Our DIY camper van conversion will be used as a winter splitboarding basecamp, so climate control is primordial and so is the EZ Cool thermal insulation. Thinsulate thermal insulation, along with the Webasto AirTop 2000 STC air heater and the Maxxair Fan are other key elements to make our campervan conversion comfortable during winter.

Choosing which type of insulation to use was one of the toughest decision; there is no perfect solution, therefore we went with the solution that was the best compromise for us.

The EZ Cool installation was performed progressively during the length of the conversion process, as we were installing the wall and ceiling. Why? Because if we covered the walls and ceiling too soon, we would loose the location of the existing holes for Plusnut installation.

 

What’s the point of the EZ Cool?

We chose Thinsulate (check it on eBay) as our “main” thermal and noise insulation. To be effective, Thinsulate requires to be fully expanded: that’s almost 2 inches thick for SM600L Thinsulate. There are locations where we just don’t have that space to install Thinsulate (we rather keep that space as living area), so we installed EZ Cool.

Is it redundant to install Thinsulate AND EZ Cool? NO! Metal is an excellent thermal conductor, therefore leaving some metal exposed is really bad for thermal loss. We experienced it during our conversion: while we were in the Chic-Chocs at -15F, the Thinsulate surfaces were warm to the touch as opposed to the bare metal surfaces that were freezing cold. We lost a lot of heat there. That was enough to convince us.

Why did we install EZ Cool over the Thinsulate at some locations and some other not? The EZ Cool acts as a vapor barrier. We did not want to sandwich the Thinsulate between the van metal and the EZ Cool, to let it “breath”. We believe moisture will eventually get to Thinsulate (vapor barrier or not) so we covered about 75% of the Thinsulate surface. This is a compromise: this way we get some radiant shield properties of the EZ Cool and we let breath our Thinsulate.

 

 

TIME SPENT ON THE JOB

Really, it’s hard to tell because the EZ Cool was installed as the conversion progressed. It’s fairly easy and fast to install, so let’s say 4 to 8 hours total.

 

TOTAL COST

200$ USD, more or less

 

DISCLOSURE: This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click and commit to buy one of the product linked, we will receive a commission fee. The price you pay remains the same, affiliate link or not. Buying through our affiliate links is a great way to say thanks if we were of any help in your van conversion! Alternatively, you can visit our Say Thanks! page.

 

 

MATERIAL

If you choose to only install the EZ Cool on the remaining exposed metal (following the Thinsulate installation), 200 Sq. Ft. should be enough. If you choose to cover the remaining exposed metal AND to install on top of the Thinsulate, you should probably get 400 Sq. Ft. (we are also using EZ Cool to make insulated window covers, so we went for the 400 Sq. Ft).

 

EZ Cool

A nice roll of EZ Cool

 

TOOLS

  • Scissors

 

RESSOURCES

  • There’s nothing to see here.

 

PRE-REQUISITE

 

HERE IS HOW IT GOES

It’s not very complicated, so we will keep this short and sweet.

 

Similar to Thinsulate, we used 3M 90 Spray Adhesive on metal surfaces. For installation over the Thinsulate, we used the aluminum tape included with the EZ Cool.

 

We really let go on the EZ-COOL pictures… here is what we have :

 

 

ON SECOND THOUGHT

On second thought, we should have take more pictures of the EZ Cool installation!!

 

 

WANT MORE?

Check out our Build Journal, or learn everything about The Van.

 

 

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ABOUT US

Hello! We’re Isabelle and Antoine, a couple dreaming of being on the move and we’re seeking for the ride of our life. We bought a Ford Transit van, we’re converting it to a campervan and we are now selling our house to make our dream a reality. We are sharing this in hope of inspiring and helping others to follow their dreams too!

 

 

CHEERS!

 

 

 

2 comments

  1. Comment by Jonathan

    Jonathan Reply May 13, 2017 at 2:55 pm

    More questions as I research your great site! …
    * Did you apply EZ Cool to the inside of the van walls in the larger sections under the thinsulate?
    * What material and sizing did you use for your firing strips that are used to fasten your finished ceiling and wall to? Did you consider other methods besides the firing strips?
    * What tongue and groove material did you use for your finished ceiling and walls? How is it holding up? You see any buckling?
    * Overall are you happy with the thermal AND noise isolation of your insulation method? Do overs? e.g. In lieu of the vinyl sounds layer you put in your flooring build, did you consider first laying down EZ Cool as the first layer over the entire floor?

    Thanks a bunch for your great work!

    • Comment by Antoine

      Antoine Reply May 15, 2017 at 8:35 am

      1) No EZ-Cool was applied under the Thinsulate. (see point 5 below)
      2) We used baltic birch plywood as firing strips. 1/2″ thick at ceiling, 3/8″ thick at most places, 1/4″ thick at a few places where we wanted a curvature in the wall.
      3) We used Knotty Pine Paneling from Home-Depot (5/16″ thick). It’s working great so far! No buckling. Some cracking sound, but not enough to bother us.
      4) We’re happy with our thermal isolation. We feel there is no need to put effort on noise insulation; the Thinsulate does the job. Next time, we would NOT use MLV layer on the floor. We feel it’s a waste of money and weight.
      5) EZ-Cool works best with an air gap, don’t waste money and time applying it directly on metal where you can have better (i.e. Thinsulate or foam). We applied EZ-COOL directly on metal only where we needed minimal insulation thickness, to break the thermal bridge between the metal and the interior finish.

      We will post more details on the Wood Paneling Blog Post, but we’re making slow progress as we’re busy selling the house, working on the van and distracted by the fact that mountain biking season has begun…

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