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Old 07-07-2012, 12:57 PM   #1
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Replacement Air Conditioner

Talk about timing, our fairly ancient Lunaire AC system crapped out during the midwest's hottest weather in years, and I'm looking to replace it. It's a self-contained unit that resides under the pilot house bench and there is plenty of room for a similar sized new one. Ductwork and return air seem fine and I intend to recycle them into the new installation. I've looked at the Dometic ECD series, the Mermaid CHPs, and the Webasto FCF series. Anyone have experience with these units? Any particular one(s) that I should stay away from? Thanks.

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Old 07-07-2012, 01:41 PM   #2
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I went thru this a couple of years ago. Local guy recommended Ocean Breeze Ocean Breeze Marine Air Conditioning - Home

I put one in. 18k vs. the old one at 16k; still runs all the AC circuits on the boat on a single 30 amp shore plug. The A/C circuit has never tripped on its own 20a breaker.

They will configure it pretty much any way you want (i.e. location of the in/out air supply)

All stainless, no plastic. Solid state controls. Mine has a resistance heat system vs. reverse cycle. It's run great, though since it's located in the aft cabin hanging locker, we have to get used to the noise if you want it on while you're asleep. In our climate that's not usually a problem; admiral doesn't like to cruise in July-Aug anyway.
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Old 07-07-2012, 04:45 PM   #3
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Holy Cow Bells!I hope that 10.3 amps at 110v, for the 12,000btu unit, is including the water pump.That's a good bit of juice for a small unit.
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Old 07-07-2012, 05:13 PM   #4
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We have 2 Dometic Vector-Turbo 16,000 BTU reverse cycle units that we installed in 2009. They aren't run full time but they have performed well.
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Old 07-08-2012, 09:49 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ben2go View Post
Holy Cow Bells!I hope that 10.3 amps at 110v, for the 12,000btu unit, is including the water pump.That's a good bit of juice for a small unit.

Interesting observation. I spec'd a couple of other 12k units on the net, and the Mermaid says 9.4 amps, the Webasto 8.5. And I doubt any of them include the water pump. Have to wonder if it's due to relative efficiency, or maybe they actually put out more/less that 12k and are just rated that way for comparative purposes.

In any event, my slip comes with 30 amp service not metered, so unless the Green Police stop by to cite me for using too much power, I am good with it.
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Old 07-08-2012, 10:09 AM   #6
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I have installed Mermaids on this boat and my previous boat. They are great and so is their customer service. We are full time live-aboards and have beem for the over 12 years. The units are alwayas running and nevr had any serious problems.
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Old 07-08-2012, 02:15 PM   #7
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I have my second Mermaid 16.5 on order, but it's out of stock. Hopefully shipping next week.
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Old 07-08-2012, 05:12 PM   #8
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I have installed Mermaids on this boat and my previous boat. They are great and so is their customer service. We are full time live-aboards and have beem for the over 12 years. The units are alwayas running and nevr had any serious problems.
Tony- I've got an '88 dc w/o AC. Mind if I ask where the units are installed, what sizes serving what spaces and where the thru hulls are located? Thanks for any information. Love the boat.

-Rick
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Old 07-08-2012, 07:12 PM   #9
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... Mind if I ask where the units are installed, what sizes serving what spaces and where the thru hulls are located? Thanks for any information. Love the boat.-Rick
Rick.
The boat is still new to me and I haven't had a chance to dig around a lot.
I don't remember the manufacturers names but I will get them for you tomorrow.
One is located under the dining settee - the one more aft. The other which looks like a real antique is located on the starboard side under the corner 'box' in the main salon on the wall adjoining the aft cabin.
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Old 07-10-2012, 01:40 PM   #10
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Rick

Sorry took so long to get back to you.I was looking in the wrong forum for this post. I was looking in Cruisersforum.com
Anyhoo, my forward AC unit in the dinette under the aft seat is a Pompanette Air Systems 16K unit.
The rear AC unit under the corner box which most people use as a lamp table is a Lunaire 16K.
If I were buying new, I would buy nothig but a Mermaid. Prices are all competitive.
Don't buy their hose.grill, fittings kit. Total waste of money. Buy all your peripheral stuff from a local AC shop.
If you need pics, let me know.
Also, only get the 16K units or you will be sorry. This is a fairly large area to heat and cool when you consider the ducts extend into the V-Berth and Aft Cabin.
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Old 07-10-2012, 07:13 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony B
Rick

