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Old 09-16-2018, 01:17 AM   #1
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Has anyone ever installed a rooftop air conditioner?

Has anyone ever installed a rooftop air conditioner? Meaning cut the 14Ē x 14ď square out of the roof and installed an RV rooftop air conditioner? The roof can hold 250 pounds (electric top models) and those air-conditioners are about 75 pounds. Iím wondering if anybody has ever taken down their ceiling panels to see if they could move wires around if necessary to find a place to do the cut out and install...? A few people have asked me if it can be done, so I called Peter Deltoro at SMBW and he said itís not really possible because wires are going from the front light pad to the rear light pad down the center. So I wonder if itís possible to move them out-of-the-way or cut and splice the wires that are in the way to make them longer and move them off to the sides...?

Thanks!
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Old 09-16-2018, 02:41 PM   #2
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Whenever this topic comes up the question becomes: how are you planning to power it? Shore power? Generator?

The weight obviously isnít an issue. Though youíd probably want it evenly distributed. Most people like the sleek look of the tops low profile.
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Old 09-16-2018, 03:39 PM   #3
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I have done it. It's simple. Cut a 14x14 hole where you want it mounted and add supports if need be. I did this on a CCV pop top but they are all similar, fiberglass with plywood center. I have no idea why Peter would say it can't or shouldn't be done but it doesn't surprise me that SMB would dissuade you honestly. They aren't that heavy. You will probably stumble upon the wires hidden above the panels and if you do just extend them and route them around the hole. Wires for lights are simple two wire wires like a speaker wire, a positive and a ground.

I don't remember if your PH is electric or manual but if manual you may have to adjust your springs for the extra weight. It's documented here several places, the best DIY I remember was done by Larrie (username).

Good luck!

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Old 09-16-2018, 03:45 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grampswrx View Post
Whenever this topic comes up the question becomes: how are you planning to power it? Shore power? Generator?
True, you will need to run AC wiring capable or supporting 20 amps from the unit to an exterior plug/port of some kind. I got heavy duty extension cord (flexible type) cord from Lowe's for mine.

If you are planning a standard 13,500 BTU unit, the most common in RVs, they are power hogs. You won't be able to run one with any less than a 2500 or 3k watt generator. You won't be able to run one at all with an interter but many try anyway. If you usually go to RV parks or places with a hook up then this doesn't matter, get the 13,500. They are the cheapest and most plentiful.
However, if you want to occasionally use a generator I recommend one of the low profile, lower BTU slim units. The one I bought was a Coleman Polar Cub 9200 BTU. It ran great with a Honda 2000 watt generator and was plenty for my van, an EB Ford with a pop top.

COLEMAN POLAR CUB RV ROOF AIR CONDITIONER Top Unit - $699.99
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Old 09-16-2018, 10:23 PM   #5
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The Coleman 13,500 btu units weigh about 90 pounds.
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Old 09-17-2018, 01:45 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grampswrx View Post
Whenever this topic comes up the question becomes: how are you planning to power it? Shore power? Generator?

The weight obviously isn’t an issue. Though you’d probably want it evenly distributed. Most people like the sleek look of the tops low profile.
Hey, thanks for the response!
Shore power (my van is wired for 120V) and also the large battery bank/3000W inverter I currently use to power the power- hungry 8000btu portable I have inside. If my inverter will run my current a/c, a rooftop unit should be easier.
And although the roof looks sleek, it is certainly not low profile. The top on my ProMaster is around 8” tall.
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Old 09-17-2018, 01:49 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 86Scotty View Post
I have done it. It's simple. Cut a 14x14 hole where you want it mounted and add supports if need be. I did this on a CCV pop top but they are all similar, fiberglass with plywood center. I have no idea why Peter would say it can't or shouldn't be done but it doesn't surprise me that SMB would dissuade you honestly. They aren't that heavy. You will probably stumble upon the wires hidden above the panels and if you do just extend them and route them around the hole. Wires for lights are simple two wire wires like a speaker wire, a positive and a ground.

I don't remember if your PH is electric or manual but if manual you may have to adjust your springs for the extra weight. It's documented here several places, the best DIY I remember was done by Larrie (username).

Good luck!

This is my thought too. And the top is electric and can have 200lbs on the roof. These units are about 75-90lbs.
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Old 09-17-2018, 02:05 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 86Scotty View Post
True, you will need to run AC wiring capable or supporting 20 amps from the unit to an exterior plug/port of some kind. I got heavy duty extension cord (flexible type) cord from Lowe's for mine.

If you are planning a standard 13,500 BTU unit, the most common in RVs, they are power hogs. You won't be able to run one with any less than a 2500 or 3k watt generator. You won't be able to run one at all with an interter but many try anyway. If you usually go to RV parks or places with a hook up then this doesn't matter, get the 13,500. They are the cheapest and most plentiful.
However, if you want to occasionally use a generator I recommend one of the low profile, lower BTU slim units. The one I bought was a Coleman Polar Cub 9200 BTU. It ran great with a Honda 2000 watt generator and was plenty for my van, an EB Ford with a pop top.

COLEMAN POLAR CUB RV ROOF AIR CONDITIONER Top Unit - $699.99
I have a 3000W inverter that runs my power-hog 8000btu portable. And the newer Class Bís run off their batteries/2000W inverters, so I actually think mine will do it. The right wiring wonít be a problem. 13,500btu may be overkill and use too much power. I think a smaller unit will do great in that space. And low profile is a must. I want clearance between it and the loft bed when the roof is down. A low profile will work there.

You know, I used to run my old 13,500btu unit in my old Class A just plugged into a standard 110/120 household outlet. But I probably couldnít run much else...
Iíll check out the Coleman Polar Cub 9200. If it cooled your extended body with pop-top, it would work for me, as my van and top are smaller... smaller space to cool.
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