Thoughts on mounting window ac on interior bulkhead?
Tagged: AC-unit bulkhead
July 20, 2017 at 10:58 am #1066TeardropTackiParticipant
I wanted to bounce an idea off of those in this community who have considered the decadent addition of an AC unit to their camper. I am considering adding the following unit into the middle (or maybe off center if structural integrity is an issue) of my bulkhead: https://goo.gl/5Y3yQL
I saw another teardrop company that builds this unit into their high-end models (see: https://goo.gl/ky7M9E) and the manual controls (no thermostat that automatically turns on and shuts off and therefore burns the unit out by constantly turning on and shutting off) look like they might be a cheap and easy solution. The tradeoff of course is that I am giving up the ability to have the galley module and also losing a good chunk of the storage space in the galley, and have to find a way to port the intake/ heat exhaust from the back side of the unit out of the enclosed galley area.
What do you all think? Am I forgetting anything? Any plans/stories from anybody who has done something similar?
July 20, 2017 at 12:47 pm #1069rovineyeParticipant
- This topic was modified 3 years, 11 months ago by TeardropTacki.
Can’t help you with mounting, but you could add temp control with an ink bird ITC1000 for less than $20. If you don’t want to wire it your self, you could use an ink bird 306 or 308. The AC unit plugs into that outlet, the outlet switches on/off using a temperature probe which you can set.July 21, 2017 at 2:28 pm #1070stevieParticipant
I would think it’d make the entire camper vibrate. Could transmit sound throughout too.July 23, 2017 at 4:08 pm #1072
5000 btu sounds like overkill. The smallest AC I’ve found is 2500 btu and sits outside with ducts, so you wouldn’t mount it in your bulkhead. I’d like AC, but I also want to be off-grid, and even this 2500 btu unit draws a lot of power.July 24, 2017 at 4:27 pm #1077faithie999Participant
here’s a thread from the tiny teardrop trailer forum that I stumbled on a few weeks ago re: running an AC off battery overnight.
the person who posted it calculates that it can be done. he plans to use a 5000 btu AC which I agree with restonthewind would be much larger than needed, but maybe a smaller one can’t be found.
the spec sheet for this 2500 btu ducted unit:
says the power draw when cooling is 480 watts. so this is twice the power consumption that the author of the post I linked to assumed ( he assumed 500watts for 5000btu/hr) so 2500 btu/hr might deplete the battery overnight. you could always wire two deep-cycle batteries in parallel which would double the available power, and still be at 12volts.July 24, 2017 at 9:34 pm #1082
The 2500 btu Climateright AC is new. It doesn’t start shipping until August, so there’s some early adopter risk at this point, but their website has a video from the head of Little Guy campers (the largest maker of teardrop campers), so small campers are part of their target market. They also expect to sell ACs to dog lovers for dog houses, but that almost sounds like a joke to me. Both the size and the fact that it’s ducted and not a “window unit” appeal to me. Window air conditioners can be very loud.
5000 btu/hr is 1465 watts (by definition). Your friend assumes (correctly) that the AC doesn’t run continuously, so his 500 watts is an average.
2500 btu/hr is 733 watts, so 480 watts is also an average. The manufacturer presumably assumes use over 24 hours. At night, the AC would run much less, so an average of 250 watts during the night seems reasonable, but over eight hours, even 250 watts is 2 kilowatt hours, and I expect to have a one kilowatt hour battery. I’ll spend the extra bucks for a lithium battery (around a thousand of them), but even with these batteries, the weight of 2 kw-hrs is around 60 lbs. With lead acid batteries, the weight is hundreds of lbs.
A second battery also requires another 200 watts of solar panels, which is getting large. A 200 watt solar panel only generates about one kw-hr/day. I am seriously considering an AC, but it’s not at the top of my wish list. I want to tour the country with the camper and to work from it frequently during the day, but I’ll avoid hot weather. To sit in it during the day in Georgia in July, AC is an absolute necessity.
July 24, 2017 at 9:51 pm #1084
- This reply was modified 3 years, 10 months ago by restonthewind.
Further down in this forum, the discussion turns to the 2500 btu AC from climateright, and someone in the forum has used an earlier version of it.July 26, 2017 at 9:11 am #1099
One guy’s experience with the Climateright AC:July 26, 2017 at 9:16 am #1100
Here’s an even smaller AC designed for dog houses. It’s 1400 BTUs. Still costs $399, but the power consumption is a little better, 350 watts.
Apparently, dog house air conditioners are a thing …
July 28, 2017 at 1:30 pm #1110TeardropTackiParticipant
- This reply was modified 3 years, 10 months ago by restonthewind.
After seeing some of the criticism of the Climate-right I’m pretty turned off of that particular unit, but not the concept in general. I came across ductless Airconditioning units which have an external unit with tubing that goes through the wall into the actual interior unit. Here’s one guy who was able to install one on the tongue of a larger camper: http://googleshortener.com/5iwuWt9j
I think if I can find a small enough unit, this might be the way to go.
July 31, 2017 at 9:04 am #1126
- This reply was modified 3 years, 10 months ago by TeardropTacki.
The guy taking a sledge hammer to his climateright is definitely not encouraging, but the specs are right.
Here’s the same, 1400 BTU air conditioner (linked above) for dog houses for $299:
This AC is a lot smaller and lighter than the climateright, and it uses significantly less power. The design seems simpler (doesn’t heat and has no wireless remote), which could be a plus. This pet-discount-store ad claims that the AC cools up to 90 cu. ft. The ad at the other site says 40 cu. ft. (with provisos about insulation). Even 90 cu. ft. is less than the volume of the camper, but these estimates presumably assume a poorly insulated space.
1400 BTU sounds about right for the camper. A typical 5000 BTU window unit claims to cool a 150 sq. ft. room or around 1200 cu. ft. The camper is closer to 150 cu. ft.July 31, 2017 at 4:04 pm #1129
This appears to be the manufacturer of the 1400 BTU AC.
And here’s a short youtube about it.July 31, 2017 at 6:37 pm #1131faithie999Participant
That looks interesting. I think I’d want to build a stand for it then duct it to/from the teardrop.
Do campgrounds restrict the hours for a/c operation for noise control?July 31, 2017 at 10:21 pm #1135
Agreed. It can be ducted, but the ducts aren’t included. Don’t know about campground restrictions, but one of the retailers claims 65 decibels.August 1, 2017 at 6:41 am #1136mpiloneParticipant
You could mount it on or in the tongue box and then run a duct that attaches to a front mushroom vent. Then the noise could be in the box and you don’t need another hole in the camper.
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