Metal Flooring? What to Do?

Hi all,

I’ve just purchased this Mercedes van with 35,000 mi on the engine. It’s 8 years old, and was previously used (as her twin brother was) as a shuttle bus for workers - bringing them into the factory for work from the parking lot. It’s a dually as well.

My first question: this metal flooring was probably pretty practical for moving people around. What are my rust odds lurking under there? I know it should be lifted to look for rust…but…

Second question - I know there are pros and cons to the dually wheels in the rear. My question is whether the suspension performance is improved by having them - or is it more a question of overall stability?

Last question (I promise)…I have heard other Sprinter owners talk about getting quite a bit of weight in their van (2500+) - far more than is recommended for my 2014 Sprinter L4L2. According to dealer specs - the van can only manage about 900 kg or 1984 lbs. That’s not really a lot of weight…are these owners fudging the numbers or are the specs from the dealer mistaken, or (fill-in-the-blanks-here)…? Does the fact it was a passenger van make a difference?

Thanks one and all for any insight at all!!!



I wouldn’t remove that floor, walls, or ceiling. You can check the original floor from underneath the van, along with any other dangerous rust.

Dually’s probably mean it’s a 1 ton or greater van. That’s good news. I would still keep your build as lightweight as possible & practical. Dually’s help considerably with stability & traction.

There should be a tag, possibly in the drivers side door jamb, that will give you the accurate load ratings for your specific van.


"Be the reason someone smiles today!" ~ Van_Dweller

Thanks for your answer - it is really appreciated!

I remember what you had said about leaving the walls intact because there was an assumption that a passenger build would want to keep the passengers comfortable. So, while visiting the dealership - I took a hard look at the walls. What the picture doesn’t show is that the wall is made of the thinnest possible wood. Not even sure it’s plywood since there seems to be only one layer of it. There was a small hole I was able to actually put my finger inside…I was unable to detect any insulation at all. The dealer, who is giving me a year’s warranty and doing the 30K maintenance work for it - says they only used a very thin layer of insulation in these kinds of vans. So…while it doesn’t look “bad” - it also doesn’t seem very sturdy. I would definitely be concerned about depending on those walls to hold any kind of weight. They were decidedly flimsy. Same story with the ceiling, of course - it’s the same light-weight wood.

I’m really happy to hear about the floor though - I did do a pretty thorough rust inspection and will check the side panels further when I get it home.

Does that additional info change your perspective on leaving those walls in place?

Thank you so much -! I have been reading a lot in the forum and I really enjoy your perspective!


The walls may not be original, the missing trim in the back corners suggest that it may have been a cargo van that they added windows to. I like to keep original factory interiors, but wood doesn’t sound normal.

If it’s not factory, it’s anybody’s guess what’s inside the walls & ceiling. I would investigate it. Try not to damage the panels though, as you may want reuse them, or use them for templates.


"Be the reason someone smiles today!" ~ Van_Dweller

Hey - I wanted to follow up on the wooden wall situation. I was watching a YT build today from the UK. They pulled exactly the same kind of wood from the walls from their Sprinter as are in mine. They called their model a “panel van”…so perhaps that’s where the wood comes from?

And they did indeed use the wood as templates going forward…


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