Has anyone advice on what the best insulation material is for Canadian winters - including the humidity factor. I am living full time in my van and just arrived, from Ontario, in Alberta with temperatures in the - 30s.
Thanks in advance.
I’m up in the frozen North too, hasn’t been above freezing in a while, and I’ve got windows all the way around that I never cover. It’s currently snowing & blowing like crazy. I’ve done winters down to -60°F.
When you need constant ventilation, that pretty much defeats the purpose of insulation, so I concentrate my efforts on heating & cooling, not insulation. It’s currently a comfortable 74°F inside, and I slept on top of the covers last night till just before daylight when I got a little chilly.
I rarely run my heat longer than hour or so at a time, and I’m heating my big dutch oven filled with sand, which will continue to radiate that heat for many hours after the heat is turned off. I’ll run it maybe an hour before bedtime, an hour when I get up, and once or twice a day between times. It’s currently too cold for my heat pump to keep up, so I’m using one of my $5.00 stove burners/heaters. They’re a cheap dollar store DIY project, that is basically a multi wick liquid candle that runs on vegetable oil.
I have a 12vdc peltier powered heating/cooling blanket, that circulates heated/cooled liquid through it. And I have a couple of good old fashioned rubber hot water bottles I can take to bed with me too if I want/need them. They’ll stay warm all night too. An electric blanket is nice, but it’s also a luxury… I don’t want to rely on having power for my comfort or survival. Too many things can go wrong, and find yourself without any power. Fuel is much more reliable.
Comfort is high on my priority list, we don’t get extra brownie points for roughing it or being miserable. Heat works with or without insulation. Insulation might slow Mother Nature down, but only active heating/cooling can defeat her, because we don’t have room for enough insulation to defeat her, and ventilation only further complicates things. Heat for the win friend, heat for the win.
Thanks for all the info. If it would be only me I wouldn’t worry to much about the cold either.
I am in the same kind of temperatures as you are, however I travel with my animal family so it needs it to be warm for them.
Blessings, health, happy and safe travels.
Are you aware of the self heating pet beds & mats?
Yes, thank you, but which ones did you have in mind?
Blessings and health.
None specifically, but nomads with pets say the pets love them.
They also have self warming blankets for people too. When they first came out years ago, there was only one brand available, and the reviews weren’t very good, so I decided to experiment making my own… I got a couple of thin fleece blankets from walmart for cheap, and several of the cheap mylar emergency blankets. They were smaller than my queen sized blankets, so it took several. I sandwiched the mylar between the two blankets, and basically sewed them together using a diamond pattern, to keep the mylar firmly in place.
Not only did it work, they’re fantastic! Everything combined, it weighs less than a wool blanket, and is probably 5+ times warmer than the wool blanket. I liked it so much that I made several more. I have one draped over my chair right now, and another within easy reach if I want to kick back & relax in my chair.
Today, they have many choices available on Amazon, and if they work as good as my homemade ones, I can highly recommend them.
They even have power free cooling blankets available these days!