Air Con - Worth The Extra?

Discussion in 'Motorhome Chat' started by norfolkenchants, Dec 20, 2013.

  1. norfolkenchants

    norfolkenchants Read Only Funster

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    We are eagerly waiting for our first motorhome to be built -April delivery. It's a Vantage Neo van conversion and one of the options is a roof mounted air con unit for the habitation area. We are mostly going to tour in the UK. My question is - does anyone have any experience of these units? Are they worth the money and are they noisey? I appreciate there are quite a few different models out there but any advice would be much appreciated.
     
  2. DuxDeluxe

    DuxDeluxe Funster Life Member

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    A good question..........

    We tour mainly UK and decided that habitation aircon wasn't worth it as the days when you really need it are relatively few and the nights, where it is really useful, even fewer. An endless breeze cooling fan does the job for us at night if needed and the act of sitting outside works for us during the day.

    It is horses for courses - the AC will only work when you are hooked up......... so please bear that in mind
     
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  3. Mousy

    Mousy Funster Life Member

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    Oh your post has given me a twinge (of envy), we were going to buy a neo from Scott but the 7 months wait time for an auto made us pause. Congrats lovely vans, as to air con, we weren't going to have it cos Scott said even when they go abroad the side and rear doors are so open, van stays cool.
    I'm presuming if it's hot enough in the uk to need it, you'd be outside in the daytime so it would be on for sleeping, which would restrict you to EHU all the time. Are you planning on wild camping?

    We were going to try it without for a season then if needed have it fitted when the hab check was done. :thumb:
     
  4. John Laidler

    John Laidler Funster

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    The problem with A/C is you get used to it! By that I mean when I lived in Belize, which was exceptionally humid (99% at times) I had an air conditioned office, which was fine but when you went outside in the day the heat and humidity knocked you for six. Others, who didn't have A/C in their offices and had actual windows (I worked in a bunker) got used to the heat and humidity.

    I have also lived in Kuwait where A/C was more or less essential. Before A/C no one moved during the day but sat wherever they could catch a breeze - in some places they built "wind towers" to generate a breeze artificially.

    I have also camped in a little tent in Jordan (Wadi Rhum) and by mid-morning it was too hot to move in late May so we used to get in the car and go for a drive to enjoy the A/C in the car!

    In the UK I wouldn't bother with A/C unless you suffer from heat (i.e. to put it indelicately you are probably grossly overweight) and for Europe I wouldn't bother either although if you want to go to say Greece in the height of summer you would certainly appreciate it but you would have to accept the A/C is going to do its best to keep you trapped in your MH during most of the day!

    My advice, unless you need it on medical grounds, is avoid A/C except in the cab and choose places to go where the temperature is reasonable, so hot countries in Spring or Autumn, northern Europe in the summer.
     
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  5. Forestboy

    Forestboy Funster Life Member

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    Our last 3 vans have all had aircon fitted and in 7 years I don't reckon we've used it 6 times and we've been all over UK Europe & North Africa. A lot of sites abroad probably don't have the power on ehu to run it anyway. If I was buying a new van I wouldn't fit it a good roof vent decent blinds and small fan does the job perfectly.
     
  6. MikeD

    MikeD Funster

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    Habitation air con

    We have a dometic freshlight fitted.

    We have never found the need to use it in the UK but if you tour abroad it will become more useful.

    Our freshlight is not too efficient so does not really chill the van and whilst it is almost silent when in operation for your neighbours it does make a fair old racket inside.

    I could not sleep with it running.

    But it does reduce the humidity in the van so makes a comfortable sleeping environment. :thumb::thumb:
     
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  7. Phill D

    Phill D

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    it will also affect your available payload,:Eeek: with the local weather i guess in uk you would use it maybe 2 weeks every 5 yeras :Blush::Rofl1::BigGrin:
     
  8. Moodybrook

    Moodybrook Funster

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    We have gone down the "Endless Breeze" route too £38, it is as new ! off fleabay, so hope you are right. Have looked at air con but the power consumption was always the stumbling block. Extra batteries and solar a better investment.
     
  9. phase3begins

    phase3begins Read Only Funster

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    Fellow Neo owner, no AC.
    really hot weekend this summer drove coachbuilt owners outside but we were fine inside with side and back doors open.
    Paul
     
  10. Tootles

    Tootles Funster

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    We have a Trav-L-Cool unit fitted to the roof, not strictly an air-con, but it draws cool water from the tank, passes it through a heat transfer system, and the air being drawn in is quite cool. You can also use it as an extractor when cooking in the MH. Works on 12volts, but has about a 6 amp power drain.