Sorry took so long to get back to you.I was looking in the wrong forum for this post. I was looking in Cruisersforum.com
Anyhoo, my forward AC unit in the dinette under the aft seat is a Pompanette Air Systems 16K unit.
The rear AC unit under the corner box which most people use as a lamp table is a Lunaire 16K.
If I were buying new, I would buy nothig but a Mermaid. Prices are all competitive.
Don't buy their hose.grill, fittings kit. Total waste of money. Buy all your peripheral stuff from a local AC shop.
If you need pics, let me know.
Also, only get the 16K units or you will be sorry. This is a fairly large area to heat and cool when you consider the ducts extend into the V-Berth and Aft Cabin.
Tony-

Many thanks for the information. This jibes with advice I got from the Yahoo Mainship group a couple of years ago. Two 16s seems to be the ticket. My slip shore power is only a single 30 amp that I split to both circuits. Both units running will be at about 24 amps, cutting it a bit close with the refer and charger. Might need to find another slip!

Best

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Old 07-11-2012, 08:25 PM   #12
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We have 3 Mermaids on this boat...and had one on the previous boat... All I can tell you is that we are very happy with the units...and haven't had any problems with them.
If you have questions...their tech services guys are easy to reach and really know their stuff.
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Old 07-12-2012, 09:22 PM   #13
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We installed the "Mermaid" unit in spring of 2011, so far two hot summers on the Texas coast and the unit has performed very, very well.
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Old 07-12-2012, 09:43 PM   #14
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Another vote here for the Ocean Breeze. We have the same 18K unit in our salon. I use a dedicated 30A cord for it when we are at the dock, and run it (along with the 6K cruiseair in the fwd cabin) on our 5.5K genset at anchor (we load shed). It has been a great unit, and their service is awesome.

Only complaint is that their digital control panel is too complicated.
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Old 07-13-2012, 07:45 AM   #15
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Fwd. a/c

Dougcole, does the forward a/c have separate thru hulls for the water flow? I think I am going to have to add some air to the bunk rooms on my 34LRC Californian. One 16btu just does handle the salon with the single vent hose to the bunk rooms blocked off.

Wondering the best way to add another a/c unit. Considering a marinized RV type unit over the forward hatch or one of the carry on board types for the hatch. Not really liking either of those solutions. This boat also has two shore power circuits-one 30 amp dedicated to a/c circuit, each 120 volts. I have a 8kw gen, 120volt set up. No 220 volt set up for the boat. Anyone that has added a unit please jump in. Thanks.
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Old 07-13-2012, 08:33 AM   #16
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Fighterpilot, originally there was a totally useless second toilet in a compartment under the V-berth in my boat. A PO removed it and installed an A/C there which wasn't working when I bought the boat. I took it out and installed the little cruiseair unit. It uses one of the two through hulls leftover from the head. I capped the other one. It has it's own pump, which is in an under floor compartment along with the strainer and the through hull. The outflow T's into the sink drain outflow which is just above the waterline.

The air outlet of the A/C pushes flush against the grill, so there is no need for any ductwork. It is a very simple but effective installation. My forward cabin is pretty good sized, a big v-berth, hanging locker and a sink. Even in our beastly summer heat 6000 BTU is more than enough. My two sons (it is their cabin) like to close the door at night and turn it on full blast along with their two fans. They sleep under blankets in the middle of the summer....we call it the meat locker.
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Old 07-13-2012, 09:04 AM   #17
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Good news...Mermaid is shipping AC units again. Mine went out Wed.
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Old 07-13-2012, 08:44 PM   #18
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Dougcole, thanks for the detailed discussion of your system. Don't have a second head but do have a closet we aren't using.
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Old 07-13-2012, 09:51 PM   #19
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Maybe it is just me, but I have never liked the way those hatch mounted units look on a boat.
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Old 07-14-2012, 04:50 PM   #20
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I agree they are ugly, but I can probably mount and hook up the better looking of the two-that is the RV type unit for $1200-1500 dollars-total. The mermaid cost plus hiring the installation would probably cost me three times that.
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