6 Easy Steps To Make A Camper Out Of A Cargo Trailer (2018)

If you're into camping, then you probably know that there are different ways to camp, and it isn't about the usual tent and campfire! You have RV camping, which is a more comfortable and secure way to camp, as you are inside a mini-home protected by the elements.

Plus, it gives you an easier time as compared to setting up tents or navigating your way to a campsite. And did you know that people have started making a camper out of a cargo trailer?

Making a Camper Out of a Cargo Trailer How To 1

With just a simple cargo trailer, you'll be able to create a cozy temporary home for you and your kids to appreciate. But how can you do that? In this article, I'll be showing you how you can begin making a camper out of a cargo trailer!

What Is A Cargo Trailer And How To Choose One For Camping?

Before going into the details of making a camper out of a cargo trailer, what is a cargo trailer in the first place?

Making a Camper Out of a Cargo Trailer How To 2

You've probably seen those big compartments behind trucks, used to deliver goods to various locations. It can be attached to vehicles with a ball joint mechanism, making it an ideal choice when attaching it to your RV trailer truck.

There are different types of cargo trailers, but all of them are suitable to convert into a camper as long as you check these factors to consider:

- The first thing you should look at would be its strength and durability. Ensure that the cargo trailer has straight sides and square corners, built well to withstand any form of weather and damage.

- The size is also an important factor since you want it to fit when attached to your trailer and make sure it isn't too heavy or large for moving around.

Making a Camper Out of a Cargo Trailer How To 3

- It would save the hassle of getting an insulated cargo trailer with consistent fasteners and room for ventilation.

- Also, focus on safety and look for cargo trailers with anti theft locking mechanisms for added security.

Why Create A Camper Out Of A Cargo Trailer?

You're probably wondering: why bother converting a camper into a cargo trailer in the first place? Isn't it easier to purchase a camper ready to go?

Making a Camper Out of a Cargo Trailer How To 4

Here are some advantages of making a camper out of a cargo trailer can give you:

Save Money

We all know that RV campers are very expensive. But the starting costs of customizing a cargo trailer are considerably less.


You'll be able to create YOUR space and get the results you want, according to work done. Plus, it's better than spending the similar price on USED campers, since you are assured that everything installed to the converted cargo trailer is new.

Making A Camper Out Of A Cargo Trailer

Now that you know what making a camper out of a cargo trailer can do, the next question is: How?

Follow these steps, but take note that this is a very straightforward and cost-effective camper trailer. It has NO toilet but the necessities, such as a bed and electrical system.

Plan The Layout

Before anything else, make sure you chose the right cargo trailer and planned out the interior design and where you should add everything (including electrical system and cot), so you will have an easier time installing everything.

Having a detailed drawing and plan will help figure out where essential parts should be to access them quickly.

Install The Electrical System

Many parks have electrical access you can use, or you can invest in a reliable battery to supply power into your trailer while on the road.

Making a Camper Out of a Cargo Trailer How To 5

You Will Need:

  • RV Power cord with outlet box
  • Electrical Pigtail
  • Cordless Drill
  • Hole Saw


Cut a hole in the wall or floor, strategically placed where you would usually plug in small appliances. Attach the RV cord to the pigtail under the trailer so you can easily hook it up to the campsite electrical outlets. Drill the outlet box to the wall after.

Add Ventilation

Making a Camper Out of a Cargo Trailer How To 6

You Will Need:

  • Trailer vent
  • Drill
  • Tape or glue


What you need to do is to drill holes to the sidewalls (according to where you want to place the vents). Make sure that the holes are at the exact measurement of the vents to avoid small openings that bring in dust or bacteria. It’s best to start off with a smaller hole then adjust if needed.

Install the interior vents to the holes. You can use tape or glue to hold it still, then drill the vents shut with the nails that come with the vent. Follow the same procedure with the exterior vents. After installation, check the vents again to see if they are flimsy or have small openings. Adjust if needed.


You Will Need:

  • Glue for flooring
  • Carpet or vinyl flooring
  • Paint for walls (optional)


Measure the floor and cut the flooring or carpet to the appropriate size. It’s best to add in the flooring while the whole trailer is bare to avoid any hassle or moving. Using glue, apply the flooring on the base of the trailer. Apply pressure and make sure that everything is neatly places without any gap or opening.

You can also paint over the walls or add wallpaper for a better look. If you plan on painting the walls, do it before adding the flooring or carpet to avoid making a mess. For wallpaper, stick it well, similar to as if you were applying the flooring.

Make A Cot Or Makeshift Bed

You Will Need:

  • Lightweight mattress
  • Enough plywood for stand and makeshift bed frame
  • Hinges
  • Rope for grooves
  • Drill
  • Strap to hold the bed up


Measure out the size of the mattress and height of the stand. Cut the wood according to those measurements and make sure to leave a bit of space for the bed. Install hinges to the bed to hold it up properly when the bed is made. Notch the legs so they could fold together when the cot is up.

Install the clip for straps so it can hold the bed for more space. Then, use the rope to make the cot and route grooves to hold the mattress.

Other Facilities

Now that you have installed the necessities, you can start assembling other extra essentials for your home, such as the sink, toilet, and other electrical appliances needed for your home.

You can purchase these appliances from online shops or home depots for you to assemble yourself, according to the manufacturer's instructions. You may need to prepare power tools when assembling it, such as a power drill and saws.


When it comes to RV camping, you'll want to make sure you can save as much money as you can and have the comfortable space suitable for you. That's why it's best to invest in a cargo trailer and make it into a camper, so you have the freedom to make your temporary home from scratch and save money along the way!

I hope this article on making a camper out of a cargo trailer helped you become more knowledgeable about what to do when you want to make your camper creatively. So what are you waiting for? Follow these steps and find a cargo trailer to create it into a camper today!

If you have any questions or would like to share your tips on making a camper out of a cargo trailer, then comment down below. I would love to hear what you have to think.

6 Easy Steps To Make A Camper Out Of A Cargo Trailer (2018)
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6 Easy Steps To Make A Camper Out Of A Cargo Trailer (2018)
Wondering how to save money in RV camping? Then you can start making a camper out of a cargo trailer instead! Learn how to make a basic one here.
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Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 1 comments
Rhianna Hawk - a few months ago

Wow, making a camper out of a cargo trailer sounds a lot like making a fancy treehouse. I’ve wanted a camper for a while, partly because having a portable room like that sounds great, but never had the budget, though I think I could get an enclosed trailer. Not every camper has a bathroom on it anyway, so not having an included bathroom like you mentioned wouldn’t be too much of a drawback, and it really sounds like a fun way to make a camper that is completely customized.


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