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Old 06-06-2021, 05:20 PM   #1
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Has anyone used one of the portable air conditioners

We just purchased a 17 foot Sunline T-17 A It does not have a factory installed air conditioner, so we have been searching the net to see what is offered. We found several table top one that claim to cool the entire room in 5 minutes. Has anyone tried one of these units and if so does it actually do what it claims.

Thank You

Bettye Goleman
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Old 06-06-2021, 06:25 PM   #2
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Don't believe it. You can fit an AC in the roof vent it is all ready wired for it just a matter of a gasket in the 14X14 hole on the roof for the AC unit.
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Old 06-06-2021, 07:40 PM   #3
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What year is your camper?

I agree with mainah, claims of cooling the entire room in 5 minutes without stating a few facts about what cooling means, or some temperature difference, points to marketing hype.

On a hot camper that is in the sun ll day, and heated up inside to 80 F or higher, and you want it cooled down to 72F is going to take a whole lot longer than 5 minutes. Everything in the camper is at 80F, the wood, the cushions, bed, chairs, etc. They all absorb and hold heat in. And then there is single pain glass that lets heat in constantly. The AC unit has to overcome all the heat leaking in, while cooling everything inside at the same time.

You need to be looking for a BTU rating on the AC unit.

You camper may be presetup for a roof mounted camper. Some were even wired for them, just not hooked up. Those AC units are big enough to cool the camper, but they do take time

Hope this helps

John
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Old 06-07-2021, 05:24 AM   #4
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They actually have been around for decades basically they are swamp coolers they use water mist to cool (evaporate cooling). They really are not much good where the humidity is high may make an OK desert cooler but their clams are greatly exaggerated.
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Old 06-08-2021, 09:16 AM   #5
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And adding moisture to the inside of a camper isn't a good idea.
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Old 06-18-2021, 06:46 AM   #6
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I believe you are talking about the type where it sits on the floor and has a hose coming out of it to vent the heat out a window? Yes, they do work, I have seen them used in computer rooms and other places. Their biggest problem though is that most of them only have a single hose, meaning that they run inside air through the "hot" side of the system and then vent it outside, meaning that outside air has to get sucked in to replace the hot air that was vented outside, thus reducing the efficiency. If you can find one with two hoses to the window, one for fresh air intake and one for hot air exhaust, it would be much better, but they seem to be quite uncommon for some reason.


I did recently run across an interesting item, do a search for "zero breeze" - it's a portable air conditioner that can actually be powered by battery for a number of hours. Would love to test drive one of those at the beach dry camping, but sounds like 5-7 hours is optimistic (not a full night), and they are quite expensive, $1000+. I would probably also have to invest in more solar panels to get the battery charged during the day.


I have seen a good many people take out a window or somehow otherwise jerry-rig a window AC unit. Obviously that works, but I personally dislike how it looks. A family member has a nearly new A-Liner that actually has a small window unit built into the side of it, that doesn't look too bad. I have seen or heard of people putting them inside a cabinet or something where they can vent outside, but have the bulk of the unit inside. Depends on how crazy you want to get. Obviously the ideal route is a rooftop unit, but they don't tend to be cheap.


Someone else mentioned heat load through the window panels and such. We were camping last summer on the Eastern Shore of VA in our 89 Sunline, one of the tan colored ones. It was hot, well into the 90's as I recall. We've had our trailer 14 years now, and it ran more that week than all of the rest put together, at least several times over. The compressor ran constant from early-mid morning until about the time we were getting into bed before it started cycling off. I actually put aluminum foil in the roof vents and door window to try to block a little of the heat...didn't help we were parked out in full sun during the day. Inside temps got up well into the 80's, but the reduced humidity made it tolerable, and still cooler than outside. So while we generally don't like to run the AC, that week it was more than welcome... We also like to stay at the NPS campgrounds on the Outer Banks of NC, with no hookups. Not bad during the day with a breeze, but mid 70's at night with pretty much 100% humidity and no air other than a 12v fan makes me wish there was something to knock down the humidity a bit...though in a few more years when the kids are out of school, we can go back to spring/fall trips rather than summer.
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Old 06-18-2021, 03:07 PM   #7
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I have one of those R2D2 AC units! Yeah they do work but they are not real small, way to big for a T17. My camper AC is a 6" computer fan mounted directly above the bed blowing right in my face and a Fantastic Fan roof mount in the sky light.
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Old 06-21-2021, 06:44 PM   #8
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Thanks everyone, we have looked at some of the products that are advertised and just don't think any of them will work for us. We bought this trailer to travel across country as we have children in NV and TX. We also have two cats that will be traveling with us and we are trying to keep them cool while driving. If anyone has any other suggestions as to what we can do to keep them cool in NV and TX heat they would be welcome.
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Old 06-22-2021, 07:16 PM   #9
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Bettye - Welcome to SOC and congrats on your Sunline T17! Forgive me if you already know this but when you wrote
Quote:
We also have two cats that will be traveling with us and we are trying to keep them cool while driving.
I hope you don’t mean that the cats will be traveling in the T17. Most campers, especially older ones, do not have shock absorbers so it’s a scary experience traveling in one, even at low speeds. We had friends who, when they got their first travel trailer, put their dog in it while they traveled and wondered why after the first trip the dog refused to enter the camper, even when it was parked. I know that some dog trainers use the Fantastic Fan 12V fan to keep their vans cool(er) when attending shows. We’ve been to NV & TX in the summer and would probably get an RV AC unit installed, not just for the kits but for you too!
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