A Definitive Guide To Campervan Windows: Everything You Need To Know

Don’t fancy travelling around in a dark and stuffy box? Then you’re going to need some campervan windows! Installing windows creates natural light and ventilation, helping to keep the air in your camper cool, fresh and airy.

And even if you don’t mind living in darkness, but want to re-register your camper with the DVLA (either as a “motorhome” or a “van with windows”) then you’ll need windows to meet the criteria.

This post will cover the pros and cons of the most common campervan windows as well as looking at some unusual and alternative options.

When is it best to install a campervan window during your camper conversion? Find out in our 5 Stage Build Guide.

A sliding, bonded window on a campervan

The reviews on the sliding bonded glass window and the hinged polyvision window are based on our own experiences. For other windows, we asked other vanlifers for their honest reviews and opinions.

Don’t have time to read the full article? That’s okay! Here’s a simplified overview of the windows you might choose for your conversion, with their main pros and cons.

This post may contain affiliate links. Meaning, if you make a purchase after clicking one, we may earn some commission. This pocket money will help Vandercamp Adventures continue to grow at no extra cost to you. It’s a win win situation!! Learn More…

Window TypeMaterialMain ProMain Con
BondedGlassSits flush with the metalworkSingle glazed
AcrylicPolyplasticDouble glazedStick out
PolyvisionPolyplasticDouble glazedMore expensive
SlidingPolyplastic/GlassGood for stealth campingRisk of rain invading
HingedPolyplasticDouble lock internal armsBreaks up the lines of your camper
FixedGlassGenerally the cheapest optionCan't open the window

Common Campervan Windows

These three types are the most commonly used campervan windows. Bonded windows are made from glass, while acrylic and polyvision windows are made from polyplastic.

All three categories of windows have been designed specifically for camper vehicles, and therefore comply with European safety standards, as long as you buy from a reputable dealer.

All three have inside locks, although acrylic and polyvision windows both have double locking arms, as well as the ability to lock in place while slightly open, meaning you can’t open them further from the outside.

Bonded Campervan Windows

Bonded (AKA “new style”) windows are made of single glazed glass and bond (glue) directly to the van. They can be quite tricky to fit and some less confident DIY-ers sometimes choose to have them professionally installed.

They sit flush against the metalwork and look like the windows were already fitted when the van rolled off the production line. This makes it less obvious that you’ve adapted your van and is ideal for stealth camping.

A bonded window on a VW T5 campervan

Bonded sliding campervan window kit from Camper Glass

  • You can have a large window that sits flush with the camper panel.
  • Generally a cheaper option to buy the glass, rubbers and the bonding kit.
  • The cutout panel doesn’t need to be dead straight as the rubber seal hides minor wobbles.
  • Single glazed glass can create a lot of condensation on the window.
  • If someone wanted to break in, they could smash the glass and climb through the hole.
  • More prone to leaks than other window designs if not fitted correctly.

Further Reading | 9 Easy Steps To Fit A Bonded Camper Van Window

Acrylic Campervan Windows

Seitz is the leading brand in acrylic campervan windows. They have a light, aluminium frame and thermal/double glazed polyplastic windows. They are simple to install but stick out slightly from the side of the van.

Because they were originally made for motorhomes (which have thicker walls), a wooden frame needs mounting before installing the window on a panel van. The frame creates more depth so the window attaches securely.

A sliding acrylic campervan window

Seitz Dometic Campervan Sliding Window

  • The windows are double glazed, which helps with insulation and reduces condensation.
  • Integrated flyscreen and blinds can save you time later, as you won’t have to make/fit any.
  • They are not made of glass and are therefore more secure.
  • Originally made for motorhomes, so they’re not as sleek as bonded or polyvision.
  • It makes your conversion more obviously a camper van.
  • Need additional sealant to secure them, as they “should” be fitted on a flat panel.

Polyvision Campervan Windows

Polyvision windows are very similar to acrylic windows, but they’re a more modern-looking alternative. They’re a lot sleeker and sit much closer to the body of the van.

As with acrylic windows, they need a thick wall to attach securely, so a wooden frame needs fixing in place first. But otherwise, they are very simple to install, as they just clip in place.

Campervan Polyvision Aero Window

Polyvision Aero Campervan Window (With Blind)

  • The windows are double glazed, which helps with insulation and reduces condensation.
  • Integrated flyscreen and blinds can save you time later, as you won’t have to make/fit any.
  • They are not made of glass and are therefore more secure.
  • More expensive than acrylic or bonded windows, unless you hunt for eBay bargains.
  • Designed to fit a perfectly flat panel. May need bonding on a panel van.
  • The polyplastic can become scratched and warped over time.
A DIY polyvision camper van window

Our polyvision window was purchased from Magnum Motorhomes.

They sell some polyvision windows that ‘are not retail packaged or boxed so have some very minor marks from storage. Therefore they’re sold at a discounted price.

Common Campervan Window Openings

Hinged campervan windows are only available as acrylic or polyvision, whereas sliding windows are available as acrylic, polyvision and bonded glass.

Alternatively, you could opt for a window that does not open at all, in which case you’d be looking at a fixed, bonded (and therefore glass) window.

Sliding Campervan Window

A sliding, bonded window on a campervan

Bonded sliding campervan window kit from Camper Glass

Further Reading | How To Install A Bonded Window To A Campervan

  • You can adjust how wide open the window is; it only needs to be open a crack if it’s cold!
  • The windows can be open while stealth camping without drawing attention.
  • The window can safely be kept open while driving to ventilate the van.
  • When open they don’t let as much air or light in compared to a hinged window.
  • Can’t lock it in place when it’s open so if it’s slightly open, it can be opened further from outside.
  • Risk of rain coming into your camper if there’s a sudden downpour.

