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Installing Campervan Curtains

Part of our Campervan Conversion Guides

Dive into our campervan conversion guide on installing blackout curtains for your van. Setting up a full set might take some time, roughly 30-45 minutes per curtain set. Beyond adding style to your van, campervan curtains are a must-have for any camping adventure. They offer several benefits:

  1. They provide much-needed privacy in crowded campsites.
  2. Blackout campervan curtains keep the early dawn light at bay, letting you sleep past sunrise.
  3. They trap a layer of air, acting as an insulator and keeping your van cozy on chilly spring nights.
  4. These curtains also help minimize window condensation in the mornings.

Tools Required:

  • 12V Drill / Battery Driver
  • 2mm Drill Bit
  • 3mm Drill Bit
  • PH1 (Phillips) Driver Head
  • Optional Stanley Knife and Centre punch and Hammer

Components Required:

  • 1 x Curtain set per window – each of our curtain sets include upper and lower shaped rails, tiebacks, end fixings and screws.
Tips for installing your campervan curtains - clearcut campervan design
Renault Trafic/Vivaro Blackout Curtain Set – Sliding Door and Opposite – 2014 Onwards

Clearcut Conversions: Campervan Conversion Guides

Lets Get Started!

Installing your own campervan curtains is a gratifying final touch to your campervan conversion project. It’s one of the last steps in a campervan setup, allowing you to relish the completion and anticipate your first overnight adventure.

Fitting a full curtain set requires patience; expect to spend around 30-45 minutes on each set. You’ll start with the curtain rail tracks, marked with ‘T’ for Top and ‘B’ for Bottom. These pre-drilled tracks secure within the window reveal. Note that the larger curved edge of the track should face towards the van’s center when fitted.

A word of caution: drilling pilot holes in the window surround needs care to avoid damaging the van’s carpet lining. Some carpet types can wrap around the drill bit, causing damage. To prevent this, drill slowly and carefully. If the problem persists, you might need to slit the carpet under the screw or use a centre punch to screw directly into the metal with a battery driver.

  1. To start, only secure the rail using the inner drilled holes, the holes close to the ends of the rails are left for the time being (See Fig 1).
  2. Thread both curtains in place on the upper. Take care to make sure the curtain is orientated correctly – the side poppers should be on the outside edge of the window.
  3. Once both curtains are threaded onto the upper track, push the end caps in (See Fig 2). Note: these are handed and so will only fit neatly in their correct side.
  4. There is a hole in the center of the end cap, drill through this hole and through the rail with a 3mm drill bit to create a clearance hole. Be careful as you drill through the rail that you don’t wrap the carpet lining material up in the drill.
  5. A 2mm drill bit is then used to drill the metal underneath the rail. As mentioned previously, drill slowly to avoid the lining carpet gathering on the drill bit.
Install your blackout campervan curtains, clearcut campervan design
Blackout curtains from clearcut campervan design

5. Once the upper end caps are in place the lower curtain sliders can be threaded onto the lower rail, and then the end cap process is repeated as above (see Fig 3).

6. The side popper location is carefully marked to correspond with the poppers on the curtains. The side poppers are now screwed onto the side wall of the window reveal (the same care needs to be taken when piloting the hole in the centre of the side poppers). See fig 4 & 5. The side poppers help to minimise light bleed through the window edges when the curtains are closed and also produce a neat tensioned finish to the curtains.

7. The last items to be added are the tie backs (as shown in fig 6), this again produces a neat finish to the curtains and also allows maximum light to enter the van when the curtains open.

Tips for installing your blackout curtains - clearcut campervan design
Tips for installing your blackout curtains - clearcut campervan design
Tips for installing your blackout campervan curtains - clearcut campervan design
campervan curtain tiebacks

When fixing the rear tailgate or barn door curtain set, the tolerances and positions are slightly tighter.

8. The tailgate version (available with or without the wiper housing shape bended to the lower rail) has the upper rail fitted within the small reveal across the top of the window, as shown in fig 7 (screwed upwards as per the other curtain sets). However, the lower rail is fitted below the window reveal across the front of the door, and is screwed in sideways, moulding around the wiper blade housing if present (see fig 8).

Clearcut campervan design curtains
clearcut campervan design blackout curtains

9. The barn door set of curtains have a set of rails for each of the windows and has side poppers to both curtain edges to avoid any gaps in the curtains when closed. The barn door set upper and lower rails again fit within the window reveal (see fig 9). However, the upper reveal is very narrow, and care must be taken when fitting it to ensure its correct positioning, especially on the outside edge of the (see fig 10).

10. The manufacturing limitations of bending the rail and its width mean that the tighter radiused corners may have a small gap under the For aesthetic purposes we often infill this with a bead of black silicone once the rail is in place. Alternatively, if preferred the rail can be cut back slightly to suit.

Campervan curtain instructions
Fit your campervan curtains - clearcut campervan design

You can download a printable PDF version of this how to guide here.

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