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Old 02-04-2013, 11:46 AM   #1
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Coleman polar cub ac

Greetings,

Am in the planning stages of a 19 and I'm considering this unit. For those of you who have it what were your reasons for choosing it, are you happy with it and what was the cost? I've done some research and it seems like a good choice.

Thanks

Dave
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Old 02-04-2013, 11:48 AM   #2
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It is one I am considering adding to mine when it is time to get A/C. One of the advantages of it, is that it can be run with a 2000W gen set with no problem.
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Old 02-04-2013, 12:03 PM   #3
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I think you can get one with a heat strip too. Then it can pull double duty.
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Old 02-04-2013, 12:45 PM   #4
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I have the standard issue ac unit that Escape uses and with the soft start feature they now have I can easily run our ac with our honda 2000 watt inverter, I also have the heat strip which doesn't really work as well as I had hoped. the fan is very noisy and heat output is marginal. a electric space heater is much less noisy and has better heat output..
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Old 02-04-2013, 01:09 PM   #5
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While in the past there was an advantage to using a smaller Polar Cub AC for operating on a 2K generator, the newer version that Escape is currently installing uses less current. I believe I have the correct part #, but feel free to correct me if I'm wrong - I'm not digging out the trailer to check!

One other difference may be the sound level - I have the new Dometic & it is louder than I'd like, even on low...

From the Manufacturer's websites:

Polar Cub 9200:
Locked rotor (starting amps) 58.4
Running amps cooling - 11.5
Running Heating amps - 13.75

Dometic Penguin 11000 Model 600312.321:
Locked Rotor (Starting amps) 53
Running amps cooling 9.5
Running Heating amps - 12.7
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Old 02-04-2013, 01:26 PM   #6
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I never realized that they went to a new A/C unit. Good to know. I am also much smarter now.
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Old 02-04-2013, 02:53 PM   #7
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My understanding is it the the same ac unit just updated with the smart start/ soft start feature that has ben used in marine applications to reduce the power surge on initial start up. Jim is your roof re-inforced for the ac unit? I would agree with Jon that the noise level from the dometic unit is a bit harsh but the reality is we don't often use it. When its too darn hot to sleep with out it I guess I will deal with the noise.
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Old 02-04-2013, 04:11 PM   #8
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Dave, I would need to get the support shroud added in order to mount A/C. It is not put on otherwise.

I have been camping where daytime highs got well above 30°C, and with the decent insulation values our trailer has, it has not heated up too bad inside, and we just run the fan a lot when it cools in the evening, including keeping it on a lower speed, with a window over our head cracked. We have been comfortable enough. I know when it comes time to retire, and we will hit the road for extended lengths of time, I will most likely be adding A/C then.
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Old 02-04-2013, 05:52 PM   #9
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Other than places like Radium a few summers ago and last summer we were in Montana when it was in the high 30's, we probably only use it a couple of times a year at the most, but it is nice when you need it.
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Old 02-04-2013, 07:17 PM   #10
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When my Escape 19 arrived last summer, another Escape with the Dometic also was shipped. Mine was ordered with the Polar Cub and heat strip. I have had this unit in 2 other trailers and I'm quite please with it's performance. The problem with a too big a unit in a small trailer is temperature swings. It will run for 15 minutes and freeze you, shut off for 15 minutes, gets hot, runs again and freezes you, off and on. A digital thermostat will help but it is better to properly size the unit. Any HVAC person will tell you for "air conditioning" it is better to allow the unit operate long enough to remove humidity and to cool down the interior, off and on cold/heat cycles do not achieve such levels. A smaller, properly sized unit will operate longer to achieve the proper comfort level.
When both units were parked next to one another, you could not hear the Polar Cub in operation, the Dometic was louder and could be heard next door.
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Old 02-04-2013, 07:44 PM   #11
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Jim, that logic is similar to what our HVAC guy tells people about sizing a furnace. He says the ideal sized furnace is one that runs 24/7 on the coldest day of the year. So many furnaces are over sized, and cycle too much.
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Old 02-04-2013, 07:53 PM   #12
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There are a couple of past posts on this subject that might add some experience and information. Posted 5-18-2012 ( Dometic Penguin a/c w generator) and 8-20-2012 (Honda EU 2000 and Dometic Penguin A/C with SmartStart). The later is very informative. As for me, I thought I was getting an AC with SmartStart but that wasn't the case. I can barely start and run on my Honda 2000 with ECO off at near sea level. Talking to Reace, he told me that the inverter has to be off line in order to run the AC on the generator. One needs to be careful not to damage the Dometic Penguin with marginal amps. My Escape came with a Model 6003 Series. The unit is very noisy in my opinion. I may invest in a SmartStart or try a Supco hardstart capacitor. Having AC is a must in the southern US and prevents you from any boondocking during late spring through fall without it.
I drove home today from work with the AC on. I can only image what July & August 2013 will be like in Texas.
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Old 02-05-2013, 10:02 AM   #13
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Thanks to everyone for their replies. I have read tons of posts on the 19 and everyone's builds, really helps in deciding on options. Have also done a google search on the polar cub , it seems to be a well respected unit in the RV community.
Jim, have you used the heat strip, if so, how does it work? Do you remember the cost of the unit? I really like your built in electric heater mod.
Sure is fun planning, and I'm getting close to what I think I want.

Dave
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Old 02-05-2013, 11:06 AM   #14
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Yes, I have used the heat strip, it is about 5200 BTU's but with the higher fan speed it is not too hot. It takes the chill off but definitely not a primary source of heat. I'm real pleased with the electric heater mod also because it has a real low fan speed you can feel the heat and it is quiet. The Polar Cub w/heat about $350 more than the Dometic.
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Old 02-06-2013, 08:41 AM   #15
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Jim,

Thanks for the quick reply. Sounds like the polar cub is worth the up charge both from the sizing for the trailer and noise level.
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Old 02-06-2013, 09:24 AM   #16
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Something I had not considered for when I eventually get A/C, but noise would be a big consideration. I don't imagine they publish the decibel levels though.
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Old 02-06-2013, 09:46 AM   #17
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Actually, with all the db meters built into apps & Radio Shack's inexpensive, but fairly accurate meter, it might be useful for some of us to measure the SPLs of our ACs. Can't do mine until the spring, but if we picked a meter location for each model trailer & had enough samples, it might be worth doing...
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Old 02-06-2013, 10:13 AM   #18
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I rely upon my ears and as I get older I hear less, so some noise will not be heard by myself. However, for some reason I still hear clearly "Next round is on me" even if whispered!!
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Old 02-06-2013, 10:19 AM   #19
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Much that I read was about how quiet the polar cub is both inside and out. Noise is so subjective nothing bothers my wife but me...... Would be an interesting comparison.
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Old 02-06-2013, 11:13 AM   #20
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Certainly true that noise is a subjective, as a example the furnace fan in our 19 doesn't bother me but wakes up my wife. but rattles in the truck while driving make me crazy and she doesn't hear them. I think a little real world decible testing of the two units for future owners would be a great idea.
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