bing tracking image
Q & A Icon

Recommended Vent Setup to Cool Enclosed Trailer Mobile Workshop


I turned an enclosed trailer into a mobile micro mechanic shop.inch Im trying to figure out a way to run a small AC unit in an RV rooftop ac, or even a portable AC. I need to run it off batteries as I dont want the generator running inside while im inside monoxide. Im trying to figure out how many batteries I would need to run it 7-10 hours a day and then charge them at night. I know there is a huge power loss using an inverter dc-to-ac. I have tried looking for a DC air conditioner but they are unreasonably expensive $3-8,000. I have found several cheap portable AC units for around $3-500. They are generally around 12-15amp, at 115v, and 1100 watts give or take. Is it even realistic to try to set up an AC powered Air Conditioning system....even if it means setting up 4-6 large AH batteries? Are there any realistic DC air conditioning systems out there?


Expert Reply:

Even the smallest RV air conditioning units we offer will require 115-volt AC electrical service of at least 11-amps to operate properly. The Atwood Air Command Rooftop RV Air Conditioner will draw almost 4000-watts at startup and even once running it will still need close to 1300-watts to operate. Delivering this amount of power via high capacity 12V batteries and an inverter such as the 5000-watt Go Power # 34280179 will be a fairly costly and bulky proposition.

Instead what I recommend is using multiple vents to both allow cool air in and to exhaust out the hottest air at the ceiling of the enclosed trailer. Installing multiple vents like # PLR20 or # HMAV2-AVT2 along with a roof-mounted 12V powered vent like MaxxAir # MA00-06401K will give you a large volume of air flow (up to 900 cubic feet per minute) without the high power requirements of an AC setup.

No, a warm breeze is not as nice as a cool one but given the cost and complexity of the AC's power requirements and that a suitable inverter like the Go Power will itself generate waste heat, using vents instead will probably give you a much more satisfactory result on a cost/benefit basis. The MaxxAir vent has 4 operating speeds and includes a rain shield so it can remain in operation even on a rainy day. It requires a 14 x 14 roof cutout.

If you want a vent with powered lid lift and more operating speed choices you can use the MaxxAir # MA00-07500K which also includes a remote control. This vent also has reversible operating direction for air exhaust or air intake, depending on the weather. For either vent I recommend our install kit # 344270KITW.

expert reply by:

Products Referenced in This Question

Product Page this Question was Asked From

Q & A Icon

Similar Expert Q&A Pages

See More Q&A Expert Answers >>