How to Soundproof a Van (5 Easy Steps)

In this blog post, we will talk about, “How to soundproof a van?”, and discuss the types of noises in a van. We will also give you an insight into the four main soundproofing parts of the van and provide you a simple 5-step guide to soundproof a van.

How to Soundproof a Van?

By following these 5 steps you can easily soundproof your van;

  • Clean and Dry the Van
  • Add Soundproofing Flooring
  • Insulate the Doors
  • Soundproof the Roof
  • Insulate the Windows

Types of Noises in a Van

You should know that noise can be produced in a few different ways before you start to soundproof the van, which means that you will not use just one material and one system, but rather a couple, depending on how the sound is transmitted.

Metal Sheets Resonance

Typically, when it comes to van noises, the main culprit is the large and thin metal sheets. This is because they reverberate, as a gong does, not just transmitting the sounds, but also amplifying them.

You may find your windows shake or create a rattling noise when a bus or a truck drive by your house. Placing your hand on the glass pane effectively absorbs vibrations and quiets down the noise.

The same thing happens to your van and you need to place somethings on them to stop them from vibrating. Placing a hand is no longer an option and what you need here are sound-deadening materials.

The Road Noise

The road noises require you to soundproof your van with sound-blocking materials to restrict the entry of airborne road sounds. 

You need mass and thickness to counteract the road noises and you can get these two from materials like mass-loaded vinyl and insulated doors. 

Other Airborne Sounds

There are many other airborne sounds as well on the road made by your van and the cars nearby. To dampen these sounds, you need to do the same things you did to reduce resonance and that’s to add sound-absorbing materials like carpet or acoustic foam.

Soundproofing a Van

You know that both the camper vans or regular vans are usually very noisy vehicles. Vans are not only noisy, but they also have poor heat insulation, which means they heat up like an oven in the summer and freeze like a chiller in the winters. 

Soundproofing a van not only equips them with the materials needed to fight off sounds but also makes them better insulated against the heat.

There are many reasons to soundproof a van; if you use one for work, or whether you just want to go on a recreational trip in your classic VW campervan. The need to insulate is high and everyone certainly prefers to drive in vans that don’t shake vigorously when you speed up.

Most importantly, soundproofing a van has zero negative impact on any other aspect and you can relish the same old feel even in the newly insulated vans.

Four Components of the Van You Must Insulate

To achieve the desired level of sound insulation, you need to focus your attention on four key components of the van – Flooring, doors, roof, and walls. 

Flooring

It’s no rocket science that the majority of the sounds in the van come from below. Either it is the engine sounds or the vibrations of the differentials, soundproofing flooring is the best way to insulate your van.

The idea behind soundproofing is to cover maximum space with the right material and no other component of the car has more ample space available than the floors. By soundproofing the flooring, you are eliminating sounds at their source and preventing them from diffusing in the rest of the van.

Doors

When we talk about doors, we aren’t only referring to the driver’s door but we are talking about all the doors. To get the best results, you have to soundproof every single one of the van’s doors from the side doors to the back door. 

Cracks, crevices, and gaps in your van doors are the biggest culprits. They let most of the sounds in and make your drive an irritating experience. The only way to improve the experience is by insulating these holes or sealing the gaps in the doors. 

Roof

As we are talking about vans, we can’t forget about the roof. Everything from strong wind and hail to heavy rain can make your drive experience truly horrible. They not only disturb your peace but also makes it hard for you to listen to the radio or have a simple conversation. 

Walls

One of the most important areas for soundproofing is the walls of your camper van. The van walls are thin, so they easily let in all sorts of noise. Although furnishing your camper van can help, it is best to add sound-deadening or soundproofing material to each wall, even the walls connecting the roof and floor. 

Materials Required to Soundproof a Van

  • Sound Deadening Floor Mats
  • Mass Loaded Vinyl (MLV)
  • Closed Cell Foams
  • Wooden Rollers
  • SoundSkins Door Kit
  • Glue Spray
  • Scissors

5 Easy Steps to Soundproof a Van

Soundproofing a van do takes a little time but the results are well worth the efforts and investment. What you get in return is a van where you can travel in peace with fewer disturbances from the surroundings. Here is a simple 5-step guide to soundproof a van;

  • Clean and Dry the Van
  • Add Soundproofing Flooring
  • Insulate the Doors
  • Soundproof the Roof
  • Insulate the Windows

Clean and Dry the Van

Regardless of what you are planning to do, the first thing is that you must clean and dry the van. Sound-absorbing materials are adhesives and they stick to the surface of the van. To make them work, you need to have a clean and dry surface as sticking them on wet surfaces will spoil them and waste your money.

