Which air conditioner is best? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-27-2015, 02:27 PM   #1
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Which air conditioner is best?

I am planning to buy a roof air conditioner for my 19 ft. trailer and install it myself. I got it narrowed down to probably either the Coleman Mach 8 ultra low-profile 9,200 BTU model, or the Dometic Penguin low-profile 11,000 BTU model.

The big question for me is… which one is the quietest? I haven’t seen any reviews of these anywhere. It would be good to know any additional issues, good or bad, owners of either model have had to deal with. Any advice?
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Old 04-27-2015, 02:36 PM   #2
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Myron,

The only quiet air conditioners I've ever seen in an RV were located externally from the RV living quarters, not attached to a wall or roof of the RV.

We have friends who have an RV where the AC compressor is located in an under the floor storage compartment, works well and quiet.
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Old 04-27-2015, 02:43 PM   #3
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The two models I mentioned both are sitting on top of the roof but nested into the 14 x 14" vent opening. Wouldn't the compressor then be outside? I understand there's no quiet a/c... but have heard someplace that some are less quiet than others, but which ones?
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Old 04-28-2015, 11:48 AM   #4
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Myron......

I think you should read Larry Gamble's (of Little House Customs) comments on Casita Forum. He's tested them all.

Frank
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Old 04-28-2015, 05:16 PM   #5
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Well after a little research I am totally turned off on the Coleman Mach 8 air conditioner. Too much bad with that one. But have questions with the Dometic Penguins... like what is the difference between "ducted" and "non-ducted"? Wow, and the Duo-therm model has a low price but who wants a steamer trunk on their roof?
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Old 04-28-2015, 05:23 PM   #6
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What does ETI install? I'm sure they have done a lot of research and have customer feedback as well.
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Old 04-28-2015, 05:34 PM   #7
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Pretty sure it's the Dometic... another reason for going that way.

Yep, just checked. 11,000 BTU $875.
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DometicAC.JPG  
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Old 04-28-2015, 06:26 PM   #8
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I have retro-fitted a couple of RV trailers with rooftop AC. Ducted means that the AC air is routed throughout the trailer via the furnace duct system. Most rooftop AC's are non-ducted.

Rooftop air is going to be somewhat loud no matter what model you buy. My criteria was weighted more toward energy efficiency and profile. Another criteria I had was the ability to use my Honda 2000 generator to power the unit when boondocking. My Bigfoot came with a Duotherm 11000 AC that requires a minimum of 2500 watt generator. The Coleman Mach Power Saver 11000 I bought functions with the 2000 watt gennie but puts out the same amount of cooling, presumably, with less power draw.

On a previous trailer I put on a Coleman Polar Cub AC with good results. I believe the output on that one was 9200 BTU. Great little air conditioner and ran really well with the Honda 2000.
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Old 04-28-2015, 06:42 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David and Nancy View Post

On a previous trailer I put on a Coleman Polar Cub AC with good results. I believe the output on that one was 9200 BTU. Great little air conditioner and ran really well with the Honda 2000.
There are a lot of people who think that A/C is great and they say it is quiet if on the low setting and they found that sufficient. The noise from the Domestic is considerable on any setting as I recall. Was your Polar Cub quiet?
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Old 04-28-2015, 07:49 PM   #10
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Ah thanks for the ducting answer. Odd...Never heard of any egg trailer having ducts anywhere. Guessing it's another reason why the sticky world is a whole other brand of cat.

If I get one I really want it to be a great little air conditioner, and not a boxy jet engine, but there are so many conflicting opinions.
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Old 04-29-2015, 07:49 AM   #11
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See my post under AC in Scamp 13 for pictures of the Comfort Aire DVH 09 mini split heat pump. This is quiet (or should be when I have finished the installation).
As mentioned above if the compressor is mounted to the shell structure the vibration will be transmitted throughout.
The compressor unit will be isolated on the tongue of the trailer.
The total weight is similar to the rooftop units, but the major weight is mounted low on the tongue for stability.
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Old 04-29-2015, 08:47 AM   #12
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I have the Coleman Polar Cub 9200 BTU. Folks, you're mounting a roof-mount A/C on a big kettle drum with these FGRVs!! The most noise I get is the kicking on and the vibration set forth through the shell. If my ac was isolated from the shell, it would not bother me at all.

Others may say different, but on these 13'ers, you can "feel" these A/C's. I love the Coleman and would NOT trade it for the Dometic.
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Old 04-29-2015, 09:42 AM   #13
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If you go Dometic be sure to get their digital thermostat. That wires up to let the fan stop between heating and cooling cycles, not roar continuously. We have that in our Escape 21.

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Old 04-29-2015, 09:44 AM   #14
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Great suggestion Charlie. I have a friend over on Scampers@yahoo who retrofitted a new digital thermostat unit to his existing Coleman. They now offer that as well.

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If you go Dometic be sure to get their digital thermostat. That wires up to let the fan stop between heating and cooling cycles, not roar continuously. We have that in our Escape 21.

Charlie
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