Tips, Tricks & Trends

Box Truck RV Conversions Are a Thing

When people think of an RV, oftentimes, they get the image in their mind of a pop-up camper, a travel trailer, a van, or a bus. But, there is another type of RV that does not pop as easily into people‚Äôs minds. That is an RV box truck. Yeah, you know,… the U-Haul kind of thing.

Box truck conversions are a real thing

A white commercial box truck sit by a loading dock.
2020 Chevy Express Box Truck | General Motors

Many RVs are box truck conversions. Although not as prolific on the roads today as a traditional trailer or bus, a converted box truck is actually a thing in the RV community. There are even converted ambulances also. However, both the box trucks and ambulances seem to be more in the realm of the RV do-it-yourselfer more often than not. 

Living in an RV is different than using it for occasional travel

It is important to remember that occasionally traveling in an RV and living in an RV are two different things. For the person or family determined to live in an RV, the details of the build-out will change. For example, an occasional traveler who uses an RV may not need a full bathroom because they will always be near one, or they may only need a bathroom set-up for the odd emergency. A person who lives in an RV full-time, however, may want a more extensive build-out for a bathroom. Do-it-yourself box truck conversions permit the owner to build things out accordingly. 

Box trucks vary just as much as any other RV 

Box trucks and ambulances come in all sizes and shapes, just like any other RV. Many are tall enough for people to stand straight, which is always a good thing. Many box trucks also come with four-wheel drive. So, the ability to go up or down trials is not limited. Again, that is no different than some motorhomes. 

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Where the box truck shines

Where the box truck shines for the do-it-yourselfer is in the platform being plentiful. You do not have to go to a dealership specific to RVs to find them. They are used in many industries. Plumbers, movers, floor covering companies, and more use these trucks. So, it is easy to find box trucks in many regular automotive dealerships, auctions, or listing services. You can even go to your local town office and find out when retired service vehicles will be offered for sale. There are plenty of out of work box trucks that can be snapped up.

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Used box trucks are inexpensive

Used box trucks are relatively inexpensive. So, if a do-it-yourselfer is so inclined, a quick look over at Ebay Motors turned up twenty box trucks under $12,000. Those are spread out across the nation. However, there will most likely be a person at a local dealership that can connect you with the point of contact in your town for out-of-service commercial vehicle sales. Buyer beware, though. Do the due diligence to make sure whatever vehicle interest you are mechanically sound.

Box trucks are not often thought of for an RV. A pop-up camper, a travel trailer, a van, or a bus are more the norm. But, RV box trucks are really a thing. Just because it started as a U-Haul does not mean it can not be repurposed. The platform is ripe with the space needed for a conversion.