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Darryl Engle's Remote Ducted A/C Installation

Darryl uses remote ducting for his A/C installation.  He made a cowling for the A/C unit out of left-over aluminum, and attached it to the face.  He originally had separate ducts for supply and return air, but found that the unit would ice up because there was not enough air flow over the coils.  In the photo above, the square hole in front is for the intake (it could have been larger), and the two ducts are for the cold air exhaust.

 

This photo shows the location and type of the interior ducts.  The elbows and flex ducting are found with the dryer vent stuff at Home Depot.  There is no need to try to find insulated 4" ducting.  However, you should wrap insulation around these two elbows to prevent condensation on them.

 

 

       
The photo on the left is the cabin registers, obtained from an RV supply store. The right photo is the A/C control panel Darryl installed in the cabin wall.  The wire is run inside the duct.

 

This is a close-up of the cowling.  It actually only needs to cover the top cold-air vent.  It appears Darryl took out the control panel, connected extension wires and quick-disconnect couplings, and re-mounted the thermostat inside the cabin.  If this seems a little beyond your technical abilities, you could either try to find an A/C unit that comes with a remote control control, or just exit the teardrop to control the unit.

The benefits of this option are:

  • The A/C unit is not taking up space when not needed.  
  • The A/C unit is outside, reducing noise and the possibility of condensate water leaks.
  • It is easy to have the unit intake fresh warm air in order to keep icing to a minimum.

  Some considerations  with this installation are:

  • A vent the same size as the A/C vents should be installed to the outdoors to avoid pressurizing the cabin, or the windows left partially open (but this adds to the noise).  Typically, a couple vents the same size as the A/C vents are installed into the galley, and then a couple more vents installed in the galley side walls to the outside.  Round louvered aluminum soffit vents are popular for this. Venting like this will also condition the galley, saving your ice a little longer.
  • Remember that if you're using a generator to power this installation, keep the generator well away from your A/C intake so the exhaust fumes won't be sucked into the A/C and blown into the cabin.  This could kill you. 

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