Transform an old ambulance from Elite Ambulance Sales into a custom camper experience. A Campulance is a great alternative to traditional campers because they safer, stronger and often more affordable. Campulances require only a few modifications to be camper reader. However, many people customize their ambulance camper for the ultimate road trip experience. Check out our Used Ambulances For Sale to start your Campulance adventure!
Can I turn an Ambulance into a Camper?
Yes, you can own and drive a used ambulance as a private person. The important rule in the states is that ‘you can’t display red and blue flashing lights on a public road, or sirens’. The word Ambulance and EMS symbols may have to be removed. Some people recommend removing the emergency lights and sirens all together, or if it has red or blue light lenses to swap those out for yellow. Used ambulances can be found all over the place for private use.
Do Ambulances make reliable Campers?
Ambulances are very Sturdy/Strong/Safe. There are videos of ambulances doing 2-3 rollovers at highway speeds and they are intact. Iff a normal motorhome or RV tips on its side at zero to 10 mph it often sustains major damage.
How much does a used Ambulance cost?
A new modular (type I or III) ambulance usually costs $150,000 to $220,000 new. A used one with 1/2 to 2/3+ of its functional life left which still offers a lot of value will cost around $20,000. (See the homepage post on miles. Most of the engines in these units are great commercial duty engines, and there are plenty on the road with 400-500,000 miles on them still running strong like the 7.3, Duramax, etc.)
What is the maintenance level of a used Ambulance?
Ambulances are very high grade throughout, from the aluminum skin and sturdy structure, to the heavy gauge electrical wiring. Even aspects like the cabinets and latches are all very strong and well made.
They are almost always very well maintained, especially if they come right from an ambulance service (not third hand). Serviced ambulances get DOT inspected every year to be in service. Many services even replace parts early/preemptively because they cant have a failure on a call.
How much power can I expect from a Campulance?
The electrical systems in an ambulance are second to none. The vehicles usually have dual upgraded/larger alternators that put out a lot of electricity. A lot of people assume they need to put solar on a Campulance; however, these alternators generate a lot of electricity that can be captured using a few extra deep cycle batteries.
Ambulances have a big electric cable that runs from the alternators to the back electrical cabinet. There are usually 1-3 deep cycle batteries in a compartment and a battery maintainer/charge controller. More batteries can be added as needed.
An additional benefit to driving a Campulance is the commercial-duty pure sine wave inverter found is most ambulances. This inverter can change the 12v power to 110v normal ‘household’ electric that feeds the inside outlets. Pure sine wave or modified sine wave inverters in these that are much more durable than a standard inverter.
How much work does it take to transform an Ambulance into a Campulance?
Ambulances are pretty much ready to go as a basic camper van. Simply take out the stretcher mount bars on the floor, put you stuff in and go. We’ve seen conversions from fairly simple to the super fancy.
A lot of people extend the side squad seating bench to a slide-out or fold out bed, and put a portable 2 burner stove on the little counter on the other side. Some add a sink with a catch bucket under it, 12v horizontal fridge/cooler and a portable toilet.
Does Elite Ambulance Sales provide financing options? Insurance.
Getting a loan on a decommissioned ambulance can be a bit of a hassle through a private bank, and many people do it. Elite Ambulance Sales can finance units if they can go under a business name. The titles often don’t say ambulance, and we state what the chassis is (such as ford E-450 van) to the banker, if you have to say ambulance, emphasize that it is decomissioned, not for EMS service.
Insurance is an option, but we recommend you get a commercial policy at first until the ambulance has been converted to camper van. Progressive insurance company has an online quote tool where you just enter the chassis brand/model and you get you policy in few steps, everyone we have dealt with has easily gotten insured, other companies insure as well. Policies may change depending on the insurance company. Every state we have seen allows owners to get the Campulance titled and plated as a motorhome/RV.
States usually require that a homebuilt RV have something like 4 of 8 systems, such as a separate power or heat cooling system, toilet, etc to be qualified as an RV. Look on your local DOT or state website for their list for homebuilt motorhome/RV. Once the ambulance has been converted into a RV, insurance options become much more affordable.