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Old 07-30-2019, 08:40 AM   #1
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25 FC--are two ACs necessary, or required, or just a bunch of hot air?

I mean, are they worth the money or does one work fine? (I'm talking about a 25 or 26.) Remember, I'm in the deep South, and it's hot as heck here.
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Old 07-30-2019, 08:59 AM   #2
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I also live in the South. What kind of camping are you going to do and what time of year? Here in Eastern NC you just do not want to go camping in July or August. Even if we had 2 A/C units, we would have to stay holed up inside because outside it is pretty miserable, heat and humidity. However, off to the mountains and it is great...and only 1 A/C is needed. For me to enjoy camping, I need to be able to sit outside and enjoy the surroundings and I need to be able to sleep comfortably. 2 units is only half that equation.
But, the trend has been for people to buy trailers with 2 units since Airstream made it available on the 25's and up. Certainly that will affect your resale market, even if you do not use 2 A/C units that much. You also have less concern about what appliances are running with 50 amps, traded against a bigger cord and maybe fewer campsites if you need 50 amps.
Summary: it depends on you. You can get some advice, but only you know your absolute requirements.
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Old 07-30-2019, 09:14 AM   #3
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The 'Secret of Vacationing':

Travel South in the Winter months.

Travel North and West and into higher elevations elsewhere in the Summer Months.

Living in the Mohave Desert in an air conditioned home, it is very comfortable. Step out with 110 degrees it is not comfortable, for those not use to heat.

Water... lakes, rivers and streams are popular where you cannot escape the local heat and humidity. Be prepared to rub elbows near the water and in the water.

Las Vegas Casinos must lure the 'local gamblers' into their Casinos with lots of free stuff during the Summer months. In the Winter months... not so much as the climate is just wonderful. Planes and Traffic smoothly access the city and the travelers love the climate at that time.

Birds fly South in the Winter.
Birds fly North in the Summer.

Think like a 'bird'. Otherwise hibernate like a Bear. Or come out of a burrow like a raccoon at night...

If anyone believes that an Airstream with a metal exterior will NOT become hot enough to easily melt chocolate, probably fry an egg, over easy... you will be disappointed.

If anyone believes that an Airstream with minimal insulation will retain heat at a Ski Resort in January, you will be disappointed.

Just strip down using local clothing options in the hot months. Dress in layers like the locals in winter months.

Then consider humidity, monsoon season, winds, sandstorms, insect hatches... shall I go on? Probably not. This is not what most want to hear. Although... you will understand sooner than later.
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Old 07-30-2019, 09:33 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Belbein View Post
I mean, are they worth the money or does one work fine? (I'm talking about a 25 or 26.) Remember, I'm in the deep South, and it's hot as heck here.


I have one Dometic Duotherm 15000 btu heat pump. Sitting in my driveway with full sun it is a heat index of 96 as I write. In Gulf Breeze Florida. We have been working in our 2007 Classic 31 for a few days and the coach is a comfortable 74 degrees inside with humidity of 32 percent.

Nuff said.
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Old 07-31-2019, 06:31 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trumpetguy View Post
I have one Dometic Duotherm 15000 btu heat pump. Sitting in my driveway with full sun it is a heat index of 96 as I write. In Gulf Breeze Florida. We have been working in our 2007 Classic 31 for a few days and the coach is a comfortable 74 degrees inside with humidity of 32 percent.

Nuff said.
Unfortunately today's ducted air systems won't allow that degree of cooling, as they trade off pure cooling for quietness and better air distribution.

At the recent Airstream International Rally in Doswell, Virginia it got up to 101F one day, and in the upper nineties most days. On the really hot days two A/Cs kept us at 74F just fine, but when we were forced to run on only one A/C it ran at 86F during most of the day, and up to 91F for a brief period during the hottest part of the day. The humidity was lower, and the big fan we got at Walmart helped, but it wasn't pleasant until the sun went down. With reflecix (sp?) in every window and vent opening it was dark in there during the day, but warm.

