How To Make A Tent In Your Car Inside

How to Turn Your Car Into a Tent: No Pitching Necessary!

When you mention “camping,” many people immediately envision: setting up a jumbled tent, fending off bugs and animals, enduring a variety of weather conditions ranging from unexpected rains to blazing temperatures, and fumbling about in the dark to find the restroom and shower facilities. Fully equipped recreational vehicles (RVs) offer all the conveniences of home, including a full-size bed, hot shower, kitchenette, sofa, and large-screen television. Full-scale RVs are available at the opposite end of the camping spectrum.

How to make your automobile into a tent is something you should learn.

In addition to just throwing everything in your vehicle and heading to a camping, you could experiment with ways to transform your car into a tent.

When you combine these easily accessible resources, you’ll have a reasonably priced home away from home that’s ready to take you to your favorite surfing or fishing destination.

The world will be your campground if you have a car that can also serve as a shelter from the elements.

How to Turn Your Car into a Tent: A Little DIY May Be Necessary

True, certain vehicles, such as small hatchbacks or sedans, are not well-suited to being converted into a tent, but with the increasing popularity of crossover SUVs, as well as pickup trucks and the classic “van down by the river” panel van, you may already possess a vehicle that is ideal for car camping. Camping accessories are a low-cost method to turn your automobile into a reliable camping companion for your next camping trip. For a few hundred dollars, you can get a truck-bed tent, which converts the bed of a pickup truck into a sleeping area for many people.

  1. The simplest and most affordable alternative is to construct a sleeping platform within your vehicle.
  2. A platform made of 2′′ x 4′′ timber and 3′′ plywood provides a flat surface on which to install a mattress, as well as storage space beneath.
  3. Mosquito netting strung from the ceiling will keep troublesome bugs at away.
  4. A few tent poles, a rope or stake and a general purposetarp may be used to convert the rear of your car into a vestibule, which can be used for changing clothes and preparing food.
  5. Take a look at all of the tools and equipment offered on NAPA Online, or come into one of our 17,000 NAPA AutoCare shops for routine maintenance and repairs.

Talk to a trained specialist at your local NAPA AUTO PARTS shop for additional information on do-it-yourself vehicle camping. The image is courtesy of Flickr.

Benjamin JerewView All

Ben has been taking things apart and putting them back together since he was five, and he has been putting them back together since he was eight. With the Automobile Repair program at the Central Georgia Community College, he discovered his true passion after dabbling in do-it-yourself repairs at home and on the farm. Ben felt he needed a change after holding his ASE CMAT certification for ten years. He now writes about automotive themes for websites and publications all over the world, covering topics such as new automotive technology, transportation regulations, pollution, fuel efficiency, and vehicle maintenance, among others.

Quick Answer: How To Make A Tent In Your Car Inside

Make an investment in a nice bed. Air mattresses that are plush and soft might be almost as comfy as your own bed at home. You have the option of using a tiny camping pillow or just bringing a full-size pillow. Remember that automobiles may be just as chilly as tents at night, so bring an insulated blanket such as a Rumpl or a sleeping bag with a temperature rating to keep you warm.

How do you camp inside a car?

Put money aside to get a comfy mattress. Air mattresses that are plush and soft might be almost as comfy as your own bed. A tiny camping pillow is an option, or you can pack a standard-sized pillow. Remember that cars can get just as cold as tents at night, so bring an insulated blanket such as a Rumpl or a sleeping bag with a temperature rating.

How do you make a car tent?

Detailed instructions for making a magnetic car tent Purchase a lightweight cloth that is not too heavy. After you’ve measured the hatch and the height of the car, you can figure out how big you want your tent to be. Make some zippers for the back of the dress. Make a flyscreen for the interior of the bag. Hemstitch the seams in place. Magnets should be used. Close the seams around the magnets in the right places to keep them in place.

Can I sleep in my car at a campsite?

Is it possible to sleep in your vehicle while camping? Campgrounds that allow van or automobile camping are determined by the location of the campground. There are certain campsites that will allow you to camp, while others will require you to camp in specified places, and some will not allow anyone in a vehicle or van to camp overnight.

Where is Boondocking legal?

In California’s national forests, boondocking is normally permitted in the majority of regions. When it comes to California State Parks, only Anza Borrego Desert State Park has an open policy that allows boondocking in the majority of its sections.

Can I sleep in my car if I’m drunk?

If you’ve had too much to drink and are unable to get a cab home, you might believe it’s a good idea to sleep it off in your car while driving home. According to Alex Garner, if the police detain you, you may be charged with “drunk in command of a motor vehicle,” which can result in a criminal conviction. In accordance with Section 4 of the Road Traffic Act 1988, this is a criminal offense.

Can u camp at Walmart?

Camping is not permitted at all Walmart locations.

Only about half of Walmart stores, according to estimates, allow overnight parking. It is critical that you do your homework on the exact site before you visit.

Is it legal to sleep in your car at Walmart?

In general, yes, you are permitted to sleep in your car at Walmart. Walmart does not have a policy in place that prohibits individuals from sleeping in their cars in its parking lots on a corporate level. It is entirely up to the discretion of each individual shop manager.

Is sleeping in a car warmer than a tent?