Hinged Campervan Window

A dometic hinged window

Seitz S4 – Top Hung Hinged Campervan Window

  • Because the windows are plastic, there isn’t any glare from the sun.
  • Double lock internal arms create an additional level of security.
  • Because it’s a single panel, it gives an uninterrupted view to the outside.
  • The protruding window is a potential hazard to passers-by, especially when it’s dark.
  • If it’s cheap polyplastic, it can scratch, warp or drop out of place.
  • Not as aesthetically pleasing, as the open window breaks up the lines of your campervan.

Fixed Campervan Window

Fixd bonded window from Camper Glass

Fixed Bonded Campervan Privacy Window From Camper Glass

  • A single, sleek, continuous line around the van with no protrusions or openings.
  • The cheapest option of campervan windows, which is ideal if you’re on a strict budget.
  • Because it’s a single panel, it gives an uninterrupted view to the outside.
  • As it’s a fixed pane of glass, it will create a greenhouse effect in your camper.
  • Reduces the amount of airflow and ventilation circulating through.
  • Only opening the cab windows to create airflow isn’t as effective.

See Through VS Tinted

The main difference between having either see-through or tinted windows is light VS privacy. Black (tinted) windows give more privacy, while or see-through windows allow more light to pass through.

If you choose see-through windows, then blinds or curtains can be installed for privacy. On the other hand, if you opt for tinted windows you can choose how heavy you’d like the tint to be.

See Through Windows

Dometic Seitz clear sliding window

Dometic Seitz S4 Clear Sliding Window For Campervans

  • They let a lot of light into your van making it a bright area.
  • Allows you to admire the view in full colour without a black tint over it.
  • Can have lots of light in your camper and then close the curtains if you need privacy.
  • Allows a lot of direct sunlight, UV rays and heat into your campervan.
  • Can easily see into the van, so any valuables would need to be securely out of sight.
  • Need to spend time/money installing curtains or blinds.

Tinted Windows

The difference between the view out of n windw and a tinted window in a campervan

Bonded Sliding Tinted Glass Window From Camper Glass

  • Reduces the direct sunlight, heat and UV in your camper when it’s super sunny.
  • Additional privacy as tinted glass is much harder to peek through.
  • Tints can be applied to existing windows instead of replacing them completely.
  • Reducing direct sunlight also means reducing the amount of light in your van.
  • Heavily tinted windows might suggest there’s something to pinchable hidden in your camper.
  • A black tint will make the view from the window look duller.

Alternative Campervan Window Ideas

But what if you don’t want to install windows in your campervan conversion? Or maybe you want to have something a bit more unusual?

The following windows will all bring something a bit different to your camper conversion. Additionally, there are things like reclaimed windows for larger conversion, but these will be heavy and won’t necessarily be a safe addition.

Campervan Skylight

Skylights cross over into the ventilation realm if you choose one that opens or has a fan. You can read more about skylights and other types of ventilation in our ultimate campervan ventilation guide.

They are better suited to a larger conversation, as there’s more roof space. On a smaller van, they would dominate space that is more useful for a solar panel and additional storage.

A campervan conversion without any windows, just a skylight for light

Krys and Taylor are based in Ontario, Canada, where the winters are incredibly harsh. They decided not to include windows in their build so they wouldn’t lose any heat. Instead, a skylight was their source of light.

  • Having a skylight (or skylights) would create a very light, airy space.
  • If they open, they will create a through draught which is good for ventilation.
  • Not having panel windows means making full use of the wall space inside your camper.
  • More obviously a camper, especially if the skylights are open.
  • No draught if it’s a fixed unit, and letting a lot of light in will make your camper very warm.
  • Could potentially leak if they’re not installed properly, causing water to fall inside the van.

Campervan Porthole

Including portholes will give your camper a cute, quirky look. They definitely add character to camper conversions – especially if you go for a brass-steampunk look!

The window itself is usually made of glass but adds a level of security because even if someone did smash it, there’s not much chance of them fitting through the hole. (Unless they’re with Oliver Twist!)

A Mercedes Spriner camper van painted like the yellow submarine with porthole windows in the rear doors

Dom and Missy’s super colourful Mercedes Sprinter conversion has yellow submarine vibes galore! So in addition to their sliding window, they have portholes for that real submarine feel!

  • Adds character and a more unique edge to your camper van conversion.
  • Let a good amount of light in while still creating privacy.
  • They can be fitted in smaller spaces where you can’t fit a standard window.
  • Difficult to install as it’s harder to cut out a circle than a rectangle.
  • They need to be installed on a flat panel to prevent leaks.
  • Generally more expensive to buy, or time-consuming to find an affordable one.

Opening Sides

We can almost hear you thinking that you’ve never seen anything like this, in real life at least. And you’re right… this one is rare, especially in the UK. But it’s so cool, we just couldn’t not include it.

It’s a package option for a Chevvy Express, called the “Chevvy Express Access Package”. Instead of windows, the whole side of the van opens up as one great big window. How ace does it look?!

A widthways platform bed in a Chevvy camper with opening sides with views of the sea and the mountains

Zach, from the vanual has these amazing windows/opening sides in his van. He told us that it’s quite rare to find used vans with this package installed. In the last two years, he’s only seen four and he bought one of them! Super rare!


And that’s it! Pretty short and sweet, huh?

Campervan windows create natural light and ventilation, helping to keep it bright, fresh and cool in your conversion.

In addition, if you wish to re-register your campervan as either a motorhome or a van with windows with the DVLA, then you’ll need to install windows to meet their criteria.

To find out more about how installing additional windows helps ventilate your campervan, and how they work with other ventilation solutions, read our Ultimate Campervan Ventilation Guide.

No Comments

    Leave a Reply