Ducted air or Fantastic fan - Fiberglass RV


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Old 10-15-2011, 11:24 PM   #1
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Ducted air or Fantastic fan

I currently have a small side air conditioning in my 16 ft Scamp. During the hot months, it only cools the front half of the travel trailer whereas the other half (the large bed area) is often hot despite opening the vents and having a small fan. I was wanting to install a rooftop air conditioning unit but have been reading about other alternatives. I was thinking about one of these options. Has anyone had any experience with these "Cool" alternatives?
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Old 10-16-2011, 07:46 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lowpaidnurse View Post
I currently have a small side air conditioning in my 16 ft Scamp. During the hot months, it only cools the front half of the travel trailer whereas the other half (the large bed area) is often hot despite opening the vents and having a small fan. I was wanting to install a rooftop air conditioning unit but have been reading about other alternatives. I was thinking about one of these options. Has anyone had any experience with these "Cool" alternatives?
Hi: Lowpaidnurse...I took out the static 14X14 vent in our Boler and put in a MaXXfan. I like them better as they have a built-in rain hood and can be left open in a storm. I fed the wires through the Ensolite wall/celing covering so they were hidden. The power was avail at the nearest light fixture with crimp-on connectors. Here's a couple of pic's.
Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
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Old 10-16-2011, 07:48 AM   #3
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Hi: Again... Here's a couple of exterior shots. I had to use a second trim ring of 3/4 plywood to make up the 1 1/2" roof thickness required for the fan housing depth. By doing that the controls were recessed into the celing and away from smashing noggins!!!
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Old 10-16-2011, 12:17 PM   #4
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I put in a Fantastic Fan over the rear table/bed area and it was without a doudt the best mod I have done. It was easy to do as the trailer already had a light in that area which I took out and used the wiring from it to supply the fan. You can also get them with removable covers or auto rain closing feature.
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Old 10-16-2011, 01:59 PM   #5
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It's called Fantastic Fan because it is. By the best model and it has a rain sensor and remote. You can set the remote to a specified temp and it will control the fan accordingly.

I bet the MaxxFan will have a model withe same features.

Shop around the Internet for a good price.
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Old 10-16-2011, 02:02 PM   #6
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If the small AC is cooling the front half, seems like a basic fan inside the trailer would better circulate that cold air to the back half. Opening a vent seems counterproductive as fresh (hot) air is able to get in from outside, just as air inside can get out.

I also have a Maxx Fan up top and like it. It can draw fresh air in through the windows and the other vent very quickly, and if it's not too hot outside the fan is all I need to be comfy. But I don't use that fan (and keep vents closed) if I'm using the AC.

Roof AC will cool the whole unit better, of course, but check with Scamp to see if your trailer's roof is built to withstand the weight. Some are, some aren't.
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Old 10-16-2011, 02:24 PM   #7
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Wink A lot will depend on Mother Nature's mood swings...

I doubt that any one method for cooling your trailer will be entirely satisfactory by itself. I have both a Fantastic-Fan (with a separate Rain Cover) and a 5000 BTU air conditioner. I am now contemplating adding an RV Evaporative Air (Swamp) Cooler to what I already have. What works in Bandon, Oregon may not be adequate in Quartzsite, Arizona; which is useless in Hot Springs, Arkansas. As I have camped in all 3 places, I have discovered that what works well in one place doesn't necessarily work well in another.

When it's up to 85 degrees or so in the shade, simple air movement works well. This is when a Fantastic-Fan is ideal. It runs on 12 Volts DC just like your lights, so it runs anywhere with battery power. It's reversible, so you can exhaust hot air, or bring cooler air inside.

Air Conditioning's physics create cool air by dehumidifying moving air. If it's hot and humid, this is what you want to use. But A/C is a closed system, and it needs all vents and windows closed to work. When it gets too hot when it's dry, there isn't enough moisture to wring out of the air, and lower BTU A/Cs cannot keep up, higher BTU A/Cs have diminishing returns. Compressors' power needs are another drawback; A/Cs need 110 volts with high current draw. Without hook-ups, that means a generator.

