Welcome to our ultimate guide to the best camper van roof vents on the market! Whether you want a multi-speed programmable vent or a simple, affordable way to move air through your van, this expert blog post will help you find the roof vent for you.
There’s nothing like the smell of fresh air while you’re cruising down the highway in your retrofitted van conversion. And while sliding doors and open windows provide decent airflow, it’s sometimes not practical for full-time van lifers. After all, you can’t necessarily leave your doors open all night in the sweltering heat of summer!
That’s why many people have switched over to using a roof vent. Not only does a vent give you more control over the temperature and airflow in your van, but it also protects you against potentially harmful fumes from cooking on your stove and unwanted mould caused by humidity.
While most roof vent fans may seem similar, there are actually big differences you should take into account before installing one. In this article, we’re going to help you choose the best fan for your van, so you can enjoy that fresh breath of air no matter where in the world you travel to!
WHAT WE LIKE
THINGS TO CONSIDER
MAXXAIR MAXXFAN DELUXE
FAN-TASTIC 801200 3-SPEED RV ROOF VENT
FAN-TASTIC 807350 RV ROOF VENT WITH THERMOSTAT
FIAMMA TURBO VENT CRYSTAL POLAR CRANK ROOF HOOD
LIVPOW RV ROOF VENT 3 SPEED REVERSIBLE MANUAL LIFT SMOKE LID
HENG'S ROOF VENT KIT
The Best Camper Van Roof Vent
There are certain criteria to look for when deciding on the best roof vent fan. Besides finding a fan that fits your space, you’ll also want one that’s energy-efficient, easy to install, and powerful enough to draw in fresh air while filtering out stagnant air.
Editor’s Choice – Maxxair MAXXFAN Deluxe
If you’re looking for the best on the market, high-tech roof vent fan, then look no further than the Maxxair MAXXFAN Deluxe. Airflow can be adjusted using one of the ten different speed levels, so you’ll always have the perfect temperature when traveling on the road.
Better yet, the temperature can also be programmed and regulated, so there’s no manually adjusting involved. With the MAXXFAN Deluxe, you can just set it and forget it!
And when we say high-tech, we mean high-tech. The temperature, fan setting, and even the roof opening are completely controlled using the wireless infrared remote control.
That way, you can open and close the vent fan without ever leaving the comfort of your bed.
With the parent company AirXcel being one of the most reputable brands in the camper van industry, you can’t go wrong with a fan from Maxxair. They’ve been in the business for over 30 years, so they know a thing or two about appliances for your van.
This is the exact model we have on our campervan, Marlee, and we can attest to it being the best option on the market!
|* Automated temperature control|
* Ten speeds
* Controlled by wireless remote control
|* High price point|
Fan-Tastic 801200 3-Speed RV Roof Vent
The energy-efficient Fan-Tastic 801200 is one of the most popular roof vents for small to medium size camper vans. It fits snugly in the standard 14 x 14 opening of your van roof and pulls in up to 920 cubic feet of air per minute (although that’s completely adjustable using the three different fan speeds).
It comes with a removable vent cover that can be easily cleaned from the inside of your van and even comes with see-through blades so you won’t be blocking out the sunlight.
And because it only uses three amps of power to operate, you won’t have to worry about draining your van battery. That means you can run it for much longer compared to other roof vent fans.
Best of all, it’s one of the quietest camper van fans on the market today, which is perfect if the fan in installed directly over your bed or sleeping nook.
The 801200 is the entry-level model of the Fan-Tastic range, which means it doesn’t include tons of nifty features like reversible airflow, automated temperature control, or wireless remote control. But for the price, it’s one of the best van roof vents you can buy for your camper van.
|* Affordable price point|
* Easy to install
* Energy efficient (3 amps)
* The quietest fan we’ve tested
|* Only 3-speeds|
Fan-Tastic 807350 RV Roof Vent with Thermostat
As the more robust bigger brother to the Fan-Tastic 801200, the Fan-Tastic 807350 model comes equipped with all the bells and whistles you could ever want in a roof vent fan.
It comes with a whopping 14 different speeds, reversible airflow blades, an automated dome lift, and a wireless remote. It even has an automatic rain sensor that closes the dome when it gets too wet.
If you’re traveling often, then a rain sensor is an incredibly useful feature that can protect you in case you get caught sleeping through a downpour in the middle of the night.
It also comes with a built-in thermostat, so all you have to do is set the desired temperature of your van and let the fan do the rest!
Unfortunately, these high-tech features come at a high cost. The 807350 model is one of the most expensive camper van fans you can purchase. But if you’re looking for a durable, high-functioning 14 x 14 fan that you won’t have to replace in a few years, then consider the 807350.
|* Many high-tech features|
* Reversible blades
* 14-speed levels
|* Very high price point|
Fiamma Turbo Vent Crystal Polar Crank Roof Hood
The heavy-duty Fiamma Turbo Vent is a trusted companion amongst many van life travelers. Powered by a 12v charge, this 10-blade fan can be used in both directions. It has three settings to draw cool air in and two additional settings to expel the hot air out of the van.
It’s made from high-quality, UV resistant materials, so it’s less likely to crack or break over time.
