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Old 01-12-2012, 05:22 PM   #1
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Default built in air conditioner.

I have been searching for a built in ac system for my build, does anybody know of such a beast?
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:10 PM   #2
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as in a mini split or basement model?? Both very spendy, tell us what your plans are...
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Old 01-13-2012, 06:52 AM   #3
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I have a md International truck that I am building 20 ft of living space and a drop down garage in the rear for our racing karts. I only have 12 ft. doors in my shop so I am trying to keep the height down. I am putting a lift in the garage to store spare karts so I need to keep the inside height as tall as possible.
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Old 01-13-2012, 09:31 AM   #4
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I have been using a mini-split style system for the very same reason ie:height. I had mine installed by a home HVAC friend of mine. It works great. The only advice I would add would be to secure all lines tightly. We had a few leaks in the begining, because these AC units are not designed to bounce down the road. Since we re-secured everything it has been fine.
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Old 01-13-2012, 09:40 AM   #5
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Those home style mini-split systems seem pretty nice. I was talking to a guy at the hdt rally last October about his. He had one installed in the sleeper of his tractor. They had lots of problems with it and ended up removing it. He said they decided it just wasn't up to the abuse of going down the road. I don't know what brand he was dealing with. I do know it was a shop that was doing all his work so it wasn't like they didn't know what they were doing I don't think. Maybe putting one into a living quarters box wouldn't be as rough as the sleeper on the truck? I think somebody makes ac units that mount down below and duct up to the roof though. My neighbor's 2 year old Winnebago doesn't have roof air. His a/c is down below. I never really looked at it so I don't know what they use. And his is in storage now so I can't go over and check it out.
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Old 01-13-2012, 10:47 AM   #6
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I think coleman used to make a self contained heat pump unit for the basement of motorhomes, but i believe they stopped making it, not sure if anyone has made a replacement for it yet. biggest problem with the mitsubishi mini split units in a road vehicle is making sure the copper line sets are properly mounted, constant flexing of the copper line causes it to harden and then crack. also make sure the condensing unit is mounted somewhere out of the path of the moving air while driving down the road or the fan will be spun by the air and ruin the bearings. (the company I work for builds mobile office trailers and we learned this the hard way.) The great thing with the mini splits is you can put up to 3 indoor units on one outside condenser. That way you can have three different temp zones for different rooms. electrical draw is also about the lowest of any heat pump.
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Old 01-13-2012, 12:24 PM   #7
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Regardless of mounting style, you are on the right track with a heat pump vs. normal a/c unit. I used a 15,000 btu Carrier roof heat pump in our trailer instead of the normal 13,500btu a/c that you usually see. It was not that much more than an a/c unit, and you get full heat output out of it instead of just cooling. The heat strips in a std. a/c unit are entirely useless, but this works quite well. We've had this on working well with days into the 90's, and sometimes nights into the 40's and it keeps up just fine. A basement heat pump makes sense for the same reasons. One unit for heat and cool.
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Old 01-13-2012, 12:31 PM   #8
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Another thought just came to mind. What about one of those Bard a/c units? I think that's what they're called. I see enclosed race trailers advertised all the time with those. I think they mount those to the front of the trailers. I wonder if you could lay one down on top, or underneath? They must be heavy duty.
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Old 01-13-2012, 02:00 PM   #9
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Thanks for all the responses it gives me alot to think about, I just can't beleive there are not more companys building them so people can get rid of the roof mounted units.
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Old 01-14-2012, 02:09 PM   #10
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We use the Bard units on our potable office trailers and classrooms all the time, However they are fairly heavy, draw quite a bit more power, and make more noise and vibration than the mini splits. Biggest advantage for us is they are self contained, no refer piping to deal with and cheaper. All but the smallest (12,000) btu are set up for a supply duct up high (usually in the attic or above a suspended ceiling, and a return grill through the wall. They work great on the larger race trailers with either shore power or big gen-sets. One other drawback is if you four season camp, the heat pump portion does not work well in cold climates, needs to have the auxiliary heat strip option that will add an additional 40 amps to the power requirement.
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