First Van Trip

Updated: May 21, 2020

The first van trip was a success! I drove 200 miles north to the trail head, parked the van, and headed out on an overnight backpacking loop. I left the Dometic fridge running off the aux batteries for 24 hours while I was on the trail. When I returned to the van the fridge was still running and had plenty of aux battery power left. It was amazing to come back to cold water and all the snacks. The next night I moved to a new campsite which took me down a bumpy two track. Driving down the two track it was obvious that the shocks are the ones the van came with in 2004. After all the shaking around I didn't find any loose electrical connections or have cabinets fly open. The next morning the van started up indicating the smart isolator was working properly and there wasn't a draw while running the MaxxFan all night.

There are a few items that I would like to tweak to help get a better night sleep. The USB charge port next to the platform bed is back lit and glows too bright at night. Replacing the USB charge port will be a quick swap and well worth it. The fridge display screen will need to be dimmed at night because the glow is also too bright. The platform bed memory foam topper is a bit too thin and needs to be paired with another pad. I would like to add an air temp gauge inside so I have an idea of the cooling capability of the MaxxFan. Having a mini vacuum would also be nice. Diesel has the ability to make the van dirty quickly.


The rear pull out drawer with cook top was a great addition. It allows for a nice cooking platform and spot to eat from. Having the Bluetooth capable head unit allowed me to stream podcasts which made the drive fly by.


Overall the first van trip went well and I look forward to many more!


#vanbuild #vanlife #dometic #vantrip #maxxfan

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