Best RV Air Conditioner Reviews: Our Top Picks For Staying Cool On The Go
Don’t let the heat stop you from enjoying RV life. Installing an RV air conditioner can help in minimizing the impact of sweltering temperature to your indoor space. If your RV doesn’t have one yet or is in need of a replacement, now is the best time to start looking for one.
We checked into what the market has to offer and found RV air conditioners that boast of durability, superior cooling functions, versatility, high-end features and safety. Read on to find out what products we discovered.
Different Types of RV Air Conditioners to Choose From
There are 2 basic types of RV air conditioners to choose from – the ductless and the ducted ones. A ducted one requires a duct system installed in the RV to work. Cold air will be blown into these ducts, so the air will be distributed in vented areas of the RV. It can be through the roof or through your floor. While it might require more rigorous installation due to its need for ductwork, it often takes up less space because there is no control unit protruding inside.
The ductless ones are easier to install because you only need the air conditioner itself and not the ducts. It blows air directly from the appliance, thereby heating up the room it has been installed in. This can be an ideal choice if you only need one space heated up instead of all areas of the RV. On the other hand, it can take up some space.
Best RV Air Conditioners Reviews
Here are the air conditioners many RV owners recommend:
- Dometic B57915.XX1C0 Brisk II Polar White Air Conditioner
- Coleman Mach 15+ A/C Unit
- Dometic Penguin II Low Profile Rooftop Air Conditioner
- Atwood 15027 Ducted A/C Unit
- Dometic Brisk Air II A/C
The following are some of the things you need to know about these products:
This might be a less expensive option, but it surely delivers when it comes to cooling capacity. With 13,500 BTU/hour, this does a more than adequate job of keeping your RV comfortably cool. It works with either ducted or non-ducted systems. With its ease of installation, RV owners should have no trouble getting it to work.
Maintenance is also fairly easy for this one. It keeps vibrations at bay as well, thanks to its dampening brackets. You can keep your home on the road properly “aired” as well with its reliable fan setting.
This product is one of the best when it comes to its cooling capacity. It does work in keeping internal temperatures in your RV cool even during the most demanding days of the summer season. It has a good motor capacity and the fan also works well.
It can be installed easily. It is compatible with both ducted or non-ducted RVs so special fittings or changes in the layout may not be required. We also like the dampening brackets included in it as it prevents the appliance from being too noisy when in use.
It also seems to be a durable option. You can put it on your roof without any issues. It can withstand harsher weather conditions. In case you experience problems, you have a 2-year warranty to back it up.
Installation is quite easy, even with the lack of instructions. In fact, many RV owners said the hardest part was just getting it on the roof of the RV. Anyone can do it with some little research.
This works wonderfully even when cooling bigger RVs.
The control unit is not included in the package, so you might need to buy that separately.
This cooling unit can also be used as a heater. With its 15,000 of cooling and heating capacity, you can have a reliable appliance that will serve you well for many more years to come. Its electrical rating is 115 VAC and has a heating element capacity of 5,600 as well as a cooling amps capacity of 14.8. It is also one of the most dependable air conditioners out there due to its 1/3 hp fan motor that ensures you are getting to the temperature you need.
It already has the seal attached so there is no need to buy one. Many people also had an easy time installing this in their RVs with the existing fittings they already have with their previous air conditioner. Even those with zero knowledge on installing air conditioners in an RV didn’t go through to much issues with its installation.
This can be relied on for bigger cooling needs so if you have a bigger camper van, you will find this air conditioner a good option for your needs.
It can be a bit noisy according to some users.
This is a workhorse when it comes to cooling air. It makes use of R410A type of refrigerant that works in releasing heat into the air more effectively. This one has 13,500 BTU/hr. of cooling capacity and has an electrical rating of 120V.
Compared to other air conditioners for RVs of a similar variety, this one has a low profile. It is lower than 10 inches, which is difficult to beat by other air conditioners. It also comes with a nicely-designed shroud that reduces drag on your camper van.
This is a good choice for small to medium-sized camper vans. If you have a RV, you might need to install 2 or 3 units of this. It can be used for both vented and non-vented fittings though. However, if you are going for the vented ones, make sure you purchase the air distribution unit as well.
It produces even temperature and doesn’t have issues maintaining the right temperature and doesn’t have complaints about short cycling.
The low-profile design is good and doesn’t get in the way of the RV’s aerodynamics. It also doesn’t stick out to much so if you are concerned about aesthetics, you will like this.
