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Old 04-29-2018, 11:18 AM   #1
Junior Member
Name: Karla
Trailer: Boler
Posts: 5
Air conditioning or coolers

I have a 13 ft Boler with no AC. We have not traveled much where we need AC so it has never been a problem for mor than a day or 2 while traveling to a destination but this year we have plans to go to Texas and then North Carolina and Iím concerned with the heat and humidity! Does anyone have any recommendations that have worked. Iíve looked at some portable evaporative coolers but they say they donít work in a humid environment. Iím not sure of the cost of putting an ac in but not sure I want to put that much into it as we donít usually travel south. Would appreciate any recommendations!
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Old 04-29-2018, 11:49 AM   #2
Senior Member
Name: Gordon
Trailer: 2015 Scamp (16 Std Layout 4) with '15 Toyota Sienna LE Tug
North Carolina
Posts: 5,155
If you want to be comfortable in hot and humid conditions then evaporation coolers won't be much help.

There are almost endless threads in this forum on adding A/C's. Spending some time reading them is my best advice.

Also check this out:

Some use cheap window units, but I personally dont think much of that approach. Some only put them in place when needed, others build a permanent mount, which in cases I am always thinking its going to stress the trailer too much going down the road.

Of course most common is roof mounted A/C and for good reasons. But I have to guess (and its only a guess) than you wont be able to do that.

One of the approaches I do like is a floor portable type unit with hoses going routed to the outside, sometimes through a bulkhead put in the place of a window for the purpose. This can be done with minimal modification to the trailer, and maybe even built so that the A/C can easily and fairly quickly be installed or removed as needed for the next few months of use.

I'm in NC myself.. and camp a lot in SC too, and I dont use my A/C often, but I am darn glad I got it for the times I do "need" it, like the total eclipse last year where is was in the 90's with high humidity.
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Old 04-29-2018, 11:49 AM   #3
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David B.'s Avatar
Name: David
Trailer: Former 13’Scamp, now Snoozy
Posts: 2,316
Karla, some have used the portable style air conditioners with success, for he rare times that they would be needing them, that way they can leave it home when not in hot humid climates. We have a roll around floor unit we purchased for our home for when we are having friends staying with us who really like it cold. The unit just uses a flexible hose to exhaust hot air out a window. I have seen others on this forum that have used a ďdog houseĒ style air conditioner that sits outside and uses two flexible hoses to feed cold air into the trailer and one to pull warm air out. We have been ok using our Maxx Fan for circulation eventhough we have an air conditioner in the Lil Snoozy. Another option is if it gets to hot/humid on those occasional visits, just park at a hotel and rent a room.
Best of luck with your plans.
Dave & Paula
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Old 04-29-2018, 11:51 AM   #4
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Name: Shari
Trailer: Boler 13 77
Posts: 17
Definitely a.c., there are many inexpensive options including one of the smaller portable units that vents out a window or port hole. Search for posts about a.c. for ideas. Would improve resale to have it. Roof unit is out because there is no support for the weight. You could build in a small window unit for a reasonable price.
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Old 04-29-2018, 01:02 PM   #5
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Mike Magee's Avatar
Name: Mike
Trailer: 2012 Escape 19
Posts: 6,015
I am currently camping out of my cargo trailer (Lil Hauley), and it has no A/C. I have one of those 'swamp coolers' (paid way too much for it, considering what it is) in case I'm dry camping for a night or two in the hot, dry southwest. It is like standing in front of a mist making device, like you see on the football sidelines. It has to be blowing right on you, and you get moistened by the water vapor all the time. It's better than nothing on an 80 or 85 degree night with 20% humidity. But it simply won't do what you want in a more humid environment.

You have so many options for A/C, like the others have said. A 5000 BTU window unit is cheap, cheap; it can be mounted through a window or you can make a new vent in the side of the Boler. Or spend a little more and get one that uses hoses, but be sure to get one with both intake and exhaust hoses. I tried a wheeled portable A/C with just an exhaust hose in my Hauley, and I found that it could only get intake air if I opened a window or the door... which vacuumed warm air in as fast as it produced cool air! The intake hose is needed so all the outside warm air goes into the A/C unit itself, not into the cabin.

