Exterior-Shower-Heading-(1200px)

In this article we discuss about building a DIY exterior shower for a camper van conversion. We LOVE riding our mountain bikes. It can only means two things:

  1. We drink a lot of craft beer
  2. We take a lot of showers

 

Let’s focus on the latest point. We had two main requirements for our van’s exterior shower:

  • To have hot water (for colder days and because we’re high-maintenance dirtbags)
  • To have intimacy (so we can wash at the trailhead right after the ride)

 

 

TIME SPENT ON THE JOB:  8-12 hours

 

TOTAL COST : Approximately 100$ (excluding the Propane Instant Hot Shower)

 


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MATERIAL:

  • Waterproof Fabric (We sourced it from our local store)
  • Zipper (We sourced it from our local store)
  • Velcro (We sourced it from our local store)
  • Grommet with tool (Buy from Amazon)
  • Adjustable Curtain Rod (Such as this one here: Buy from Amazon)
  • Swivel Hooks (Buy from Amazon)
  • Showerhead Bracket with Suction Cup (Buy from Amazon)
  • Eccotemp L5 On-Demand Propane Hot Shower (Buy on Amazon)

 

 

Here is how our van exterior shower works:

 

Here is the back of our van:

Eccotemp Shower Camper Van Conversion

 

And here is the back of our van with the Mosquito Screen down (read everything about our Mosquito Screens here: https://faroutride.com/mosquito-screens/ ). The fabric is waterproof, so our garage doesn’t get splashed while we shower (if you don’t have that don’t worry, it’s not mandatory. We sometime take our shower without the screen down!):

Exterior Shower Campervan Conversion (3)

 

Finally, here is the back of our van with the exterior shower setup fully deployed:

 Exterior-Shower-Campervan-Conversion-7

 

The curtain is hooked on the back doors:

Exterior Shower Campervan Conversion (11)

 

Voyeurs are all over the place, so we made sure they get no chance to watch:

Exterior-Shower-Campervan-Conversion-(12)

 

We added a zipper to get in and out:

Exterior Shower Campervan Conversion (14)

 

We also added an adjustable curtain rod (http://amzn.to/2yFd1pg) to prevent the curtain from getting blown inside when it’s windy. It’s adjustable for easier storage (the rod slides-out of the curtain):

Exterior-Shower-Campervan-Conversion-(5)

 

The shower head is held by a neat little bracket with suction cup (http://amzn.to/2fQ4NTn):

Exterior Shower Campervan Conversion (1)

 

Satellite view:

Shower View from Top

 

When the shower is not used, we roll the curtain and store it in the van.

 

We use the Eccotemp L5 on-demand hot shower (amzn.to/2tXrHOY):

Eccotemp L5 Camper Van Conversion Hot Shower

 

Everything about the Eccotemp is here (installation, operation, review):

 

 

That’s pretty much it. Thanks for reading.

Yeah, unless you’re thirsty for Instagram’s likes, we recommend using a shower curtain.

 

 

ON SECOND THOUGHT

Nothing to say about the summer exterior shower, it’s doing what it’s suppose to! The only downside we can think of is that it MUST be dried out before storing (to prevent mold); that’s the most time consuming part about that setup. But hey, there’s no rush 🙂

 

 

 

WANT MORE?

Check out our Build Journal, learn everything about The Van, read our VanLife Guides, or if you’re new to this start by reading The Prologue.

 

 

 

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ABOUT US

Hello! We’re Isabelle and Antoine 🙂 In 2017 we sold our house (and everything in it), quit our engineering careers and moved into our self built campervan. We’ve been on the road since then and every day is an opportunity for a new adventure; we’re chasing our dreams and hopefully it inspires others to do the same!

 

 

CONNECT

Join our Facebook group to connect with other passionate DIY campervan builders like you!

 

 

CHEERS!

 

 

 

19 comments

  1. Comment by Mike

    Mike Reply July 8, 2018 at 4:22 pm

    Wonderful couple and helpful site; we’re progressing our build for the van life as well. Could you provide a link to the Eccotemp L5 upgrade. I saw it once, though now I’m unable to find it again.

    Cheers !!

      • Comment by Mike

        Mike Reply July 8, 2018 at 6:14 pm

        Thank you so much for the quick reply!! Will you be creating a blog/build journal post on how the Eccotemp replaced the Mr. Heater and its installation in the van? Again, mucho thanks for the inspiration you both share.

        Cheers !!

        • Comment by Antoine

          Antoine Reply July 8, 2018 at 6:57 pm

          We will in a week or so! Stay tuned!

  2. Comment by Doug (Hack Saw)

    Doug (Hack Saw) Reply October 8, 2017 at 9:36 pm

    ps-Happy Thanksgiving-Doug

    • Comment by Antoine

      Antoine Reply October 9, 2017 at 3:19 pm

      Huh, thanks for letting us know! Maybe we need a calendar in the van?!