We had all awnings out and even purchased an extra ZipDee solar shade awning that hung down off the main awning.

Sorry, but you really need two A/C units in the south if you want to camp comfortably in the summer.
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Old 07-31-2019, 07:10 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Belbein View Post
I mean, are they worth the money or does one work fine? (I'm talking about a 25 or 26.) Remember, I'm in the deep South, and it's hot as heck here.
I'm in Florida with a 26'.
Not having two AC's was a deal breaker for me.
Not only do you get a second AC, you also get 50 map service.
Get two unless you camp in Montana.

Let me add, the second AC doesn't have to run. If the conditions are good, run one. If you want it quieter in the bedroom, just run the other AC. If one breaks down, you still have a spare.
And with 50 amp power, you never have to wonder if you can run the AC and microwave at the same time.
What's the downside? $2500 and you give up one Fantastic Fan.
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Old 07-31-2019, 07:56 AM   #7
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Get the 50 amp/dual AC !
It is a cheap upgrade, gives you 100 amp total capacity, you will have plenty of AC when needed, a backup if one AC fails. The only trade off is only one fantastic fan.
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Old 07-31-2019, 08:17 AM   #8
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I'll join the "It Depends" group. I live in Texas.

I bought a brand-new Airstream in 2017, planning to keep it a decade or two. I'd been camping with a 24' single-AC trailer for years at that point. I thought about the trade-off between a 2nd powered vent & 2nd power inlet vs a 2nd AC unit...

I don't live in my Airstream, though I like taking long trips with it (6 weeks early this summer.) I think the wheels make a better climate-control system than a 2nd air conditioner. Over the trip this summer, I was in 3 different sites where I would've needed the extension cord to plug into the pedestal if I didn't have the front power inlet. I was traveling in places where the weather was so nice I didn't always need one AC, much less 2. On the southern part of my travels, however, I did stop off at a campground with low enough voltage that I forced the fridge to LP-only and ran the water heater off propane as well. *IF* you were in a modern campground with a 50A trailer you wouldn't have that trade-off but this campground ONLY offered 30A service, so a 50A Airstream was in the same power-management boat.

If your travel goals are to go places with nice weather, I think one AC is enough and I don't regret going hunting for a single-AC trailer (the TX dealers don't order those, I bought mine in NJ.) If you like to mostly camp at down by the lake a few miles from home in the sweaty South, buy 2.
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Old 07-31-2019, 08:20 AM   #9
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what he says

^

Quote:
Originally Posted by brick1 View Post
Get the 50 amp/dual AC !
It is a cheap upgrade, gives you 100 amp total capacity, you will have plenty of AC when needed, a backup if one AC fails. The only trade off is only one fantastic fan.
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Old 07-31-2019, 08:28 AM   #10
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If buying new, I'd go with two.

Always a backup should one go down on you.

Never a concern if hotter than hades.

Like the old fire extinguisher saying, it's better to have it and not need it, than need it, and not have it.

That being said, a 30 amp cord is a lot easier to wrestle with than a 50 amp cord. Other than that, I'd say two ac's for the win
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Old 07-31-2019, 08:40 AM   #11
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Here is my 2 cents worth of anecdotal evidence. In rebuilding my 66 Tradewind, I opted for a single Coleman Mach 8 13,500 btu unit, coupled with a 3/16" layer of reflectix topped by 1 1/2" of rock wool in the walls. This seemed to do the trick. I left Hal (my Airstream's moniker) out in the 90 degree sun yesterday and then kicked on the Coleman. Within 20 minutes it was on the comfortable side of chilly inside.
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Old 07-31-2019, 09:26 AM   #12
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I have 25' International Serenity. When it was in the upper 90's on one trip, I closed all the vents at the rear, closed the partitions in the center and set at the dinette. The AC was just able to get the area to a tolerable temperature, but barely. The back (bedroom area) was impossibly hot.

Touching the upper walls and near the skylight facing the sun, the body of the coach was hot. These trailers are not very well insulated.