My next trailer (hopefully an Escape) MUST have an A/C. Gotta have it!
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Old 04-29-2018, 07:17 PM   #6
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Name: bill
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19
The Mountains of North Carolina
Posts: 4,136
North Carolina weather is all about elevation. Where I live the summers don’t get that hot. But the coast is very hot and humid and so is Tennessee to the west and anywhere south of here. Mt Pisgah campground, near me, is at 5,000 feet. Meanwhile Charlotte is 750 feet in elevation. Old rule of thumb was 3.5 degrees per thousand foot change so Mt Pisgah should be 14 degrees cooler. At night I find the difference to be more than that, we really get a break in the heat at night here.

So I’d either plan on spending some time at higher elevation or get a hotel room for a break.
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Old 04-30-2018, 04:00 AM   #7
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Borrego Dave's Avatar
Name: Dave
Trailer: Casita SD17 2006 "Missing Link"
Posts: 3,738
Karla, once the humidity hits 30-35%, a swamp fan/cooler loses it's comfort benefit. You asked for a recommendation, plan your trips to those states to when the temps are milder .
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Old 04-30-2018, 05:41 AM   #8
Senior Member
Name: Gordon
Trailer: 2015 Scamp (16 Std Layout 4) with '15 Toyota Sienna LE Tug
North Carolina
Posts: 5,155
Originally Posted by Borrego Dave View Post
... You asked for a recommendation, plan your trips to those states to when the temps are milder .
I see this recommendation from different people fairly often. But I fail to understand why they seem to think that weather is the only factor, or even the primary factor, when deciding where to go. People travel for lots of reasons, weather is just one of them.

Repeating my example in my reply to the other thread on this question, I went to see the Eclipse last year at the best location for me, which was in SC when it was very hot and humid. I was glad to have A/C and be able to go there to see the amazing celestial event.

So if weather is the only factor you consider, you don't need A/C. But if you travel to see family, for work, for special events, etc.. then you might want A/C.
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Old 04-30-2018, 07:17 AM   #9
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Name: Jon
Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
Posts: 11,898
Returning to the OP's question... For sure an evaporative cooler is out. They do work well in low humidity but lose effectiveness quickly as humidity rises.

A temporary window A/C is out because a Boler doesn't have a suitable window.

The options I see are:
(1) Roof A/C with reinforcement. Scamp installs a rafter spanning the raised part of the ceiling when retrofitting A/C in units that lack factory reinforcement.
(2) Permanent closet installation of a window A/C. Getting support, baffling for airflow, and drainage of condensation right is tricky. It requires cutting a large vent hole in the shell.
(3) Freestanding portable A/C unit with hoses for intake and exhaust. Problem is where to put it and where to vent hoses to exterior. Closet with small holes in the shell is one possibility, but it steals a lot of valuable storage.
(4) Mini-split A/C unit. Condenser and evaporator unit mounts outside (tongue or bumper) and air handler mounts inside. Don't know much about them, but there are some old threads.

The best solution for you will depend on how often it will be needed, the temperatures you expect to encounter, your skills to do a non-standard installation, and your budget.
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Old 04-30-2018, 10:04 AM   #10
Julie and Jose's Avatar
Name: Julie
Trailer: Scamp
Posts: 60
Portable air conditioner

We set up a portable air conditioner in the back window of our Scamp. It works great! Cools the camper within minutes and keeps it comfortable even in 95 degree Florida humidity. We install it in 5 minutes when we arrive at camp. Take it out when we travel and transport it in either the camper or the tow vehicle. If the weather does not require air conditioning or we won't have electricity, we leave it home. no modifications to the trailer needed. just some ingenuity to secure the AC unit to the window and prevent rain intrusion. Some wood, bolts, and a pool noodle worked for us. then we bought an ingenious contraption crafted by a member on this site. If I come across the old post, I will provide the link.

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Old 04-30-2018, 10:12 AM   #11
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Name: Julie
Trailer: Scamp
Posts: 60
Found the link to a better AC solution

Take a look at this thread.
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Old 04-30-2018, 01:23 PM   #12
Senior Member
Name: Ronald
Trailer: Trillium 1979 13ft.
Posts: 300
A/C in Boler

We used a portable floor unit with one exhaust hose out window above stove. Super cold if needed!
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