Vanagon – body insulation idea

Saw this on the samba, i think it was syncroghia that posted in his thread about adding high top to his 16″ syncro. I thought it was a good idea so i gave it a go on the rear hatch.

It is just water pipe insulation, I think its foam polyethylene, cut to length and wedged into the cavity. Now that summer’s over one might find pool noodles going cheap and I think they would do too.

I like this because it is cheap and fast to install. No gluing and I don’t think it will trap moisture against the metal.


I stuck on a bit of peel and stick roofing stuff to dampen panel noise. My van had some factory applied bits already there. Remember this is a converted 7 passenger tin top. I don’t think we sties have the factory sound proofing in the back hatch, but they do have the dreaded fiberglass batting.


And just because i had some, i pushed in some 3/8″ thick closed cell foam. Left over pipe insulation stuck on lip of cut out.


I liked how it went in, I think I’ll do more of it.

  1. #1 by Tom V on March 7, 2015 - 6:38 am

    Just to make sure I understand… Did you do the peel and stick roofing stuff, then the pipe insulation, and finally the closed cell foam on top? On the rear hatch.

    Thanks! And great posts, super helpful for a neophyte like me.

    • #2 by albell on March 23, 2015 - 7:47 pm

      Please forgIve me for my absence on the blog.

      Yeah, I just stuck the roofing stuff right on the metal. The pipe insulation tubes were cut to length, well cut a bit long so they would jam in there, and pushed into place. They hold in there fine.


  2. #3 by Caroline on December 31, 2016 - 8:56 am

    Hello! Thanks for all the creative ideas. I’m just curious, have you peeled back the body panel to see how things look back there now that it’s been a couple years?

  3. #4 by littlepackage on December 31, 2016 - 8:58 am

    Hello! Thank you for all the creative ideas. I’m just wondering, have you peeled back the body panel since you put in the foam noodles, to inspect for trapped moisture, breakdown, whatnot? Also, any observations with how they’ve worked as insulation?

    • #5 by albell on December 31, 2016 - 9:23 am


      Nope, I haven’t. I see should shouldn’t I? 🙂
      Hate to remove the hatch angel in the winter though. The cold really makes the plastic plugs super hard to remove.



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