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Heating Your RV Van CHEAP

538 ratings | 50607 views
Hey YouTubers! So, I know it's a little late for this one. Because summer is right around the corner. But this will be something to play with and tweak over the summer to prepare for the winter. I hope you like it. Thanks for watching! Comment and subscribe!
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Text Comments (144)
Louise Florida /Missouri (6 months ago)
You can get longer lasting tea lights so your not waking to relight more often. Putting a tile under it will keep them from melting your cooler.
Luke Snyder (7 months ago)
But do you still work or do you work for awhile save up and relax
KuraQueen (9 months ago)
I wasn't impressed with it. I ended up using multiple tealight candles in a ceramic high sided container. Way better, and I buy the 9 hour ones because I want to stay warm all night. I generally get 10 - 12 hours out of them. My van is very small but I still light up between 8-20 a night depending on how cold it is.
meet the fockers (1 year ago)
Were you high in this video?
Nancy Creation (1 year ago)
This Is Slammin (1 year ago)
One other thing you can try is getting a 5-10 pound block of soapstone, throwing it in a campfire and bringing it into the van. Soapstone retains and gives off heat incredibly. You’d be shocked. Plus you don’t have open flame.
This Is Slammin (1 year ago)
Use an alcohol burner.
Lotta (1 year ago)
Check this out! :) https://youtu.be/om41dWw0nMk
Lotta (1 year ago)
These things seem to be very dangerous though. Should probably not be used unattended and only with one candle. There may be a safer way of using it... https://youtu.be/fnna1PAakV4
Billigan (1 year ago)
DO NOT TRY IT, if you don't want to die! This shit almost killed us.
Ramona Hopewell (1 year ago)
Cool idea.
Jas Bagby (1 year ago)
Get u a flat bar from hardware store 1 inch wide x 1/16 or 1/8 by how long it will take to make a handle. & place on top. get u a oven mitt ,, or figure out some material to cover handle so u won.t burn your hand
Error 404 (1 year ago)
just slow cook yourself a soup overnight every night with some propane and that should keep you nice and toasty. Gota get that propane coals for chumps.
Shilodog Smith (1 year ago)
These really don't work.  The candles don't give off enough heat to warm the van, and there's nothing involved that will 'multiply' the heat.  The heat produced will never exceed the number of candles involved.
Kathryn Kenyon (1 year ago)
Love your humility...thanks for your information! Think I'll do some tweeking and get back to you. Take care our there!
DR Dan (2 years ago)
Its a bad idea.  Think of the BTUs you get from a 20 pound jug of propane and safely.  An open fire is always a fire hazard.  And setting that thing on top of a plastic cooler is crazy.  Save the tin foil for your hat.
Chupa Cabra (2 years ago)
I did it and used 1 pot and left the hole in top open worked pretty good.
Chupa Cabra (2 years ago)
where did you get those tea candles.
markadoglet (2 years ago)
very interesting video and such a cool way to heat a van, its surprising his many people have a dog for company.
K. R. V. (2 years ago)
Hello mike. If the candles can do that, how about placing the upside down pots on top of a burner on your stove, put the burner on low and I'm sure that will convect a lit more heat and less harmful fumes than those candles! I would definitely NOT leave the candles on a PLASTIC cooler!!! Maybe on the stovetop is a better idea!
John Howland (2 years ago)
Just in case no one has suggested this, but try using canned air to blow the stuff out of your camera.
evan burdick (2 years ago)
living free of showers
xanadu1jw (2 years ago)
The flower pots don't magnify the heat that the candles put out so just sitting candles in a saucer and lighting them would be just as effective but both of them are dangerous. Dog knocks either of them over or gets tail too close and you have a torch in motion. The only way this might make a difference is that is holds the heat in one place that you can hold your hands up to to warm them up.
Low Key (2 years ago)
sorry bro this is a dangerous idea. what if the unthinkable happened? your gas tank is right underneath you. the best principle here is enough heat not to burn yourself alive, I get chills just thinking about it.
Bill Potts (2 years ago)
the dog knocks it over . he burns to death
Bill Potts (2 years ago)
un candles go all night .
Bill Potts (2 years ago)
uncandles and veg oil .
Bill Potts (2 years ago)
no on the fan . dude .
Other299 (2 years ago)
I wonder if you could make a coiled bonnet made of copper tubing that would fit over the pot. If you have 12 volts available you could connect one end of the tubing into an aquarium water pump placed in a jug of water and the other end you could coil around the grill face of a small, 12 volt fan and then back into the water bottle. The water in the tubing would quickly heat up and the fan would disperse the heat.