Sleeping in your automobile might appear to be rather comfortable. Even while a car can keep you safe from the wind and snow, it can be just as chilly as sleeping in a tent in the middle of the night. Furthermore, because cold air is traveling through the automobile on all sides, it is extremely vital to insulate your sleeping quarters.

Do you have to crack a window when sleeping in your car?

Sleeping in your car might appear to be a really comfortable option at first glance. In the middle of the night, even while a car can keep you safe from the wind and snow, it may still be as chilly as a tent. Due to the fact that cold air is moving through the automobile from all sides, it is extremely necessary to insulate your sleeping quarters.

What does Boondocking mean?

At our opinion, boondocking is the option to camp off-grid, away from the services and conveniences that can be found in RV parks and planned campsites. It’s a more peaceful method of camping, and it frequently takes us to stunning locations for days or even weeks at a time.

Can you sleep in hotel parking lots?

Don’t take any chances. In addition to that, hotels often have private parking lots, which means that by parking there, you are essentially on private land. If you are seen attempting to sleep on the premises without paying for a room, you will very probably be kicked off the premises. If parking in a hotel parking lot seems too unsafe, consider stopping at a truck stop.

Can you sleep in your car at Yellowstone?

Is it possible to sleep in my vehicle in Yellowstone? While it is not permitted, some paid campgrounds will allow you to sleep in your car if you insist on doing so. Overnight parking is not permitted at Yellowstone’s attraction parking lots, trailheads, or on the side of the road in any location.

What states is it illegal to sleep in your car?

State rules on sleeping in one’s automobile vary from one another. Rest stop parking is permitted overnight. Alaska There is no mention of it. Arizona Camping in the automobile is permitted, but not outside the car. Arkansas Camping is permitted exclusively for safety reasons; no overnight stays are permitted. California Rest spots have an 8-hour time restriction, and there is no overnight parking or camping.

Can you Boondock at Walmart?

A full-time RVer (or just someone contemplating a long cross-country RV journey) may have pondered spending the night in a Walmart parking lot at some point in their lives. It is critical that these are not exploited, and Walmart should continue to allow RVers to camp in its parking lots for years to come.

Can I get in trouble for sleeping in my car?

No, it is not against the law to sleep in your vehicle. Nevertheless, there are several exceptions to this rule, and the regulations governing sleeping in your automobile will differ from one state to the next. For example, more than a dozen states, including Florida and Virginia, prohibit motorists from spending the night at rest areas while traveling.

How do I make my car easier to camp?

Make use of these 14 car camping suggestions for an unforgettable weekend on the open road. PRE-ARRIVAL. FILL ‘EM UP WITH GOOD STUFF.

SELECTION OF A LOCATION Don’t limit yourself to only staying at paid campgrounds. ARRIVAL. Turn off the lights in your vehicle’s interior. SET-UP. Choose a secure location for your tent. CAMPING. REMOVE YOUR GARBAGE FROM THE HOUSE. DEPARTURE. LEAVE IT IN PERFECT CONDITION.

How can I sleep comfortably in my car?

Tips for Staying Safe While Sleeping in Your Car Before retiring to bed, send a text message to someone letting them know where you are. Never park on the side of the road. It is against the law. Create a sleeping surface that is as flat and lengthy as you can manage to get away with. You should not leave your car running or your key in the “on” position overnight if you want to utilize the temperature control system.

Is car camping legal?

Is it against the law in California to sleep in your car? For up to eight hours, you are permitted to sleep in your car during rest stops according to the California State Department of Transportation (Caltrans). The regulations in different cities and counties vary, but the majority of them prohibit sleeping in automobiles overnight.

Going Car Camping? Check Out the 20 Best Tips and Tricks for Your Next Adventure

Each product featured has been chosen by the editors of Country Living. If you make a purchase after clicking on a link, we may receive a commission. More information about us. It turns out that sleeping in your car might be rather comfortable. Edwin Remsberg is a well-known author. We can’t wait to get back on the road! We can’t wait to go back on the road! There is one positive outcome from the global pandemic: it rekindled our enthusiasm for the great outdoors and allowed us to spend more time in it.

  • Another thing we took away from our quarantine period was that How to travel on your own timetable.
  • Numerous people, whether they purchased a recreational vehicle (RV) or an Airstream or camped the old-fashioned way, spent time traveling the nation in methods that were self-sufficient and independent.
  • It’s not an issue!
  • Of course, you’ll want to make certain that you’re well prepared before hitting the road, and we’re here to assist you.
  • We’d recommend incorporating low-cost grocery stores for stocking up on food, as well as low-cost petrol stations and camping grounds.
  • Prepare for meals ahead of time — we recommend carrying a reliableDutch oven and other camping equipment to experience the taste of a home-cooked meal.
  • 1of 20Use a tent that is specifically designed to fit your vehicle.

It is lightweight and easy to transport.

There’s also a version for trucks.

It is also possible to avoid a stuffy environment when sleeping in your car by opening the windows and leaving the curtains open to allow for a refreshing breeze to flow through the vehicle.

When it comes to sleeping, open your windows if you don’t mind a few bugs coming through as you sleep.

Awning Invest in a component that is simple to build, such as this, or just suspend a water-resistant tarp from the back of your car with some rope.

Although you should always have a shower head with you, you should also be aware of a few additional hygiene tips that you may use while on the road.