Still, I think with the duct system, I would hesitate to install a second AC as it will defeat the whole point of the ducts, unless you spend considerable time in an area with over 100 degrees.
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Old 07-31-2019, 09:32 AM   #13
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Hi

Humidity matters a lot. It can be over 85 out and I won't turn on any A/C at all. I'll be quite comfortable and so will the rest of the crew. Why? The humidity is low. Head somewhere else and at 85 you would be crazy to not have something running, at 95% RH it's not going to be comfortable otherwise.

The same thing matters to your A/C unit. Low humidity makes it easy to cool and maintain a temperature in your trailer High humidity makes the poor thing struggle. That's just how it all works.

Next on the list is moving air. Sit here at 90 degrees and you are boiling hot. Turn on a fan and you cool down. The temperature has not changed in the least. What has changed is how your body cools. Again the same thing applies to A/C. Sit in the blast of air out of the unit and ... gee... it's a lot cooler. Sit away from the air outlet and you aren't as happy. No difference in temperature, just air motion. Simple solution - get a fan

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Old 07-31-2019, 10:29 AM   #14
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You are right about the fan and that is one reason I stay comfortable in my 1 A/C trailer. I put a large Fantastic 12v fan on the floor in the middle of the trailer and it acts as my air distribution device. It also makes you more comfortable wherever you happen to be sitting.
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Old 07-31-2019, 11:29 AM   #15
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We went with 2, but we have a Flying Cloud 30 RB. We had a 32 ft SOB once with only a single 15000 BTU unit. it took a long time to cool down after getting to where we were going. For comfort, rapid cool down and a 50 amp system I would seriously consider going with 2 A/C units.
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Old 07-31-2019, 11:39 AM   #16
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In our experience with our 2016 27 FB, having ducted heating, the AC will cool the interior down around 15 degrees. That works for us (living in Seattle), as we don't like heat and do our best to avoid being in areas over 80-85 degrees. If we wanted "to go south," meaning in the 90s & approaching 100 or more, I'd be the first to buy a 2nd AC.
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Old 07-31-2019, 12:12 PM   #17
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I'd Get Two!

We bought our 25RB new and opted for the two units. Most of the time we only use one, but WOW - when you need two you need two. And, like at the house - how miserable if you only have one and it goes out. There goes your trip!
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Old 07-31-2019, 01:37 PM   #18
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I have a 27' Globetrotter and I can tell you spending this week in Cape May, NJ the heat reaching the mid to high 90s has been terrible. We are in the shade at NJSH AS Park but only 30A service limits me to using only 1 of my 2 units so 1 AC will have to do but it will not keep up during the day. The only time it cycles on and off is at nighttime. During the day 1 unit does not get the job done. A 25' will be a little better but to me the choice is clear, 2 units. Nice to have a backup if one fails also.

Now all I need is 50A service...
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Old 07-31-2019, 03:04 PM   #19
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Sitting in the heat

As I write, I am sitting in my 2017 27ft FCFBT with one air conditioner. It is 95 and sunny in Fernandina Beach. We are in direct sun with a bit of pine tree shade. Temperature in the trailer is 77, with two humans and two canines on board. The trailer cools to long sleeve shirt temps at night.

We've had it up to 103 out side with similar results.

I've often considered two ACs, but this experience has me wondering, as no one is complaining about the heat.

A 25ft should be cooler.
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Old 07-31-2019, 03:20 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lsbrodsky View Post
You are right about the fan and that is one reason I stay comfortable in my 1 A/C trailer. I put a large Fantastic 12v fan on the floor in the middle of the trailer and it acts as my air distribution device. It also makes you more comfortable wherever you happen to be sitting.
Larry
We're only 23', but its rare that we have to set the AC below 78 to stay cool....and we also have a small antique oscillating fan that moves the air quite well. Humidity is another issue, but we have a small de-humidifier. Our only give to reducing heat was installing a street-side awning which really helped with the big side windows. Personally, I would not want to have to hassle with the 50 amp cord, or spend whatever for a second a/c to have "a back-up". But, that's me
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