Evaporative Cooling's physics is just the opposite; it creates cool air by ADDING humidity! This is important in a Desert climate, where Evaporative Coolers are more plentiful than Air Conditioners. They are an open system, needing to circulate air from outside to inside and back out again. They are cheaper to run being made up of a fan, water pump, and a porous material that is kept wet. Fan motors and water pumps do not have a high current draw, so they do work off just a 12 volt battery. Their drawback is that they don't work in high humidity, they just make everything damp, which may be how they got their nickname: "Swamp Cooler."

My friends who live in Palm Springs, California experience wide swings in temperature and humidity. They have Air Conditioners and Evaporative Coolers and Ceiling Fans. I plan to emulate them.
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Old 10-17-2011, 11:09 AM   #8
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Hi: Is there such a thing as a "Fantastic Fan" that runs off 110/115 electric? The 12 v system has been removed from my unit.'
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Old 10-17-2011, 04:27 PM   #9
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You can also get the Fantastic Fan in a thin mount version so you don't need to make a spacer like Alf did.

I have a Casita with the front mounted air low in the closet.
I have made deflectors and used fans and tried everything to get it to move the air to the rear where the bed is but to no sufficient effect.
It helps but it is just cool by the door where the AC is and not where I sleep.
In addition the thermostat that cycles the unit is where the air is cool not where I am hot and unless it is moved I can not see how the AC in there can ever really work well?

In contrast I got another Casita recently with the roof air and it immediately starts cooling the bed area as it is directly over it and the cold air merely has to fall to the bed which it does without any help from me.

When camping in different spots it is exactly as Fred describes. Different solutions in different climates.
I have used the Fantastic Fan in South Florida without a problem but it can also be way less than I need in the same spot depending on the weather.
Here in the Midwest it is cool right now but a few weeks ago was above 100 degrees with full humidity.

So there is no one answer to the problem unless you can choose the method you need when the time comes.
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Old 10-17-2011, 05:15 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by h.mike View Post
Hi: Is there such a thing as a "Fantastic Fan" that runs off 110/115 electric? The 12 v system has been removed from my unit.'
There are 110V RV fans. I don't think the Fan-tastic Vent Company makes one, but here's one from Ventline.

http://www.pplmotorhomes.com/parts/r...roof-vents.htm


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Old 10-17-2011, 08:02 PM   #11
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Fantastic did make them, and may still, but they didn't have reverse. Try giving them a call. The info on the website is limited:FanTastic Vent - Frequently Asked Questions
this link is to cached info. Sherry
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Old 10-18-2011, 08:45 PM   #12
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I had the same problem so I got a 4 inch diameter PVC elbow pipe fitting and cut off a lobe to act as a duct to divert air to the front of my trailer. I velcro it in place when parked and remove it when traveling. A velcro pad is attached to the top of the AC and the top of the duct and a velcor strip attaches to both to hold it in place. It works well and I imagine it costs less than $8. Pictures are attached.

I used a toy pinwheel to figure out the best way to set the AC vent to get max airflow to the front of the trailer. I marked the AC so I can quickly set the proper vent condition.
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Old 10-23-2011, 07:50 PM   #13
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I had the same problem so I got a 4 inch diameter PVC elbow pipe fitting and cut off a lobe to act as a duct to divert air to the front of my trailer. I velcro it in place when parked and remove it when traveling. A velcro pad is attached to the top of the AC and the top of the duct and a velcor strip attaches to both to hold it in place. It works well and I imagine it costs less than $8. Pictures are attached.

I used a toy pinwheel to figure out the best way to set the AC vent to get max airflow to the front of the trailer. I marked the AC so I can quickly set the proper vent condition.
That's a very clever, cost-effective mod, Thane.
I love the pin-wheel test method, too.
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Old 10-23-2011, 09:36 PM   #14
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I grew up with swamp boxes in Tucson. They do work in dry climates. Besides, only rich people had airconditioning, and we,...well..didn't .

Another benefit not mentioned is that they are light weight. The TurboKool evap unit weighs only 16 pounds dry. It draws 4.6 amps on high, uses 3 gallons of water per day. The water could be an issue. There really is no great option, but for me fans have to do it. Sleeping is the toughest thing for me in the heat, and I find that you need a fan blowing right on you. I've got a fantastic fan with a cover that works well but's located over the dinette, and I sleep at the front. I'm thinking about installing a second FF over my bunk. That way it could blow in while the other pulled air out. That would move a lot of air. Problem is, they draw 3 amps each so that's 6 amps on high. Again, no free ride.
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