Alternatively, you may download programs such as Oh, Ranger!

You may download the app for free from the” data-vars-ga-product-id=”b417fe2e-1cc3-4e25-8c25-3cf07ac3beb1″ data-vars-ga-product-price=”0.00″ data-vars-ga product-sem3-brand=”” data-vars-ga product-category=”” data-vars-ga product-sem3-id 6 of 20Inflatable Air Mattress for the Car If you don’t have a tent (or don’t want to deal with the hassle of setting one up), this affordable vehicle bed will make sleeping a bit more comfortable.

  1. The Seventh of TwentyDIY a Dining Table From Your Trunk When it comes to eating on the road, it is not always necessary to resort to fast food from the automobile and/or rest stops.
  2. You could even build an enclosed wood storage box to match the width of your trunk, then use the lid as a strong table to rest your belongings on.
  3. If you like, you may also use a little charcoal barbecue to prepare your meal.
  4. You may find a list of campgrounds posted on the United States Forest Service road for a list of places where you can park overnight (as long as you aren’t in the way of other cars).
  5. 11 of 20Conserve food and beverages in a car cooler.
  6. 12of 20Finding Free Parking is Simple With These Tips Whether you’re looking for a place to stay the night or just a place to pull over and rest for a while, the Allstays app will offer you the greatest options in your immediate vicinity.
  7. DIY a Trash Can for Your Car on Day 13 of 20 Line a cereal container with a plastic bag to create a lightweight, portable trashcan that is easy to carry anywhere.
See also:  How To Heat My Grow Tent

With a few easy adjustments, you can transform your vehicle, van, or truck into your own own little camper.

15 of 20Saving Money When You Fill Up With Gas Make use of theGasBuddyapp to get the most affordable gas prices along your route.

Utilize a Collapsible SinkWash dishes, do some light washing, or lather your face while on the road with this tiny and convenient tub that folds down and can be tucked away.

RoofBags are available for purchase on page 18 of 20.

Whether it’s raining or shining, this tough bag will keep your essentials safe and secure while protecting them from the weather.

When the sun goes set, take use of any high hooks on the inside of your car and make sure that a lantern or two is always within reach.

While this is unquestionably on the more costly side, it is still far less expensive than a hotel or RV.

Jessica Leigh Mattern is a web editor and writer that specializes in lifestyle issues such as home, holidays, DIY, crafts, travel, and other activities.

Blair Donovan is a staff writer for, where she covers a wide range of topics, including the latest Joanna Gaines and “The Voice” news, as well as home décor, gardening, DIY projects, and entertaining.

This material was generated and maintained by a third party and imported onto this website in order to assist users in providing their email addresses for further consideration. You may be able to discover further information on this and other related items at the website

Car Camping: Tips for Sleeping in Your Car

There have been 6 reviews with an average rating of 3.8 stars out of 5. Outdoor excursions might need an early start on occasion. A vehicle camping near a trailhead may be a convenient and flexible alternative to tent camping, especially if you want to save time on setup or if there isn’t enough room for tents on the route. The fact that you’re spending the night in your rig might also provide some additional protection from the weather. Here are a few pointers and tricks to make your next road trip more comfortable, organized, and fun.

Pack light.

Remember to adhere to Leave No Trace principles and common sense safety procedures while car camping; never sleep in a vehicle with the engine running.

Park out of the way and know what permits you need

The first question that any car sleeper must address is, “Where should I park my vehicle?” With the use of applications such as AllStays and Hipcamp, you can find out where you may lawfully stay without being disturbed. They provide a range of free and paid spots for people to pitch up camp for the evening. The United States Forest Service Overnight parking and camping are typically permitted on public highways. Make careful to adhere to any local or temporary exceptions, to show any needed passes or permits in the appropriate locations, and to avoid obstructing the passage of others.

Set up your campsite

Having located an area that permits for overnight parking and camping, set up camp on a level, shaded area as soon as possible. When it comes time to unload the truck, make sure not to overwhelm any campers who may be staying nearby for the night. For an overview of what to bring, have a look at our camping basics checklist, which includes goods like a foldable table and camp chairs. additionally to a camp stove for a more pleasant camping experience. Furthermore, if this is your first time camping, ourCamping for Beginnersarticle will walk you through the essentials.

Sleep with your head toward the front of the car

However, because of the winding nature of Forest Service routes and the remoteness of certain locations, flat spaces are not always available. If you find yourself at an angle, ensure that the automobile is positioned such that your head is higher than your feet. Sleeping with your head toward the front of the car will also provide you with extra elbow room in general, since most cars have wheel wells at the rear that take up valuable space and restrict your movement. Is there still a lack of comfort?

Be prepared with the ten essentials

The Ten Essentials are just as vital on a road trip as they are on a mountain trek.

Keep your electronics charged

When traveling, it might be difficult to keep electrical devices charged. Even while you can plug in gadgets while the car is running, you won’t be able to do so overnight. Maintain the functionality of your phone, tablet, camera, and any other battery-powered gadget for the duration of your trip by mounting a solar panel on the dashboard or carrying a portable power source.

Not sure which one is the best fit for your needs? Read on for additional information on how to select solar chargers and portable electricity.

