​​How do you secure a camper shell?

In this blog post, we will answer the following question: How do you secure a camper shell? We will talk about safety and security when camping or spending one night in your pick-up camper shell. 

How do you secure a camper shell?

There are different ways to secure a camper shell:

  • Invest in a steering wheel lock: A very common safety tool, it can be seen fitted even on some cars. This is a bar that will pass through your steering wheel and lock into place. Manoeuvres are then impossible. 

There are several kinds (bar, cane which is connected to the brake pedal, a bar connected to the hand brake, etc.). Prices also vary, depending on the sturdiness and the materials used: between $ 20 and $100. 

  • Consider getting a side door lock: Locks on the side door and back door. You can add a lock on your side door or on the back door, to secure from the outside as well as from the inside. Count between $ 9 and $ 125. 
  • The transverse security bar is our top choice: an anti-intrusion system that is fixed between the 2 doors of the cabin to block them. Count around 50 $.
  • Get an alarm as a precaution: You can equip your camper shell with an alarm that will trigger its siren in the event of a break-in.

What is the best way to secure a camper shell if sleeping in it?

While there is not a single way to secure a camper shell, as mentioned, a transverse security bar is our top recommendation to secure a camper shell. In this section, we explain how to use one and our reasons for considering it the best choice for camper shell safety. 

  • The main advantage of a transverse security bar is its ease of use. It is basically just a straight bar that is connected to the center portion of the camper shell. 
  • You can install it quite easily while you are inside the camper shell: When you get inside for the evening, just turn the security bar and it will completely lock the camper shell. 
  • To completely lock it, you can get some simple needle nose vise grips at any hardware store. You can set them to where the security bar clamps down on something. The nose grips will lock it into place and the camper shell will be impossible to open from the outside!

How secure are camper shells?

Camper shells are the best option if you are transporting valuables or packaging that can be easily removed from the vehicle when travelling at low speed or stopping at a red light or parking lot.

For this, you must choose a camper shell with a firm lock that can only be opened with a special key, similar to those used by the flywheel locks. Thus, no unwanted person will have access to the cargo while they are travelling.

The main reason a camper shell is installed on a truck is to provide protection for the cargo being transported. When exposed to the sun, rain, wind, cold and heat, the load can suffer various damages, especially if it is food, electronic articles or any other element with a certain degree of fragility.

Safety is also a good reason for installing a camper shell. In this sense, this accessory allows the load to remain contained in the pick-up of the truck, thus avoiding any “leak” or fall to the road due to potholes, sudden braking or other unforeseen events. The idea is to protect the safety of those who are in the van and also of third parties who run into it on the road.

On another edge of security, camper shells are useful for protecting the high-value or attractive cargo that is easy to steal. Being parked, moving slowly or stopped in front of a stop disk or red light are situations that encourage the actions of criminals, even more so if the load is within reach behind the back of those who transport it.

Some tips if you go camping with your camper shell

Yes, camping with a pick-up truck and choosing to sleep in a camper shell is more often done than you may think. And why not? After all, camper shells can easily be converted to sleeping quarters just by adding an air mattress. 

A good night’s rest is essential if you want to wake up refreshed and ready to hit the trails before everyone else. For all of this to work the right way you must have a good quality mattress that lasts all night long that can withstand a lot of abuse and is easy to inflate and deflate.

Make sure it is large enough to fit in the back, but not so large that you have room to store items such as water and other important items.

Here are a  few more tips for sleeping safe and sound in your camper shell:

There are designated camping areas throughout the USA for trucks, cars, and tents. These grounds are usually well prepared, with a fire pit, a picnic table, electricity, and a nearby water source. It is advisable to visit the local police station or call them to inform them of your stay.

Your truck pickup is going to be your home away from home. Living there can be a disaster while you are in nature. Before leaving, do a thorough cleaning of the truck. Uninstall accessories like cargo bars and toolboxes to reach the smallest spots. This will also ensure that you have enough space for the base of the bed.

Consider travelling with bags that help keep everything organized. Avoid throwing objects and forgetting about them. Stack your boots and all dirty items in a garbage bag. You can broom or vacuum the pickup each night before you go to sleep. To maintain a clean camping environment, consider using a biodegradable dishwasher to wash dishes and toss leftovers in a trash can. This way you will avoid attracting animals and dirtying the environment.

You want to keep animals and critters away as much as possible. Hang your food high up in a tree if you can. This will keep most animals away and give you a safe distance from your truck. Food, like chocolate bars and other leftovers, attracts a lot of bugs. Store your food, toiletries, and leftovers in steel boxes and use a bug-proof container to dispose of leftovers and unwanted toiletries.

If you’re interested in fishing, it means you’ll be spending time in mosquito-infested environments. Consider bringing biodegradable mosquito repellent to keep mosquitoes and other critters away. Avoid leaving standing water in containers and containers around your truck. This will prevent you from giving the insects a home.

The bottom line

FAQ on How do you secure a camper shell?

How to defend yourself in a motorhome?

To protect yourself in a motorhome, take all the necessary precautions. Perimeter protection, carried out by magnetic sensors, concerns the exterior protection of the motorhome, it is effective day and night. The alarm is triggered when an attempt is made to force the doors of the driving position and the front door, but also bays or gates.

What alarm for a truck camper shell?

Here is a list of the best alarms for truck camper shells:

  • Tiiwee A2 – A motorhome alarm with a motion detector. 
  • Kerui – An inexpensive motorhome alarm.
  • Tiiwee Alarm Kit – A good alarm for motorhome.
  • Beeper – Good alarm for wireless motorhome.
  • Beeper TSX99 – A volumetric and perimetric alarm for motorhomes.

How to sleep safely in your camper?

Some tips to make the night go well in a camper:

  • Stay discreet!
  • Before going to bed, remember to put all your belongings inside the van. 
  • Opt for curtains: in addition to making your interior opaque, this will isolate you from outside view.
  • You can opt for additional locks.

Where can I sleep in my truck?

There are many authorised and free camping areas if you need to sleep in your truck. If you are travelling with your vehicle:

  1. In the middle of nature 
  2. At camping sites 
  3. With local people 
  4. At a farm 
  5. In the street or in a parking lot
  6. At Walmart.

Can you sleep under a tonneau cover?

Yes, you can sleep under a tonneau cover. In fact, there are many people who go camping with their pick-ups without a truck camper! 


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