Picture this: It's a Sunday morning in the van; the timer goes and you take the freshly-baked sourdough bread out of the campervan oven. The warm, doughy bread crackles as you break a piece off. You douse it in olive oil, add a pinch of salt, a few chilli flakes, and some herbes de Provence. Your mouth waters before you've even taken a bite.
That could be you... If only you had an LPG oven.
Well! In this guide you will learn all about LPG ovens - what the best models are and how to install one. In our 2023 study, we found that 23% of van conversions have an oven installed.
I'm Shane, I've been teaching people to convert campervans for years; I'm the author of Roaming Home; The Comprehensive Guide for Converting Your Van Into a Campervan,writer of The Van Conversion Newsletter, instructor of The Van Conversion Course over at Udemy. And full-time vanlifer for 4 years!
Now let's jump in and see how to install a campervan oven and hob!
This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click a product link and buy anything from the merchant (Amazon, eBay, etc.) we will receive a commission fee. The price you pay remains the same, affiliate link or not. By using these links, you are helping me to continue writing free educational content!
Note: Did you know that you can get a free electrical wiring diagram by signing up to The Van Conversion Newsletter
Do you need a campervan oven?
To be completely honest, LPG Ovens are more of a 'nice-to-have' rather than a necessity. However, if you live for an extended period on the road and really want to make your van feel like home, a campervan oven can be a fantastic addition! They bake bread, they make pizza, and they look great!
Once your LPG system is setup, installing the LPG oven is actually very easy! The question is not one of technicality, but moreseo one of space and money.
Campervan oven size
An LPG oven is bigger than a simple gas hob. There's no getting around that fact. You should probably only consider getting an LPG oven if they have a long-wheel base van (or bigger). Because it can take up a lot of room, I recommend noting the oven location when you are designing your van (in software or on paper) at the outset.
To give you an idea of size, the popular (and slim) Dometic Sunlight (ebay) has the following dimensions:
Depth: 357 mm
Height: 398 mm
Width 449 mm
Luckily for us, there are many campervan oven options (some of which are very small indeed) - we will look at our options in the next section.
LPG oven cost
Believe it or not there are some really good value LPG ovens out there (considering what you get)! For a traditional campervan oven prices range from €300-€1300. Though as we will look at in the next section, there are some super cheap alternatives that you could look at!
What is the best LPG oven?
Omnia Camp Oven
Before we get into more traditional LPG ovens, I want to give a shoutout to an excellent, cheap, and tiny alternative: The Omnia camp oven!
Also known as the 'wonder pot', this stovetop oven is perfect for campervans. The donut-shaped design gives an even heat all around the food - the top and the bottom.
Dometic-SMEV Oven and grill
The Dometic-SMEV is one of the most popular campervan oven and grills on the market. It is cheap, small, and does the job!
20 litre oven
Combined oven and grill
530 x 310 x 410 mm
Oven output: 1kW
Note: The old Dometic-SMEV oven must be ducted to a roof-mounted flue! It comes with the chimney connection for this job.
Thetford-Spinflo Duplex Oven and grill
The Thetford-Spinflo Duplex oven is another very popular LPG oven. It is bigger and more powerful than the Dometic-SMEV.
36 litre oven
Combined oven and grill
456 x 445 x 440 mm
Oven output: 1.5kW
An alternative to the Thetford duplex is the Thetford Triplex, which is a combined campervan oven and hob! Super handy and space efficient.
Note: You must install a drop-out vent underneath both the Duplex and Triplex ovens. Ensure you follow the specifications set out in the manual.
Voyager 4500 LPG oven and hob
The Voyager 4500 campervan oven and hob is another very popular option.
It has a dedicated oven, grill, and hob - all delivered in a very compact size.
Battery ignition (no 12v required)
19.8 litre oven
LPG grill, oven and hob
530 x 485 x 410 mm
Oven output: 1.26kW
Road Chef 12v Oven
The Road chef is a 12v oven... how about that! No need for any LPG, just hook it up to your leisure batteries!
With one caveat... it has a draw of 8.5a, so you better have some big batteries and thick cables!
Thermostat & timer
Heats to 180C
190 x 320 x 280 mm
Campervan oven and hob safety
Ensure your campervan is very well ventilated (ie. Install a fan!)
Many LPG ovens require either a dropout vent or roof exhaust flue
The surrounding material must be able to withstand a certain amount of heat - do not put flammable material right beside the oven and check the manufacturer's guidelines to find out what heat is output
Get the gas installation done by a professional
Keep a fire extinguisher in your van
Install a carbon monoxide detector and smoke alarm
Install a gas leak detector (mount near the floor - gas is heavier than air)
LPG oven installation guide
The specific installation steps for an LPG oven differs from model to model. For example, if you have a Dometic-SMEV, you will need a chimney flue, whereas if you have a Thetford, you need a drop-out vent.
The installation instructions provided below are presented as a generic guide - always follow the instruction manual provided by the manufacturer.
I highly recommend you read this guide about campervan gas installations in this guide. Gas installations should be carried out by a registered gas fitter, and at the very least checked by one. Gas is very dangerous and a gas system must be fitted correctly. Campervan oven and hobs get very hot and the utmost care should be taken when installing them.
With all that being said... Let's hop in and look at how to install a LPG oven! In particular, we will be looking at installing the Thetford Triplex, though the steps are similar for most ovens!
Step #1: Build the wooden support frame for the oven
Your campervan oven will likely go in the kitchen unit of your van - ensure you have left enough room there for the installation!
When building the support frame, follow the exact specifications laid out in the instruction manual for the oven. For example, these are the measurements for the Thetford Triplex:
To do this carpentry you just need a jigsaw and some plywood.
You must install a drop-out vent underneath the oven - though not somewhere that will cause a draught to come in (which could potentially disrupt combustion). The drop out vent is in the cavity under the oven. You can cut the drop-out vent using a holesaw.
The oven must be 10mm away from the wood on the left and right sides. There must be a gap of 80mm at the back of the oven.
The surrounding material must be able to withstand temperatures of 65°C above ambient temperature. You can install cement board (Hardie board) all around the oven to help with the temperature regulation. Cement board can withstand much higher temperatures than plywood.
There was an excellent guide written by Wanderwoods about how to install an outdoor oven inside - which requires the use of cement board + reflectix due to it's high temperature. The photo above is taken from their build.
When you are sure you have followed the instructions specifications to a tee, you can push the LPG oven into the space.
Step #2: Connect the gas
Attach the gas pipe (rigid pipe required by BS EN 1949:2021 standards) to the campervan oven inlet using an 8mm brass compression fitting
Ensure you put jointing compound/pipe dope on the oive/ferrule in the fitting. Tighten the fitting hand tight and then tighten it another 1.5-2 times with a wrench.
Step #3: Hook up the ignition
If you don’t have a piezo ignition, the last thing to do is hook up the 12V ignition! So go ahead and wire the oven up to your fuse box - the ignition usually takes a 3A fuse.
And that’s it - you're done and ready to start cooking all your favourite dishes! Nom nom.
And that's how to install a campervan oven and hob! Not too tricky... Don't forget to subscribe to The Van Conversion Newsletter for everything you need to get started with your own van conversion (I'll send you a free wiring diagram when you sign up).
Don't forget to subscribe to The Van Conversion Newsletter for everything you need to get started with your own van conversion (I'll send you a free wiring diagram when you join).
If you're looking for some guidance with your van conversion, you might be interested in Roaming Home; The Comprehensive Guide for Converting Your Van Into a Campervan. In the 380-page book (or ebook), you'll learn directly from me how to convert a van into your dream home - no prior experience needed!
Until next time,