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Old 03-22-2023, 12:01 AM   #1
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Alternative Air Conditioner?

Just came across a small portable air conditioner that looks at first glance might be useful as a substitute for the big noisy boat anchors Escape Industries installs on our trailers.


It is the LG 7,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner with a built in dehumidifier, sold at Home Depot and other outlets for about $400. Small enough to fit under the dining table, it would likely require a hole to be made in the outer shell of the trailer to draw in outside air, and a drain through the floor to drain water from the dehumidifier.


With modification of the passenger side seat at the front of the trailer, this thing just might work for folks who don't desperately need every square inch of table and seat space.


It would be a real improvement to be able to get rid of the 100 lb. unit hanging out in the wind on top of the trailer. Create a lot more room for solar panels, too.



I just saw the unit in the April/May 2023 issue of "Home Handyman" magazine. A crazy idea that may have some merit? Would love to hear comments from those who can think through ideas like this better than I can.
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Old 03-22-2023, 12:47 AM   #2
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I’ve seen floor level units in Casitas that I believe were factory installs at one time and
I’ve seen window air units installed in trailers, usually stick builts, could work I suppose
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Old 03-22-2023, 01:21 AM   #3
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This unit?

7,000 BTU (DOE) 115-Volt Portable Air Conditioner LP0721WSR Cools 300 Sq. Ft. with Dehumidifier Function and LCD Remote

Here's the link to the installation manual

WIth dimensions of H 27.36 in, W 17.32 in, D 12.8 in, top discharge for cooled air (likely eliminates an 'under the table' location), plus clearances required for filter access and return of interior air (hot exhaust is vented to the exterior through a provided flexible duct) .... it's difficult for me to envision a desirable, or even acceptable, integration into an Escape trailer.

But maybe I lack the required imagination (YMMV).

Remember, unobstructed top discharge blowing the 'heavy' cold air high in the space is likely necessary to provide a cool overall room environment as opposed to just a cold layer of air at the floor.
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Old 03-22-2023, 02:36 AM   #4
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Mini splits have been installed in a few Escspes. Whisper quiet. Requires some design work.
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Old 03-22-2023, 10:08 AM   #5
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The trailers are pretty small, just about any air conditioner would work to a degree.
Not sure how well one would work in the 5th wheel trailers for the bed area.

With the air conditioner putting the cool air out at the floor you probably would want to have a fan moving the air. Iíve been in a room with that type of air conditioner, wasnít bad while seated, but when you stood up the temperature was noticeable wormer and not as comfortable while standing.
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Old 03-22-2023, 11:46 AM   #6
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I like the Coleman Mach 10 air conditioner Escape Industries installed on top of my trailer. It does extend higher in the air-stream than the Dometic. It also limits the addition of solar although I do have over a 1000 watts of flat mounted solar on the roof. At 13,000 BTU, it is oversized for me so I run it on low setting. If I was plugged in and it was really hot, maybe a higher setting would be better.

It does not interrupt conversation (I wear hearing aids) nor does it interrupt my sleep. I especially enjoy being able to adjust settings or switch it on or off while sitting at the dinette or at night in bed. I do not have a problem running it off the batteries which is nice when boondocking.

I suppose there are some advantages to having the air conditioner under the dining table but as previously mentioned, there are some valid concerns too. One other concern for me is that I try to keep the trailer tongue weight close to 10%. I don't use a WDH so shifting downward force to other axles is not doable for me.
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Old 03-22-2023, 11:48 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by occer View Post

The trailers are pretty small, just about any air conditioner would work to a degree.
I agree and I wouldn't want one under the table.

I found it easy to use a smaller unit and that it's easy to sit it on a shelf under the flipped up emergency window.

The shelf doesn't require any bolts etc., the tang just has a drop pin to keep it in place. Easy to put in place and doesn't take up any interior room.

We don't use it often but if we were heading to a really hot area we'd take it with us.

Ron
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Old 03-22-2023, 03:05 PM   #8
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I agree and I wouldn't want one under the table.

I found it easy to use a smaller unit and that it's easy to sit it on a shelf under the flipped up emergency window.

The shelf doesn't require any bolts etc., the tang just has a drop pin to keep it in place. Easy to put in place and doesn't take up any interior room.

We don't use it often but if we were heading to a really hot area we'd take it with us.

Ron


Probably less expensive and no modification (holes) in the trailer.
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Old 03-22-2023, 04:30 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron in BC View Post
I agree and I wouldn't want one under the table.

I found it easy to use a smaller unit and that it's easy to sit it on a shelf under the flipped up emergency window.

The shelf doesn't require any bolts etc., the tang just has a drop pin to keep it in place. Easy to put in place and doesn't take up any interior room.

We don't use it often but if we were heading to a really hot area we'd take it with us.

Ron
I like that... except I don't think I would like to have that AC right over the bed. But it is a clever solution.
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Old 03-23-2023, 11:29 AM   #10
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I read somewhere that the emergency escape windows are not "reclosable" rather have to be replaced if used. Maybe that is just the one over the bed in the 5.0 (?)
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Old 03-23-2023, 11:33 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Carmel Clown View Post
I read somewhere that the emergency escape windows are not "reclosable" rather have to be replaced if used. Maybe that is just the one over the bed in the 5.0 (?)
There isn't an egress window in the loft of the 5.0. There's a egress vent on the roof, right over the bed. And it is re-closable after use.
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Old 03-23-2023, 12:46 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carmel Clown View Post
I read somewhere that the emergency escape windows are not "reclosable" rather have to be replaced if used.
IIRC there is something to that effect in regard to certain of the newer acrylic windows (not used on any Escape, yet); perhaps not total replacement after use for emergency egress but some degree of 're-building' the window unit.
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Old 03-23-2023, 12:54 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Carmel Clown View Post
I read somewhere that the emergency escape windows are not "reclosable" rather have to be replaced if used.
That certainly doesn't apply to the emergency window used in Escapes. Ours is used like any other of the windows. Opened for ventilation when needed. Evidently the new ones don't have bug screens which for us would be a nuisance. I guess that I'd have to make my own if that was the case on ours.

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Old 03-23-2023, 10:22 PM   #14
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Bear in mind that these units that only have one duct and use cool room air as condenser air that is exhausted to the outdoors put the space under a negative. They need make-up air which will be the hot, humid outside air coming in through cracks. They are terribly inefficient. You would want a window unit like Ron’s, a mini-split or if you go the portable route one with two ducts (condenser air intake and exhaust).

I know it takes up roof space but if I didn’t already do a mini-split I would just get a Houghton 9500 BTUH rooftop unit from Rec Pro and be done with it. They are pretty darn quiet.
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