Keep food in the car, ideally in a cooler

It only takes a short period of time in the fresh air to build up an appetite while you’re vehicle camping in the great outdoors. You may use our camp kitchen checklist to help you decide which tools and food to bring along with you on your journey. Whether you’re walking to the outhouse or cuddling up with a sleeping bag for the night, prepare to keep all of your food safely stored in your car while car camping. Consider bringing a cooler to keep perishable items such as meat, cheese, eggs, and milk from rotting when traveling.

Pro tip: Continue reading our article, Food Storage and Management for Campers and Backpackers, for additional information on food handling while automobile camping.

Invest in a comfortable bed

One of the most convenient aspects of sleeping in your car is that you don’t have to bring your bed around with you. As a result, you may spend more money on heavier cushiermats, pillows, and blankets. You have the option of using a tiny camping pillow or just bringing a full-size pillow. Make sure you have an insulated blanket like a Rumplor and a temperature-rated sleeping bag in case your automobile gets colder than your tent in the middle of the night! Having trouble deciding on which sleeping bag or pad would best suit your vehicle camping needs?

Have your own drive-in movie

Watching a movie on your smart device might help you relax after a hard day of driving or touring. Just make careful to download your desired material before trekking out to potentially bad service locations in search of Wi-Fi-free entertainment options.

Bring a headlamp or hang lanterns

Just because you’ve gotten comfortable for the night doesn’t imply you’re ready to retire for the night. To brighten your vehicle’s inside while reading, organizing, or cuddling up with your adventure canine, hang lanterns or headlamps from its handles. Are there any other reasons to carry a light on the road? It can be useful when nature calls in the middle of the night, or if you want to go for a walk at the crack of dawn or dusk to get some exercise.

Stay squeaky clean

Sinks and showers may not be available if you’re sleeping in your car because you don’t have access to them. Maintain your personal hygiene with a fully equipped toiletry kit that is road-ready, which includes goods that don’t require much water, like as no-rinse shampoo and hand sanitizer, to keep you feeling fresh.

Open a window enough to ventilate

Breathing in a car all night may cause the windows to fog up and moisture to build in places you don’t want it. It is essential to have good ventilation. Open your sunroof or a window just wide enough to prevent an animal or a person from getting inside. Get some inexpensive mesh and trim it to be 2–3 inches wider than the aperture on either side.

Fill up the gaps around the outside of the area to keep out the pests and presto, no dampness. Try to get as much moisture out of damp garments as you can before going to bed for the night. Keep a squeegee in your car as a backup in case you need to wipe down your windows first thing in the morning.

Rise and shine (when you want to)

Cars are convenient for going about, but they aren’t particularly effective for shutting out light and sound. Use cordage or bungee cords to hang drapes on all windows and behind the front seats to provide seclusion and keep the morning light out of your face. This will give the vehicle a pleasant, warm bedroom-like vibe. Carry earplugs with you to prevent any late comers, early risers, or restless partners from interrupting your sleep. This is especially critical if you’re parking in a less-than-secluded area of the parking lot.

Build your own shower

Warm shower after a hard walk or bike trip is a wonderful experience. By constructing your own camp shower, you can take that sensation with you wherever you go. Are you looking for further camping advice? Our Expert Advice articles provide a wealth of knowledge on a variety of topics ranging fromHow to Set Up a TenttoHow to Prepare for a Trip. How to Build a Campfire (with Pictures).


Ashley Brown is a writer and traveler who fell in love with the Pacific Northwest at the age of twelve and hasn’t looked back since. My Side of the Mountain was her favorite novel when she was younger. In 2015, she completed a thru-hike of the Pacific Crest Trail, which she started in 2010.

How to Convert Your Car into the Ultimate Camping Vehicle

Car camping is the newvanlife—and we don’t simply mean packing your belongings into your car and heading out for a tent-camping excursion. Essentially, we’re talking about converting your automobile into a smaller version of a camper van conversion, using a vehicle you already own, to create a micro-motorhome on wheels. Yes, living in a van is fantastic. However, it may not be feasible for everyone. Those luxurious van conversions are stunning, but they may be prohibitively expensive and take a long time to construct.

In order to achieve your vehicle camping conversion goals, you must first complete the following procedures.

1. Assess Your Vehicle

First and foremost, what sort of vehicle are you tasked with maintaining? Even a two-door vehicle may be transformed into a comfortable adventure vehicle, so don’t be put off by the size of your existing vehicle. Smaller automobiles have a significant advantage in terms of fuel economy: they get greater gas efficiency. Motorhomes typically obtain between 8 and 13 miles per gallon, which means that road trip budgets can be swiftly depleted by fuel costs. Take a look at the available space in your car when you fold down the rear seats, no matter what sort of vehicle you’re dealing with.

If you are unable to do so, there are always rooftop tents available.

2. Decide on a Layout

It’s time to plan out the arrangement of your automobile camping gear at this point.

