To Aircondition or Not Aircondition that is the question - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-05-2011, 12:04 AM   #1
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To Aircondition or Not Aircondition that is the question

Hey Everyone,

We are getting ready to buy a trailer and are undecided on one last point. Do we need the airconditioner or not? We are both tall and worried about headroom. Interested to hear your take. We generally camp and backpack, but were thinking it might be nice to splurge a little. Not sure if it is worth it if we are bumping into it though. Any thoughts are greatly appreciated.
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Old 02-05-2011, 12:36 AM   #2
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Hi: John Hall... At 95*F. in a full sun camping site...it's worth it!!! We don't use it much but when we do WE DO.
Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
Scrambled Egg Rally Shipshewana Ind.
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Old 02-05-2011, 04:15 AM   #3
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John : For trailer as small as ours, I decided not to bother with it because I thought such a big unit sitting on top of the trailer looked out of place.

In the spirit of keeping it simple, I suspect we'll just be getting one of these instead if we feel the need...

YouTube - 12 Volt Air Conditioner....very cool

Portable air conditioning - 12 volt - air conditioners - Evaporative coolers

Cheers, P.
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Old 02-05-2011, 04:27 AM   #4
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This is really one of those things only you can decide.Location and heat tolerance are things to think about.

I am in my 5th Egg and it came with a dead AC which I replaced. I installed AC each of the others.
I consider myself immune to heat but I like to be able to sleep when it is around 100 degrees out,call me crazy? In the Midwest I need it.
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Old 02-05-2011, 05:47 AM   #5
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John,
I'm biased of course, since I already own one, but you may want to check out EggCamper (LIGHTWEIGHT FIBERGLASS TRAVEL TRAILER). They are a bit wider and taller than many of the fiberglass rigs, which translates to more headroom and a longer bed.

Also, the AC unit is not a roof mount. In fact it's an off-the-shelf window unit mounted under the side dinette seat that you could probably replace for less than $200.

Ron
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Old 02-05-2011, 05:50 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by John Hall View Post
Hey Everyone,

We are getting ready to buy a trailer and are undecided on one last point. Do we need the airconditioner or not? We are both tall and worried about headroom. Interested to hear your take. We generally camp and backpack, but were thinking it might be nice to splurge a little. Not sure if it is worth it if we are bumping into it though. Any thoughts are greatly appreciated.
John:

We decided not to install an air conditioner in our trailer. We have a small 13 foot trailer and have travelled so far just in the Pacific Northwest. There were a few days last summer around Bend Oregon where air conditioning would have been nice, but we managed fine without it.

I think your decision on whether to buy an air conditioner will depend on when and where you camp. Are you in St Michael MN? Are the summers hot and humid?

Our trailer is built to take an air conditioner so that if we did decide to add one we could. When you are buying a trailer this may be a feature to look for so that you keep your options open.

Brian
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Old 02-05-2011, 07:55 AM   #7
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I was faced with the same decision when I was planning what options I wanted vs needed. I've owned several pop-ups and a hard sided British camper in the past but never had A/C. I ended up buying a used Scamp so the decision was already made for me, since it came with A/C. I have to admit that I thoroughly enjoy the A/C and now would not hesitate to spend the extra to get it if I ordered new.
The A/C made our summer trip to South TX much more enjoyable as the temps hit the triple digits. We also use the heat strip in the A/C in the winter rather than the gas heater when we're plugged into shore power.
If on the other hand you don't plan to spend much time in hot and humid climates, or if you plan most of your camping away from shore power, then the A/C would probably not be a valuable option.

John
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Old 02-05-2011, 08:36 AM   #8
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Hi John Hall,

As Ed noted above, your own heat tolerance and where you'll be camping are big factors.

We do not have an AC unit on our 13' Trillium. We do have an O2Cool fan that Raz modified to run off the Trill's battery when we need it. And the ceiling fan works very well, too.

We've camped in the southern end of the Outerbanks and in Delaware's humidity and Utah's dry heat ... and have found the sleeping conditions just fine using the O2Cool in the window over the feet end of the bed. The Trill's windows make a big difference.

