Top Campervan Storage Ideas for Space Saving in Your Van
First Steps to an Organized Van:
De-clutter / give away / sell!
Before you do anything take a good look at what’s in your van, or what you plan to put in your van, and ask yourself the following questions:
- Do you really need it?
- Have you used it in the last 12 months?
If the answer to either of these is no- get rid of it! Try to avoid chucking it away. You can try selling it or at the very least offer it free. There are many easy to use websites that you can offer things up for sale or free. We have used the following with great success and have managed to make a bit of extra cash from things we didn't need:
- Ebay - Online auction marketplace
- Facebook marketplace - Facebooks main selling section.
- Facebook groups- there are oodles local groups you can join to offer things for sale/free to collector.
- Gumtree - A popular selling website that's been around a while.
- Olio- A free website / app that allows you advertise food and other items for people to come and collect.
Once you have only your essentials you can then start organising the space in your campervan.
Make use of Hidden spaces in your Campervan
Have a good poke around your van and look under and around everything! We discovered some excellent hidden storage areas in our sprinter campervan that offer amazing extra space:
- Under the front cab seats- in the sprinter you can lift the passenger seats up and there is a gigantic space which we use for storing extra food. In most vans there is space under the seats (you might need to remove panels to access this)- Make use of it!
- Behind the drivers seat- behind and under the drivers seat is small area we use for keeping cleaning products and a few other things we don’t use everyday.
- Cab storage- there are often extra areas that can be made use of. In the sprinter there are 2 large compartments above the sun visors and of course the side door compartments.
- Behind the sink- there is an area which can house things like washing tablets and extra toiletries that don’t get used all the time. You can then put your everyday items in front of it which are easily accessible.
- Behind the worksurface- we have an area behind our worksurface which we keep a few big clumsy items that use up a lot space elsewhere e.g. a huge spotlight torch!
Sliders are your best friend in a campervan - they make accessing space so much easier and make the van more functional. The photo above shows Dolomiti nearing the end of her build with all the slider storage on show.
We use Eurofit direct for all our sliders and they have given us great customer service and have an excellent range of sliders for all uses.
In Dolomiti (our second van) we used sliders in our under bed space to create the following super function storage sections:
Slide out table
We used heavy duty sliders so that the table was very strong. We also designed it so the sliders were hidden within an internal frame so the table looked simple and classy when pulled out. Above is a photo of the slide out table in our 3rd build Blencathra.
Massive under bed storage cupboard (the coffin!)
We have a huge pull out storage cupboard on sliders which spans the whole length of the bed. This has been aptly named the coffin as if we took the dividers out it could be used as such! This cupboard has 250kg sliders on as it holds a lot of our kit.
Under bed drawers
We have 2 drawers which sit under the bed and are great as organised space for all our odds and sods. We have found that having smaller spaces with dividers work best rather than 1 larger drawer where things turn into chaos very quickly!
Slide out fridge drawer
We have a slide out fridge which sits under the bed between the 2 bench seats. In our old van the fridge lived in the garage where the only way of accessing it was going outside to the back doors. We love how we can now access our fridge from inside but it doesn't use up any of the living space.
Water storage slider
We have built long narrow storage box which sits on heavy duty sliders in the garage space and holds another 4 x 10 litre jerry cans. This makes the water so much easier to access. We have waterproofed the box by painting it in raptor paint and using CT1 sealant on the edges.
Spice rack / larder
I always wanted a larder cupboard in a van so I could store all the spices, oil and spreads. We bought an IKEA kitchen cupboard that was 20cm wide and built our own slide out storage unit to sit inside. We used short sliders from Euro fit direct and it works brilliantly!
Clothes Storage Ideas for a Campervan
Clothes can become a messy affair. We try to use a logical and practicle approach and use the following clothes storage plan which works well for our lifestyle:
Storage pouches for everyday clothes: These are amazing and allow you store so much more than you could folded (or stuffed!) in a cupboard. We have separate pouches for different items e.g. a 1 pouch for each of the following: underwear, socks, smart tops, exercise tops, hiking/exercise trousers/ casual trousers. Look how neat it looks:
Where to put Big Items of Clothing
We keep big items such as hiking jackets and hoodies etc under the bench seats in the living area. Top Tip- if they have a hood, roll them up and stuff everything in to the hood- it keeps it much neater!
Rotate winter & Summer Clothing
More often than not you don’t use the same clothes all year round. We keep any kit were not going to use for a few months (e.g. skiing and winter mountaineering clothing) in another pouch in our cupboard under the bed. It then means that stuff you’re not using everyday isn’t in the way.
Food Storage Ideas for a Campervan
Use Containers and lots of them: make sure that they can fill the space well and you will have a highly organised and well used kitchen space. For our kitchen drawers we made use of our empty Illy Coffee pots (having enjoyed amazing coffee!) for everyday staples which fit into the drawers perfectly:
Make sure all your kit is stackable- all your pots, pans, dinner wear and cooking equipment needs to be stackable to make the most of the space. E.g. our kettle pan fits inside our saucepan and the mixing bowl fits over the top of all the dinnerware so takes up less space.
Use boxes for different food supplies: Inside your drawers make sure you use boxes for different food items. We have different boxes for the following:
- Baking supplies
- Seeds and nuts
- Cans and jars
- Fruit and Vegetables
- Pasta/rice and everyday staples
All of this fits into 1 Ikea Kitchen unit. We make sure that the stuff we don’t use everyday is put at the back e.g. baking supplies and the seeds and nuts and vice versa.
Shelf Storage in a Campervan
Shelves: We use reformed Ikea Bekvam shelves in our campervan. They are a cheap way of getting fixings already inset into the wood so we can just put an oak bottom on and change the wood front to a copper pipe.
We use these in several places in the van:
- Ipad/coffee shelf
- Whisky bottle shelf
- Spice racks
We much prefer making use of these shelves than having too many wall mounted cupboards which can make a small space feel claustrophobic.
Slide Out Tables For Space Saving
We have a fixed table because we are lucky enough to have plenty of room in the living area and also don’t need a 3rd birth. If you are struggling for space or simply don’t like the idea of putting up a table up every time you want to eat then consider building in a pull out or pop up table.
More often than not they slide out from under the bed in a fixed bed arrangement or pop up from the side of a worksurface.
Back Door Storage Ideas in a Campervan
Particularly if you have a fixed bed you will have a hidden area for potential storage on the inside of the back doors that doesn’t get seen if the doors are shut.
We have hooks on ours which we use for rucksacks, gaiters and ice axes.
Garage Space Storage in a Campervan
If you have a fixed bed then you will no doubt have good garage space for storage to play around with. We store all our hobby equipment (including bikes and skis) along with water, cool box, extra food, recycling bin and electrical system.
We find crates work really for keeping equipment tidy and contained. We have a crate each for hiking gear and a further crate which sits at the back of the garage with items in that aren't currently being used. This gets rotated around according the season and the particular activities we are doing.
Remember: just because it’s a big space it still needs to be organised. The easiest way to keep it organised is to plan what you are going to put in it first and then partition accordingly (rather than leaving it all open where everything can just get mixed up).
Use bungee and hooks to make use of space around the top of the garage walls and partitions. We use bungee for shoes, drinks bottles and some lightweight equipment.
Have you any space saving tips of your own? Please contact us here we would love to hear from you!
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