Perhaps you’ll construct a platform bed with storage below and a nicer sleeping surface, or you’ll simply toss a camping mattress in the back of the car for a refreshingly simple car camping setup. Examine your answers to the following questions:

  • Do you require additional storage space within your vehicle? If so, what do you want to store on the inside? The less belongings you have in your automobile, the more space you’ll have for your own belongings. If you want to save room in addition to any storage you install as part of your bed platform, attachable rooftop storage boxes are your best choice for conserving space. Consider the activities that you most love doing when camping, as well as the equipment that you will need to bring with you. This facility will accommodate a certain number of individuals. The greater the number of persons participating, the larger the amount of bed space required. Will you be bringing your dog along with you? They’ll need some room as well
  • How long do you expect to be on the road? You’ll find that the more you use your car camping gear, the more creature comforts you’ll want to have in your vehicle. If you’re just going to be here for the odd weekend break, you might be able to get away with a less-than-comfortable bed. In the event that you’ll be using your automobile for regular errands or transporting a family to school and soccer practice, you’ll want alternatives that are easily detachable for camping.
See also:  Tent Pole Repair Kit 1490 How To Use

Continue reading if you want to learn how to make a platform bed. If you don’t want to use a platform, you may just toss your mattress on the ground and skip this step.

3. Build Your Platform

If you have any carpentry expertise, this will be a very simple project to do. If you don’t have one, chances are you know someone who does. There are a variety of platform designs available; spend some time searching the internet for ideas on how you’d want to construct your own platform. This is a straightforward construction, consisting of four legs and a plywood plank. Start by measuring the length of the space where you’ll be placing your mattress from the entrance to the back. In order to optimize your sleeping space, you should move your automobile seats forward to a position that is still comfortable for driving.

  • To determine your available height, start by determining how much clearance you’ll require.
  • What kind of headroom do you require?
  • Once you have this all worked out, you may take your height measurements.
  • In order to accomplish this, you will need to design two supports that are similar.
  • Begin by measuring and cutting four identical legs from 2x4s to use as a base.
  • Then fasten the plywood board to the supports using a wood screw.

Car Camping Gear Essentials

Image courtesy of Martin Lopatka via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 2.0) Following are the basics for a good journey with your new vehicle camper conversion. They will keep everything operating smoothly:

1. Organizers

You have a few alternatives when it comes to vehicle camping organizers. If you chose the platform bed, there is likely to be plenty of storage beneath, and a simple crate or basket up front will house your nightstand items. If your bed doesn’t take up the entire backseat, you may build a little storage nook within your car using crates and other materials. Books, lights, and personal hygiene supplies are examples of items you might want to keep close at hand.

2. Power

If you want to be on the road for an extended period of time, solar panels may be an option to investigate. They can help you save money on propane and fuel while also contributing to the preservation of the environment. It is not as difficult to build a solar panel system as you may expect it to be.

3. Warmth

You should consider solar panels if you want to be on the road for an extended period of time. They can help you save money on propane and fuel while also contributing to the preservation of our natural resources. It is not as difficult to build a solar panel system as you would believe it to be.

4. Accessories

Create the aesthetic should be the most enjoyable aspect of the process if you’re an interior design enthusiast like me. Everything you carry on board should be important—and it should be as little as possible in a confined area. When it comes to road trips, there’s nothing more draining than the frequent re-arrangement of needless goods. Having said that, if you bring along items that you truly enjoy, you will have a compact RV that seems like a home.

Adding accessories to your room may be done with blankets, pillows, and lighting, among other things. And whatever you bring, please make sure it is clean. If you maintain a small room tidy, it will appear to be much larger.

Additional Car Camping Tips to Get You Started

Now that you’ve set up your bed, taken care of your storage needs, and are ready to hit the road, let’s talk about some more ideas to help you have a successful car camping trip over the long haul.

  • Keep a space blanket under your mattress with the reflective side facing up for extra warmth. This assists in providing insulation against the cold. In chilly climes, sleeping bags are often more comfortable than blankets if you’re traveling alone. Reflectix panels should be cut to the size of your windows in order to provide sound and light blocking. You’ll need a cooler to store your meals. This may be stored in the trunk of your car while you’re driving. It should be kept in the front seat when you’re sleeping (animals can get into if you leave it outside of your vehicle). Find one that will suit your front seat area, even if your automobile has been converted into a camper. Keep food and toiletries in a bear-proof canister for the sake of your own protection and the safety of the animals around you. When it comes to automobile camping, a number of bear canisters are readily accessible from outdoor merchants. In order to shower, you might want to consider using a solar shower that can be mounted to your vehicle. When it comes to cooking, a portable camping stove or backpacking burner is the ideal option.

You might easily become disillusioned by the opulent conversions that can be seen at trailheads and campers. When you’re on a limited budget, it might seem hard to live in a van. However, as you can see, all you really need is a car and the determination to drive out there and see what you can find. Often, it is the simple things in life that provide the most happiness—car camping is one of those things.

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Turn Your Vehicle Into A Camper With An SUV Tent

In the event that you enjoy camping but do not have the financial means to purchase an RV or van conversion, consider purchasing an SUV tent to use in conjunction with your Jeep, SUV, or minivan. SUV tents are available in a variety of sizes and styles, and they cost a fraction of the price of an RV, whether new or used. They are meant to be utilized for every camping occasion, particularly on overlanding expeditions where your off-road vehicle is capable of traveling, to provide more room and comfort on large family outings, and to provide general protection from severe weather.

Outfitting your SUV for camping mode completes the package for the perfect outdoor experience in terms of enjoyment, convenience, comfort, adaptability, and safety.

These two factors—SUV tents and camping gear—will be examined and brought together in this post to assist you in converting your SUV into an all-in-one camper.

