Keeping your RV cool in the Summer and warm in the Winter is important for a comfortable camping experience. This is particularly true if you are using propane for both heating and cooling. Propane can become expensive if you use it frequently and filling the tanks can be time-consuming and inconvenient. This is why having a portable cooling unit on hand to supplement your RV air conditioning system can be an excellent idea. This unit is also inexpensive and consumes less energy than air conditioners, making it a more affordable and eco-friendly alternative.
The cooling units in refrigerators and RV air conditioners work on a similar principle. They take advantage of evaporation to remove heat from the space to be cooled. The process begins with a liquid refrigerant being forced through an expansion valve or small hole into a larger tube. This lowers the pressure of the liquid, causing it to boil at a low temperature. The vapor will then take the heat out of the space, and the liquid will then return to the compressor where it can be reused for another cycle.
An RV air conditioner can be powered by an external power supply or the vehicle engine’s alternator, but it will still draw a lot of electricity and therefore need to be plugged into a voltmeter to avoid overcharging the battery or damaging the electrical system. RV owners who wish to reduce the amount of power they need for their rv cooling unit should install an inverter to generate their own electricity.
Many RV owners also opt to convert their existing absorption refrigerators into more efficient compressor fridges. This can be a relatively easy DIY project, although it will likely require some mechanical knowledge and may involve the removal of the cabinetry and paneling. In order to ensure a safe and successful conversion, it is crucial to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and to consult with a qualified technician.
Some RVers also choose to upgrade their existing refrigerators to residential-style units, which can be a more expensive option but is often well worth the investment for those who plan to spend long periods of time in their RVs or live full-time on the road. However, the process is not for beginners, and it can be difficult to find the right model to suit your specific needs.
For those who prefer a more modern cooling solution, mini splits are becoming increasingly popular in RVs and offer quiet operation and higher efficiency than standard roof-mounted rooftop air conditioning units. RVIA Master Tech Steve Albright provides a quick overview of the components and functionality of these units. He also discusses how to properly install and use them in your RV. rv cooling units