10 Easy Steps to Install your Fan:
- Maxxair 00-06200k MaxxFan Ventilation Fan with Smoke Lid and Keypad Control
- Power Drill with Metal Hole Bit
- Frog Tape
- Butyl Tape
- 2 x 2 Lumber
- Tape Measure
- Utility Knife
- Caulk Gun
- Lap Sealant
Step 1: Buying your fan and Planning the placement of your fan.
We ordered the MaxxFan Ventilation Fan with Smoke Lid and Keypad Control on Amazon. This fan has 10-speed intake and exhaust settings with a thermostat to control the room temperature which is crucial when the dogs are in there alone for short periods of time. The fan will kick on if it reads the van is getting to be over 71 degrees. Equally as important, the built in rain cover is crucial to full time van life. We wanted to maximize air ventilation so we placed our fan in the very front of the van while our windows are placed in the back. This creates a nice breeze throughout our whole living space, another important detail if you aren’t planning on installing an AC unit.
Step 2: Template Time!
Anytime you are preparing to cut a hole in your van, you’ll want to make a cardboard template. Our fan came with specific instructions for that template. You can also use the plastic trim piece to trace the shape of the fan onto the van’s roof.
Step 3: Tape the Roof
After you have traced your template onto the roof with a sharpie, tape an 1”-1.5” around your template trace. This will prevent any scratching during the cutting process.
*Pro Tip: Tape the bottom of your jigsaw to prevent unnecessary scratches as well.
Step 4: Measure three times, cut once!
It’s time to drill your pilot holes on the inside of your sharpie line. Always remember to measure three times and cut once! This is a critical part in the process because if you cut the hole to big you’re pretty much screwed here! Once you’re positive your measurements are correct, drill your pilot holes using a metal drill bit just big enough for your jigsaw blade. Keep cutting until you have a giant hole in your roof!!
Step 5: Build Interior Frame for Fan to Mount to
For this we used 2 x 2 lumber to create an interior frame for the fan to mount to. This is critical because the sheet metal that makes up your roof is too thin for your roof fan to properly attach to. Use Liquid Nail to glue your frame on to the inside of you van. Clamp in place and take a break for two hours!
Step 6: Dry Fit your Fan
Once your adhesive is dry on the interior frame you can dry fit the white trim ring of the fan. As long as it fits, mark and pre-drill holes for the screws.
Step 7: Butyl Tape
Rub down the fan Trim ring and the van with rubbing alcohol to rid the space of any left over grease and dirt. Once your space is clean, apply butyl tape to the white trim ring and secure into place. After you screw the trim piece into place, some excess butyl tape will run out of the sides, always be sure to clean this up.
Step 8: Mount Fan to Trim ring
Once your fan frame is secured, install your fan to the trim ring as instructed by the fan’s directions.
Step 9: Apply Self-Leveling Lap Sealant
Liberally apply sealant to all screws while covering the whole trim ring.
Step 10: Wiring
Wire the fan up and enjoy the breeze!