Fitting Seitz Mini Heki Plus Rooflight to a panel van – Camper conversion

Following on from the Seitz window installation, I wanted the extra light and ventilation that would be perfectly delivered by a rooflight.

The Seitz/ Dometic Mini Heki Plus rooflight was just, and I mean just the right size to fit in the space between two of the support beams in my medium wheelbase van, conveniently the location of the standard spinning ventilator, which was to be removed.

I won’t go as in-depth as I did with the window installation instructions (unless requested), as there seem to be plenty of resources in the way of installing these kind of products in panels vans.

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The Mini Heki is installed in the same way as the window; two halves, inside and out, screw together, a frame must be made to fill the space inside, and (unlike the window), the surface on the van roof needs to be made flat to bond the outer part of the rooflight to (as vans roofs are almost always ‘corrugated’, containing some kind of ridges or unevenness).

There are a few options when buying a Mini Heki – fixed ventilation and thickness options. I chose the thinner of the two roof options (25 – 42mm), as van roofs are thin as it is so I didn’t want it sticking down too far on the inside encroaching on headspace. I also chose the option for without fixed ventilation – if I didn’t want a choice I’d install permanently open vents!

The first job was to cut the hole –

Drilling initial holes to fit the jigsaw through
Drilling initial holes to fit the jigsaw through
Hole drilled, old vent with it!
Hole drilled, old vent with it!

With the hole cut out, I could now start to build up around the ridges on the roof. To do this I cut some sections from a uPVC gable end strip which was the perfect thickness to build up in between roof segments.

The soft uPVC cut so nice and easily with the jigsaw
The soft uPVC cut so nice and easily with the jigsaw

The benefit of using uPVC is that it is waterproof and will not rot should any condensation or rainwater get in (which it shouldn’t as you should give it all a thorough sealing around the edges!)

holebuiltAfter glueing on the uPVC outer frame, I made a wooden frame to attach the inner section of the rooflight around. (I don’t have pictures of this stage as it was getting late and I was getting frustrated with the frame!)

Annoyingly after meticulously measuring dimensions for the frame, it didn’t fit, so I had to widen the built frame from the inside with the jigsaw (a pain but it worked).

I used mastic tape around the edge of the outer section of rooflight to pull it onto the uPVC frame when the inner half of the rooflight was screwed to it. After this I used a fair amount of Sikaflex to fill any gaps in the uPVC frame and seal all around the edges of this frame and the rooflight itself. (Certainly not a neat job on my part, but it’s the roof, and I don’t think the birds will be judging my sealing neatness).

Mid-seal. As you can probably tell it was getting late at this point
Mid-seal. Mastic tape and some Sikaflex in the gaps. As you can probably tell it was getting late at this point
Inner half screwed in and the blind and flynet cover attached
Inner half screwed in and the blind and flynet cover attached
Finished and sealed rooflight (and rather messy roof)
Finished and sealed rooflight (and rather messy roof)

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