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Old 08-18-2010, 08:33 AM   #21
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2016 16' Sport
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Great ideas, thank you.

We'll try the insulation ideas, although with panoramic windows on both ends, there is a lot of opportunity for heat transfer. It is probably because we bought the Airstream in Oregon that it didn't have the bigger unit!! Too bad, because everything else is just fabulous. The LED lights are incredible, so high tech. But in reality, we are more likely to be travelling out of TX during the Summer months anyway.
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Old 08-18-2010, 09:09 AM   #22
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We just installed a new a Brisk Aire unit 12,500 on our 93 Classic 34 and its seems to be doing the job so far. A couple of notes: our unit has the upright compressor and is therefore slightly taller (maybe 2-3"), but I'm still under 10 feet. The lower profile Penquins look nicer, but cost more upfront w/supposedly less efficiency because of the horizontal compressor.
Also, and this is really important: AC units suck in LOTS of dirt in general and fuzz from trees and it doesn't take to long and your efficiency goes down. It's not the year of the trailer so much as how much it has run. . .sucking in dirt and such. Cottonwood trees around MN and elsewhere can clog up a unit in no time flat, along with just general dirt and such. Gotta remove the cover and clean if you want high efficiency. Just a thought. I'm typing this from Little Rock where its 95 deg and humid. How nice!
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Old 08-18-2010, 09:57 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fstuneck View Post
... I'm typing this from Little Rock where its 95 deg and humid. How nice!
Glad you are here for the cold snap. Trust me, 95 is much nicer than it has been. It's also less humid than it has been.

Are you camped here in LR or visiting "solo?"
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Old 08-18-2010, 11:42 AM   #24
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We also have the 15000btu AC in our 25' Classic and it will turn the inside into a meat locker in the 100+ degree Albuquerque heat.



Quote:
Originally Posted by RLS View Post
We have the 15,000 unit in ours, and in the summer time, it will not cool down all the way. I found it helps to use insulation on the fans and windows you do care about seeing out of. I can maintain about 78 - 80 during the hottest times doing this.
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Old 08-18-2010, 01:17 PM   #25
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The large difference between the 13.5 and 15 K units that some report makes no sense. The 13.5 K unit is 90% of the BTU's of the 15 K unit.

I suspect the difference is number of windows, square footage of the trailer, insulated windows and roof openings, and use of heat producing appliances, use of and number of awnings, number of occupants, and heat tolerance of the occupants.

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Old 08-18-2010, 02:08 PM   #26
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We were seriously considering changing out our 13.5K unit for the 15K one. We're planning to stop at Jackson Center next month and we asked how much it would cost to change it out and they said it would be about $2300. Holy cow. I guess we'll sweat a little longer for that amount of money. The trailer is only 6 weeks old!!!
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Old 08-18-2010, 03:03 PM   #27
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I have 5 more windows( Vista View size) than a standard 25' Classic plus skylight and two fantastic fans. None of the windows or skylight are insulated but I do keep the shades closed during the day. Maybe Airstream forgot to insulate some of these units.




Quote:
Originally Posted by CrawfordGene View Post
The large difference between the 13.5 and 15 K units that some report makes no sense. The 13.5 K unit is 90% of the BTU's of the 15 K unit.

I suspect the difference is number of windows, square footage of the trailer, insulated windows and roof openings, and use of heat producing appliances, use of and number of awnings, number of occupants, and heat tolerance of the occupants.

Gene
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Old 08-18-2010, 04:04 PM   #28
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We were seriously considering changing out our 13.5K unit for the 15K one. We're planning to stop at Jackson Center next month and we asked how much it would cost to change it out and they said it would be about $2300. Holy cow. I guess we'll sweat a little longer for that amount of money. The trailer is only 6 weeks old!!!

Considering that a new unit should cost at retail under $800 (even less wholesale for Airstream) and take about 2 hours (maybe 4-5 for a novice, me included) the $2300 is a way-over-the-top price.

It's a window unit mounted on top of a trailer - electric hookup, drain hookup and a new gasket.

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Old 08-19-2010, 06:57 AM   #29
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Just passing thru on the way home. Stay cool! Little Rock area is prettier than I expected. Lots of rolling hills and nice highways. Thanks for the reply.
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Old 09-02-2010, 03:27 PM   #30
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We have had our '10 31 Classic on the Texas Gulf Coast for the past couple of months. Temps have been in the low to mid 90s, but the humidity has been 80%-100%. With just one 15K unit it is definitely (as an earlier poster said) an uphill battle. We have considered adding a second unit, but at a cost of over $2,000, and with all of the other issues we have experienced we will just have to deal with it. Next year we plan to not use the AS during the hot time of the year.

