Which heating system to choose for a converted van?

Living in a converted van is an increasingly adopted lifestyle, whether for freely traveling or simply adopting a more minimalist life. However, van life can present certain challenges, especially when it comes to maintaining a comfortable temperature inside the van throughout the year. As such, choosing the right heating system for a converted van is a crucial task. The purpose of this article is to help you choose the best heating system for your van.

Choosing the energy source

The first thing to take into account in choosing a heating system for a converted van is the energy source. There are mainly three types of heaters: electric, gas, and diesel.

Electric heaters are very convenient since they do not require a fuel tank. However, they consume a great deal of energy and, unless you have a significant renewable energy source (such as solar panels), it is unlikely that this type of heating will be a viable option for permanent use.

Gas heaters, such as propane gas, are another popular option. They are relatively economical to use and produce a comfortable heat. However, they require carrying a gas bottle in the van, which can pose safety issues.

Diesel heaters are also a feasible option, especially if your van already runs on diesel. These types of heating are particularly effective at generating intense and steady heat, but they can be a bit more costly to install.

Choosing the type of heating

Once you have chosen the energy source for your heating, you will need to decide on the appropriate type of heating. There are several options, including portable space heaters, forced air heaters, and hot water heaters.

Portable space heaters are ideal for short-term van travels. They are relatively cheap and require no installation. However, they can be dangerous if you don’t follow necessary precautions due to the risk of fire or toxic fumes.

Forced air heaters are an excellent choice for those living full-time in a van. They generate rapid heat and warm up the interior space evenly. Most models come with a thermostat, allowing the temperature inside the van to be regulated. They can be powered by electricity, gas, or diesel.

Lastly, hot water heaters, also called central heating systems, can be a good option for those looking for maximum comfort. These systems heat water that then circulates in radiators, thus heating the space. They can be powered by gas or diesel.

Other criteria to consider

Before making your choice, it’s important to consider several factors. Firstly, your budget: Some heating systems can be pricy, especially if you have to pay for installation. Secondly, the space available in your van: some heaters, like water heating systems, take up a lot of space. Thirdly, the amount of energy you will be able to generate: if you are relying on solar energy to power your heating, you will need to ensure that you have enough solar panels to meet your needs.

In summary, the best heater for your converted van will depend on your personal situation, your heating needs, and the amount of energy you can afford to devote to it. It’s important to weigh the pros and cons of each option before making a final decision.

Vans living can be an extraordinary adventure, and with the right heating system, you can ensure being comfortably warm, no matter where the road takes you.