Unless you sound deaden your van, the thin steel body is going to rattle and vibrate as soon as you start moving and is going to do little to protect you from the noises of the outside world during the night.
If you’re starting your van from scratch, soundproofing really worth doing and will make a satisfying difference to the end result.
Why should you sound deaden your campervan conversion?
When you drive along, the thin steel sheets of metal reverberate and resonate and when you’re charging down a motorway, this can quickly become really noisy. One vanlifer measured this racket go to over 90dB on main roads.
The metal sheets will also resonate if they’re knocked during the night and do next to nothing to insulate you from the noises outside, disrupting your sleep.
What’s the best material for sound deadening?
By far, the easiest way is to use seal and peel mass loaded vinyl sheets, which you can either buy online or in home improvement stores.
How do you soundproof your campervan conversion?
To apply these, you need to:
- Take whatever panels came with your van (we used our Ryobi drill to do this).
- Clean the steel with an alcohol solution
- Cut the MLV to size
- If it’s quite rigid, a good trick is to soften it with a hair dryer
- Stick it to the steel panels
- Cover as many sheets as possible
Once you come to insulate that will cover it all and have added deadening.
For more info, check out Van Dog Traveller who’s written a really great step-by-step guide with lots of pictures to help you through this stage.