1man1van (2 years ago)
I believe the fan pulling warm air from the grill, will cool it down faster than the water in the pipe can heat it up!
Living Free (2 years ago)
Interesting idea!
Carl Manderstedt (2 years ago)
Get a kerosene burner that is buildt for heating, it's cheaper and get you more heat. Parrafin candles in that config is dangerous, high risk over heating candles.
Mark Hall (2 years ago)
yep put your candles in a cheap round cake tin,. and maybe get bigger clay pots,. gr8 work tho gave me ideas.
Like It Or Lump It (2 years ago)
you need bigger pots for one thing and use 3 pots not 2,,,,,, traps more air heated air man... cant beat heated air
The J.A.P. FAMILY (3 years ago)
if the pot was at least 200 deg  when you blow cold  air in it wont it cool off?    just saying
Bargain Boondocker (3 years ago)
I have a 20' and replaced the furnace with a Wave 6 Catalytic heater. You have to leave a window at one end open about an inch or less and a roof vent about the same for air and it works great. Here's a link to the video of the replacement procedure https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gQD5KSL10k4
Russell Park (3 years ago)
The top pot hole needs to be uncovered while the inner pot is uncovered. This will give off convection heating. Silver is awesome :)
jesus aman (3 years ago)
What kind of van do you have? How many miles to the Gallon?
4trade2 (4 years ago)
Wake up and read basic of physics... If you have open flame inside of a car, that open flame temperature will heat that car. There is no difference if put one or 10 pot over heat source. Pot don´t affect nothing. Heat don´t multiply if you put something in a flame, unless it is flammable material.
Tracci Quartermaine (4 years ago)
Tracci Quartermaine (4 years ago)
Deejo (4 years ago)
fire hazard and carbon monoxide
csal91 (4 years ago)
I had better luck putting more washers on the left over threads underneath... metal heats up faster which causes more heat to disperse so give that a try see if you notice any difference
sniper152 (4 years ago)
come to the Pacific North West in December or January and tell me this works. I live in a 5th wheel and the Central Propane heater barely keeps me warm.
Jonny B (4 years ago)
Nice vape ^_^ good call with the tea candles maybe some slightly bigger candles for about 6 hours to get through the morning chill and a solid non-flammable base. Pretty damn funny you took your dog in a photo booth. Ventillation? ehhhh, crack the window 1/4 inch.
commodore256 (4 years ago)
Debt isn't bad if you're responsible. Good example of Debt: You see a good deal on motorhome, but you don't have the money to buy it and it's a really good deal and you can't miss out on that opportunity, so you borrow money and pay it off over the course of x amount of time.
Robert John Wimsatt (4 years ago)
Another thing you could do is brush Sober Girl every day and collect her fur for insulation in the van. You could also put her dung on top of the flowerpot to dry it out. That will also put humidity in the air allowing it to hold more heat. Later after it dries out you can put wicks in her dung terds and burn them in the flowerpot heaters. That will also give your van a nice farm smell. If you feed her a lot of beans she can double as a forced air furnace at night. If you let her sleep under your covers you can convert your bed into a dutch oven at night keeping you toasty warm all night.
claude63ful (3 months ago)
so funny!
Eddie's gone Whacko (1 year ago)
redhotz21 (2 years ago)
O-M-G. 🐶💩
badphobar (4 years ago)
hello   I think the bigger the flame the more heat the pots absorb. the holding of candle flames heat is saved and maximized. foil would stop the moving heated air does not need a fan.
dratsab1980 (4 years ago)
The ONLY thing this does is captures some of the soot which comes off the burning candles, saying it doubles or magnifies the heat breaks the most basic thermodynamics law (the conservation of energy law). If a candle produces say 50watts, then that is what it produces, no amount of pseudo-science, terocotta pots or big words like 'convection' changes that. Yes candles produce heat, but if an electric heater is 1000watts minimum, thats 20 candles going at once to match it, and in an RV, Im thinking of CO poisoning, iritant fumes, soot and possably a charred corpse and a tragic story in the local papers. Park out of the wind, block every draught and insulate everywhere, THEN think of heating, its just as important...
mike jones (5 days ago)
dratsab1980 The clay absorbs the heat and that’s how the heat is increased
Erich Langner (4 years ago)
one word, Mylar! use it as a heat reflector on bottom and opposite side of where you are to direct the heat towards you.
