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Old 05-26-2015, 01:52 PM   #15
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I have a 2008 Classic 25fb. The roof has a vinyl ceiling and mouse fur on the walls which I think provides a little more insulation. The single 13k AC has kept the trailer cool enough even on some hot Texas summers in full sun. It will keep it in the low 80s but I'm also wearing T shirt and shorts. The front bedroom keeps cooler than the rear living area due to all the windows in the rear. I have the full awning package which helps shade the rear living area windows and the skylight shades are closed. If I ever have to replace my AC it will be a 15k unit.

Anything longer than a 25 should have 2 ACs if not ducted if it were me. However, two ACs running at the same time will be really noisy unless its ducted air. You may get away with one AC if ducted on a 27'. The ducted air in the 2015 is a big improvement on what I've read and worth checking it out before making a final purchase decision.

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Old 05-26-2015, 04:54 PM   #16
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2015 Airstreams have ducted air. The TR has a hump on top to accommodate the ducts. The hump is painted white to reflect sunlight / heat. A step in the right direction. Give AS some credit, had to be some engineering considerations. FYI, the hump will still get beat to pieces by a hail storm. Recently proven.
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Old 06-10-2015, 06:40 AM   #17
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So with all this in mind, your Airstream is going to conduct heat from the sun. You need to use awnings, available shade, and if you order new and live in the hot climes, consider the size and/or number of air conditioners you will have. Airstream has no flying idea of the conditions that you will camp in and it's entirely up to you to insure that you have sized the air conditioner properly. The 13.5K unit that was standard on my Safari, was clearly undersized based on full sun 100 degree temps.
Air conditioning "laws" are the same for any application. When sizing BTU to a cooling area/space the volume, insulation, heat sources (stove, avg #people, etc) are calculated tp come up with a BTU requirement. Insulation is a variable that changes everything. I calculated my unit using the lowest factor of insulation and came up with around 10, 000 BTUs required for a 25' Airstream. The ONE factor that is not included in the mix is ambient humidity/temperature. In other words, AC units work better in hot humid environments than they do in hot dry climates as they draw warm humidity and cool and dry it. I have posted about this a few times. When we were having a custom home built we had detailed discussions on AC unit matching for the house with two AC companies. We wanted the best AC for the house in FL. Both told us the same story that it is not about getting the most BTUs but finding the best match that draws out the humidity before cooling the space down too quickly. If you have too many BTUs, (too large a unit) that is exactly what you get - cold and damp. With an AS, the insulation would be a constant but WHERE it is placed- sun/shade is not. So your idea of awning use is important.
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Old 06-10-2015, 06:55 AM   #18
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We have a 2015 30' with duct air, two of them. Works fine, but much stronger in the bed area (back) than in the living area. In shop now for one other warranty item and the A/C issue. But we enjoy the duct system, much quieter than the non-duct system we had.
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Old 06-10-2015, 07:04 AM   #19
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Roadster, you are absolutely correct, good info. Most everyone who lives in Fla knows this, others don't. Thanks.jim
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Old 06-10-2015, 08:42 AM   #20
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Perhaps an A/C service expert will chime in, but I believe the 20 - 22* drop is measured on INSIDE room temp compared to evaporator OUTPUT temp. For example, in my 74* cooled house, the closest register to the A/C evaporator measures 52*.

In a 95* degree AS, (just parked after driving all day), output at the unit (after running for 5-10 minutes, should be around 75*ish. As the interior cools down, the A/C output should drop in the same differential.

Outside temp CAN play into the equation, but not if the outside unit is appropriately sized to climate and home size.

