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Location: N.C.
Joined: 08/27/2005
Posts: 10
Camping

What is the best way to stop condensation from my breath. Here is the scenerio Sleeping in the back of my truck with a fiberglass cover. I had the windows cracked on the side one half inch for cross ventelation and the front towards the front of the truck about the same. It was cold down in the teens and our breathing condensated the inside. When it warms up it drips and gets everything wet. I opened it up wider about four inches and it helped. I wanted to stay warm but had to give in on opening it up wider this cooled it down. Any thoughts about this? Thanks.

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Location: Arizona
Joined: 06/07/2002
Posts: 506
Camping

I couldn't help but smile when I first read this. It reminded me of being in a pup tent as a kid and pressing your finger against the canvas to see if it was true that the rain will start to drip in afterward. eye roll
Well, I can only think of two answers to your dilema since I haven't had that problem.
a) Get a better sleeping bag and open everything up.
b) People often leave a light on in their boats while moored to keep condensation from building up inside. You could try that?
I can tell you once I woke up freezing in the back of a Chevy Blazer with the tail gait down to find the bottom foot and and a half of my sleeping bag covered in frost and ice. Learned a lesson there and bought a tent. Mr. Cool!
Good Luck.

expatriate's picture
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Location: Arizona
Joined: 10/26/2002
Posts: 3207
Camping

If you insist on sleeping in the back of the truck, there's not much you can do. The moisture from your breath increases the humidity inside. When things cool off during the night the dew point drops and all that moisture condenses on surfaces that are below the dew point.

Most tents nowadays are built with a permeable top to allow water vapor to escape, where it works its way out from under the rain fly. Trucks don't breathe, so the only way you can get moisture out is to open up the windows to let the air exchange. However, when you do that you let in cold air, which lowers the dew point and works against what you're trying to acccomplish. You could wind up colder and still wet. Even if you opened up windows all the way, if it's wet enough to create dew outside, it'll create dew inside.

Best solution would be a combination of ventilation to keep moisture under control and heat to keep the temp above dew point. But of course, there's fire and carbon monoxide safety hazards associated with running a heat source while you sleep.

Temperature and humidity are solidly linked. The more humidity you have in the air, the warmer it has to be to prevent condensation. The trick is to juggle the two. One thing that might help would be to vent at the highest point possible (roof would be best) -- the warmest air (which will hold the most moisture), is going to rise and carry the moisture with it. Think about it -- in old style tents most condensation occurred on the roof, not the sides. In new tents it's the roof that's permeable, too. I don't know how much it'd help in something as non-permeable as a truck, but it might make things a little better.

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Location: Colorado
Joined: 11/09/2005
Posts: 166
Camping

There are only two alternatives: 1) provide enough ventilation to prevent condensation, or 2) run some sort of heater and keep the inside warm enough to prevent condensation. If you run a heater, though, you need to be aware of carbon monoxide buildup and provide enough ventilation so that you don't asphyxiate yourself.

The bottom line is that it's pretty hard to prevent condensation inside of a pickup shell.

Offline
Location: N.C.
Joined: 08/27/2005
Posts: 10
Camping

Thanks for the replies i'm going to mull this one over. This hunting season i'll get back and tell you how I went about this in a different way. Think Brick Wall,)

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Joined: 05/21/2005
Posts: 26
Camping

Tape sections of cheese cloth at the upper corners of the topper, but don't try to make it tight against the roof. When you wake up take it down and haing it up outside to dry. This will not remove all the moisture, but it will help considerably.
From northern Minne(no)snowta,
Dan

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Location: N.C.
Joined: 08/27/2005
Posts: 10
Camping

Thanks again keep it coming.

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Location: St. Louis County
Joined: 01/10/2006
Posts: 339
Camping

I wouldn't sleep with a heater in the truck...unless you want to end up on the local news.

I don't know how cold it gets where you camp, but ventilation is definitely the key here. Even a small vent near the top of the shell will help.

If a small pop-up trailer is out of your budget, a good 4 season pup tent and a mummy bag might be the best way to go. A blow-up mattress to get you up off the ground is key to staying warm.

Good Luck.

Offline
Location: N.C.
Joined: 08/27/2005
Posts: 10
Camping

I'm getting ready to give the advice a try next month hopfully I want to do more camping this year and prove it out.

WesternHunter's picture
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Joined: 05/05/2006
Posts: 2368
Camping

Ahw com'on you don't need to breath, do ya? Big smile

No seriously, as long as you breath, there is going to be condesation in confined spaces. Just sleep in a tent or camper.

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Moderator
Joined: 12/03/2005
Posts: 1691
Camping

Then why are some of the cars at the Drive-In all steamed up while others are not
Think Think Think

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