Richard Anderson (4 years ago)
i have 24 hr candles that i get from military surplus stores for about 2 bucks a piece. there about 3 inches tall. will these work for this or would this set the heater to high. just seems like a lot of work to do at night if ya want to sleep all night. and also could you use big dia, washers to capture more of the heat being put into the steel nut and bolts. seems logical but dont know since i have not built one yet, 
TheRizz701 (4 years ago)
I just use 1 pot on 3 feet.  Tea candles can alight across their surface if they get too hot so need nice air gap at bottom of device and nice hole in top of pot.  When pot is open like this the hot air jets out of the top of the pot and ends up circulating the air in the room.  Finally, I stand the whole thing in an aluminium baking tray.  The heating effect is excellent and the whole room becomes nicely warmed.  Again, take care that the heat from the tea candles can escape to avoid them engulfing in black sooty flame.
ben burnell (4 years ago)
you need to put fire proof  something under candles. I made one and my son started the hardwood floor on fire. thank god we got to it before it burned down the house. dont sleep with it. good luck
TheDodgeboi (4 years ago)
I do the same thing on my propane stove. Also use a small 12V. muffin fan to circulate the heat.
Chris Paulick (4 years ago)
See "$3 Boat Heater" youtube. His design is like a furnace it lets a inner pot with no hole heat up and air is drawn up between larger pot with hole and smaller heated pot. Air is heated and vents out of large pot hole. Your design doesn't circulate and heat the air. Watch the Vid and you will get the idea.
Betsy Oman (4 years ago)
Be really careful with the tea lights. We did that and the whole candle caught fire. The wax caught fire. So for one thing, you should have the whole thing on a metal pan like a cookie sheet with sides. And then if you could have a cooking pot or a large tin can handy to put over the top to smother it, that would be good. Another thing would be to use a candle that's in a glass candle holder, it would be better than the tea lights. 
Ebb Tide (4 years ago)
three is three you will not get more heat because of pots  ….keep warm  ...
Joe Blake (4 years ago)
The pots don't magnify the heat, they concentrate the heat.  The candles are producing no more heat with the pots than they are without the pots.  The only thing the pots will do it store some of the heat and release it over a little longer time after the candles burn out.  But not by much at all.  It's just mostly a mind screw job for stupid people.  It concentrates the heat into a small HOT area, fooling you into thinking that there is more heat being created.  Humans can be so stupid.  The only thing you have to be concerned with is how many BTU's your heat source produces and how well your RV is insulated.  If you have a flu coming from a heat source like a wood stove, then you have the aspect of trying to reclaim as much of the heat from the exhaust as possible.
rouelibre1 (4 years ago)
Right-on!  Burn the 3 candles in the open in your van and the result will be exactly the same.  People are so foolish at times...
Trenton Quarantino (4 years ago)
Serious heat, look up rocket mass heater, someone should design one for a van. It can be done.
Digging Arizona (4 years ago)
I would add some sort of spacer at the top of your clay pot. In between your large washer and the large clay pot. like 15 pennies stacked in a triangle of 5 each in a triangle. to allow some of the heat to rise out of the top. It would allow the air to flow much easier and it would easily release all of the heat collected by the inner pot
ME & MY 9!!! (4 years ago)
I've been experimenting w pots and alcohol with  ss dish ware works way better ,instead of a flower pot use a cooking crock pot it gets way hotter also use a small fan to circulate the air
sthwestb (4 years ago)
I use sterno instead of candles because the candles get too hot. With the sterno you just set it on a rack and don't have to worry about it. It also heats the place up faster too.
Doris Shanks (4 years ago)
The video u saw shows a loaf baking pam with the candles I'm the bottom and the clay pots set over the top edges of the pan. Also if you are trying to keep things cold in your cooler , I would not place the heater on the cooler.
Jim Marcum (4 years ago)
I bet it would get warmer if you would go ahead and light the candles.  are you a lot lizard??
Paul Oake (4 years ago)
Drill some hole in the pts?
Jane Hammond (4 years ago)
peace be with you and .best of luck, don't get old and be in the same van stay well.
Shannon Parker (4 years ago)
Did anyone notice the other "pot heater" in his hand?
heartland96a (4 years ago)
If the goal is to heat the van cheaply perhaps this candle idea during the day , there is little point to try and heat the van during the night or in the winter this way . If your trying to keep yourself comfortable during the night three seasons of the year fall,winter,spring  a better way would be a electric mattress pad  , it will put the heat where you need it underneath you , a solar panel and deep cycle marine battery and a converter not sure if you would need more than one battery depends on how much heat you will want and how many blankets you put over you . 
