If you have an alarm in your Sprinter, or if you specified the overhead cubby option, there’s a neat source of power you can hook in to for things like dash cams or equipment that would fit in the DIN cubby hole.
We use our van to camp close to the trails we want to ride. That doesn’t mean we want the contents of those trails in our van. Keeping ourselves, our bikes, and the van clean takes some creativity.
A while back we made a joke about voiding the warranty on the van by cutting a hole in the roof. Some people took it seriously and we still get questions about what really is OK to do on a van conversion without voiding the manufacturer’s warranty.
The short answer is, it’s completely up to your dealer and Mercedes what they say they will cover or not cover, but knowing what the manufacturer warranty claims to cover and knowing what the law states about warranties is a good starting point for any warranty-based claim you might need to make.
No matter how much you insulate the rest of the vehicle, The glass in a Sprinter van is a massive heat gain/loss area. We bought a sun shade made specially for the windshield and made ones for all the other windows from Low-E foil faced foam with magnets around the edges.
The Sprinter van’s starter battery is under the driver’s feet. If you see a battery under the hood, it’s an auxiliary one. Connecting another car’s battery to it won’t help with starting the engine.
But you don’t have to tear the van apart to jump it – Mercedes gave you a special connector in the engine bay.
The front end of our bed platform is right above the passenger bench seat. We added foam pipe insulation to the platform to protect our noggins from getting whacked.
To make it look fancy, we covered the pipe insulation in black vinyl. It’s not exactly the same color as the seat upholstery, but it looks just fine.
Along with oil, antifreeze, transmission fluid, brake fluid, and fuel, modern diesel engines also need DEF to run properly. All North American Sprinters built after 2010 have DEF tanks.
DEF helps with emissions control and the computer in your van will stop you from driving if it detects an empty DEF tank. But don’t panic if the DEF light on your dash comes on. You’ve got plenty of time to fill up.
So, what is DEF, why does your engine need it, and what’s the best way to fill the DEF tank?
Continue reading “DEF (Diesel Exhaust Fluid) – the other engine fluid”
Our latest entry in the “Why didn’t we do this two years ago?” category is buying a bench mounted drill press. This thing is so much easier to work with than a hand drill.
We’ve been able to borrow access to our neighbor’s floor mounted monster drill on occasion, but he’s a woodworker and aluminum swarf is a bad idea to have around his shop. Now we have our own hole maker.
The bench seats in a Sprinter are burly. They are designed to keep three passengers safe in a crash, so they are heavy and sturdy.
We move our seat out of the van every now and again, either when we’re working on the interior or when we need to carry oversize objects.
What we needed was a way to get the seat from the van to wherever we want to store it, and also a way to make sure the seat can be easily moved by just one person if it’s in the way of other stuff we need.
People often refer to parking overnight in an inhabited area as “stealth camping.” Unless your Sprinter has no exterior adornments, no condensation on the window glass, local license plates, and absolutely no light showing through the window covers, it’s unlikely you’ve gone unnoticed. What’s more important is that you are not disturbed.