Jump to content

Oliver insulation R value


Recommended Posts

I was perusing the FAQ section here: ... https://olivertraveltrailers.com/travel-trailers/frequently-asked-questions/. and read their "What kind of insulation" statement (   I added the bold:

"There are three ways to transfer heat: Conduction (through a solid material), Convection (through air space) and Radiant (reflective heat transmission.) The Oliver uses materials and construction techniques to take advantage of all three. The fiberglass hulls provide conductive insulation while the built in air gap between the inner and outer hull provide convective protection just like you would find in a double sided insulated cup. The Oliver is fully insulated between the exterior and interior shells with an insulated double-sided radiant barrier, which is best described as follows: "Reflective aluminum foil on each side of a 5mm (13/64 inch) polyethylene bubble center."

"*Polyethylene Bubble + Radiant barrier + Vapor Barrier + Air Gap Barrier".

This unique material provides a combination of radiant, convective and conductive protection. The foil radiates heat back into the camper in the winter or away from the camper in the summer. The foam insulation is infused with billions of tiny air bubbles that provide convective protection while the foam itself provides conductive protection. At only 13/64" thick this powerful product provides an R16 insulation rating. You would need approximately 4 3/4" of standard fiberglass batt insulation to equal this performance. The insulation we use serves as a radiant, vapor and air barrier making camping in any temperature a pleasurable experience."

I don't know the brand they use, but I searched for that description, which seems to be cut and pasted directly with quotes from here, which states R8: ... https://www.usenergyproducts.com/collections/reflective-sealer-foam-core-1

 

141876885_ScreenShot2022-06-07at8_58_17AM.thumb.png.a904358c2f02d5776844ff9e6ed87c00.png

 

Oliver says it has an R16 value, that manufacturer says R8, and I have a really hard time accepting either figure, since Reflectix has this VERY confusing chart:

1326979690_ScreenShot2022-06-07at9_05_07AM.thumb.png.b425a3f889bb20bf7eff2f756bdb0a50.png

That chart says you need 9.5" gap to get to R16! And a thin Cathedral ceiling with 0.75" gap in a Northern winter is just R1. Basically a single layer of Reflectix with NO air gap has an R1 value. ;( and sticking another layer directly on top of an existing one doesn't do anything at all to increase it. The physical gap is the key, and the bigger the better.

I think the Oliver description is misleading in the extreme, I hesitate to call it BS, but I really doubt the combined R16 value for the little 1 inch gap between inner and outer hulls. And they don't mention all the areas that do NOT have a protective gap against extreme temperatures, like the over and under storage cabinets, battery box and rear cargo area. Those spaces ARE the gap, they do keep the heat or cold out of the cabin, sort of, but it is also why they get so darned cold or hot inside. So your water valves freeze or your batteries overheat. I have been adding 1 inch slabs of Dow Corning R5 rigid foam board ...  The Pink Stuff ... into those areas wherever I can reach, especially near water lines that run along the inside of the outer wall..

Any comments?

John Davies

Spokane WA

  • Like 2

"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags, Safari snorkel.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Most theoretical values hit a wall in real-world applications because they rarely get installed optimally. Even so, R16 does seem a bit far-fetched. The real question: is the Oliver insulation any better than a standard RV with aluminum studs and fiberglass/styrofoam/luan sandwich walls and roof? I'll know pretty soon. Had a few of those "stickie" trailers. This summer will be an Ollie. I know that our last fifth wheel radiated a lot of heat through the slideout walls, which I think were thinner than the "main" walls, and the cabinets/compartments in those slides were always cooler or hotter than the cabin interior. Comparisons with the Ollie will be interesting.

  • Like 3

Stephanie and Dudley from CT.  2022 LE2, Hull #1150: Eggcelsior.

Tow vehicle: 2016 GMC Sierra 6.0 gas dually 4x4.

Our Oliver journey: Steph and Dud B's RV Screed

Where we've been RVing since 1999:

ALAZCACOCTDEFLGAIDILINIAKYLAMDMAMIMNMSMOMTNENVNHNMNYNCNDOHOKORPASCSDTNTXUTVTVAWAWVWIWYmed.jpg.e6391b9064a3f8f0951751f985664135.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree that the R16 claim is "aggressive" marketing.  If it were true, then an Oliver wall would outperform a sheathed 2x4 stud wall filled with R13 fiberglass batt insulation and drywalled on the inside.  I seriously doubt that.