Fabricator (4 years ago)
Looks like a potential fire hazard if hit during the middle of the night. What about pups hitting it while asleep.
Brother Beno (4 years ago)
You might want to put a fan to blow across the top part of the pot, after they warm up, to spread the heat through the van. 
UVB76 -4625KHZ (4 years ago)
A great cheap camera does what a go pro does at a fraction of the cost is the sj1000 for $85.00. Comes with water proof case ,if it breaks buy another one.
sok8888 (4 years ago)
I think you are trying to create a thermal mass with the pot. But there is not enough mass in just 2 pots. What you need is to filled it up with mud or cement. People all over the world uses this concept by heating rocks and then placing rocks inside blankets to sleep with.  However, 3 candles will probably keeps you warm in mild temperature only. Better if you just use the dog as heat generator. LOL.
the humble servant (4 years ago)
Yes, thermal mass is critical to storing heat. A better solution would be to heat a metal pan filled with water and heat the water for washing in the morning.
jaywalking17 (4 years ago)
You could go a step further on this and use a small tuna can or whatever and drill some holes around the can near the bottom so air can get in, say a half inch up from the bottom. Then set your tea candle inside of it and place that under the clay pots. That may contain the heat a little better. Maybe a taller tin would work just as well. Anyway, good idea for a low tech heat source.  
Ballistic45 (4 years ago)
Drill three holes in the Bottom of the Large pot between the big hole where you put bolt through evenly spaced around the outside edge that way the inner small pot will catch the candle head and the space between the pots will create small updraft between the pots and out the three small holes, might work?
FuddyDuddy99 (4 years ago)
My problem is I have 4 chickens in cages within my van..and while they do provide some heat ...their respiration coats my windows with fog which I have to scrape off in the winter mornings...moreover, when they fart (and they do frequently all night long  even) that could lead to a mini-explosion er sumpin'.....plus carbon monoxide has to be a worry....but since I am still alive after all their farts every morning... I guess a little carbon monoxide won't kill me either...but maybe if they both add up...farts and Carbon monoxide... it will be curtains for me ...I better keep a window open for safety's sake  eh ?
Bruce Jones (4 years ago)
Hi LF, Thanks for the pod. A good idea but needs tweaking; I will have a stone slab or sand in a tray. I will get a CO2 detector or leave a window open. You may find you are a bit chesty and coughing in the morning. A lot of T-lights (especially the cheap packs) come from China and have all sorts of chemical/industrial waste in them, When the wax gets burnt the toxins go into the air. I think I would still give it a go though. Thanks again, stay free.
freddy wise (4 years ago)
no way I would take a animal along, dog or cat
freddy wise (4 years ago)
why two pots?
bsekisser (4 years ago)
Looks to be a good thing to try some time...  My thoughts...  Those pots look to be a 3" & 6"...  I would go with a 6" and 12" (keeping the 3" inside might not be a bad idea either...  On the 12" pot layout and carefully drill 4-6 (1/2" diameter) holes on the bottom so as that the 6 inch pot does not block the holes...  Bolt together...  Muffin/Computer fan on stands of some sort on top with a large can over that...  Thought being the smaller pot holds the heat and the fan draws air over that...  Could also try with out the fan and see if it offers any improvement.
porjo01 (4 years ago)
You can make candles using used cooking oil. You can get used cooking oil from resturants for free. You just need a metal container with the used, and some form of wick like a small strip of tshirt, a metal lid with a small hole which will hold the wick.
selms22 (4 years ago)
Seeing the comments about having a hole in the outer pot to allow heat to escape,, I think the idea here is to trap the heat within the pots. The material the pots are made serve as a radiator for heat, just my take, maybe I'm wrong. The other thing I wanted to mention is the possibility of an oil lamp as the source of heat. I've tossed around this idea, but haven't tried yet. Not only would the lamp give off much more heat, but also provide an excellent source of light, much more efficient than the little candles. I've thought about hanging the pots over a lamp, but that would seem unsafe, if the pottery would weaken, it could fall onto the lamp, and that's not good. I will continue to play around, try to figure out the best and safest way to use these pot heaters, just thought I'd share my 2¢
Tuan Vu Nguyen (4 years ago)
What about carbon monoxide build up inside the van? Do you keep the window open a bit?
Turk E. Man (4 years ago)
Hey Kelvin, has anyone ever said you look like Michael Madsen?