On the other end of the spectrum, we towed our AS to Yellowstone NP during the last week of May. Temps were anywhere from 30-50, and we almost froze to death. It's a good thing we are both well insulated because our AS is not. Even with the use of an electric space heater, we still burned a whole 40 lb. tank of propane.
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Old 09-02-2010, 05:22 PM   #31
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have you considered having the trailer pressure tested for big air leaks? a lttle draft can go a long way in changing the inside climate.
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Old 09-02-2010, 08:07 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by Frody View Post
If that barrel fan will not rotate, grip it and firmly apply pressure trying to wiggle it back and forth. Eventually you should be able to free it up so it spins freely.
Once the barrel is moving freely, plug your trailer back in to 110 power and turn fan knob to low. Should work, if so, reassemble.

Mechanic also said there is another fan on the opposite end of the barrel. To get to that other end, have to go through the roof. Haven't had to do that, and hope not to.

Mechanic told us to run that AC/Heater once per month whether we are living in it or not. Doesn't take much for fan shafts to lock up.


Look up TXIcemans trick with a broom handle. On his Dometic he sez he believes (as I recall) that a sticking shaft is the usual culprit, and that it needs to be moved every few weeks. He may access his from roof. Posts here, but mainly on IRV2 (Another Silver Streak owner, with a "new" Avion in the shed).

15k is minimum in Texas. We fulltimed seven months in 2007 in Texas from May to December. A/C was off only to move to another site (another city); ran non-stop, essentially, for seven months.

Keep an eye on voltage; plug vents, use awnings, install curtains with a blackout liner (and use similar to reflectix); mainly park in afternoon shade. While our Silver Streak had better insulation/construction than an Airstream, heating up that metal takes a toll. (Streamline painted their roofs white from the factory for the very reason of heat rejection, and there are A/S owners who have done likewise). The amount of glass area to floor square footage ratio is high (poor on an SOB, but, that's life on a hot day). I also bought a small (cool looking) oscillating table fan from RESTORATION HARDWARE in Dallas (Galleria) and this was a good help. I also removed A/C and installed a better gasket, and went for a better filter (Camper Capitol, on Forest Lane).

This problem alone put a HUGHES Autoformer (or other brand) high on the list for the next trailer as low voltage on a 106F day is a lousy proposition (dual A/C WILL be on the next one, with a mod to a 50A system to handle it).

On the hottest days (hell, weeks) in Dallas we had all the curtains shut until latest evening. I found all the hot "leak" spots around doors and windows and did some fixin' . . an IR gun is your friend. Also did cooking in morning or outside. Sounds like a pain to an non-RV'er but that's part of the fun. Don't forget that trailer leveling can torque the door frame slightly (air gap). And that age causes window gaskets to shrink (research this topic).

We hibernated in the afternoons when no appointments called.

Interior storm windows were an option on Silver Streak, and on Avion, and they are also high on my list for summer weather (as well as low-key, non-attention-grabbing insulation pieces for vents and windows that appear professionally-made).

Our windows were a smoked glass. I have read of some "success" by others with heat reduction by having high-zoot film applied. (Plenty to study here).

Don't forget refrigerator performance. I sold my trailer short of installing a SNYDER vent fan modification kit. (Also, see threads on hotrodding the stove vent fan operation).

When not in use I had a portable de-humidifier in constant operation. Found it was not hard to store, and that the trailer benefitted from it's use on marginal days where humidity was the greater problem than heat. A few hours operation in morning was enough that the A/C didn't work so hard the rest of the day to keep things dry and cool.

No such thing as too much A/C down here. I recently went through some detailed lists of how to calculate A/C needs for houses (Manual J and the like) and had a laugh at what was "revealed". My 1,800 s/f house has 5-tons of A/C . . considered normal by local, long-time contractors; twice what government calculators estimate. What works in Illinois or Nevada just don't matter here. (A new house system might be less tonnage, but more expensive due to other add-ons).

Good luck

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Old 09-02-2010, 08:19 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AirHedz View Post
We have had our '10 31 Classic on the Texas Gulf Coast for the past couple of months. Temps have been in the low to mid 90s, but the humidity has been 80%-100%. With just one 15K unit it is definitely (as an earlier poster said) an uphill battle. We have considered adding a second unit, but at a cost of over $2,000, and with all of the other issues we have experienced we will just have to deal with it. Next year we plan to not use the AS during the hot time of the year.

