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Old 08-04-2016, 07:30 AM   #1
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Reflective mylar on roof?

I did a search and didn't find anything... after our last extended trip out west (in July heat), the A/C had a hard time keeping up with the heat in the desert. It could be the A/C needs service, but it got me to thinking about ways to minimize heat absorption.

Has anyone tried using adhesive reflective mylar on the the roof? It's readily available as automotive wrap, relatively cheap, and should reflect solar heat (at least some). It could be installed only on the very top to where it wouldn't be easily visible (i.e. ugly) from anyone viewing from the ground. A 5'x6' sheet is under $50 shipped from Amazon.

Has anyone tried this?
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Old 08-04-2016, 07:57 AM   #2
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Very interesting idea.....

One thing to note....just because it's reflective in the visible light spectrum doesn't necessarily mean it's very reflective at the IR/heat end of the spectrum. That being said, the foil faced rigid foam that is used for house sheathing is shiny foil.

It would interesting to stick a piece up there and then shoot in IR thermometer across the van ceiling.

I have another solution on about half of my roof....suspended a few inches above my roof I have a material that absorbs the radiated energy from above........and converts that energy into something useful...solar panels. I know....light energy not heat...........
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Old 08-04-2016, 08:53 AM   #3
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Stock roof? Pop top or fixed top? Stock roof and many fixed tops have no insulating or reflective properties, SMB pop tops at least have some fiberglass insulation. You could put a layer of reflectix or similar Mylar sandwich insulation under the headliner, that would greatly help reducing heat transfer. Yelnam had the the top part of his CCV pop top painted white on his new transit to help with heat, that seems like it might help too. I got the insulation package on our CCV pop top, I think it was some sort of 1/2 inch foil backed insulating blanket, like this, works well- http://www.speedwaymotors.com/Alumin...9_3RoCZ9jw_wcB
heading up there today, I'll confirm.
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Old 08-04-2016, 09:03 AM   #4
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My experience was that the windows allowed much more heat transmission than the roof or the van walls. Makes it more challenging to correct the situation while driving, but adding insulation to the windows while parked helped a lot.

I considered, but never did, painting the roof white. I think one or two people here have done that though.


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Old 08-04-2016, 09:14 AM   #5
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Stock roof (for now at least ), and this would be for the outside of the van. It would be cheaper (much!), less work, and less permanent than painting white (although that crossed my mind too)... So somewhat of a temporary/short term solution (that would be cheap) until a pop top is installed.

Reflectix inside the headliner is also on my list (but a pop top may come first, funding dependent). I already have reflectix "screens" on the windows which seems to have helped, but if this would add a secondary "proactive layer" for the roof, then it could even further improve above and beyond reflectix inside the headliner.
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Old 08-04-2016, 09:26 AM   #6
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Do you have roof rails and Thule/Yakima towers and crossbars? Maybe securely attach some panels to the crossbars to provide shading to the van roof? Could use solid or perforated panels. Not sure what percentage of the roof could be shaded this way though.


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Old 08-04-2016, 10:20 AM   #7
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Shade will be your biggest friend. It cuts out all radiation. Accrete has a good shade solution for his rig. Shade will not do anything for the heat of the desert. If the air temp is 100 degrees it will be 100 degrees in the shade to.
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Old 08-04-2016, 05:41 PM   #8
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We kept our roof white because of solar heating concerns and also park in the shade.
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