Same with A/S.
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Old 06-13-2015, 10:20 PM   #21
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We have a 2015 Flying Cloud 30. Our previous trailer was a 28' Safari with a 13.5 BTU AC. The ducted system is far quieter---the main reason we bought a new Airstream. We opted for 2 AC units. You don't have to run them both at the same time! We can run the 15 BTU center unit and the noise in the bedroom is very low. Likewise the 13.5 BTU unit in the bedroom is hardly heard at the front lounge area. Either unit distributes air through all the ducts. It is now pleasant to sleep with the AC on, unlike in the Safari with the noise the fan running and compressor cycling on and off. Also, the older AC units are very drafty. The ducted air is evenly distributed throughout the trailer and cools it down faster. I bought a 30 amp cord and use it with a single AC unit just like I did with my Safari when it isn't hot or 50 amp service is not available. We are thrilled with this new setup.
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Old 06-22-2015, 12:44 AM   #22
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Just an observation: On our 2012 25FB the aluminum interior roof surface would be hot to the touch and radiating heat when in full sunlight, while our 2015 30 Bunk is much cooler under the same conditions. I believe this is due to the added insulation and distance from the roof surface to the interior on the ducted roofs. The heat transfer on the Aluminum (exterior) to Aluminum (interior) is much higher than interiors with non aluminum interiors. My old 1979 25 was much cooler running a single AC. The new 2015 30 Bunk has Dual AC and the full awning package. I also permanently insulated the center skylight and plan on putting exterior covers on the fans. We are almost always in direct sun light and heat when parked and the difference now is very enjoyable. I love my 50A cord!!
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Old 06-22-2015, 06:23 AM   #23
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The air duct system was easily fixed, the new version of the ceiling vents were installed, four in the rear bedroom and two in the bathroom toilet and sink area. Can be directed and or closed which puts more air up front and with the two very rear vents stops air blowing on our heads while sleeping.
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Old 06-23-2015, 03:01 PM   #24
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Just returned from my second outing with my 2015 FC 27 FB Twin. We live in Southern California and have a single Ac unit. We have the standard awning setup on our FC. Temperatures during this trim were 100 degrees in the daytime and the trailer was not comfortable at all during the day. The best we could accomplish was 85 degrees during the peak of the day. We were traveling with a family member who was towing a 2007 trailer of similar size. It was not an Airstream and no where near the quality or feature level. I'm embarrassed to say we spent much of the mid day hours in his trailer. When we were at 85 degrees his thermostat had cycled off and his trailer was at 72 degrees.

I took the trailer to our storage facility this morning (Our Airstream dealer) and asked them to look into it. The first question I was asked was "How old is your friends trailer". Upon learning it is 8 years old he told me the refrigerant used in that vintage was far more efficient and could achieve those Ice Box like temperatures. The best we could expect was 15-20 degree differential from outside.

They have my trailer now and I will report back my findings.

By the way, I'm also having significant issues with sticking windows. I've sprayed silicon lubricant but am still wearing out my credit cards unsticking my windows from outside. Any suggestions?
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Old 06-23-2015, 04:37 PM   #25
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Ducted air- cooler/more efficient OR just quieter?

What size ac unit do you have on your FC 27? I had a 27' Safari in 2001 with a 13.5k Penguin. I soon learned that 100 degrees would overwhelm that sized unit. Interesting in your comment since I was camped next to the guy who bought my 30' SOB. It had a 13.5 k Duo-Therm. Comfy in his trailer. Upper 80's in my Safari. I learned a lesson and ordered a street side awning for the Safari. That helped a lot. Upgraded the AC unit on my Classic to 15k. I also make sure to put out all the awnings. Aluminum soaks up the sun. My white SOB reflected it.

FYI I took mine back to the dealer and got the same answer. Stopped by Jackson Center on the way home from vacation and they said the unit was functioning to specs. To me the unit was undersized but in 2001 the 15k unit wasn't available to me. Awning on the street side helped cut the solar gain through the skin.

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Old 06-23-2015, 06:47 PM   #26
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We have read through LOTS of the ducted air threads and the consensus seems to be QUIETER, but I haven't seen a lot of discussion about COOLER?
Just saw this article. It echoes what is state across the RV industry. While Airstream is new to ducted AC, it is not new to other makes/models. RVForum is loaded with posts about basement AC not cooling, ducts blowing hot air, etc.; however, there are some work-arounds.

How to Properly Use The Air Conditioner (AC) in Your Camper | Pete’s RV Quick Tips | Pete’s RV Info Blog

The point is that direct-air cools better into the space quicker. If the trailer is 100 degrees inside, so is the duct. Cool the interior first then switch over to cooling the duct. The question I have is how is the duct hump insulated? The idea is similar to getting into a hot car- turn vents on you as it cools down the interior then as it cools direct them away and lower the fan control. I believe the main benefit would be the even distribution of air in a ducted system.
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Old 06-23-2015, 07:14 PM   #27
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I talked to my dealer and his experience is that while the noise level is lower, when trying to cool down a hot trailer, the ducted system is somewhat slower. Not that it is inhibited, but the fact that the cooler air is being more evenly distributed through out the trailer. For those of us without ducts, you know that the area around the main discharges from the box are noticeably cooler than the ends of the trailer. It's just a matter of the cool air working its way back to the ends.

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Old 06-23-2015, 07:35 PM   #28
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Yes, to some degree the cool air is being divided up into ducts so with one AC it would be slower. I did not understand this point of warm "trailer ends" until I was recently in a dual pano unit. I do not experience that though I have experienced uneven air distribution when my fan blower was on low. I redirected air to the rear by closing the front vent and corrected the difference from/warmer rear situation. One thing too is that several have opted for dual AC units. That would overcome cooling challenges but toward the question, it does not mean that ducted air is more efficient. I believe every AS should have a temp/humidity readout inside. That way, no matter what type of AC you have, you can dial in the optimum comfort.
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