Heating a tent when off the grid camping





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  1. #1
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    Default Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    What do you guys do when you go camping when it is cold and you need to warm the tent? For small kids/babies. And there is no electricity...

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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    Google it. The guys in the Northern Hemisphere have some real ingenious ideas, without the smoke.

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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    Try to prevent the cold coming from beneath as much as possible by insulating with something like foam rubber. No air mattresses as they become very cold.
    Enough layers of clothes and lots of blankets. Wear a beanie to keep your head warm.
    Warm water bottel or two in the bed works wonders.

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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    Spaceblanket under the inflatable mattress, thermal type clothes, featherdown duvet, warmwater bottles.
    Slept like log in the middel of winter in Botswana.
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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    Cadac safari heater.
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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    Have done 4 winter camps this year, although it doesn’t get as cold here. Coldest we’ve seen on a camp was 1.1 deg C.

    As the others have said, insulate the bottom layer first. We sleep on stretchers, so a blanket underneath first, then sleeping bag on top, and a blanket inside the sleeping bag works well. Thermal underwear, and a beanie for the head.

    Same for the kids, although we place another blanket over their sleeping bags as well.

    And then of course, the hot water bottles.

    I find it’s fairly easy to sleep warm. I struggle more with keeping warm early in the morning when the baby needs a bottle and the rest wants coffee or something, and you need to leave the warm bed!

    Another thing I’ve seen (damn expensive) is a gas heater, that you leave outside the tent, that as a duct pipe that you can feed into the tent. So the heat comes in, but the carbon monoxide stays outside.

    https://www.anacondastores.com/campi...ter/BP90161765

    Not worth the money or the trouble of lugging it around for me, though.
    Last edited by Flip Marais; 2020/07/26 at 10:30 PM.
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  9. #7
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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    One thing that I can advice , do not get a tent that’s to big. More air takes more time to heat

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  11. #8
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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    Thanks guys. This gasmate duct heater looks quite handy. My wife and myself use our wool duvet and that keeps us warm. My kids sleep on stretchers on foam matresses. We put them in sleeping bags with a blanket on top. The eldest (7) is fine in keeping covered, but his younger brother (3) not so much. He climbs out of his sleeping bag, sometimes even before he is asleep, other times during the night. And he does not keep a beanie on his head.

    When we camp where there is electricity we use these small fan heaters. It works well. If it was just my choice, I would only dress them warmer without a heater as I feel the heater is a sick making mechanism. But my wife thinks otherwise. We do not often camp when it is below zero, but two weeks back even the water in the “sink” outside froze. And it was only about 30km outside of Nelspruit.



    The above picture was two weeks back. Our first time using the add a room with new stretchers for the kids.

    We are planning to go camping again over the long weekend in August and the the two weekends following that. Ons weekend on top of a mountain and the wife is not to keen at this stage due to the weather being cold and the aim is to keep the kids’ noses dry.

    I have fond memories of this cadac gas heater. My dad and I used one in the garage in winter month as we sat around a gas stove, meling lead to make sinkers for rock and surf angling that took place August for many years.

    I saw this Mr. heater heaters on the net, also looks if it can work and it has couple of safety features which helps as it is also a gas heater.

    So maybe place a space blanket below the mattresses, then the sleeping bags (both rated below zero) and blankets on top. With warm clothing and maybe if youngest one keeps on crawling out, just let him sleep by us.

    Regards

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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    Blankets, thermal underwear, and warm clothes / pj's. Heaters starve the tent of oxygen, and it makes for loads of condensation on top. It costs a fortune to run a gas heater all night. Also quite dangerous should one of the kids get up at night.

    My problem is when sitting outside. Warm fire, freezing breeze from behind. Also when coming out of your warm bed into the cold in the mornings, geez I battle with that. And the KILLER, that cold toilet seat!

