How to Keep a Small Camper Warm

Written by eric cedric
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How to Keep a Small Camper Warm
Campers let you take to the highways to see the wilds of the country. (Jupiterimages/ Images)

Small camper trailers like popups or hard-shells less than 21 feet in length are portable "homes" for road-based camping adventures. Many of the campers get towed off-road as well, for a style of camping referred to as "boondocking." Many campers have factory-installed heaters powered from the liquid propane (LP) fuel stored in the camper's LP tanks. There are two things to consider when heating and keeping the camper warm: the heat source and the ventilation.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Ceramic heaters

Show MoreHide


    No Hookup Camping - "Boondocking"

  1. 1

    Turn on any factory-installed propane heaters in the camper, first checking that there is adequate fuel in the tanks. Turn the LP tank valves counterclockwise to open the fuel flow.

  2. 2

    Set the heat setting to the desired temperature. Open the windows one-half to one inch to allow adequate ventilation. Because the propane heaters use flames, oxygen is removed from the air and, unless the camper is ventilated,this presents asphyxiation danger.

  3. 3

    Heat the camper fully until all contents are warm. It takes a few hours to heat up and warm the interior of the camper. Once warm, adjust the heat setting to a lower temperature that keeps the inside warm. Leave the heater at a low setting when leaving the camper, thus keeping the interior warm. Push all objects away from the front of the heater before leaving the camper.

    Hookup and Front-country Camping

  1. 1

    Plug the camper in to the campground electrical system. Plug in one or two small ceramic heaters and turn them on to heat the interior.

  2. 2

    Turn the heat setting down once the interior is at an adequate temperature. It is less important to open windows to ventilate as the ceramic heaters do not burn fuel or have an open flame. Most campground include electricity in the camping fee so you aren't being charged for the use of the heaters.

  3. 3

    Move all objects away from the heaters and adjust to a low setting to keep the interior warm when heading out for the day. This ensures you have a warm camper after your day's adventures.

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