Insulate the Floor

If you want to soundproof the car the right way, you must cover the floor perfectly with the right materials. You can either use soundproofing floor mats or install mass-loaded vinyl. Both alternatives work the best and not only help you effectively block sounds but also help you minimize echoes.

To soundproof your van’s floor with soundproofing floor mats, you need to first remove all the pre-existing floor mats. Afterward, clean the van’s floor and dry it up. You will also stick a mat over the wheel well and it is important to clean it too. 

Once you have cleaned and dried the floors, all you need to do is stick the mats on the desired places by removing the adhesive backing and pressing them gently on the floors.

For tricky places, it is best to pre-cut the mat in the desired size to simplify the process. The maximum space you cover the better it is. 

Insulate the Doors

It’s straightforward to insulate the doors, but it takes a bit of time and effort because you need to remove the panels covering the doors. 

To soundproof the door effectively, you need to gain access to the inside. Make sure to remove the speakers from the door’s inside. As van doors are hollow, it will be very easy for vibrations to produce reverberations on those thin sheets of metal.

These sounds or echoes create a lot of disturbance and you need sound-absorbing materials to dampen this resonance. However, the first thing to do is remove the oil and grease with the help of alcohol to get better adhesion.

Pre-cutting the material into small square-shaped pieces is a good way to go about soundproofing doors. The principle remains the same as that is to cover the maximum space to get perfect insulation. 

Insulate the Roof

Insulating the roof isn’t much different from the doors and you can use the same material to soundproof the roof. However, it is relatively easier than working in a confined space like the door’s inside. 

Nevertheless, cutting the sound-absorbing materials into smaller pieces is always the right way to go about this. Vibro 6mm Closed Cell Acoustic Foam is an excellent material choice for soundproofing the roof. 

Insulate the Windows

Lastly, you have to insulate the windows. However, insulating windows is not for everyone as it does minimize its overall functionality. There are two things you can do with the windows to make them soundproof.

The first thing is that you can use the same sound-absorbing material or skin you used on the door and roof to insulate them. You have cut these into precise sizes of the window for the best results. Secondly, you can try using Vibro closed-cell acoustic foam for this purpose. 

Conclusion

In this blog post, we talked about, “How to soundproof a van?”, and discussed the types of noises in a van. We also gave you an insight into the four main soundproofing parts of the van and provided you a simple 5-step guide to soundproof a van.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): How to Soundproof a Van?

How do you sound deaden and insulate a van?

The only effective way to insulate a van is to add as many sound-absorbing materials as possible. You can add them to your van’s flooring, doors, roof, and even windows. Mass-loaded vinyl, acoustic foam, or soundproofing mats all are materials commonly used to insulate a van.

How do you insulate a campervan?

To insulate a campervan, you need to start from the grounds up. First, install soundproofing mats on the floors then insulate the walls with sound-absorbing materials such as polyester eco wool. Afterward, insulate the doors and roof with Vibro closed-cell acoustic foam. 

Is soundproofing your car worth it?

Soundproofing a vehicle is worth it and is the only way to cut down the road noise and excessive vibrations. This is a simple way to make your driving experience a whole lot better. 

What’s the best sound deadening insulation?

Fiberglass or blown-in cellulose insulation are among the best sound-deadening insulation options available to you. Both materials get the job done and help you minimize echo and resonance by insulating the empty spaces.  

Is it worth insulating a van?

Yes, insulating a van is not only a good way to cut down the road noise and excessive vibrations but also help you insulate against both the hot and cold weather. 

References

https://www.soundproofcow.com/how-to-soundproof-a-camper-van/

https://www.deadening.co.uk/pages/van-insulation-soundproofing

https://www.carbuilders.com.au/vaninsulation

https://bearfoottheory.com/van-insulation-walls-soundproofing/

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