Fresh Start/First Question


Introduce Yourself…

Hey everyone,
I’m so happy to have come across a van community online like this! I’m looking to start new from the dirt up in creating a vanlife perfect for myself. Can’t wait to find info and pick up ideas from everyone here.

First question I guess would be what did people do with equipment removed from vans they gutted? Donate? Wrecker? Recycled somehow?

Very thankful,


The first thing most people try to do is sell it so they can make an extra couple of bucks to help out with the cost of the conversion.

You can try selling them online on different classified websites, if not a junkyard would be your best bet.

Just out of curiosity, how did you find the forum?
Glad to have you join us. Feel free to continue asking questions and engaging with the community.


Thanks for the input, definitely makes sense.
Nothing wrong with getting a little help where you can along the way.
I found the forum through the Instagram page, I loved what I saw and wanted to be a part of it.

Again thanks so much



When do you think you will start living on the vanlife?
and is it something you are thinking of doing part time or full time?


The dream would be making it as much of a self sufficient home as possible, but with that said I really am starting from scratch. I’m presently trying to find the bones on which I will build my castle :wink: and I figured joining the forum would give me great info and ideas on which I can grow off of.
As of right now only time will tell where this takes me, either full time or part time, but I would like to see it full


Greetings & Welcome!

If you get a passenger van and just remove the rear seats, you’re both time and money ahead. Your floor, walls, and ceiling will already be finished, and you’ll have opening windows, so no roof vents will needed. Windows make a world of difference in the livability of your house.

A lot of people push for gutting vans and adding insulation, but I don’t. I made that mistake starting with a cargo van, and it was the most miserable camper I’ve ever had. Heating or cooling a window van is simple and easy and no added insulation is necessary. Thanks to having a window van and parking in the sun today, even though the high was only 49f, it was in the 70’s all day in my van and I didn’t need to run any heat. In my heavily insulated cargo van, I would have had to run heat all day long. Without covering my windows, and no added insulation, my window van costs less than half as much to heat than my smaller heavily insulated cargo van did. Solar heat is a real money saver in the winter.

My current camper van for the past 10 years or so was the cheapest and easiest of them all to build, and is head and heels better than all the rest. It started out life as a passenger shuttle van with the high top. Instead of gutting it, and building it, I just removed the rear seats and moved my new furniture in and secured it using the former seat mounting points. I made no modifications to the van itself, other than to add a battery isolator for my house battery. Not so much as a single screw hole, no holes in the roof, nothing. Easy to heat, easy to cool, plenty of power, and all with a view. It didn’t take insulation, solar panels, roof vents, expensive fridges, or anything built in at all. This portable build works really great because it can be used outside too if weather and location permit.

If my van does die beyond repair, I can easily swap my whole interior to a different van as well, saving me even more time, money, and headaches.



Hey thanks so much for this!
Those were great points that I hadn’t even thought of, with the already installed sound proofing and existing points to connect newly installed furnishings.
Definitely realize I need to think outside the “cargo van” box a little and obviously want to save money where money can be saved.

I really want to use the sun to my advantage as much as possible for heat and power.

Thanks so much