Keep those questions coming!
Maggie
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Old 02-05-2011, 01:02 PM   #9
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Great input everyone,

This is John's wife Debra. We are in Minnesota, but have traveled quite a bit out west and in Canada. This last year we were out East for a change, so we have covered all kinds of climates. I am pretty good with heat, but John tends to like it cooler while sleeping like some of you have mentioned. Sounds like we could probably get by without air, but it might be a nice luxury for those occassional nasty heat waves.

We really appreciate all the feedback. This forum has been very helpful in making our decision.
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Old 02-05-2011, 01:23 PM   #10
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We use our Egg to escape Minnesota's heat and humidity - usually heading up to the North Shore or out to the Black Hills, Rockies or Pacific NW. Heat has seldom been a problem. On the rare hot nights, we stay comfortable by running our rooftop FanTastic Fan on exhaust, drawing a light fresh breeze through the windows over our bed. In 30,000 miles of Egg travel coast-to-coast, we have never felt a need for the bulk, weight, expense and complexity of A/C.
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Old 02-05-2011, 01:38 PM   #11
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Heat and AC (climate control) are, to me, the biggest comfort factor in having a trailer. Were it not for that I could tent or even use the back of an SUV. You're in MN? Even in Michigan where I grew up, we would have days in the 90s or over 100* sometimes. I wouldn't have a trailer without AC... or a source of heat either... because too much heat or cold can make a travel vacation miserable for me. Spending thousands on a trailer but foregoing AC for a hundred or even a few hundred dollars... nah, not me.

Keep in mind that with a small trailer (17' or less) you can do pretty well with a common room AC unit installed in a cabinet or someplace. No need to take away from head room.
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Old 02-05-2011, 01:41 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Hall View Post
Great input everyone,

This is John's wife Debra. We are in Minnesota, but have traveled quite a bit out west and in Canada. This last year we were out East for a change, so we have covered all kinds of climates. I am pretty good with heat, but John tends to like it cooler while sleeping like some of you have mentioned. Sounds like we could probably get by without air, but it might be a nice luxury for those occassional nasty heat waves.

We really appreciate all the feedback. This forum has been very helpful in making our decision.
Debra:
Even if you don't decide to buy an air conditioner it would be a good idea to get a trailer with good ventilation. Our trailer has these features:
  • Maxx Fann
  • screened windows
  • screened door

Brian
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Old 02-05-2011, 02:54 PM   #13
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We have camped for a number of years in a tent, old Skamper pop-up and Viking Express tent on wheels with no air. We do however carry a fan for those warm southern nights that can make trying to sleep in an enclosed space a miserable prospect.

That said, one of our hopes was that all other criteria being met, the the gently used rig we planned to purchase would come with the air. We looked at a 16 foot Casita with a window unit and decided the unit took away an awful lot of light we find desirable. Others things being less than acceptable, we didn't buy the rig. The next one had the roof air factory installed. This model is a 2003 Scamp and has a higher roof so Mr. 5'11" Handyman can stand right under the A/c unit with his head just touching the bottom of the housing. The rest of the trailer has ample headroom for him.

Since we bought Li'l Scamp in January, we have not had the need to use the air, but living in the south, we can foresee muggy summer nights where it just might be nice to have the air a mite cooler than just a fan. There is a lot more cross ventilation in a pop-up and the tent on wheels, so the enclosed trailer may be warmer than we care for...We will see.
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Old 02-05-2011, 07:53 PM   #14
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Hey, this is Debra's not as good half. John. I want to reiterate how appreciative we are for your input. I want air because I am a wimp (like most guys are), Debra on the other hand does not care either way. That said, I will have to duck regardless (I am 6'3 and a half). My concern is my wife needing to bend down when making my food I want, washing the dishes for my next meal and warming my water for my sponge bath she will give me when I want her too :-) She also has two bad disks in her neck. On the Trillium website it states the interior height of the units are 6'3 which would imply that it would give her head room to stand up strait under the air conditioner (she is almost 5'11). The only option is to mount it over the stove and sink. It hanges down three plus inches. However, it appears there may be some inconsistencies among the units relating to floor to ceiling height. Any tall trailer owners out there who want to weigh in on whether the floor to ceiling height with an air conditioner is an issue for you? How big an issue is it?
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