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Old 10-30-2013, 03:05 PM   #1
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Window AC inside van and vented through floor

A couple of forum members have asked that I share information on my homebuilt vanís window air conditioner that I installed inside the van and vented through the floor. Since my van is home made this seems like the appropriate section to post pictures and write-up.

The most important thing to note is that I did not decide to use a widow AC because it was cheapest or because I thought it would work/cool best. My main priority was to make the van look like a travel van instead of a camper so I could park it at home, and after evaluating many options decided to give a window AC a try.

As I stated in a previous thread which I may copy here later, the ACís manufacturer recommends against installing a window unit as I did in my van. Window units are designed to operate best with free air flow at both the intake and discharge of the condenser, so limiting air flow to either side of condenser should be done with full understanding of associated risks.

Before proceeding with the final installation I built a mockup of the cabinet I was going to install the AC in the van and bench tested operating conditions by taking lots of temperature and current data with the AC running in free space and in the cabinet. This allowed me to compare current draw, inlet temperature, discharge temperature and cooling efficiency. After a couple of days of testing I decided air flow was not impeded that badly and that the risk was minimal under most conditions. Roughly eight years later it seems the risk was indeed worth it for our intended use.

If I had to do it over again Iíd obviously do a few things differently, but for the most part I think installing a window AC inside the van and venting through floor is viable when itís necessary to obscure its presence. Assuming of course the installation is done carefully.


Following this post Iíll try to add pictures directly from my iPad. The picture below was posted on this forum previously.
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Old 10-30-2013, 03:42 PM   #2
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Re: Window AC inside van and vented through floor

Sorry, picture files too large for forum and I don't know how to scale size on iPad. Will take pictures again with regular camera in 640X480
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Old 10-30-2013, 04:07 PM   #3
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Re: Window AC inside van and vented through floor

When you upload photos the forum will resize them on the fly.

Mike
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Old 10-30-2013, 06:30 PM   #4
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Re: Window AC inside van and vented through floor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ford_6L_E350
When you upload photos the forum will resize them on the fly.

Mike
Each time I tried it I got error message that photo had to be between 0X0 and 900X900 pixels in size. If it resizes automatically, why error message then? I may be doing something wrong even though I though I had done it before.
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Old 10-30-2013, 08:37 PM   #5
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Re: Window AC inside van and vented through floor

I downloaded a free app SimpleResize for just that reason. I look forward to the thread as I am considering this option for my build.
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Old 10-31-2013, 12:54 PM   #6
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Re: Window AC inside van and vented through floor

Thanks. One more try before giving up. The purchased APP did not work so I upgraded to free one.

Looking directly at front of 5000 BTU/HR GE window air installed about 8 years ago. It sits at floor level but could be much higher if needed. I replaced window hardware with aluminum angle to seal against front face when AC is pushed in all the way. Angle bottoms out when AC is all way in.
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Old 10-31-2013, 01:03 PM   #7
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Re: Window AC inside van and vented through floor

This picture shows about how much room I left for ambient air to enter side of AC. Air comes in from top and enters louvers on both sides and top of AC cabinet. If larger AC I'd leave a little more space all around. Will show lovers with AC partially pulled out.
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Old 10-31-2013, 01:07 PM   #8
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Re: Window AC inside van and vented through floor

This wing nut holds AC in place and makes removal an easy task. The AC is screwd to plywood base and wing nut keeps plywood from sliding out.
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Old 10-31-2013, 01:15 PM   #9
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Re: Window AC inside van and vented through floor

This picture shows AC part way out. AC lovers can be seen. When AC is pushed in, lovers reside in space between two plywood bulkheads that gets air from outside port.
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Old 10-31-2013, 01:21 PM   #10
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Re: Window AC inside van and vented through floor

On left side of picture the two plywood bulkheads can be seen. At back one of the two discharge ports can be seen. Sun shining on area makes it hard to see.
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