    We once camped in Tonteldoos for a weekend in August or September, cant remember. Campsite was also on top of a hill. The wind blasted us 24/7. I got rid of my wind / privacy screen because of the setup schlep. I might still regret it.
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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    Quote Originally Posted by Flip Marais View Post

    Another thing I’ve seen (damn expensive) is a gas heater, that you leave outside the tent, that as a duct pipe that you can feed into the tent. So the heat comes in, but the carbon monoxide stays outside.

    https://www.anacondastores.com/campi...ter/BP90161765

    Not worth the money or the trouble of lugging it around for me, though.
    Why the elctrical plug? For the fan I guess?
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    Last edited by LandyLove; 2020/07/27 at 07:01 AM.
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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    Quote Originally Posted by LandyLove View Post
    Why the elctrical plug? For the fan I guess?
    Didn’t actually notice that. I haven’t looked at it in detail as I don’t intend to buy it.
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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    The plug is to charge the battery.

    Look at the webasto diesel heaters the guys use for RV camping.

    You can get an equivalent from ebay/banggood etc for about R6k.

    My brother in Aus has just bought one and rates it highly.

    YouTube "diesel heater in a box" lots of options.

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  17. #13
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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    See this has been discussed before. Gas is certainly not popular.

    https://www.4x4community.co.za/forum...-tent-at-night
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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    Quote Originally Posted by LandyLove View Post
    See this has been discussed before. Gas is certainly not popular.

    https://www.4x4community.co.za/forum...-tent-at-night
    Just went through this post. Thanks

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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    Quote Originally Posted by LandyLove View Post
    See this has been discussed before. Gas is certainly not popular.

    https://www.4x4community.co.za/forum...-tent-at-night
    Jip a gas heater in a tent is one of the worst things you can do. Get water bottles, warm clothes or what ever, but leave the gas heater outside. If the kid is kicking himself open it is because you are over heating him with too much stuff. Most moms dress kids because THEY themselves are getting cold.. Reduce the layers up to the point where he stops doing it. And no one sleeps with a beany, if he says his head is cold, just pull the sleeping bag over his head, or get a hooded bag.
    Last edited by Hedgehog; 2020/07/27 at 10:34 AM.
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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    For an air mattress buy 2 cheap blankets from PEP or similar, sow them together on 3 sides and put the air mattress inside before inflating. Also space blanket or newspapers under it. Gas, no, too
    dangerous, fire hazard, gas leak, uses the oxygen in the tent. A small Weber with warm charcoal may be worth a try as a heater. Warm water bags, warm water in 2L Coke bottles etc. plus all the
    other advice.

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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    Quote Originally Posted by LandyLove View Post
    My problem is when sitting outside. Warm fire, freezing breeze from behind. Also when coming out of your warm bed into the cold in the mornings, geez I battle with that. And the KILLER, that cold toilet seat.
    Try a small spadeful of coals under each camp chair. What an amazing little invention
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  24. #18
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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    Electric blanket on lowest setting through an inverter. Will run the whole night without draining the battery. Do not use these double-johnny blankets. They draw too much.
    The more blankets required the more batteries to use.
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  26. #19
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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    Quote Originally Posted by Hedgehog View Post
    Jip a gas heater in a tent is one of the worst things you can do. Get water bottles, warm clothes or what ever, but leave the gas heater outside. If the kid is kicking himself open it is because you are over heating him with too much stuff. Most moms dress kids because THEY themselves are getting cold.. Reduce the layers up to the point where he stops doing it. And no one sleeps with a beany, if he says his head is cold, just pull the sleeping bag over his head, or get a hooded bag.
    Thanks, but I also sleep with a beanie. It helps a lot

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    Default Re: Heating a tent when off the grid camping

    Quote Originally Posted by Hedgehog View Post
    Jip a gas heater in a tent is one of the worst things you can do. Get water bottles, warm clothes or what ever, but leave the gas heater outside. If the kid is kicking himself open it is because you are over heating him with too much stuff. Most moms dress kids because THEY themselves are getting cold.. Reduce the layers up to the point where he stops doing it. And no one sleeps with a beany, if he says his head is cold, just pull the sleeping bag over his head, or get a hooded bag.
    I do sleep with one, i have no cover up on top and a lot of heat gets lost there.
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