The choice of tent must take into account the following questions:
1) Space needed
Tents are classified by the fair number of people that fit in them. So if you are going to camp as a couple and want to have a break for more comfort or to store things in your room, I advise you to buy one for 3 people and so on. Many manufacturers are making models available for ⅔ people, indicating that it fits two and a half people.
I advise you not to completely rely on these indications of the number of people in the model, as they vary a lot. See the exact measurements of the tent: Length (L), Width (L) and Height ( H ), brought in the technical descriptions of the product.
It is noteworthy that the factor that usually defines the number of people is the width of the tent. Keep in mind that the ideal width size per person is 60cm.
The advance (balcony) does not enter this number of people account, being considered as an extra space and its measurements must also be contained in the technical description of the product.
Another important point is the height of the tent :
- More technical tents , for those who go hiking, are usually shorter, around 1 m high in their central part – that is, you can just sit inside, making them more resistant to strong winds and also lighter.
- Tents called family have higher height and allow you to stand and walk inside, some even have more than one room. Such tents are usually much heavier and complicated to assemble, however, they bring with them much more comfortable.
It is important to remember that the size of the tent directly impacts its weight and volume – super important points for those who will carry camping items in their cargo bag.
Another point is that tents are not square, so their design, placement of rods, etc. directly impacts the internal space, a factor that must also be taken into account.
It is usually measured in mm of the water column, to determine how much the fabric that makes its covering can withstand the rain. They protect the camping tent’s roof and floor from rain, so each of these parts have waterproofing, and the roof is more in demand.
- Tents smaller than 1,000 mm are only able to withstand small drizzles.
- According to international standards for a tent to be considered waterproof, it must withstand at least 1,500mm to withstand light rains for short periods of time.
- 2,000mm to 3,000mm tents to withstand rain for longer periods.
- Above 4,000 mm you can let the “torch” fall down outside and stay calm in your comfort.
However, water tightness is also defined by the quality of the sealing of the fabric seams. Because waterproof tents demand that the micro holes and the lines that cross the roof are sealed with a waterproof resin inside.
In order to provide a more complete measurement, the marks belonging to giant Decathlon equipment , has a different test system that measures the tightness of the whole tent, like a shower test. Thus, its impermeability is measured in the amount of cubic meters of water poured in an hour. Ex: 200 mm water/hour/m2, amount equivalent to heavy rain.
Impermeability wear: it is important to emphasize that this impermeability contained in the floor and especially in the roof is the main part affected by the use or poor maintenance of the equipment.
So, before buying used tents or going camping with a tent that was stored, check:
The state of the fabric of the roof, checking whether the color is affected or the seals of the internal seams dry, factors that compromise its function. A quick (1 minute) waterproof test I usually do is to pool a glass of water on the outside of the roof and check if it seeps between the fabric and seams. It can be done in the home tank even using a piece of the overhead.
Tents tend to be quite hot, especially in direct sunlight. Its ventilation is especially determined by the ability of air to flow between its openings, that is, the more openings, the cooler .
On this point, there is a factor called cross ventilation, that is, when the openings are at opposite ends, it allows for greater air circulation. That’s why I recommend tents with two doors side by side.
It’s also worth considering the material in the room, with those that are more open, such as mosquito screens, being cooler, with the exception of the floor, of course, which will always be waterproof. Higher ceilings and more spacious tents in relation to the number of people inside also make it cooler and airier.
These cooler tents are called 3 or 2 seasons , as they cannot withstand harsh winters as they are very ventilated.
If you want a warmer winter tent , look for one of 4 seasons . However, this indication must be taken into account together with the ventilation points mentioned above, as in the photo below, in which we use a 4-station tent, which also has large openings in the front and back, allowing a good passage of the air.
Weight is an important factor for those who will have to carry the campsite on their “back”.
It can be said that a light tent, for 2 people, ranges from 2kg to about 3kg. More than that makes it a little heavy depending on the walk you are going to do.
However, if your goal is to camp near your car, opting for a heavier tent can greatly reduce the cost of the tent.
Checklist summary for choosing the ideal camping tent:
- Tent size: according to the amount of people who will sleep, if you want more comfort, add an extra in size. Preferably the ones that contain an advance, a balcony.
- Type : 3 seasons are usually enough for the Brazilian climate.
- Ventilation: preferably with two doors, with mosquito nets in the bedroom.
- Weight: A good weight for 2 people would be up to 3.5 kg, suitable for both trails (trekking) and campgrounds close to the car.
- Waterproofing: with a ceiling that supports a water column of at least 1,500mm.