Types of SUV Tents

Truck campers that may be added to a vehicle through the rear door or the roof provide several benefits. The following are the two most common varieties of SUV tents: canvas and aluminum.

Hatchback Tent

Truck campers that may be mounted to a vehicle via the rear door or the roof provide several benefits. SUV tents are generally classified into two categories.


Hatchback tents are designed to meet a wide range of requirements. Multi-room tents can easily accommodate five or more people, as well as store outdoor gear and give additional protection from the elements when necessary. Besides expanding tunnels and individual sleeping spaces, a screen room and extendible awnings may be added to SUV tents as optional extras. Alternatively, if campers fold down the back seats of their SUV to create a bed, the tent may be used as an additional room, kitchen, or sitting space.

The same principles apply to the installation of this device, with the exception that it serves more as a screen for the back entrance.

Protection and Safety

The three design components that distinguish high-quality hatchback tents (and, by extension, any type of SUV tent) are the material, the ventilation system, and the weatherproofing system. Material: Fabrics such as polyester and nylon mixes are lightweight, simple to clean, waterproof, and tend to hold up well in outdoor environments. Elastomer tents with elastic bands assist in keeping the unit sealed around the rear of the automobile. To prevent rips, the flooring should be constructed with a substantial base.

Ventilation: Mesh screens not only keep annoying pests out of the tent, but they also keep the air circulating, allowing fresh air to enter and stale air to leave.

Weatherproofing: Although most hatchback tents are waterproof, the degree of permeability varies from model to model.

The best protection from rain is provided by waterproof tents, so search for those that have a high waterproof rating. A rainfly is also recommended since it acts as an extra layer of protection.

Setting up a Hatchback Tent

There are many different types of hatchback tents, but they all have one thing in common: they are designed to fit on the back of an SUV. The video below, which features theNapier SportzSUV Tent with a Screen Room, illustrates how to put up a hatchback tent in your vehicle. While some installations may be completed in as little as 3-5 minutes, others might take up to an hour or more, depending on the size of the camper, the number of pieces, and the camper’s previous expertise.

Popular Hatchback Tents

The Rightline GearSUV Tent is a single-room tent with a floor space of 8′ X 8′ and a height of 7.25′ that has received excellent reviews. The facility easily accommodates up to four persons. A water-resistant fabric is used to construct the tent, and the bottom has been strengthened to prevent water from accumulating beneath the structure. Because of the glow-in-the-dark zippers on the SUV tent’s windows and doors, it is simple to open and close the tent even in complete darkness. Finer mesh is used in the construction of the screens, which provides protection against microscopic insects such as no-see-ums, gnats, and sand flies.

  • Easy to Setup: TheMogic’s Carsule is a “pop-up cabin for your automobile,” as the company describes it.
  • The big cube has around 6.5 feet of headroom and is marketed as a multipurpose place for your SUV, according to the manufacturer.
  • The Carsule is a hatchback-only vehicle that has been particularly created for it.
  • The Carsule SUV Tent by Mogic

Rooftop Tent

A rooftop tent is another form of SUV tent that is available. Campers can set up camp virtually anywhere with this tent. Their feet will not get stuck in the rocks and dirt, nor will they come into contact with any creepy crawlers or other creatures. When it’s time to set up camp, the equipment is attached to the roof rack and unfurled from the roof rack. The use of a ladder allows residents to enter and exit the building. When it comes to selecting the ideal rooftop tent for your needs, there are several alternatives to consider.

Structure and Build

Rooftop tents are divided into two categories: soft shells and hard shells. A softshell tent is similar in appearance to a normal tent in that it is mostly comprised of a canvas-style ceiling and walls, rather than the traditional canvas. Despite the fact that hard shells are more expensive, the hard section of the tent, which is often the roof, provides additional protection during shipping and in inclement weather. Both kinds are simple to unfold, but the hard shell is by far the most expedient in terms of setup time.

They have the ability to spring up like a jack-in-the-box if the clasp is removed. High-quality shelters are built with the same components as hatchback tents: strong structural integrity, adequate ventilation, and weatherproofing.

Consider these before getting a rooftop tent

Take a look at some of these upfront specs and expenses before getting on the rooftop bandwagon. After all, despite the many ways in which rooftop tents improve our camping experience, they may not be the greatest option for everyone.

  • Rooftop tents are quite popular, but they are not suitable for every type of vehicle. These tents are often above 100 pounds in weight. It’s only that certain roofs and factory racks weren’t constructed with the structural capability rated to handle this load when campers and supplies were added to the mix. Always double-check the weight class of your car to see if there are any rooftop restrictions. Sometimes the only thing that is required is a more durable rooftop rack.
  • Furthermore, unlike hatchback tents, which can be purchased for as little as a few hundred dollars, rooftop tents may be very expensive. You’re now looking at products that are worth thousands of dollars. Softshell tents range in price from $1,000 to $2,000, while hardshell tents range from $2,000 to $5,000.

Set up a rooftop tent

Following is a video demonstration of how to unfold and put up a soft shell rooftop tent with a ladder in about 15 minutes using only one person. In addition, an appendix is included in the tape. Most rooftop tents come with this feature as an optional extra. A separate chamber that sits beneath the rooftop tent and is totally covered, providing a standing area for changing clothes or showering as well as protection from the elements while entering and exiting the side door of your SUV from the back seat of the vehicle.