Some people said this is noisier than they first expected. Nothing too loud or grating though but the white noise could bother some people.
With a standard 13,500 BTU rating, this should be a good option for small to medium-sized RVs with ducted ceilings. When installed, it has a weight of only 84 lbs. With its lightweight feature, it doesn’t affect your RV’s aerodynamic and doesn’t weigh down on your RV’s roof.
It comes complete with a digital thermostat that can allow you to easily tweak the settings to find the right temperature.
This is one of the best choices for ducted ceilings. It can be installed easily, and people might not even need to hire a professional to do the work.
We love its lightweight design. You don’t have to worry that it will damage your RV’s roofing. It’s also the best design when it comes to avoiding drag on your RV’s aerodynamics.
It has a strong output according to many customers. They like how it effortlessly keeps their camper vans cool during the summer. It runs quietly as well. There are no humming noises to keep you wide awake at night.
In cooling mode, expect the fan to run as well. Some people might not like this feature, but it can work in improving air circulation in your RV even when your compressor is not turned on.
Although more expensive than the others, this one delivers a lot of cooling capacity. Its 15K BTU cooling capacity should be able to cool down even a larger-sized RV. It is also lightweight. With only 79 pounds of weight, it won’t damage your RV’s roofing.
You will find this a good choice for cooling bigger RVs. It has a reliable cooling capacity that will surely come handy during the summer season.
It is also easy to install. It comes complete with all the things you might need for the installation such as the foam gasket. The only difficult part about installation is getting it to the roof of your RV.
A lot of users said this is more efficient than the previous air conditioner they replaced.
It is a pricier choice. The price tag might put off some buyers.
Which One Should You Buy?
For those who have bigger RVs and in need of a more reliable cooling capacity, get the Dometic B57915.XX1C0 Brisk II Polar White Air Conditioner. It is more expensive and definitely not one for those saving money, but it can be relied on for heavier cooling needs.
If you are looking for something that is easy to install, we recommend getting the Coleman Mach 15+ A/C Unit. Most comments about it were how easy it was to set up. Even if you are not experienced in installing air conditioners, you can use instructions found online to guide you and not suffer through so many difficulties.
For those who want to have a sleek and modern-looking air conditioner, the Dometic Penguin II Low Profile Rooftop Air Conditioner is a good choice. It doesn’t just look good, it functions well too. And with its low-profile design, your RV can get a good aerodynamics.
If you are looking for an air conditioner for your RV that won’t produce annoying noise, the Atwood 15027 Ducted A/C Unit is the recommended choice for you. A lot of people recommend it because of its quiet features.
The cooling capacity of the Dometic Brisk Air II A/C is great for those looking for a more reliable air conditioner during the dog days of summer. It is powerful and more efficient but is also more expensive. But if you don’t mind spending a bit more money, this can be a good option for you.
Buying Guide for RV Air Conditioners
When deciding which of these products to get, here are some of the things you need to keep in mind:
Cooling Capacity. Compare the unit’s cooling capacity first. If you have a bigger RV, you also need something with a bigger cooling capacity.
Noise and Vibration. Nobody wants to sleep in an RV with an air conditioner humming loudly in the background. Although air conditioners for RVs are not completely free from noise, they should be relatively quiet. Some vibration and humming are acceptable but nothing too annoying that it’s all you ever hear. You would still want to talk to your friends or family without shouting to each other, so you can hear each other over the noise of your RV.
Ease of Installation. If you are replacing your old air conditioner, make sure you get the right fittings for your new one. Check the specifications of the product to find out if it already includes the things you need. You don’t want to order another gasket, for instance, if the product already comes with it. Also find out if those who bought it had issues installing it. If they were able to install it even with little knowledge on air conditioner installation, you might be able to do the same.
Compatibility with Your Thermostat. If you already have an existing thermostat, find out if the air conditioner you are buying is compatible with that or if you will need to buy a new one.
Price. Of course, you will want to compare prices. Cheaper doesn’t always mean not better. You just have to know which features you are willing to sacrifice for a lower price. If it’s a more expensive product, find out what makes it more expensive. It could have a better cooling property or might include a longer warranty.
What to Do Next?
By now, you should already have an idea which RV air conditioner to get. Make sure you visit the products and click on those links. If you want things that will improve your comfort while using your RV, go ahead and check out this page for more product recommendations, buying guide and comprehensive product reviews.