Is there a way to scientifically test the R value of an Oliver double-hull-with-interior-insulation sandwich?

3 hours ago, John E Davies said:

I have been adding 1 inch slabs of Dow Corning R5 rigid foam board ...  The Pink Stuff ... into those areas wherever I can reach, especially near water lines that run along the inside of the outer wall..

Dow Corning pink foam insulation board offgasses highly toxic fumes if burned.  Get out of Mouse ASAP in the event of fire.

  • Like 2

 

Hull #1291

Central Idaho

2022 Elite II

Tow Vehicle:  2019 Tundra Double Cab 4x4, 5.7L with tow package

spacer.png

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Steph and Dud B said:

Most theoretical values hit a wall in real-world applications because they rarely get installed optimally. Even so, R16 does seem a bit far-fetched. The real question: is the Oliver insulation any better than a standard RV with aluminum studs and fiberglass/styrofoam/luan sandwich walls and roof? I'll know pretty soon. Had a few of those "stickie" trailers. This summer will be an Ollie. I know that our last fifth wheel radiated a lot of heat through the slideout walls, which I think were thinner than the "main" walls, and the cabinets/compartments in those slides were always cooler or hotter than the cabin interior. Comparisons with the Ollie will be interesting.

I thought the only R value that Oliver talked about were the windows.   R16 for the windows was a figure that I recall.   I could be wrong.   My wife would agree that I could be wrong. 

  • Care 1
  • Haha 2

John and Debbie, Beaverton, Oregon,  2017 Ford Expedition EL 4x4 3.5 liter Ecoboost, with heavy duty tow package. 

2022 Hull #1290, twin bed with Truma package (a/c, furnace, hot water heater with electric antifreeze option), picked up November 7, 2022

Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 minutes ago, Rivernerd said:

I agree that the R16 claim is "aggressive" marketing.  If it were true, then an Oliver wall would outperform a sheathed 2x4 stud wall filled with R13 fiberglass batt insulation and drywalled on the inside.  I seriously doubt that.

Is there a way to scientifically test the R value of an Oliver double-hull-with-interior-insulation sandwich?

Dow Corning pink foam insulation board offgasses highly toxic fumes if burned.  Get out of Mouse ASAP in the event of fire.

I think doing a walk around with a thermal camera would show where the heat is going. It might provide some interesting pictures and start some “heated” discussions. 

In the event if a fire I am not going to hang around inside. There are plenty of other sources of toxic chemicals in there like the tanks, plumbing, cushion foam, and appliances, not to mention the VAST amounts of fiberglass and gelcoat. My small addition of DC foam is not a serious concern to me. But I wouldn’t want unprotected DC foam in my house, it needs a fire barrier like 5/8” drywall..

“Aggressive marketing” 😄 That is a great euphemism for a lie. Like “up to”. My truck gets about 12 to 14 mpg normally, but it got “up to” 50 mpg once descending into the Hells Canyon gorge right after filling up.

John Davies

Spokane WA

  • Like 2

"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags, Safari snorkel.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Moderators

When we were building our sips  home, LEED standards required insulating every solid wood component (headers, lvls, posts, etc) as a thermal break. We used reflectix. My LEED advisor said it added only r1, but it helped with sealing the structure. The firring strip interstitial space took the rvalue to maybe 6? If I remember correctly.  

An inch air gap between two layers of reflectix  type insulation may help more. I don't know. Rvalues require testing, but not within my capability. 

I don't have any of your current insulation in my 2008 trailer, just air gaps, and I've been good into the high teens, if it warms above freezing daytime. I'm not a serious cold weather camper, so it works for me.

Slideouts have always been problematic for us, in motorhomes. They leak cold or hot air, and allow the mosquitoes in, as well. 

  • Like 1

2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 minutes ago, John Welte said:

I thought the only R value that Oliver talked about were the windows.   R16 for the windows was a figure that I recall.   I could be wrong.   My wife would agree that I could be wrong. 

I do too 😁 A good double pane glass panel is maybe R5. Which is pretty good compared to a single pane, but not much more can be said about that. Just stick your hand on your home window when it is bitter outside.

