Block heater enough to warm van?

#16
Rayra I'm not going to get into a major discussion here, its a waste of time trying to explain any thing to you.
Fact, people die every year from CO poisoning from poorly maintained or vented propane heaters.
Fact, these heaters all state: DO NOT OPERATE WHILE SLEEPING
Fact, the OP has an infant, particularly susceptible to CO poisoning
Fact, the OP wants a CO safe option
Fact, the OP has the ability to plug the vehicle into 120volt outlet
Fact, an electric space heater meets his needs
Fact, a propane catalytic does not.
People also die from electrocution, electrical fires, vehicle rollovers (tall off road trucks with high COG), falling, riding bicycles, etc.

Better not do any activity with a remote chance of death.
 

robert

Expedition Leader
#18
OP, you'll lose a ton of heat through the glass and the rest through the body. Ideally pull the body panels and add insulation, something that doesn't absorb moisture as sleeping in a vehicle adds a lot of moisture to the air. Go by your local home improvement store and grab a roll of Reflectix and cut it to fit your windows. Hang a blanket behind the front seats to help reduce losses through the front glass. Put an old blanket or rug on the floor to help heat lose through the floor. One of the great things about car camping is you usually have room for things like extra blankets or comforters. I use a propane heater before bed and when I wake up and a sleeping bag, blankets, etc. while sleeping.

If you've got access to electricity use a small electric heater, if not there are plenty of fuel powered heaters that are safe to use with a little common sense including tossing a CO detector in with your camping supplies.
 
#19
OP: fresh air circulation is also really important; try sleeping in a vehicle overnight with all the windows closed; the morning headache is due to less oxygen, more carbon dioxide and a little dehydration; the couple of beers you had the night before really don't help either. The more people sleeping in the van the worse it will be. I would suggest to try and keep it simple, use lots of insulation on the van (especially windows) and leave one window cracked open for a little air circulation. Use really warm sleeping bags/blankets and put a small electrical fan heater on a timer so that 20 minutes before wake-up, the thing comes on and starts to heat the van in time for breakfast.

Good luck!