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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys,

I'm currently working on insulation using 3M Thinsulate.

I was wondering should I also add thinsulate at the bottom behind the plastic caps. See pictures.

Thanks


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What about filling it loosely with polyester fill?
If the upper walls have insulation on them, if there is any condensation, it would get wicked into the insulation, correct? So, any condensation in that lower part would be caused by warm air in the van contacting the cold outer metal, which would be amplified by not being insulated(?)
Would a loose poly fill give some insulation, while still allowing moisture to drain?
I also planned to fill all the channels in the van with loose poly fill insulation. If it's a bad idea to put anything in that lower channel, I will have to come up with another solution. It's a large area for heat exchange with the outside.
 

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Putting insulation in there is like putting insulation in the mirror housing, it's outside the envelope. Insulate over the triangles if you must. There are plastic plugs in the rocker panel, but I haven't seen any drains holes.

I wouldn't recommend insulating the ribs under the floor so I don't recommend insulating the rocker panels.
 

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it's outside the envelope.
I see what you mean.
What's stumping me is, if it's intended to drain condensation from the walls, then the idea must be that the walls are either not insulated, or there are just panels on the walls that leave a space behind for condensation to build.
I'm assuming that if the van is heavily insulated, with insulation contacting the outer shell, there really won't be condensation to drain down.
If any did form, it would get wicked into any batt insulation or paneling on the walls.
Either way, moisture is bad. Best thing is to seal and insulate really well and try to eliminate it.
I wonder if anyone has attempted small 12v fans in areas like that bottom channel.
 

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Phil, I'm not sure what you're looking at, but that area shown is part of the envelope, unless the inside wall is inside that channel. As to whether to insulate or not, I can see arguments both ways but I think I stuffed thinsulate in there myself. I put foam boards on the floor.
 

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Phil, I'm not sure what you're looking at,
The op wrote behind the triangles, so I read that as in the rocker panel.
Since they are using Thinsulate® they should have just run it all they way to the floor, there by covering the triangles and completing the envelope.
 

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if it's intended to drain condensation from the walls
It's actually a structural member, the fact that it's the lowest point means it collects things, mine had wood chips for example, some of the seams aren't prefect so water can enter from the wheels wells and from the interior.

I think it's prone to rust if it can't dry out.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The op wrote behind the triangles, so I read that as in the rocker panel.
Since they are using Thinsulate they should have just run it all they way to the floor, there by covering the triangles and completing the envelope.
Yeah I meant in the rocker panel. I can do it outside the triangles. Would that be better?

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Yeah I meant in the rocker panel. I can do it outside the triangles. Would that be better?
IMO draping the Thinsulate® over the triangle is the best route, cost wise and time wise.
 

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Phil, I'm actually at a fabric store right now, looking for polyester batting and stretch carpet/fabric. Before we left, I ran out and checked. It definitely appears to be a structural channel and collecting water seems more of a side effect than an intention.
It looks like the worst culprit for water intrusion is the plastic rivets that hold the exterior plastic molding on (moulding, if you're Canadian).
If I were to fill that space with any insulation material, I would clean and thoroughly dry it first, then dab some silicone around the plastic rivets to seal the hole they pop through.
Again, if I were to put insulation in there.
 

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the plastic rivets
Or just run a bead of something on the top edge of the black molding.
But some have had water coming in from the wheel wells.
The plastic pins have evolved, they have a rubber seal (may or may not seal)
58676
 

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Phil, CUT.....
It looks like the worst culprit for water intrusion is the plastic rivets that hold the exterior plastic molding on (moulding, if you're Canadian).
If I were to fill that space with any insulation material, I would clean and thoroughly dry it first, then dab some silicone around the plastic rivets to seal the hole they pop through.
Again, if I were to put insulation in there.
Don’t. I have made that mistake in the past on a truck and car I thought were getting too cold in the far north of VT. The insulation got wet from condensation I believe and I had RUST, MOLD, and BAD Smells! Pulling it out a couple of years later would make your stomach turn and it was sopping wet!
Or if you decide not to take my advice let us know how it turns out.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Don’t. I have made that mistake in the past on a truck and car I thought were getting too cold in the far north of VT. The insulation got wet from condensation I believe and I had RUST, MOLD, and BAD Smells! Pulling it out a couple of years later would make your stomach turn and it was sopping wet!
Or if you decide not to take my advice let us know how it turns out.
So you recommend to not put anything there and just cover the top where the black triangles are?

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I think he's just trying to scare us because it's Halloween.
If that area gets wet, then it's not worth insulating it and yes, just insulate over the top.
 

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BOOOooo! Really it does get wet. We used to call them scuppers. Water gets in from condensation on the walls and frost melting, from their connection to the front fender wells and from splash up their drain holes. My Pinto (It still hurts) had so much water in there I had to go under and drill holes to let it out (about 2 gallons.) Ford must have thought they would stay dry. There were other problems...... don’t get me started.
 

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Don’t. I have made that mistake in the past on a truck and car I thought were getting too cold in the far north of VT. The insulation got wet from condensation I believe and I had RUST, MOLD, and BAD Smells! Pulling it out a couple of years later would make your stomach turn and it was sopping wet!
Or if you decide not to take my advice let us know how it turns out.
I agree with RD on that cavity (rocket panel) also;
1) If you do insulate it use a material that mold doesn't feed off (possibility Rockwool). However you are probably better off keeping this cavity on the the cold side
2) Clean it out of and debris before you close it up
3) As the metal that the plastic plugs fit into is all connected to the metal floor & walls of the van it will act as a thermal bridge regardless of insulation (to increase the R value effectively the metal thermal bridge would need the insulation applied on top of the steel structure - ie the inside of the van)
4) I suppose 1 reason to place a non molding & hydrophobic material in that cavity would be for sound insulating purposes

The prevention of rust, mold, & bad smells (as RD puts it) is paramount in my mind for thinking thru the “building science” of insulation, vapor barriers, thermal bridging of the ceiling, wall, & floor structures. I believe RD when he states he has some experience with this item. How does that saying go; Good Decisions come from Bad Experience. Anyway, best of luck with what you decide & please let us know the results
 

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It looks like the worst culprit for water intrusion is the plastic rivets that hold the exterior plastic molding on (moulding, if you're Canadian).

Hey RnR

mold / mould
color / colour
neighbor / neighbour

It is all because we like “U” Neighbour

Eh?
 

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So you recommend to not put anything there and just cover the top where the black triangles are?

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Yup

Insulate over the top (inside) of it and keep the entire void on the cold side

If was to do it again, I might design or install a hose or vent or some thing that I could attach heated forced air supply to perform maintenance to dry out those areas

MsNomer stated there are “drain holes“ in the bottom. These drain holes are plugged with rubber plugs (if you lay on the outside ground & look up at the bottom of that rocker cavity you should see them. If these plugs are water tight & you have water accumulating in there, simply remove, drain, and replace these plugs

photo of plugs;
58680
 
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