Campervan life can feel very real when you’re struggling to keep warm in the middle of the night, during the cold, dark depths of winter. It can make you want to turn the ignition and head for some place warmer, like a hotel… or home.
But it doesn’t have to be this way.
By performing a few ‘tricks of the trade’, you’ll be snug as a bug in a rug, sleeping soundly no matter what the mercury drops to.
The most obvious way to keep warm is to throw on some thicker clothes. Whilst this is fine during the day, not everybody is comfortable going to bed in a woolly jumper and socks. So, our tips are a little smarter than that.
Ultimately, the warmer you are, the better rested you’ll be, which can reflect on your mood, your experience and even in your driving ability; as a campervan insurance provider, we want to help you reduce your risk of being involved in an accident or road traffic collision.
Here are 10 things you can do to keep your campervan warm (or at least take the edge off):
Line your van with some heavy duty insulation
Some decent insulation can make all the difference to the inside temperature of your campervan. Van liner insulation is fairly inexpensive to buy and easy to fit – simply stick it between the inner and outer walls of your van (most campervans are double-walled) and you’ll notice an immediate difference.
Just remember that you might have to remove it again once summer comes around or you might end up cooking!
Keep feet warm with carpet
Lots of campervan owners opt for lino or vinyl flooring when decking out their vehicle. It’s a sensible choice in lots of ways – it's hard wearing, easy to clean and there are lots of colour and pattern options available – but it doesn’t always provide the warmth factor you need.
Instead, lay a carpet which will keep your feet warm whilst helping to trap warm air inside the van and stopping cold air from seeping in through the floor. With such a small space to fill, it shouldn’t cost the earth to fit (and can be replaced when necessary).
If you’ve already got lino down, put down a good rug, which will do a similar job to carpet and keep those feet warm.
Invest in a high-quality winter sleeping bag
Only when you start looking at camping kit do you realise just how much choice there is on sleeping bags. There’s good reason why sleeping bags range from £30 all the way up to £500.
Thankfully for your wallet, you don’t need to be looking at the sleeping bags at the top end of the market because they’re for extreme temperatures. But find yourself a sleeping bag that is made specifically for use in winter when temperatures drop below freezing.
‘Mummy’ sleeping bags are particularly effective at keeping you warm. Tapered at the bottom to help keep warm air inside and close to your body, you’ll be cosy all night long.
Go to bed on a full stomach
In everyday life, we’re told to be careful not to eat too many carbohydrates – and for good reason, as it’s bad for your health. But, on the particularly cold nights, it won’t do you any harm to fill up on some slow-burning carbs, which will help your body to stay warmer for longer, night and day.
For dinner, soup or chilli with a side of bread can make for a practical and warming meal.
Plug in an oil heater
There are a few options you can take when it comes to manufacturing a bit of heat with a heater. A fan heater is your best bet if you need a quick burst of heat during the night – but they can be noisy while in operation, so aren’t ideal if you need the van to be as quiet as possible in order to sleep soundly.
Instead, a small oil-filled heater can be used to tick over silently during the night, keeping the van at the temperature you want. You can pick one up for as cheap as £30. It might just be the best £30 you’ve ever spent.
Cover your windows
Part of the beauty of a classic campervan is having those large windows, so you can soak up those breathtaking views and see the open road ahead. But having such a vast area of glass can make things chillier in the colder months.
Buy yourself some thermal windscreen and window covers that will keep the heat in or invest in some curtains that will complement the classic style of your van whilst keeping you warmer at night.
Travel to warmer climes
We’re obviously speaking from a UK-centric point of view, where the winters can be bone-chillingly cold. But, who’s to say that you have to stay in the UK once winter comes around? When you own a campervan, you’re free to go where you please. And that might be warmer climes where you don’t have to think about how you’re going to stay warm.
Protect yourself with campervan insurance
Once you’ve winter-proofed your van, don’t forget to arrange that all-important piece of the puzzle: campervan insurance. Getting the right kind of coverage means you can get on with all your travel adventures knowing you're protected in the case of the unexpected. We can provide a range of quotes on specialist campervan insurance that could provide the following possible benefits:
- Cover for your Campervan whilst you are converting it
- Enhanced cover for personal effects
- Discounts if you’re a member of a club
- Panel of leading Campervan insurers
- Unlimited EU cover
- Up to £3,500 of cover for your camping personal effects
- Up to six months cover to complete a self-build conversion
- Value up to £150,000
Get a quote from Motorhome Protect today so you can hit the road whatever what the weather.