  3. Comment by Doug (Hack Saw)

    Doug (Hack Saw) Reply October 8, 2017 at 9:20 pm

    Have you guys come up with a winter shower yet? I’ve got some thoughts on a cheap-fix to the situation I think and easily stored after use. Use two of these: home water heater pans, plastic in many sizes too.
    http://www.homedepot.com/p/Everbilt-30-in-Plastic-Water-Heater-Drain-Pan-15032/302030901
    Two because your going to join two (white?) polyester-nylon shower curtains together (form a tube) using ‘Stich-Witchery) to in a tapered manner and pinch the tapered bottom portion, tapered to fit about 30″ and in between the two pans (gotta cut one to allow the drain hose access when ‘stacking’ the two pans) Using 1/8 bungee/shock cord, affix this to the ceiling in some manner I know you’ll be able to come up with. Shower access is done one of either two ways; 1) step over and into shower and affix to ceiling, or 2) when using the ‘stich-witch’ you overlap the curtain somewhere and make yourself a ‘slit’ permitting access while the shower is up and installed. Either way you gonna want to do a small ‘slit’ to permit the shower-head/hose access to the inside. Of course, the side adjacent to the sink. I think from here you get the idea. Now, if you really want to put a twist on it, make the bungee setup so that when you step out of the shower, it retracts and lifts the one side opposite the drain so it essentially is a self-draining out the slider door that is ‘ajar’ for draining outdoors, or a jug. You got a cheap, storable, 30″ minimum shower in a V-Shape ‘funnel’ with plenty of room for two, maybe, to minimize water use. Any thoughts?

    • Comment by Antoine

      Antoine Reply October 9, 2017 at 3:18 pm

      Yeah, it’s 75% done, we just need to figure out a clean way to attach the curtains rod on the ceiling. It’s very similar to what you propose: a plastic drain pan, 2 sewed curtains (taper). The curtain is attached to the pan using velcro (so it can be removed to dry) and is hold using two semi-circular PEX curtain rods (the two semi-circular PEX rod can be disassembled for storage).

      That’s pretty much it! Like I said it’s 75% done, we just need to finish it when it’s too cold to shower outside!

      Thanks for your input!!
      Antoine

  4. Comment by Cathy Furtado

    Cathy Furtado Reply September 30, 2017 at 2:06 pm

    Hello!

    Lovely site! I’m planning on a back kitchen with Ecotemp for hot water and back outside shower. Don’t really want an inside shower but am fretting over cold weather. “If winter was out of the equation, we would go for the Ecotemp.” Is that because you will move the Mr. Buddy to another area of the van? or is there another reason. I’m looking forward to reading your winter showering solution. Cheers!

    • Comment by Antoine

      Antoine Reply September 30, 2017 at 2:10 pm

      Hi Cathy!

      Yes, it’s only because we want to move it to another location during winter. No other reason!

      We will write on our winter shower when it takes form 🙂

  5. Comment by Sarah

    Sarah Reply September 29, 2017 at 2:11 pm

    Thank you for not posting a “chick-ass-shower-van-picture.” Thank you for keeping it real.

    • Comment by Antoine

      Antoine Reply September 30, 2017 at 9:20 am

      Ahah, glad you noticed that! 🙂

  6. Comment by Tom

    Tom Reply September 27, 2017 at 9:21 pm

    I don’t see mention of how you attached the waterproof fabric across the back of the van.
    Can you detail that for me?

    • Comment by Antoine

      Antoine Reply September 27, 2017 at 10:41 pm

      Are you referring to this: “The fabric is waterproof, so our garage doesn’t get splashed…”? If so, that’s the only part of our conversion we didn’t make ourselves. It’s all detailled here: https://faroutride.com/mosquito-screens/

      Is that what you are referring to?

  7. Comment by Mike

    Mike Reply September 27, 2017 at 8:22 pm

    Do you try to use it only on hard surfaces or is it work okay over soil? I’m imagining a mud pit forming.

    • Comment by Antoine

      Antoine Reply September 27, 2017 at 9:12 pm

      We have a rubber carpet, but yeah hard surface is better!

  8. Comment by Paul

    Paul Reply September 27, 2017 at 7:07 pm

    Remember — voyeurs are everywhere! Your “satellite” view proves you still have some work to do! 😉

    Seriously — nice work. We’ve been planning something very similar, just haven’t felt dirty enough yet. 🙂

    • Comment by Antoine

      Antoine Reply September 27, 2017 at 7:37 pm

      Thanks! We didn’t need the curtains most of the time so far, we managed to just find quiet places… but it’s nice to have some privacy when we need it!

  9. Comment by John

    John Reply September 27, 2017 at 2:48 pm

    “(If you expected the typical like-magnet-ass-shower-van-picture, you’re at the wrong place; we’re not that desperate for attention.)”
    hahahaha love it!!
    Well done guys!

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