    Here's some Bumpf on the Trav-l-cool:

    High temperatures in your motorhome can make touring stressful. The Trav-l-cool evaporative air cooler will provide comfortable internal temperatures while on the move and when the engine is off. Evaporative process does not require 240 Volts or very high 12 volt currents. The windows can stay closed to increase the cooling capacity, providing additional security particularly at night. The Trav-l-cool uses no fuel and is environmentally friendly. Complete with separate pumped water system
    which feeds the evaporator of the roof unit with water. Pump, piping & container supplied in kit. Due to the evaporative process, the external fresh air is cooled before being blown inside the motorhome, the heat is dissipated into the external atmosphere.
    • Cools stationary or moving vehicles, Aerodynamic casing minimises wind resistance.
    • Slim styled internal diffuser has 4-way adjustable air distribution outlets. Reversible fan can be used as extractor to draw out hot air or draw in fresh air as required. Dust and dirt particles filtered out of airflow. Fresh air scoop while travelling, with power ‘off’. Cools all night on low fan setting. Quiet in operation providing optimal sleeping comfort, even when temperatures outside are high.
    • LIGHTWEIGHT unit, weighs only 8 KG ( DRY ) on roof, easy to install on any roof without the need to reinforce structure in build.
    • Fits standard 14” x 14” roof vent opening, will easily adapt to 400 sq vent apertures. Easy to retrofit to existing vehicles. With careful installation, unit can be easily transferred when changing vehicle. Once removed simply re-install roofvent.
    • As fitted by Hymer, Euromobil & Burstner Germany.
    • We have had excellent results will Trav-l-cool units fitted to our own motorhomes. They provide sufficient cooling power to acclimatise to the ambient temperatures,yet provide a haven of cool to get out of the heat.
    • The addition of a 75 watt solar panel would provide enough power for a Trav-l-cool to run 24 hours a day on low setting, and still be able to put a charge in the battery.

    TECHNICAL DATA
    Dry weight 8 kg
    Voltage 12 V DC and 24 V DC versions
    Amps Hi - 5 Amps Lo - 3.3 Amps
    Size Length 805mm
    Width 680mm
    Height 180mm above roof
    Diffuser 64mm below ceiling
    Water usage Unit consumes ca 0.5 to 1 ltr per hour
    Performance
    Outside temp. Outside relative humidity Inside temp.
    32oC 40 % 26oC
    30oC 60 % 23oc

    Available, I am told, through CAK Tanks
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2013
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  11. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    nice if its already fitted to a van but not worth the extra money as an addition in the uk....we dont have enough sun for long enough.

    if you plan on spending extended periods in Southern France or Spain then yes, worth the outlay.

    we have two roof units but only turn them on to excersize them.

    they dont perform well if left unused for long periods....seals etc tend to dry out and compressor oil settles out causing problems.
     
  12. Jim

    Jim Ringleader

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    We've always used a fan on those horrible hot days. We had two of them on an RV but never used them, even in Spain in high Summer. A fan is better and was quieter.

    I too now have an endless breeze fan, a great deal from Techno100:thumb:
     
  13. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    not much info on the trav l cool unit in english but the euro cost is around €654.

    a lot of money to realise just 6 or 7 degrees below ambient temperature.

    32c outside...26c inside
    30c outside...23c inside
     
  14. ourcampersbeentrashed

    ourcampersbeentrashed Funster

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    How often in England do we need air con?

    What will you use your motorhome for?

    If you are going to be inside all the time well then yes perhaps consider aircon, but if you are only using it for sleeping in and eating in when its wet then just get a cheap fan
     
  15. Mel

    Mel Funster

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    My Dometic air con is also a heater .

    Mel
     
  16. MikeD

    MikeD Funster

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    Yes - forgot that. 40 kilos just where you don't need or want it. :Eeek:
     
  17. Snowbird

    Snowbird Funster Life Member

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    Great bit of kit. I have the same thing fitted and although do not have dash air, the TravLcool keeps the van cool during travel and the solars keep on top of the consumption when parked up. They are not as noisy as mains arcon units which I have had in RVs, allowing them to be used at night and still being able to sleep. I believe they are no longer available.
     
  18. John Laidler

    John Laidler Funster

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    If you do have A/C a problem is they tend to cut in and out to maintain the set temperature. This can make sleeping difficult so a trick we used in Kuwait in the house was to turn it down to minimum and sleep under a winter weight duvet - but then we weren't paying for the electricity!
     
  19. Biged

    Biged Read Only Funster

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    Anyone tried the Road Pro fan, its a lot cheaper than the Endless Breeze, is there a reason for that :RollEyes:
     
  20. camcondor

    camcondor Read Only Funster

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    We have a Waeco roof mounted aircon which can also be used as a heater. Its been a godsend on humid days particularly. We have airconditioning units at home and all the cars have too - would never be without them, but then there are health related reasons for their use - we do actually need them.
     
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