John Davies

Spokane WA

  • Like 2

"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags, Safari snorkel.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, John E Davies said:

I do too 😁 A good double pane glass panel is R2 or R3. Which is pretty good compared to a single pane, but not much more can be said about that. Just stick your hand on your home window when it is bitter outside.

John Davies

Spokane WA

So apparently my wife is right again.   We don't need to tell her. 

  • Like 2
  • Haha 1

John and Debbie, Beaverton, Oregon,  2017 Ford Expedition EL 4x4 3.5 liter Ecoboost, with heavy duty tow package. 

2022 Hull #1290, twin bed with Truma package (a/c, furnace, hot water heater with electric antifreeze option), picked up November 7, 2022

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Moderators

Newer technology widows, properly sealed and installed, can have an r value of 5 maybe 6. 

My windows don't feel hot in the sun, even on the west and south sides. There's some really thin metallic layer in there, that blocks uv and heat, but barely changes visibility. 

Can't speak to the cold, as I live in Florida. 

I'd "guess" my Ollie double panes are much lower r value. The shades help. And, some hardy cold weather campers use reflectix to increase it. I have, in Alaska,  with crappy single pane windows. Dual purpose-- let's me sleep at night, with the midnight sun.

2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was impressed with the Olivers ability to hold heat. I did a modification to the heating system by simply adding ducting to the street side. With full fresh water tank and pump turned on I spent two days in sub zero weather, negative four down to negative twelve. I had the thermostat set at seventy degrees and was burning .274 gallons per hour but was toasty warm inside including the bathroom.       

  • Thanks 1
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Moderators
5 minutes ago, Minnesota Oli said:

I was impressed with the Olivers ability to hold heat. I did a modification to the heating system by simply adding ducting to the street side. With full fresh water tank and pump turned on I spent two days in sub zero weather, negative four down to negative twelve. I had the thermostat set at seventy degrees and was burning .274 gallons per hour but was toasty warm inside including the bathroom.       

I'd say the magic works, then. Especially,  with your retrofit.

For us, it's mostly the air gap of double hull, in our 2008. 

Did you do anything with the windows? Just curious. 

2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, SeaDawg said:

I don't have any of your current insulation in my 2008 trailer, just air gaps, and I've been good into the high teens, if it warms above freezing daytime. I'm not a serious cold weather camper, so it works for me.

 

No Reflectix insulation in my 2010 either, but it does have the sprayed on "LizardSkin" which I'm told works even better as a reflective barrier. Haven't had it in cold weather conditions yet, but it along with the air gap seems to do the job very well in direct sunlight and 90+ temps.

  • Like 1

2010 Elite II, Hull #45

Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 minutes ago, SeaDawg said:

I'd say the magic works, then. Especially,  with your retrofit.

For us, it's mostly the air gap of double hull, in our 2008. 

Did you do anything with the windows? Just curious. 

The only place I added insulation was behind the battery compartment door and that was a piece of 1-1/2 inch open cell foam and I probably didn't need it. To answer question though  I did not do anything to the windows.  

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Moderators

@Minnesota Oli, that's an awesome testament.  

For others, he did do a significant upgrade to the heating/ducting system. 

I personally  would not choose to camp in subzero temps, but other  folks here might want to. Not for me, if I can avoid it!

I left Minnesota 40 years ago. I  go back, usually in summer, to visit my family up there. Hardy vikings that they are....

Minnesota oli's upgrade link, for those who are interested in camping sub zero

 

  • Thanks 1
  • Like 1

2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 6/7/2022 at 9:33 AM, Rivernerd said:

Is there a way to scientifically test the R value of an Oliver double-hull-with-interior-insulation sandwich?

Yes sort of, but from a different angle than you may be thinking.  To instruement Ollie for such a test would be a challenge. 

A far simpler "seat of the pants" approach to compare Ollie to Brand X would be to monitor the A/C or heat power consumption over time at a set temperture.  To normalize the result between trailers would be to divide the power consumed/cubic feet of interior.

This would not meet any "Scientific" standard, but sure would be helpful.... especially if the tests were done in a full sun/shade and side by side with other trailers.

GJ

  • Like 1

Tug:  2019 F-150 SuperCrew Lariat, 3.5L EcoBoost, Max Trailer Tow, FX-4, 4X4, Rear Locker

ALAZARCACOIDKSKYLAMSNENVNMNCOKORTNTXUTVA

 

 

 

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...