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Old 07-05-2019, 07:31 PM   #1
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AC - Central vs Ducted

Iíve tried to do some searching on YouTube hoping to find a comparison video of the noise level produced by both the central and ducted air conditioning in the new Caravel and Bambi lines. I realize these are brand new models and are just beginning to ship, but hoping someone can share a comparison.
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Old 07-05-2019, 08:06 PM   #2
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Ducted units are noted for being much quieter.
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Old 07-05-2019, 08:17 PM   #3
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Will your local Airstream dealer let you listen to AC in trailers on the lot?
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Old 07-05-2019, 09:44 PM   #4
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The new ones are a game changer. The TV was almost impossible to watch and it was very difficult to sleep with the central air turned on. But with the ducted air you can carry on normal conversations, watch TV, eat dinner and sleep in comfort.
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Old 07-05-2019, 11:19 PM   #5
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The new ones are a game changer. The TV was almost impossible to watch and it was very difficult to sleep with the central air turned on. But with the ducted air you can carry on normal conversations, watch TV, eat dinner and sleep in comfort.


I presume the cooling efficiency is the same or better with the ducted system?
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Old 07-05-2019, 11:36 PM   #6
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No idea really but I can rationalize that cold air pouring directly out of the box into the trailer is about as efficient as possible but it’s not distributed very well. With outlets throughout the trailer, including the bathroom, overall temperature consistency is drastically improved even if there are some efficiency drops because of the ducting.
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Old 07-06-2019, 12:05 AM   #7
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Makes sense. I plan on taking a look at and testing the AC units in both types of setups to fully understand the sound and efficiency difference.
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Old 07-06-2019, 04:05 AM   #8
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People went through all of this a few years ago when the bigger trailers went ducted. I even know people who sold their relatively new trailer just to upgrade to ducted air. No doubt the ducted air is better, mostly. I also know one owner who had a roof leak and the ducting has made it impossible, so far, to find the source.
As the owner of an older trailer, I found that the addition of a sound bar to the TV has overcome the noise objection of watching TV. I would go with ducting if I had a choice, but I am not buying another one of these.
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Old 07-06-2019, 06:59 AM   #9
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Iíve had both. Ducted is far superior. The old style is like a jet engine over your head - you canít have a conversation, you have to blast the TV, it wakes you up at night and itís just generally unpleasant to be in the trailer when itís running.

Ducted does not cool quite as well - so make sure you get a unit with 2 ACs / 50A service and this solves for the efficiency loss.
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Old 07-06-2019, 08:07 AM   #10
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Iíve had both. Ducted is far superior. The old style is like a jet engine over your head - you canít have a conversation, you have to blast the TV, it wakes you up at night and itís just generally unpleasant to be in the trailer when itís running.

Ducted does not cool quite as well - so make sure you get a unit with 2 ACs / 50A service and this solves for the efficiency loss.

My same exact experience and the same advice I would offer. Currently in 90 degree Kansas heat and no shade. Dual A/C's keeping it comfortable and ducted air much quieter.
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Old 07-06-2019, 08:45 AM   #11
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One thing I will add is that while the ducting distributes airflow throughout the trailer we find that in our 28RBQ that when I get up early if I close the partition in the bedroom so my wife can sleep, the bedroom will overheat compared to the living area (we’ve never needed AC in the morning). We have gone so far as to close the outlets in the bedroom as much as possible and warm air comes out the air return grills in the bedroom and it still overheats. This happens using either or both heat pumps. I’ve taken to using a space heater in the living area when I get up to avoid making the bedroom uninhabitable. Even so, I’d never go back to the central unit.
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Old 07-06-2019, 09:21 AM   #12
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The 20í AS only comes with a since AC unit, but I presume it would do a good enough job to keep it comfortable on moderately warm days (80-85)? We would likely go with one of these single axel models and at this point, the new Caravel 20FB is looking to be the one for us. I was waiting to see the 20FB Bambi, but doubt the central air they have in there is any quieter then the Sport.
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Old 07-06-2019, 09:44 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lsbrodsky View Post
People went through all of this a few years ago when the bigger trailers went ducted. I even know people who sold their relatively new trailer just to upgrade to ducted air. No doubt the ducted air is better, mostly. I also know one owner who had a roof leak and the ducting has made it impossible, so far, to find the source.
As the owner of an older trailer, I found that the addition of a sound bar to the TV has overcome the noise objection of watching TV. I would go with ducting if I had a choice, but I am not buying another one of these.
Larry
We listen to the television thru the Airstream speakers which helps, slightly, if you sit under the speakers at the dinette. But we've been wondering if a sound bar might make it possible to actually hear the TV over the AC. Mind sharing which sound bar you use?
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Old 07-06-2019, 09:47 AM   #14
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The swivel grills at the outlets of our ducted A/C seriously restrict airflow, so removing them results in substantially more airflow and better cooling.
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