On the other end of the spectrum, we towed our AS to Yellowstone NP during the last week of May. Temps were anywhere from 30-50, and we almost froze to death. It's a good thing we are both well insulated because our AS is not. Even with the use of an electric space heater, we still burned a whole 40 lb. tank of propane.

Sounds discouraging. I'm third gen on this trailer type. Problem-solving is half the fun of being independent (yes, all these trailers are energy hogs in hottest or coldest weather). If you investigate around here you'll find ton's of workarounds, stopgaps and outright fixes. An electric bedwarmer and eiderdown comforters are great (as is wool long underwear).

Same token on the coast. The wet bulb temperature of 95F is considered dangerous at a point in time for humans. We locals from "hotter climes" learn to add 12F to the local temp for an understanding of humidity. A portable de-humidifier from LOWES does the trick. Keep the doors closed, too. While it's true that with shade and a breeze that the Gulf Coast is bearable where North Texas is not, the humidity is an insidious enemy. Shade and humidity control are everything.

Research the topic of adding a second unit. You can probably get away for less than that if DIY (though maybe not much). As you could -- more than conceivably -- keep the trailer for a quarter century, that modification is cheap on an annual basis. And a huge selling point.

Again, TXIceman did the conversion himself on his new '89 Avion; PM him for insight.

Ya'll ain't over in Rockport are you?

Best

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Old 09-03-2010, 03:27 PM   #34
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Ya'll ain't over in Rockport are you?
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Yes! We are in Rockport!
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Old 09-04-2010, 10:21 PM   #35
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Fort Worth , Texas
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Greatest place on the Texas coast. Someday it'll be unaffordable for us mere mortals. Glad the temps have moderated the past few days and rain is on the way hallelujah!

Be sure to check the threads on Padre Island, Goose Island, Aransas, etc.

Take care

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Old 09-05-2010, 12:08 AM   #36
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We have a very simple, but highly effective cure for high heat problems. We moved to Montana.
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Old 01-15-2011, 12:53 AM   #37
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I have a 2010 25FB Flying Cloud and it came with a 13500 btu. Last summer, in the Texas heat when it was 100 degrees outside the best I could get the trailer was around 89 degrees. Our friends right next to us, same conditions and same size trailer, but much cheaper FunFinder had the inside temperature well below 80 degrees. As soon as I got back from our trip, I had the 13500 btu replaced with a 15000 btu. Next trip it barely made 2 degrees different. I have been told to cover the windows, stay in the shade, get awnings, stay off concrete and asphalt, keep the door close, etc.
My previous 2 airstreams never had this problem. I personally think maybe the newer airstreams have a lot less insulation.
Anyway, once summer gets here, I will start trying to get the issue resolved again, I think I might have to get a 2nd 15000 btu ac put on! And buying a FunFinder is not an option!
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Old 01-15-2011, 07:36 AM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daharvey View Post
I have a 2010 25FB Flying Cloud and it came with a 13500 btu. Last summer, in the Texas heat when it was 100 degrees outside the best I could get the trailer was around 89 degrees. Our friends right next to us, same conditions and same size trailer, but much cheaper FunFinder had the inside temperature well below 80 degrees. As soon as I got back from our trip, I had the 13500 btu replaced with a 15000 btu. Next trip it barely made 2 degrees different. I have been told to cover the windows, stay in the shade, get awnings, stay off concrete and asphalt, keep the door close, etc.
My previous 2 airstreams never had this problem. I personally think maybe the newer airstreams have a lot less insulation.
Anyway, once summer gets here, I will start trying to get the issue resolved again, I think I might have to get a 2nd 15000 btu ac put on! And buying a FunFinder is not an option!
Does your new FC have an exposed aluminum ceiling? If so, that's where the extra heat is coming from. That metal gets warm, and it does radiate into the interior. Airstream listened when they got complaints about the padded headliners, they fell, got dirty, etc, and the all-aluminum looked better, so they pretty much got rid of it. The trade-off is a warmer interior in Summer, and cooler in Winter. Also, that headliner was also an additional layer of insulation.
Of course, all this is assuming you had a headliner in your last Airstream, and don't have one in this one.
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Old 01-15-2011, 07:58 AM   #39
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Which model of portable de-humidifier from LOWES did you guys get.....I see from their web site, they have several to choose from.....
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Old 01-15-2011, 09:14 AM   #40
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Checked the Lowes site. The cheapest one is what we bought, but the brand is now different (ours was 2007). $150 is what I paid, as I recall.

I set mine up on the kitchen sink counter and ran drain hose to that. After several months storage in high humidity took 10-days to dry out trailer completely. Left all cabinets, closets, open.
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