See also:  How To Keep A Large Tent Cool

Popular Rooftop Tents

Soft Shell: The Nomadic 2by Overland Vehicle Systems is a 4-season rated tent made of marine quality rip-stop polyester-cotton canvas with stainless steel hardware. The Nomadic 2 is a 4-season rated tent made of marine grade rip-stop polyester-cotton canvas with stainless steel hardware. It features a tubular ladder with a capacity of 350 pounds. Both the body and the rainfly are water-resistant. The window screens keep the mosquitoes out and the air moving, and there is a skylight for lots of stargazing opportunities as well.

  1. The Nomadic 2 has a sleeping footprint of approximately 55″ by 94″ and can accommodate up to three people.
  2. A sleeping footprint of 55 by 85 inches and a load capacity of 660 pounds distinguish this waterproof tent, which can accommodate up to three people.
  3. Opening and shutting the tent is made simple by the gas-assisted struts that make setup and disassembly a breeze.
  4. Smittybilt Rooftop Tent with a Hard Shell

Outfitting your SUV for camping

It’s time to put your choice of shelter together with camping necessities to create an all-in-one SUV camper, now that you’ve learned about the two primary varieties of SUV tents. In this step, you’ll need to figure out how you’ll arrange and store your camping equipment. Additionally, it entails carrying along some form of power supply, which is especially important if you plan on bringing along your smart gadgets and other technological equipment. Vehicle Conversion into a Camper

The Layout

Each individual’s SUV will be configured differently in order to accommodate camping activities.

Nonetheless, in general, every camping vacation entails sleeping, eating, participating in some form of outdoor activity, and cleaning. Regardless of what is carried, the objective is to arrange the goods needed for each camping activity in the most efficient manner.

Sleeping area

The amount of individuals that will be accompanying you on your camping vacation will influence your sleeping arrangements. With a hatchback tent, it is possible to set up bedding both in the vehicle and in the tent itself. The more rooms there are, the more people who can join. In a similar vein, campers may use the rooftop tent to sleep both on top of and inside their SUV. For bedding, a sleeping bag will do, and if you have the space, a sleeping mat can also be used. Many SUV owners who convert their vehicles into campers (whether for a weekend break or a cross-country road trip) will put some type of platform in the rear of their vehicles, which is often made of wood.

Additionally, there is room beneath the platform for storing additional camping equipment.


Setting up a foldable table and placing an ice chest in the kitchen might be as simple as putting up a few chairs. It goes without saying that there is always a more efficient method to set up a table. As Sam Gross of the Nomad Kitchen Company put it before designing his ingenious in-house galley, “It’s all about the details.” “Setting up and taking down before and after each meal was OK, but it was a nuisance,” Gross said about the experience. “It took up time that I would have rather to have spent hiking or spending time with friends.” My trunk was always a shambles, and I never felt like my dishes were as clean as I would have liked them to be.

The Nomad Kitchen is a compact kitchen set that requires little storage space.

The following items are included in the setup:

  • A stainless-steel washbasin for a water jug that is compatible with a spigot
  • The use of a cutting board
  • A drying rack and a storage container
  • A platform for a two-burner stove, with a strap to hold a propane bottle on top of the platform


Whether it’s for washing dishes after a meal, washing your hands, or taking a shower to rinse off after a plunge in the lake, campers have some sort of water storage system in their tent or trailer. By twisting a nozzle, you may open the faucet of a container and collect the water it contains. Some camper conversion experts have installed a shower system on the roof of their SUVs, which they use in conjunction with a portable water pump and heater to provide a more comfortable shower experience.

Storage options

A common complaint among campers is that there is never enough capacity to pack everything they want to do while they are away. The addition of an SUV tent, hatchback tent, or rooftop tent provides a plethora of storage choices, both during transportation and at the campground. If someone chooses a hatchback tent, not only will there be space inside the SUV for their belongings, but they will also be able to attach a rooftop load carrier.

The use of a rooftop tent avoids the need to set up a bed inside the SUV, allowing for additional space to be used for other gear. Outdoor equipment, such as bicycles, can be transported in the rear of SUVs throughout the journey to and from the location.

Power source

And, of course, what is a modern-day camping vacation without freshly brewed coffee from the coffee machine, milk from a portable refrigerator or cooler, and the use of an app to plot out your route on a fully charged smartphone? If you enjoy roughing it to a certain extent, carrying along a portable power station such as aJackery lithium-ion power station for your outdoor excursion may be more of a necessity than a want. With solar panels, Jackery has created a portable power station. The Jackery Explorer 1000 portable power station is a great alternative to noisy, fume-filled gas generators.

A full-time RVer and camping enthusiast provides an honest assessment of the Jackery Portable Power Station in the article ” Jackery Portable Power Station: Product Review.” This video shows you how to set up and use the portable power station, allowing you to assess whether or not this particular brand or kind of power source will enhance your camping experience.

SUV Camper Conversion Tour

Christian Giannotti, a photojournalist from New York, completed his Jeep Wrangler camper conversion after working on it for more than a month. It is referred to as “car camping on steroids” by the author who takes viewers on a tour of his custom-built SUV, which has a complete bed, kitchen, and outdoor shower, among other amenities. “For me, this was the most practical way to get started in vanlife without actually purchasing a van,” he adds. I hope you are able to get some inspiration from this to develop something similar.

