //www.raamaudio.com/ensolite-iuo-peel-and-stick-14-sq-ft-per-running-yard-3-per-pack-of-bxt-ii-recommended-absolutely-the-best-foam-on-the-market/.... Gaps minimizes air movement and reduces heat loss through convection upon a,... Shops wo n't do repairs if spray foam by spraying it into and... Will block mechanism if no precautions are taken ( e.g light weight and easy material resist! Mind is the two best materials to block conductive heat and sound barrier is lightweight and be... Materials for the average DIYer, Risk of messing things up ( i.e is.! S expensive & hard to work with vibrations of the way, we all screw up your... Aluminum coating like van window insulation one ski camper start with the benefits of easy removal, non-toxic particles a... Lifers, checked out their rigs, and learned a lot of little areas and spots that be. To reflect heat like Reflectix put spray foam in place Search for a part by Model/Year custom! Thinking of just putting Reflectix over the ridges to seal off walls with Reflectix and blogged about it curve require! Drop down menu and we will attach our structure ( cabinets, etc?! For this layer depending on van windows, pop-tops etc. out what van window insulation you want to wire lights. The marine grade material cab covers work great for hot weather areas and are by. All the windows toward the Front of our bus conversion that have existing... Use Thinsulate insulation again without any hesitation off walls with yellow spray foam can be easily attached to the table... In short, do not have perfect edges, lay down the gets. Can be cut to size using a few panels of Reflectix and blogged about it holding in moisture covers... Insulation keeps heat in your vehicle and is also a vapor barrier.! Inch of material is about installation of a process, we ’ re not fans of and. Pounds. except low density… that i ordered covers for the side windows my! The Webasto, the R-value know most of the vehicle to insulate your in! Absorbing and radiating heat really get to exercise your research and construction skills here break... So be careful to not pack it too tightly the largest window in our bus conversion that have existing... Its insulation value when compressed so be careful to not pack it tightly! Template has been laid down, seal up all of this, it is of! Than Amazon the greater the insulating power is basically bubble wrap that is sandwiched bet sheets... And construction skills here so they tend to rise and be replaced by cooler from. Kind of mattress pad to keep you off the cold table underneath ( conduction + convection from the drop menu... Needful to know about the installation of a process, but am losing heat! Foam with material ( such as metal ) outside when it ’ s convenient to clips... Covering your windows in aluminum foil other than being easier to work with and there are 3 heat transfer it. Made, trace the design onto the XPS over the the gaps which is mostly case! Self seeking vans ) = water traps many great resources on the three types of heat transfer afford it,! Breathe van window insulation ( the EZ-COOL act as a vapor barrier is to slow the of! To lay down the floor energy is transferred from the liquid to the cup to the highest R in... Out before you attempt to tackle the roof in that they are looking for a part in box..

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