PyramidHead138 (4 years ago)
im gonna try that myself when I start van dwelling
PyramidHead138 (4 years ago)
+bob fulltin oh, as if I didn't read you right the first time 
PyramidHead138 (4 years ago)
10-22-14 update: ive tried this before and the candles don't STAY lit
UVB76 -4625KHZ (4 years ago)
Have you though of a very small wood stove ,people have put them in the back of their vans.
UVB76 -4625KHZ (4 years ago)
Get a sj1ooo camera chinese go pro rip off
Donald Whitehead (4 years ago)
How about just putting a small fan behind the pots and have it blow toward you with the speed on low? The air would warm as it passes around the pots. Maybe use two sets of heated pots or a bigger one with four candles underneath.
Living Free (4 years ago)
Yes that may help. Thanks for the input. Take care.
ursinhodany (4 years ago)
You're not supposed to block the holes.
Weggman Hillard (4 years ago)
This is just industrial strength stupid!  Out right dangerous!
Liberals are Icky (4 years ago)
You should spend another $1 on nuts & bolts to build up the stem.
Liberals are Icky (4 years ago)
Soon you won't have to worry about SNOW, because Obama says Global Warming is coming.
Teresa Fawkes (4 years ago)
I think these are supposed to work better when the hole to the larger pot is open.  You block the hole on the smaller one, so the heat builds up.  Then since heat rises, you let it rise easily out of the top one through the open hole.
Living Free (4 years ago)
Hi Teresa, thanks for the tip. I'll probably start tinkering around with it when it starts getting cold again lol. Take care.
Echad Lev Shtim (4 years ago)
Looks like a damaged solar cell. You can still use it and power a heater.
Living Free (4 years ago)
A damaged solar cell? Sorry I don't follow you. Take care.
Erva Blue (4 years ago)
Very cool! I'm working on becoming debt-free, too. Just subscribed!
Daniel Jordan (5 years ago)
I tried this in my apartment didn't do shit. Using it in a van is a good idea, Ill try it now. Thanks 
Tracy James Tavares (5 years ago)
Hay Kid , Lookin at the way u got yrs might B wrong , The Vids I have seen use just one candle , and the center bolt goes direct over it , it is what catchs the direct heat and disperses it to the pot , also should use 3 pots .  My Prob. W/ it is what to rest it on so it does not slid aroud.  Good luck KId
fade7887 (5 years ago)
Set the fan up so its sucking hot air out, If the fan is blowing in it will blow out the candle, could also drill more holes in the top for the heat to escape and or maybe try a different heat source that burns hotter than a candle, like a small alcohol stove. Lowering the pot may help too.
Camp Runamuck (5 years ago)
The only problem is if you burn the van down its not cheap ..I don't mean to say that out of disrespect it's just candles scare me it's even more dangerous with a dog in the van ..Thumbs Up for trying new things...Back in the old days truckers use to put rocks or bricks in a bucket and pour rubbing alcohol on them and light it ...
Arkansas Greg (5 years ago)
have tested it without the second pot and a small fan. It rarely gets below freezing even in the winter here but it does work. just to be safe, I got a free 12" x 12" sample of porcelain tile to set on my cooler. keep the good vids going. :)
Living Free (5 years ago)
I'll try that with just one pot thanks. And I have clay to put the condles on as well, I just wasn't using it in the video. Take care Greg!
whtmikeg30vanlife (5 years ago)
i get the van and the rain thing i drop everything when it rains here in az  we dont get much so it is a real treat for me ...................i love the sound  rain and smell of wet dirt  i like the heater was going to give it a shot next winter 
Living Free (5 years ago)
When I was living in Apache Junction AZ like 5 years ago I remember forgetting what impending rain REALLY smelled like until the rain moved in. Because it's so dry there. It smelled so beautiful. Sorry for the late response. Take care.
campervandavid (5 years ago)
I saw the pot heater videos as well. I never got around to getting the stuff for it to try it out. I did also see a video of a guy that put a cast iron skillet on top of a aluminum pail that had the tea lights in it. He also put the fire oven bricks inside the skillet and said it got hotter then the pot heater does. 
My life in a van (5 years ago)
Thanks for sharing. I enjoy your videos alot. I love the Sober girl. Would it be possible you could do a video about having a dog with you all the time? During cold, heat, and any other stuff would be very helpful. Stay safe!!
Living Free (5 years ago)
I will probably make a video like that. Thanks for the comment. Take care.

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