Best way to insulate these dang Ford Econoline walls?


#1

Hi! I am relatively new to the vanlife community and I have some questions about insulation.

I recently bought a 2000 Ford Econoline and I’m ready to start insulating it. My question is: what is the most efficient way to insulate these inconvenient wall panels that the Econoline has provided me?? My plan was to use polyiso board for the wall/ceiling but I have run into a mental block while trying to figure out how to insulate the walls. As you can see (in the picture below) they are not flat walls like I have seen in most van builds. I was wanting to stay away stuffing fiberglass insulation in the empty pockets between the outer wall and the “inner wall” - I know they make things like sheep wool to replace fiberglass, but how well does that insulate and would I have to build a moisture barrier?

I have done a bit of homework on different brands/types of insulation but I don’t want to screw anything up too badly or cause moisture buildup if I can help it. Any insight would be MUCH appreciated.

Thank you!!


#2

Hey!

We used a rigid insulation with a vapour barrier under the plywood subfloor.

For the walls and doors we used classic wool and spray foam for the cracks.

And for the ceiling we used Reflectix. Make sure to use this one correctly. You need an air gap in between the Reflectix and the metal roof/wall. Otherwise it’s useless.

Also we added an extra layer of Reflectix (again, with air gap) under our bed structure. It helped a LOT during the winter to avoid having the cold air come up from the ground.

Good luck! :slight_smile:


#4

Here is what our insulation looked like. Sprayfoam holding polyiso boards.


#5

Loving the finish. When insulating remember it is all hidden. Doesn’t have to look amazing. You can even use like an insulating expanding foam to get into hard sto reach spots. The main thing to remember is think about you electronics before insulation and finishing. Run your wires to where you want lights, sockets, fans, fridge etc. good luck :+1::ok_hand:


#6

Maybe not the best way but when I did mine I put polyiso foam board insulation in the top ‘window’ parts and then stuffed broken up leftover pieces of poly iso (and leftover polystyrene from my floor) into all the other gaps and the covered those areas in with closed cell spray foam (gaps n cracks). I have seen some people stuff wool or fiberglass into all the little holes and then seal in with plastic and tape but I didn’t bother.


#7

I have to agree that spray foam may be your best bet, for ease.

However, if you have the time, try some crafty filling with thin rigid insulation, as opposed to using only spray foam. The picture a few posts above, looks like what I am talking about.

Keep tabs on where your potential mounting holes are. (Place a long screw or dowel in the stock mounting holes, so you can locate them through the insulation.) Also add any expected “other” supports NOW, before you attempt to insulate. Keeping in mind that you can always just build up off the floor with most things, but some things will require more mounts than the stock inner-frame can offer.

P.S. Pre-plan for wiring too… PVC conduit should be put in place FIRST, anywhere you think you may need wires pushed through. (Otherwise you have to do it outside, exposed to the elements under the vehicle.)


#8

I’m about to put light metal panels to protect my small van and I thought to insert some insulating material beneath them and the original walls. the garage supposed to fix those panels told me that insulating material could be a bit unuseful for my van as it’s small and there’s no panel between the back and the front seat.
do you think this could make sense?


#9

Any insulation is better than no insulation. The 1/4" thick polystyrene is flexible enough for curved walls and ceiling and several layers can be glued together.