RV rooftop Air Conditioners

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geoleo

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Just wondering how well RV type rooftop Air Conditioners work on Trawlers?? And which brand is good? Thanks
 
That would be nice if you find a small one.
 
A friend installed one and it worked well. He did not want a water source.
 
What design of boat ? Island Gyspy or ?
With all the windows in the IG 32 I will require min 18000btu or 20000to be safe due to all the window glass that would be 3 RV 12v units
 
I have toyed with the idea. One issue will be where will it fit? In my case, running it underway would likely blast the helm with cold air, which would be a negative. My only genny is a pair of Honda's, which would likely power it OK but I would not want to run them regularly for extended periods. Noise/fumes.

At present I'm happy with using fans, and can easily run them through the night as well.
 
There are marine units, I had one on my Mainship. They work, they are loud, they need very good ventilation for the exhaust air, you need a pretty good hole in your overhead, condensation water dripping down the side of the cabin. Mine was tucked up under the front of the flybridge with the exhaust pointed aft, straight at my legs when at that helm.

Like many things on a boat they are a compromise. I don't know what differences there are between RV and Marine units, but mine was reliable. 11 years of trouble free service.

If it had not come with the boat I would have not have chosen a rooftop, too loud and precludes the use of the flybridge when on.

You see them on a lot of small patrol and commercial vessels, simple installation, inexpensive, reliable.

:socool:
 
I never have been too keen on those installed on smaller boats. I view them as more of a temporary solution to an AC unit designed to be installed below decks. I like them on the commercial ships that I work on; the roof is flat so they don't leak plus do a good job of cooling the wheelhouse since cold air falls to the floor. They are kind of loud & awfully big to have on an already crowded bridge, especially if it's tucked up under the helm area.
 
They work well, and only require a 14x14 hatch to operate thru.. although the overall footprint is larger.

RV have the same hassles as boats , frequent rotten electric from a power pole , so the need to start / operate at low voltages.

Most are very quiet at lower fan settings , reverse cycle for heat in not very cold places (over 40deg F) or a resistance element for colder operation.

Mounted any place where it would not be swept by waves would be fine.

They are fairly heavy 120 lbs or so , the cabin top might be required to handle 4x that weight for G loads.
 
That's what we have. It cools great but like others have said they are loud. Mine is old and I think a newer unit wouldn't be so loud. Simple drain.
 

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I have a coleman polar cub 9200 btu unit on my boat. This is a low profile unit. My Honda 2000 will start and run this unit no problem. The unit from the factory is pretty noisy but there is an after market quiet kit available. I installed the quiet kit and now the unit is real quiet. You now have to be closer than 10' from the boat to hear it running. Yes, there is some water that will run off the roof when its real humid out. Inside the cabin running, the boat motor makes noise than the A/C unit. The only down side is the thermostat turns the unit off when the cabin temp is about 73 degrees. I think it looks fine on my roof.
 

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We are using a roof mount on a 47 Bertram. Living in living in Louisiana there is a lot of stuff in the bayou water and now on the Red River that will plug AC pumps and screens. Yes it is a little noisy but very low maintenance. We are using a Duo Therm Brisk Air. Plastic case and drain pan to minimize rust stains. All good after 3 years. Also has a soft start capacitor available that will allow the 13,500 BTU unit to run on portable generators. Read about this idea on the RV blogs. Oh, on the heat side, not so good it will take the chill off a cool morning but that's about all.
 
GeoLeo check out mini split air conditioners. No large hole needed, sized 3/4 to 3 ton, they cool, heat, ventilate and dehumidify. Very quiet compared to rv units. Sold at big box stores, 12,000 btu units under $1000.
 
best thing about the mini splits is you can have a couple different zones running off of a single main unit, and are super quiet
 
Have one on my Mainship 34. It does take up some of the flybridge, but I don't need through hulls, nor have to deal with raw water pumps. It certainly does the job. Not all that noisy either. It is located near the rear of the flybride I'm going to build a PVC bench over it and it will then be seating on the flybridge.
 
One unmentioned advantage is , should the unit fail a replacement is a half hour to install, and probably cheaper than a service call for the historic systems.
 
The land based units are popular on houseboats where space is readily available. Seen many on the inland rivers and desert lakes.

Once into salt water the spray can corrode some parts and pieces fairly quickly. But if at the dock most of the time no spray! Some marinas have noise restrictions. I'd not want a noisey one berthed next to me.
 
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best thing about the mini splits is you can have a couple different zones running off of a single main unit, and are super quiet

I put a 2 ton mini split on my boat last july/august. I am amazed at how quiet and economical it is. I will eventually buy an additional 9K btu mini for the rear berth. Both are/will be 220Vac so won t have to worry about balancing the lines.

