12 Van life Essentials

What you need Living in a van full time

Here are 12 essential items for van life:

  1. Sleeping arrangements: Depending on your personal preferences, you’ll need a sleeping bag or bedding, pillows, and a comfortable mattress or sleeping pad.
  2. Lighting: You’ll need lighting for your van, both for practical purposes such as cooking and reading, as well as for ambiance. Consider using battery-operated LED lights, solar-powered lights, or a rechargeable lantern.
  3. Water storage and filtration: Depending on the length of your trips, you’ll need to store and filter water for drinking, cooking, and cleaning. Consider using a water filtration system or bringing along water bottles.
  4. Portable toilet: A portable toilet is an essential item for van life, especially if you’ll be spending extended periods of time in your van. There are many options available, including composting toilets and portable camping toilets.
  5. Refrigeration: You’ll need a way to keep your food and drinks cold. Consider using a portable refrigerator or cooler with ice.
  6. Kitchen supplies: You’ll need basic kitchen supplies such as utensils, plates, cups, a portable stove, and cookware.
  7. Power source: You’ll need a reliable power source for charging your electronics and running appliances. Consider using a solar panel system, a portable generator, or a power bank.
  8. First aid kit: It’s always a good idea to have a well-stocked first aid kit on hand for emergencies.
  9. Navigation tools: Make sure you have a map and a reliable GPS or navigation system to help you get around.
  10. Fire extinguisher: A fire extinguisher is an essential safety item for your van.
  11. Clothing: Depending on the climate you’ll be traveling in, you’ll need appropriate clothing for warmth and protection.
  12. Basic tools: You’ll need a basic set of tools for making repairs or adjustments to your van, including a wrench, screwdriver, and pliers.

These are just a few of the essential items for van life, but depending on your personal preferences and needs, there may be other items you’ll want to bring along as well.

How to convert a van into a camper van – DIY Van Conversion Checklist

  • Start your design
  • Make a Budget
  • Figure out what type of travel you want to do while living in a van camper
  • Evaluate your needs, Must-Have and Would be nice lists
  • Choose the type of van that meets your needs
  • Start your van Build and begin your journey

Van life Essentials List – Van life Must Haves

  • Water
  • Food Storage
  • Cooking
  • Sleeping
  • Sitting
  • Counter
  • Lighting
  • Hygiene
  • Pooping and or peeing
  • Keeping cool
  • Keeping warm
  • Entertainment

How To Convert a Van

Converting a van into a camper van can be a small or large undertaking depending on your needs or standards. I would like my van to make me feel comfortable and at home, if I plan on living in it for a long period of time. If the van is a empty cargo van start with insulation, siding, ceiling cover, bed area and table area. If the van has interior you will need to decide what to remove and change to meet your needs.

Some van campers skip the insulation and wall coverings and only put in what they need like a bed and table. It is up to you what to add in your camper van build.

Van build ideas

Make Van Living Easier Essentials Check List

  • VanElectrical Power
    • Portable Power Inverter DC 12V to 110V AC Car Inverter 
    • Batter bank – Battery System charged while the engine is running
    • Solar power – Batter Bank with solar panels on top of van
    • Solar Power Generator- All in one unite, battery with inverter to supply power
    • Mini Portable Gas Generator – Portable Mini Gas generator
  • VanWater
    • Jerry can plus hand pump – Portable water container with hand pump or USB pump
    • Pressurized Jerry can – All in one water tank, hand pressurized with nozzle
    • Electric pump water system – Full water system, water tank, electric pump and faucet
  • VanFood Storage
    • Dry food Storage
    • Cooler for Cold food storage
    • 12v Fridge/Freezer
  • Cooking in campervan
    • Portable propane camping stove
    • Installed Counter Propane countertop stove – Counter mounted gas stove with propane tank
    • Electrical induction cook-top – Powered by Solar
  • Sleepingin camper van
    • Camp sleeping matt
    • Fold out bed
    • Stationary bed
  • Sitting
    • Place to sit, work or eat meals
  • Counter in van camper
    • Table to work or eat meals
  • Lighting in van camper
    • Headlamp or Flashlight
    • Portable lights – Lanterns
    • Strip or reset roof LED lights – Lights powered by battery system
  • Hygiene in van camper
    • Portable solar shower – Portable hand pressurized shower system
    • USB Rechargeable shower head with a bucket of warm water
    • Portable Propane shower – Portable camping water heater shower
    • Shower installed in Van camper
  • Pooping and peeing in a van
    • Portable Bucket potty
    • Cassette toilet
    • Composting toilets
  • Keeping van cool in a van camper
    • Small USB fans
    • Van roof vent fans
    • Van AC
  • Keeping van warm in winter
    • Portable Propane stove
    • Installed Propane stove
    • Wood stove
    • Diesel van stove
    • Floor heating
  • Entertainment in Van life
    • Portable Bluetooth Speakers
    • 12v TV
    • Portable laptop or tablet
    • Mini portable projector

Check out my Related Blog Posts

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