What Are the Best Campervan Accessories:  Thermal Screens or Curtains?

Thermal Screens or Curtains

Choosing the best campervan accessories for your van can be surprisingly difficult. With so many options on the market, your vehicle is essentially a blank slate that you can fill with whatever objects you desire. However, how do you identify what will supplement your lifestyle against what will simply take up space and waste your money?

In most cases, you will have to go through a bit of trial and error. The longer you live in your motorhome, the more apparent it will become what are the best campervan accessories for you. Over many hours of driving and numerous nights in your campervan, you will intuitively know what is missing from your vehicle.

One big splitting point is whether you use thermal screens or curtains in your campervan. There are pros and cons to each accessory so let’s pit them against each other and see what comes out on top! Here’s the battle of the best campervan accessories: thermal screens vs curtains.

Thermal Screens

Thermal Screens for campervan

Temperature isn’t something most people think about when they are driving a car. If you want to get warmer, you simply turn on the heating. If you need to cool down, you open the windows or turn on the air conditioning.

However, when you live and sleep in a campervan, regulating the temperature requires more steps to operate successfully. Living in a freezing van is miserable and living in a sweltering van can be even worse. Aside from insulating your vehicle or installing fans/heaters when you convert your campervan, there are some additional things to consider.

For a speedy solution, thermal screens are one of the best campervan accessories you can buy. The windows are a crucial area of heat transfer in a campervan. Warmth leeches out through the glass when it’s cold and the sun beats down on the windows when it’s a hot day. Thermal screens both reflect and insulate heat to fix this common problem.


  • A thermal screen can be used in your front windshield to reflect heat or keep your van cooler when parked during the day.
  • You can use thermal screens on your interior windows when you sleep to add an extra insulating layer to your van.
  • Thermal screens are cheap to buy and available from most hardware stores, superstores, and petrol stations.
  • Thermal screens are made-to-size and ready to use. After you purchase them, they can be applied straight out of the box.
  • Thermal screens cover up the vehicle windows to prevent people from looking inside when you are away. 


  • Thermal screens don’t look particularly attractive or aesthetic. They are a functional solution that does very little for the appearance of your van.
  • You need to put thermal screens up every night and take them down each day when you are ready to drive again. This is more time-consuming than simply sweeping a curtain open and closed.


Curtains for campervan

Curtains are one of the best campervan accessories because they make your vehicle feel like a home. This is a challenging aspect of converting a van as many vehicles don’t have the comforts you associate with a home. Curtains are a common feature in a house or apartment and using them in your campervan gives it a comforting finishing touch.


  • Curtains look good in a campervan, and they give the vehicle a more homely feel.
  • They provide much-needed privacy. You hardly want people looking into your van when you’re changing or sleeping.
  • Curtains give you a feeling of security. Once your van is secured for the night, you feel safe and cosy in your vehicle with all the windows closed off – rather than being surrounded by glass and metal.
  • You have more creativity with the design, colour, fitting, and material of your curtains than you do when using a thermal screen.
  • Light pours in through the windows making it hard to sleep. Using black-out curtains helps to extinguish the light so you get a better rest.


  • Curtains take time to install. You need to do a bit of DIY to purchase the materials and tailor the products to fit your van. You then need access to some tools to put them in place.
  • Aside from stopping drafts, curtains do very little to insulate the van or repel warmth.

Best Campervan Accessories – Answer: Both!

This may seem like a bit of a cop-out, but both thermal screens and curtains have merit in a campervan. Implementing these products in your vehicle will ensure you get the most value out of each item. Selecting the best campervan accessories is often about balancing solutions when you are trying to live in a converted van.

converted Campervan Thermal Screens or Curtains

Ideally, you want to use a thermal screen for your front windshield as curtains will obscure your view. This can be removed whenever you need to drive, and it will insulate/reflect heat. You could then put a thick curtain behind the back seats that separates the driving area from your living compartment.

You can then use curtains on the side windows for the black-out effect and comfort at night. Lastly, the back windows can have thermal screens on for extra warmth which can also be removed whenever you need to drive.

Final Tips

When selecting the best campervan accessories, you don’t have to commit to something forever. It’s best to start cheap and then go more expensive if your budget solution doesn’t work. For example, even if you’re terrible at DIY, have a go at installing the curtains yourself.

You might get things wrong, but it will be a learning experience and getting hands-on with your vehicle is all part of van life. Thermal screens are a quick solution that you can always fall back on. However, it’s the finishing touches such as adding curtains that really make your campervan feel special. So get stuck in, select your best campervan accessories and gadgets, and start building the vehicle of a lifetime!