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Old 02-05-2021, 12:55 PM   #1
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Danhard AC verses portable ac

I was hoping to get some input on a new scheduled Sportsmobile North 2019 Sprinter 4x4 low roof build with PopTop that I currently have scheduled. One of the extras that we have on the build is the Danhart AC unit. Just not sure its worth the $5500 cost and the space it takes under the chassis.
Just wondering if a portable AC solution might work out as well without the maintenance issues and high cost of the Danhart?
Thanks
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Old 02-05-2021, 01:29 PM   #2
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I see a lot of posts about uninstalling AC units. Do you camp where you anticipate using AC?
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Old 02-05-2021, 01:45 PM   #3
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I see a lot of posts about uninstalling AC units. Do you camp where you anticipate using AC?
This is a good question to think about. When we bought our 2nd van, one thing we didn't want again was A/C. They are a noisy, power-hungry nuisance. Found a van with lots of opening windows (not blocked by cabinetry) and opening skylights. Perfect!
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Old 02-05-2021, 07:50 PM   #4
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I could count on one hand the few times we have used our loud and obnoxious AC and rarely have an electric hook up anyway. Besides the great ceiling fan, we use one of these cheap 12 volt fans all the time instead of the AC.

https://www.amazon.com/Portable-Cooling-Electric-Adjustable-Velocity/dp/B0747J7BRF
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Old 02-05-2021, 08:36 PM   #5
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Just had this discussion on a thread where they were taking out...They were NW SMB owners that live in an ideal location where the AC isn't much of a need.

We, however were on our build/building our SMB at SMBNorth with Nacy Nix (THE BEST SMB designer, receptionist, bookkeeper, PR, expert in the LAND!) Jim (you know the newbie Shop MGR with only 37 years at the shop,lol) was in the garage as we were looking at a Quigley/SMB (for reference/example)that was going to be picked up later that day...I asked Jim, "What's the item most people WISH they would have put in?" He calms said, "AC"..."People camp in these things in hotter locations in the summer and wish they had it." Sold...trusting Jim, we pulled the trigger on one of the biggest costs on the van...we were on the fence too with the furnace...but that was a yes that day too, AND we use that waaaay more often (with it)...

We live in the midwest, camp local often to maximize our van. Iowa gets hot and humid and the noise is worth the comfort at night(in our opinion).. and we camp on concrete pads with elec. on our way to really cool locals/boondocking etc.

We are minimum 10 hrs from Mts or Great lakes and 16-18 hours away from oceansetc...plus camp (mostly) Spring to Fall..so we end up using electricity/AC more than we ever thought...We have a Honda 2000 generator to use when we are in a a non-electric local and need to cool things down for a bit (you know, in the desert before it gets cooler at a night...) but never intended to run all night in that application...

Either way, tell Nancy and Jim the Chris's said hi!! Our 7th Anniversary from picking Sporty up 2-14-14!!!!!!!

Ps We made Chad (our main builder) autograph the inside of the shower door..lol...tell himHI too! He did a really great job on ours!

Pss Thx for another excuse to post Sporty pics...lol
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Old 02-06-2021, 11:53 AM   #6
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Thanks for all the reply's. I too have seen all the posts on uninstalling the Stacool units but not the Danhart units.

We live in the west within a days drive of Moab, Zion and other hot summer destinations where the ac would be a nice to have accessory. In the summer months we do tend to head to the higher elevation locations like Yosemite, Yellowstone or the coast. We used our diesel heater much more then we ever used our Rooftop air on our 2008 Sprinter Sportsmobile. I honestly believe I'm trying to talk myself out of having the Danhart AC installed and looking for cooling alternatives....
I do have really enjoyed working with Nancy and Chad. Our build is scheduled to begin soon, super excited...
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Old 02-10-2021, 10:35 PM   #7
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I live in CO and have a lowtop 144 with poptop - I got the danhard AC and wish I hadn't. In the 4 years of owning it I've only used it once.
I figure if I need AC I'm in the wrong place ;-)
Seriously why go to utah in the sumner - head to the cool mtns instead.
Another thing I got but wished I hadn't is the microwave - just don't use it

Shower and furnace are my best items

Have fun
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Old 02-11-2021, 10:55 AM   #8
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When camping in the Mid-Atlantic during Summer when the night time temps might drop into the upper 70's with 95% relative humidity, A/C becomes a little more than a "nice to have". BTDT and don't want to do it again.

That said, looking at the Danhard website and vendors that sell their components, I'm not sure what makes one of their systems costs so much.
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Old 02-11-2021, 11:21 AM   #9
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I have an SMB sprinter with pop top. SMB Texas recommended that I try mine without the AC. I live in FL, but I figured Austin was likely equivalently hot. We left a way to install a Danhard, but it is 7.5 years later and I still don't have the AC. The Danhard is noisy as well as very expensive. I can keep the van at ambient temp just by opening both upper (pop top) windows and main level windows (both screened), and in my 7 summers in Florida and the southeast (hot and humid), I've only had a few times where I really needed AC. I do use fans a lot. I also carry a portable 2.5 BTU Zero Breeze AC that I can run on 110v and that has a rechargeable battery that will run the AC for about an hour and that I point at where I'm sitting if it is super hot.

There is also an AC sold in Wal-mart land that is a small mini-split like some of the ones used in Australia and England for caravans. I've heard that it works when it works, but not-working has been reported too many times. I keep hoping that a US equivalent to the Australian one will show up for North America. I would happily buy that.
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Old 02-11-2021, 11:44 AM   #10
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Another reason to live and travel the west......as the sun goes down it's time to head for the high country.........I have often had to turn on the heater in the morning.
I did try using a wall A/C unit and made a bridge in the front of the van so exhaust could blow out the front Pop-Up window. Powered by a Honda 1000. Just way to much work to set up. Driving a few miles up was way much easier.
2003 7.3 E350 EB50 4X4......
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