Soundproofing

With so much road and engine noise and stuff that will be in the back rattling around, I wanted to add some soundproofing where I could to make it a little easier to hear my music, radio, audio books, and self think while driving. I’m not sure if it works the other way or not at all, but minimizing people outside hearing me in the van when I’m camped or sleeping or whatever would be great, too.

Since the previous owners had already installed reflective insulation stuck to most wall and roof surfaces, I had the floor to work with if I didn’t want to pull out anything and have to redo it.

After some forum/blog/you tube searching, I decided to order some Kilmat sound deadener material from Amazon. To install it, according to the directions and you tube, I stuck it down to the van floor and used a little roller I had to purchase separately to roll down the quilted pattern which indicates it’s pressed down firmly enough.

Each piece sticks down and gets rolled out

My van’s floor has little ridges which made it kind of a process to stick evenly and roll out, but I did my best. due to the uneven shape I had to cut some pieces down to fit in corners and edges, which was a sticky mess but not terrible aside from getting little black lines all over the knees of my jeans as I knelt in the van rolling the edges where the butyl was seeping. Finally I stuck down some trim tape, also an Amazon purchase made by Noico, to the edges and places the butyl was exposed or seeping.

All down and trimmed

Over one evening and the following afternoon it probably took about 2 hours all together to finish. I could hear the difference clearly when I was applying it, but we’ll see if it really make an impact once everything is in there.

I think I hear the difference?

The Insulation

As I’ve said, my van came to me with reflective insulation- probably Reflectix but since I didn’t buy it and the couple didn’t recall the brand I don’t want to say for sure- installed around the walls, under the roof cover, and laid on top of the floor. Reflectix has a low insulation value, but it was already paid for, installed, and better than nothing so I’ll take it unless I freeze or sweat my butt off once I get going and it’s bad enough to rip out and redo. Famous last words, right?

To add a bit where I could, I bought a sheet of 3/4″ XPS foam insulation from Lowe’s which I was able to cut with a box cutter to fill in the space between the floor ridges, and add a little more insulation, perhaps some additional soundproofing and padding, and even out the level. I cut it down, and applied a coating of spray adhesive to help secure it down. This layer is on top of the soundproofing, but will be below the reflective insulation, subfloor, and floor, so I doubt it will be moving much anyway but it helped for now during the build.

Almost done cutting and sticking the foam insulation

The size they sell by the board was more than double what I needed for the floor, so I will likely apply some to the indents where the windows might have been in the sides of the van.

With original reflective insulation laid back over the foam, and all along sides and on roof

I’ll update once I do some test runs and get on the road, but so far the little thermometer I bought and keep in the van to measure interior temps is lower consistently than I would have expected so perhaps that’s a sign it’s working?

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