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Old 04-23-2015, 10:08 PM   #1
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Dual a/c enough for hot summers?

I know I shouldn't be considering changing coaches, but there *might* be an opportunity for me to do so. The later Alpines with the Spacebeds really appeal to me since that seems like a great system (and another thing, Alpine's all seem to have really large black/grey tanks, which for us is a big positive).

The one thing I've noticed is that there doesn't seem to be an Alpine with 3 a/c units. We spend a lot of time in racetrack paddocks and at different kinds of shows, all of which seem to always end up with us parked without any shade in a large asphalt parking area. With our current coach (which has dual 13.5kbtu units) the front of the coach isn't intolerable, but in the height of summer it definitely won't hold 72 degrees inside, for example. So I had been thinking of coaches with 3 a/c units...but Alpine's seem so tempting.

So the question is, will 2 a/c units work well enough? I know our current coach might not be the best insulated, so I don't want to rule out dual a/c coaches, but I guess I am looking for some insights.

Also, as a bonus question, did Alpine's come with air leveling? Or has anyone successfully added it?

thanks!

Steve
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Old 04-24-2015, 07:14 AM   #2
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Yup--the larger tanks are an Alpine specialty; Alpines have very good insulation properties, we have never been in a situation that the two airs didnt handle it--occasionally over 100 degrees; no air leveling, Alpines have air bag suspension for ride control but use an HWH hydraulic jack leveling system....
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Old 04-24-2015, 09:40 PM   #3
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We lived in the central valley of California for years. I will tell you on 30 amp one A/C won't cut it when it is 110 degrees outside. But with 50 amp or the genset two is plenty. We are only 37 feet, but I have never heard anyone with a 40' complain either.
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Old 04-25-2015, 09:37 AM   #4
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We were at a dog show in Portland last summer. We were camped, self contained on blacktop at the Expo Center blocked on two sides by the building so there was no breeze. It was record setting heat that week. We ran the generator all day with both roof air conditioners running full blast, the window awnings down, quilted reflective construction insulation on the windshield and over the skylight in the shower. We couldn't get the coach to cool down below 90 until the sun went down. This was probably the worst case one could possibly have.
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Old 04-25-2015, 10:25 AM   #5
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Our experience with dual air is - If it is over 105 with no shade, the coach won't cool below 82. We're only 30 ft.
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Old 04-25-2015, 10:32 AM   #6
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Quote:
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Our experience with dual air is - If it is over 105 with no shade, the coach won't cool below 82. We're only 30 ft.
Have you considered adding a 3rd ac? Or you could upgrade the two you have to 15,000 Btu.

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Old 04-25-2015, 11:43 AM   #7
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.....adding a third unit, while possible, will have an impact on existing in-house wiring and genset capacity.....key issue with most roof-top A/C units is that as they get older, they tend to lose cooling capacity.....
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Old 04-25-2015, 12:43 PM   #8
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Our AC's are already 15,000 BTU. We are considering awnings on the two windows on the drivers side that are not already covered by the existing ones. The "cab area" with it's giant windows seems to be the culprit and the MCD shades are no match for triple digits. It probably doesn't help that the coach is primarily black. Good news is that we rarely travel where that kind of heat is a problem.
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Old 04-25-2015, 01:00 PM   #9
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I can't comment on a Alpine but we can cool our 43ft with two ACs. We have three ACs. We have EXTENSIVELY insulated our coach ourselves, ceiling, cabinets, ceramic window tint and much more. We fulltime and are very comfortable in single digits to 110 degrees. I have also made our ACs more efficent with no loss of cooling.
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Old 04-25-2015, 05:15 PM   #10
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Thanks for the feedback -- it confirms that for our use (which I'll grant is different than for many) that I really, really want 3 a/c units.

I would think that 7500 watts would run 3 a/c units and a residential fridge (although I'd feel better if the fridge was propane)... so has anyone added a third a/c unit on an Alpine?

thanks again!

Steve
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Old 04-25-2015, 05:44 PM   #11
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Know of only one that was special ordered at the factory to include a third A/C unit--factory added/upgraded the genset to 10.5k as part of the order. Interesting that you are worried about hot weather but are still thinking about an RV fridge??????
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Old 04-25-2015, 05:49 PM   #12
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I looked at the Onan RV Guide book and they indicates that a QD7500/QD8000 would run two A/C's and the QD10000 would run three A/C's.

It would also be difficult to add the third A/C it is alot of work.

Would must run a dedicated 120v circuit and connect a data cable to link the other A/C's together for the thermostat.

Because of the limited space for a circuit breaker. You may have to change the load panel for another circuit breaker space.

Those are a few of the thinks to consider if you add a third A/C to any existing RV.
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Old 04-25-2015, 09:24 PM   #13
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Quote:
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Know of only one that was special ordered at the factory to include a third A/C unit--factory added/upgraded the genset to 10.5k as part of the order. Interesting that you are worried about hot weather but are still thinking about an RV fridge??????
A good propane fridge works fine in the heat; it's only the cruddy Norcold 1200 that seems to have issues. In our gasser (which had a Dometic) it could be 100 outside and the coldest setting would still start to freeze milk.

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Old 04-25-2015, 09:40 PM   #14
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Except that most coaches in the category you are looking at came with ... The Norcold 1200. There is reason that almost all new DP's come with a residential fridge and so many people have converted to them from propane.

Since you have determined that 3 AC's are necessary for you (and I concur), why not look for a coach that already has 3 AC's and the wiring and genset to support them. Many of the over-40 Monacos, Newmars, and Country Coaches are so equipped.
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