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The Ultimate Van Build Guide

Planning a van build? Read our free guide. We cover just about everything you need to know - from planning, to insulation, to solar and electrical, to picking appliances, to essential tools. Get started today so you can get out there on the road!

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Why I Chose a Chevy Van for Van Life

By Christopher Ives / May 13, 2020 / 1 Comment

Are Chevy vans the best van to live in? Christopher Ives details his life in an AWD Chevy Express, which he used as a base for his eco-friendly build.


Why I Chose A Nissan NV for Van Life

By Lisa Jacobs / May 13, 2020 / 5 Comments
Exterior shot of the Nissan van with people hanging out in a distance.

Nissan NV vans are less well-known, but they can be a great option for full time van life. Lisa Jacobs shares her experience living in her Nissan NV2500.


Why We Chose a Badass Truck Camper for Van Life

By Mary Ashley Krogh & Owen Chikazawa / May 13, 2020 / 5 Comments
truck camper parked in the desert

Is van life best lived in a truck camper? To help you decide, one couple talks about the pros and cons of living in their flatbed off road truck camper.


Why We Chose a Toyota RV for Van Life

By Danielle Boucek & Tommy Kawczewicz / May 13, 2020 / 2 Comments
Toyota motorhome parked in the desert

Is a Toyota RV a good vehicle for vanlife? To help you decide, one couple details their experience living and traveling in a Toyota motorhome.


Why We Chose a Volkswagen Vanagon for Van Life

By Dustin & Noami Grevemberg / May 13, 2020 / 1 Comment
Dustin sits on the roof of the van.

Are the iconic Volkswagen Vanagons the ultimate van life vehicle? One couple talks about their experience living full time in a 1985 VW Vanagon.


Why I Chose a Ford Transit for Van Life

By Sydney Ferbrache / May 13, 2020 / 4 Comments
Side shot of the Ford Transit with the side door open.

Is the Ford Transit the best van for van life? Sydney Ferbrache writes about the pros and cons of living full time in a self-converted Ford Transit.


Why I Chose a Sprinter Van for Van Life

By Kaya Lindsay / May 13, 2020 / 0 Comments
sprinter van parked in the desert

Is a Mercedes Sprinter the best van for van life? Kaya Lindsay of One Chick Travels talks about the pros and cons of her Sprinter van dwelling.


Why We Chose a Dodge Promaster for Van Life

By Chris & Christi Moody / May 13, 2020 / 0 Comments
side view of dodge ram promaster van

Is the Dodge Promaster the best van for vanlife? This post breaks down the pros/cons of living in a Promaster, so you can decide if it’s right for you.


Mounting an ARB Awning on a High Top Van (Without a Roof Rack)

By John Serbell / August 27, 2018 / 21 Comments
how to mount arb awning without a roof rack

We didn’t install a roof rack when we built our van. At the time, we didn’t see the need for one. “Our roof is going to be taken over by solar panels and a vent fan,” we thought. “There’s no reason for us to get a roof rack.” How wrong we were. We know now […]


The Best 12V Power Inverters for DIY Campervans and RVs

By John Serbell / August 7, 2018 / 17 Comments
Best 12V Power Inverter for Vanlife

It’s tough to live without electricity in today’s world, even when you’re traveling in a van. And if you want to keep your laptop charged, or if you like to make super healthy smoothies for breakfast, or if you prefer to freshly grind your coffee every morning – you need an inverter. An inverter is […]


Vanlife Mold Prevention and Redoing Our Floor: Tips and Lessons

By John Serbell / June 26, 2018 / 28 Comments
vanlife mold prevention

It’s every vanlifer’s worst nightmare. There’s a leak somewhere, and a good rainstorm brings a steady drip of water that might not seem like a big deal at first. But that water ends up leaching into some dark, unventilated corner of your van, and before you know it you’ve got a mold problem. This is […]


Refrigeration on the Road: The Best 12V Portable Fridges for Vanlife

By John Serbell / April 23, 2018 / 34 Comments
the best portable 12v fridges from vanlife

There’s nothing like having a refrigerator in your van to really bring the comforts of home on the road. Refrigeration means you can store fresh food and other cold items – like vegetables, dairy, meat, “booch,” and beer. It means you don’t have to fuss with a cooler full of ice and water-logged food. And […]


Epic Guide to DIY Van Build Electrical: How to Install a Campervan Solar Electrical System

By John Serbell / March 22, 2018 / 334 Comments
van build electrical

When we first started thinking about our vanlife electrical system and buying our components, we had a lot of questions. We researched online, read other van build blogs and forum posts, and watched Youtube videos. Some were very helpful, but many left us with a swirl of even more questions. We were learning a lot […]


Why We Chose a High Top Conversion Van for Van Life

By John & Jayme Serbell / March 7, 2018 / 21 Comments
Conversion van parked with a beautiful sunset

High top conversion vans are the perfect combination of interior space, low cost, and reliability. Does that make them the best vans for vanlife?


Insulating Your Van: Everything You Need to Know for Your DIY Van Build

By John Serbell / January 24, 2018 / 177 Comments
Van Build Insulation

If you want to stay comfortable in your van no matter the weather, you need to insulate. Insulation is one of the most important steps of any van build, and it pays to take the time to do it right. There’s also a lot of confusion and debate over the best way to insulate a […]


5 Things We’d Change About Our Van Build (and 5 We Wouldn’t)

By John Serbell / November 6, 2017 / 8 Comments
5 changes van build

It’s officially November, and for us that means it’s time for some anniversary celebrations! A year ago we launched this blog, quit our jobs, and jumped full steam into our van build. We’re also well past six months on the road, and we thought it would be helpful to reflect on what we’ve learned about […]


Vanlife Essentials: Installing a Smart Battery Isolator

By John Serbell / October 11, 2017 / 171 Comments
installing a battery isolator in your van

Having solar power in your van is just plain awesome. It means you can live completely off the grid with lights, a fridge, phones and computers – all while not worrying about electric bills or power outages. But sometimes solar power just isn’t enough, especially if your budget doesn’t allow you to throw down for […]


Installing Our Water System: DIY Van Build Plumbing Made Easy

By John Serbell / October 2, 2017 / 21 Comments
water system van build plumbing

If you plan on going off grid for any length of time, you need water in your van. And if you like to cook as much as we do, you’ll also want a sink for washing dishes and a way to catch waste water. But how do you go about setting all of this up? […]


On the Road with Our Fan-Tastic Vent: Would We Buy it Again?

By John Serbell / August 14, 2017 / 11 Comments
Fan-Tastic Vent Review vs Maxxfan Deluxe

It’s now been over four months since we left our old lives behind and hit the road in our van. Since then we’ve learned a lot about what features we do and don’t need, and what actually works best when you live in a vehicle full time. As soon as we hit the road, we […]


11 Space-Saving Storage Ideas for a DIY Van Conversion

By John & Jayme Serbell / July 24, 2017 / 8 Comments
11 storage ideas for your van build

It’s incredibly important to keep your space organized when you live in a van. You may not have many belongings, but in a small space things can quickly get out of hand if you don’t have a good place to put everything. That’s why planning your storage areas and using every available inch is so […]

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