When treating a typical van or camper you must use a number of different products to achieve an excellent final result. Many camper van projects start life with very limited luxury, however the interior can be improved dramatically with the application of good sound deadening and insulation.
We recommend a simple easy to follow process, applying a panel deadening product first, followed by quality insulation over the top.
Stage 1 - Sides, roof and doors
Treat the metal body panels with a sound deadening mat to reduce resonance and panel boom.
Use on all metal panels up to 50% coverage for most cost effective results, or 100% on outer panels for a fully comprehensive job. This product can be used on any metal panel in your vehicle, with the most common areas to treat being the sides, wheel arches, roof and bulkhead. You may also add deadening to the floor if required, however the floor pan generally suffers least from vibration issues and will use a lot of extra material.
- A typical SWB van will require 4-8 sq.m of sound deadening (+ extra 4sq.m if floor treated)
- A typical LWB van will require 8-12sq.m of sound deadening (+ extra 6sq.m if floor treated)
Use a special formulation closed cell foam with excellent thermal and acoustic properties. Ideal to reduce noise, insulate the vehicle and to isolate barriers and trim panels.
Closed cell foam based products are the ideal choice for insulating a campervan. They are waterproof and are applied directly to the metal panels. This direct application means they act as moisture barrier, insulation and soundproofing in one clean low profile layer.
The low profile nature means that panels will refit easily and cables and ducting can still be routed through side and roof panels.
For the stage 2 product we recommend having a measure up to determine the correct amount needed. We suggest applying this like a blanket, covering 100% of the main panels. Quantity will vary most for this layer depending on van windows, pop-tops etc.
Optional - Side Voids
If the van is being used as a full campervan sleeper and you require the very best insulation for long term use, bolster the foam liner with Dodo Thermo Fleece. This thick 4" layer can be inserted into the deeper voids on top of the Dodo Liner to provide the ultimate thermal solution.
To prevent cold air being drawn up from under the van, a layer of closed cell foam underlay will help insulate the floor while keeping the profile low to allow ply and side steps to be refitted. The foam will also prevent the ply from "creaking" and act as a floating layer.
- A typical SWB van will require 4 sq.m of flooring
- A typical LWB van will require 5-6 sq.m of flooring
As an optional extra add a dense sound barrier to the floor. This will substantially reduce the airborne noise by blocking all frequencies that roar up through the floor; i.e road, tyre and exhaust noise. The barrier can be used in conjunction with a foam or on its own if height clearance is an issue.
Our online store offers bundles of the most common core products for SWB and LWB vans such as the Volkswagen T5 or T6 to make product selection easier. You can find these located here.
Forum Myth busters
We often see forums repeating bad advice, here are a few common mistakes you should watch out for....
Beware of any product that promises to cure all issues in one application. Structural noise, soundproofing and insulation require specific layers.
Flashing tape is not the same as sound deadening. While it adds some mass to the panel it is bitumen based and will perform very badly as a vibrodamping material and will degrade over time with vehicle temperature variations
Foil bubble wrap is not adequate insulation. While it is a very cheap solution it offers minimal thermal insulation and has very poor to zero soundproofing abilities.
Glass fibre and wool based "loft" insulation while thermally very good can absorb moisture. When used in a van prone to condensation, it is not the ideal environment for this type of product.