You don’t even need a Jeep to get around.

Jeep camping in the woods is in order!”

Test out your new SUV tent and camping gear

The use of a high-quality SUV tent in conjunction with camping necessities may make outdoor vacations a pleasurable experience. Following the preparation of your SUV for camping, the only thing left to do is decide where you’re going to go! Use the RV Trip Wizard, an online planning tool, to find RV-friendly routes to any camping spot of your choice. Additionally, you may browse reviews on different campgrounds onCampground Reviews to narrow down your selections and locate the finest stop for you and your traveling party in your fully-equipped SUV camper trailer.

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It’s the desire to travel, the freedom of being on the open road. It is not the goal that is important, but rather the trip. It is on a journey around the world. You don’t need a home since when you travel, you’re already at your destination. That’s what it’s like to live in an RV. The difficulty is that organizing an epic RV vacation is a complicated process. We at RV LIFE think that life should be straightforward. As RVers ourselves, we understand the process and have assisted millions of RVers in achieving their travel goals by gaining confidence and completing their journeys.

Join the discussion in any of our fantastic RV forum groups if you have a question regarding ANYTHING connected to recreational vehicle travel.

Step 1: To learn more and to join up for the free trial, go to this link. Step 2: Make a plan for your ideal RV vacation. Step 3: Take pleasure in the wonderful recollections!

How to Camp in Your Car Successfully

The final traces of city traffic have dissipated, and nothing but open road lies ahead. When the windows are rolled down, I dangle my arm into the flowing air and raise my left foot up alongside the driving wheel. Consider yourself in the driver’s seat for the weekend. Despite the fact that I have four hours behind the wheel ahead of me, the air is getting colder and the scenery more beautiful with each mile. It’s Friday evening, which means it’s finally time for the weekend, and I’m on my way to Mt.

  1. I’ll cross the border and drive into the night, stopping at the trailhead to say goodbye to my Canadian friends before retiring for the night.
  2. Campfire whiskey, eggs and bacon, and a leisurely morning of fishing or prepping for a day of craggin’ are all perfect for tent camping at the right time and in the right place.
  3. Then there’s your automobile.
  4. If your car can transport you to your adventure and then back again, you’re in business.

6 Steps to Camp in Your Car Successfully

It’s likely that you’re tall and your automobile is small, making it less than ideal for stretching out in the back seat. Even with the trunk closed, though, if you move your front seats as far forward as they will go and then fill in the area behind them, you will have more than enough room for your head and feet. In these openings, bins and backpacks fit perfectly, and when they’re covered with a foam cushion, sleeping pad, and pillow, the whole set-up is seamless.

2. Bug Screens

awould you ratherfor the day: Would you want to be kept awake all night by clammy limbs and humid air, or would you rather to be kept awake all night by an unending buzzing in your ears? Fortunately, you may be able to provide none of these answers this time. The purchase of mosquito nets for your car windows is a smart idea if you plan on spending weekends and hot summer evenings sleeping in your car in the woods. If you’re on a tight budget, mosquito netting may be purchased in huge swaths that can be cut to size and attached and removed with magnets with ease.

In the meanwhile, how about this: would you like to have a voice like Kermit the Frog or an appearance like Miss Piggy?

3. Make Your Bed

Perhaps the most important piece of equipment for getting a decent night’s sleep in your automobile is a comfy mattress and pillow. If you’re in it for the long haul, I recommend purchasing a piece of foam to use as a foundation and then laying one of Therm-a-mattresses Rest’s designed for pure comfort (as opposed to light and quick) on top, such as theMondoKing or theDreamTime.

If you’re only going to be improvising for a few nights, your regular mattress will suffice; nevertheless, don’t forget to bring a beautiful, fluffy pillow with you.

4. Movable Storage

It’s a never-ending supply of bins! Using bins not only makes it easier to keep things organized, but they also make it less difficult to remove items from the trunk each evening. Fold your bed and place it in the space between the front seats or in the area between the front and deflated rear seats and you’re done! The process of setting up camp takes less than three minutes, and you may not even have to step out of your car to do it!

5. LED lighting

The day was lengthy, with a cumulative elevation gain and loss of 12,000 feet, which included bushwhacking and mosquitoes as we made our way to high alpine meadows and ridge lines. Your legs are scraped and painful, your feet are itching to be free of their damp, muddy confines, and your heart is overflowing with gratitude. It’s a shame that when you go back to your car, you can’t get the engine to start so that you can go have some hamburgers and shakes at the small-town restaurant down the street.


They’re extremely energy efficient (and can even be recharged through USB!) and provide a far more pleasant ambience than the interior lighting in your automobile.

6. Find a Flat Spot

The parking lot is dark and deserted, with just the small route ahead of the automobile illuminated by the headlights of the car in front of it. Despite the fact that you’re fatigued from driving and have an early morning wake-up call, all you want to do is sleep. A flat bed, on the other hand, is very necessary for a peaceful night’s sleep in your automobile. Instead of looking for a parking place at 2 a.m. when you’re still having trouble sleeping, look for one when you’re parked. While it is feasible to find a level location by eyeballing it, a more trustworthy measurement may be obtained from something that we all have with us: a water bottle.

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