Since my boat is a slip queen while I rework it, I simply set the outdoor piece on my flybridge. When I get to installing it permanently I will put the indoor unit inside of the flybridge and then duct it to both sides of the salon and into the forward galley. I bought a water cooled condensor to replace the ginormous air cooled one that came with it, so when I swap that out I will repackage and mount the condenser and compressor in the engine room and do the same for the little one for the rear berth.

I will say this about them. I am amazed at how quiet they are, and equally amazed at how little power it takes to run them. I have never seen the compressor take more than 8 amps at full loading and it typically draws 2 amps at night and 3 - 5 during the day. The boat came with 2 - 16k btu marine all in one units that were loud and sucked power. The mini split is sooooooo much better.

As an aside I see zero issues running them on the inverter overnight. Also Dometic and I think coleman? make marine roof tops. But be prepared to pay for therm.
 
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This is not my boat but I have the same one, a Cargile Cutter. I took the Coleman AC off the 5th wheel when I sold it and mounted it in the same place as the photo. Works great. Noise is not an issue probably due to location. The photo was Sun Smiles. It was destroyed when blown off a trailer in Wyoming a few years ago.
 

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I put a 2 ton mini split on my boat last july/august. I am amazed at how quiet and economical it is. .

WB

Sounds like a great setup. I had them when working and living in Spain and also noted they were quite popular in other European locales. Will your's have a heat function or do you even need to worry about it in Kemah?
 
All over Euroland the commercials hang the exterior unit on the stern rail .

Doesn't look yachty , but it seems to work just fine.

The stern rail doesn't get much sea spray , and is never bothered by jelly fish.
 
This is not my boat but I have the same one, a Cargile Cutter. I took the Coleman AC off the 5th wheel when I sold it and mounted it in the same place as the photo. Works great. Noise is not an issue probably due to location. The photo was Sun Smiles. It was destroyed when blown off a trailer in Wyoming a few years ago.

Friz, I've never seen ,or even heard of, a Cargile Cutter! Interesting.
 
Friz, I've never seen ,or even heard of, a Cargile Cutter! Interesting.

AC is over the head. I installed ducting to channel the air aft into the cabin (14x8) and forward into the berthing (double v). 600 of these were built in Nashville during the 70's. Definitely not a cold weather boat. The only helm is on the flying bridge but works great here in Florida. Comments range from Wow to Unique to Interesting to That Is The Ugliest Boat I Have Ever Seen.
 

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I have a coleman polar cub 9200 btu unit on my boat. This is a low profile unit. My Honda 2000 will start and run this unit no problem. The unit from the factory is pretty noisy but there is an after market quiet kit available. I installed the quiet kit and now the unit is real quiet. You now have to be closer than 10' from the boat to hear it running. Yes, there is some water that will run off the roof when its real humid out. Inside the cabin running, the boat motor makes noise than the A/C unit. The only down side is the thermostat turns the unit off when the cabin temp is about 73 degrees. I think it looks fine on my roof.

I like your boat and the job that you did with the conversion from the original design. Can you tell us specifically about the quiet unit and maybe provide a link to the unit? And can you tell us the weight of your particular unit? Thanks
 
WB

Sounds like a great setup. I had them when working and living in Spain and also noted they were quite popular in other European locales. Will your's have a heat function or do you even need to worry about it in Kemah?

Its a heat pump. $850 with wifi for web control.
 
All over Euroland the commercials hang the exterior unit on the stern rail .

Doesn't look yachty , but it seems to work just fine.

The stern rail doesn't get much sea spray , and is never bothered by jelly fish.

Hello FF, are you referring to split a/c units? Air cooled. Yes I see them all over the commercial boats and the recreational ones as well. They are very inexpensive and the key is to find a way of installing the condenser (external unit) so it is not ugly. When they rust and rot out you just throw them away.
 
Hello FF, are you referring to split a/c units? Air cooled. Yes I see them all over the commercial boats and the recreational ones as well. They are very inexpensive and the key is to find a way of installing the condenser (external unit) so it is not ugly. When they rust and rot out you just throw them away.



$700 V $5500. and the $700 dose a better job because it has the ability to do a better job dehumidifying which is a major benefit in Ozzy land
 
"are you referring to split a/c units? Air cooled. Yes I see them all over the commercial boats and the recreational ones as well."

Yes , unless the current mfg of air cond get modern with efficiency and cots , they will go the way of POLAROID or HUDSON .
 
I like your boat and the job that you did with the conversion from the original design. Can you tell us specifically about the quiet unit and maybe provide a link to the unit? And can you tell us the weight of your particular unit? Thanks

The load noise comes from the fan being a bad design and running too fast. Coleman has updated the fan to a better design that helped some in noise reduction but they did not slow the fan speed so its still pretty noisy from the factory. The aftermarket kit can be purchased with or without the new updated fan blades. Link to aftermarket kit Mach 8 hush kits The weight of the a/c unit is 82 lbs.
 
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