And, it comes with a mosquito net, so you won’t have to worry about those pesky creatures creeping into your van while you’re road tripping through the great outdoors.
It’s made from high-quality, UV resistant materials, so it’s less likely to crack or break over time. And, it comes with a mosquito net, so you won’t have to worry about those pesky creatures creeping into your van while you’re road tripping through the great outdoors.
|* Reversible blade settings|
* High-quality crystal materials
* Included mosquito nets
|* Mid-range price point|
* No automatic features
Livpow RV Roof Vent 3 Speed Reversible Manual Lift Smoke Lid
Another contender for the Quietest Fan award goes to the Livpow RV Roof Vent. Even on the highest level, it’s still barely noticeable if you’re in the driver’s seat.
Because this is a reversible blade fan, it can push air outside of the van, which does create a bit more noise than when it’s operating in regular mode. However, it’s still relatively quiet for a vent fan of this calibre.
It fits most standard 14 x 14 openings and comes equipped with everything you need for installation, including the garnish and screws.
There’s also a detachable bug screen, which can easily be popped out and cleaned during those humid summer months.
The biggest downside we could find is that the product name is a little misleading. While there are three speed options for regular fan mode, there are only two reversible modes.
|* Affordable price point|
* Reversible blades
* Detachable bug screen
|* Only two speeds in reverse mode|
Heng’s Roof Vent Kit
Roof vents can be quite expensive, but not the Heng’s Roof Vent Kit! For a fraction of the cost of other high-end models, Heng’s Roof Vent is a practical choice for any camper van owner on a budget.
It only operates on one fan speed, which we find is sufficient for most air circulation needs. However, it probably won’t be strong enough if you’re cooking or taking your camper van to a hot and humid climate.
And while you won’t get fancy features like wireless remote control, reverser airflow, or automatic temperature control, it’s still a decent option if you don’t often cook meals inside or travel to hot and humid climates.
The only other downside to this roof vent fan is durability. If it’s exposed to years of intense sun and rain, the plastic lid can start to crack. If you’re spending a fair amount of time on the road, then you might be better off investing in a higher quality roof vent fan.
|* Extremely affordable|
* Works as advertised
|* No extra features|
* Can break or crack after several seasons
Choosing the Best Camper Van Roof Vent
We’ve shown you the best vents on the market for your RV or motorhome, and now we’re going to dive into some of the specs and reasonings behind them.
Reasons for Adding a Roof Vent
Why exactly would you bother adding a roof vent to your van? Let’s find out…
Improve Air Quality
Let’s face it – small campers and vans can get quite stinky, especially if you’re on the road for extended periods at a time. Having the ability to get rid of dust, odors, and even cooking fumes makes installing a roof vent a worthwhile investment on its own.
With a vent fan, you can simply pop the top, switch on the reversible blades with your remote control, and dispose of all those unwanted particles.
Increase Temperature Control
Unless your van is constantly running the air conditioner, it can be hard to maintain the right temperature inside. This is especially true if you’re sleeping off-grid.
But with a roof fan, you’ll have more control over how hot or cold things get (without the use of high-powered air conditioning units). Imagine – you’ll be able to sleep soundly with a source of cool air even on those hot summer nights.
Prevents Condensation and Mold
Without a place for condensation or steam to escape, your van might be the perfect breeding ground for mold and mildew. This is especially true if you produce a lot of fumes while cooking, as those particles can cling to your interior and potentially causing hazardous problems over time.
In order to draw out necessary moisture from your kitchen, bathroom, or van interior, it’s crucial to install a durable vent fan.
Criteria for Adding a Roof Vent
Although it’s possible to find custom sized vent fans, most of them come in a standard size of 14 x 14 inches. Although the width and length of the fan will generally be a standard size, you should also measure the height to make sure it’s compatible with your roof size.
The last thing you want to do is cut a hole or make adjustments to your roof, only to find out that the vent doesn’t even fit!
Roof vent fans, in general, don’t use up a lot of power (roughly three or four amps on their highest setting), although you might need a more powerful fan if you have a larger van conversion that you need to air out.
If you’re planning on running your fan throughout the entire day (for instance, if you’re traveling someone hot), then amperage draw and energy efficiency are essential factors to consider when purchasing a camper van vent.
More robust roof vents will have a variety of adjustable settings. For more control over the temperature and airspeed, the vent should have different levels of fan speed. It might also have reversible blade rotation, which blows air out of the van roof.
More advanced fans will have automated temperature control, which allows you to set your desired temperature of the van. The vent will then regulate its speed and automatically turn on or off in order to adjust the interior temperature.
Ease of Installation
Replacing your van’s roof vent is a simple do-it-yourself project that can easily be completed within a few hours. The most complicated part is removing the putty and garnish of your existing fan or cutting a new hole in your roof to support the new one.
There is a bit of manual work involved with installing a new vent, including sealing, wiring the power, and screwing on the hardware.
Here’s a great video tutorial on how to install a MaxxFan in a Sprinter:
Some vents are louder than others, which can cause problems if you’re living full-time in your van. Fans with small blades and loud motors produce more noise, while more expensive and robust fans are generally quieter.
If you’re a light sleeper (or bothered by any amount of buzzing noise), then it’s crucial to look for a fan that isn’t too loud.
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