How to insulate a van

Updated February 21, 2017

Insulating a van, particularly a camper van, can play a big part in keeping everybody warm. Insulating a van also prevents the interior getting damp due to condensation. Keeping a van warm and insulated is extremely important, particularly for people who use the van for camping. There are a few ways to insulate a van and they can be accomplished in a short amount of time.

Unscrew the panels located on each sliding van door. Remove the screws with a Phillips screwdriver and pop off any panel clips. Remove the back door panels in the same way, making sure to pop off the clips that hold them in place. Take off the front door panels on each side the same way. Set them all aside and save the clips for future use.

Put the fibreglass insulation into all of the panels in the door. Roll out the insulation and cut it to size with a utility knife to fit snugly into the door. Push it down firmly and press it into place so it fits without taking up too much space.

Add a vapour barrier over the insulation. Cut a roll of polyurethane to size and tape it over top the insulation to create the barrier. Continue the process for each individual door and make sure everything is sealed properly.

Install the original panels over the vapour barrier by screwing them back into place and clipping them if necessary. Inspect them to make sure they are all firmly attached and secure to the van.

Remove all other non-door panels from the van by unscrewing and unclipping them just like the previous panels. Add the fibreglass roll insulation in the same manner and measure the sizes of the opening the panel was removed from.

Cut 1.25 cm (1/2 inch) thick plywood with a circular saw to size to fit over the insulation and screw it in place over the insulation. Insert a screw in each corner and space out screws every 30 cm (12 inches) throughout to attach it securely to the van.


Removal of the panels may vary slightly depending on the type of van. Plywood can also be used as an insulator and put up in place of the panels if desired.


Always wear safety goggles when working with a circular saw to help protect your eyes.

Wear gloves when handling fibreglass insulation rolls or batting.

Things You'll Need

  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Fibreglass insulation
  • Utility knife
  • Polyurethane
  • Duct tape
  • Plywood
  • Tape measure
  • Circular saw
  • Safety goggles
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About the Author

Alexander Callos began writing in 2005 for "The Lantern" at The Ohio State University and has written for various websites, including Bleacher Report, Top Ten Real Estate Deals and Columbus Sports. He has published articles for CBS Sports, and other websites. He graduated in 2007 from The Ohio State University with a bachelor's degree in public affairs journalism.