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Old 07-14-2013, 09:00 PM   #91
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Re: Lets talk AC again

I am still in debate over seeing if a mini split system will work in a bus? Here is a video I found of a guy putting one in a small travel trailer. What do you think?

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Old 07-15-2013, 12:47 PM   #92
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Re: Lets talk AC again

my alternator stopped charging while i was in Nevada. I ran an EU2000 on the roof of my skoolie for 2,000 miles running a battery charger and a freezer on my way back to michigan. The generator ran fine with no issues.

I used the same generator to run a small window ac unit when the power was out. I was surprised that the compressor on this particular unit did not kick on until several minutes after the ac unit was running. I can understand how a person could plug a couple units in and think the generator was running them just fine, only to find out later that the compressors had not started up yet.

I think that if i do another skoolie i will install an engine driven a/c compressor to make cold air while driving. 4 times i drove through the desert to burningman and back in a black bus without a/c. I think all the parts could be scavenged from a suburban or other large SUV from a junk yard. There is very little magic in a AC system. Basically there is a compressor, a hot radiator, and a cold radiator. The most difficult part of the project is finding a V belt pulley to put on a compressor designed for a serpentine belt.

Something you can do to make your ac much more efficient (ie: make more cold air with less energy) is to replace the refrigerant with R290. R290 is nearly free, it's also known as propane. It is a much better refrigerant than R134a or most of the alternates. I've had excellent success using propane as a refrigerant in various applications. It is also much less likely to leak as the molecules are larger than R134a, it's non-ozone depleting (if you believe in that ozone hooplah) and you use only 30% as much propane as you would R134a.
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Old 07-15-2013, 10:19 PM   #93
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Re: Lets talk AC again

Mr. Moderator, while I agree with all you have said in your last post re propane, you have left out the most important part. Propane can safely only be used in a cooling device which has been designed and tested for its use. Anyone who contemplates using propane as a refrigerant needs to do a through study of his plan. Failure to do this could result in-- BOOM!!! Might anyway. Just saying......
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Old 07-15-2013, 11:14 PM   #94
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Re: Lets talk AC again

I must admit that I have never heard of propane being used as a refrigerant.

I do know that ammonia is used in the RV type refrigerators.
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Old 07-16-2013, 12:22 AM   #95
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Re: Lets talk AC again

There is allot controversy regarding "R290" ie propane.
You have to use a filtered type due to a "tar" like residue in motor rated propane.
I am not saying use I am just mentioning what I did experimenting with it.
The comment about it having to be used in a system specifically designed for its use isn't really correct.
The "orifice" tube in the automotive AC is used to control the refrigerant flow through the system and kind of a filter as well.
The issue is allot of people comment about exploding if you use it. There is far more risk in a "explosion" in an accident with that great big fuel tank on your vehicle.
The other thing is 134a degenerates when exposed to high heat into phosphine gas - orderless and deadly. Ice labs when you see news of all the dead bodies found at one and you see the guys wearing "spacesuits" is because of that gas...
Heck there are case of this poisoning at Vet Hospitals due to a pet ingesting Zinc Phosphate. Used in pest poison. Contact with the stomach acid, etc. and it creates phosphine gas..
http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6116a3.htm

Back on the subject.
I've charge automotive systems with "propane" as a test refrigerant used to look for leaks.
Given that a new 30lb jug of 134a now is costing me 300.00; that is very expensive to use looking for leaks. The propane "test" gas costs about 10-20 cents..
I fix the leak; pull a vacuum and retest; no leaks then pull a vacuum again and then and only then recharge with the 134a..
Also R290 "propane" is very ozone friendly and allot more environmentally safe.
You don't have to construct a 100 million dollar plant to manufacture 13a and DuPont is the only one who hold the patent to it...
Also propane is actually used in many countries beside USA for this very use; automotive, etc.
Remember if you get that great AC repair done in Tijuana Mexico; the odds are the gas is propane...
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:35 AM   #96
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Re: Lets talk AC again

Ya pays ya money and ya takes ya chances. Propane is cheap so I wonder why the major auto manufacturers haven't gone that way?
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Old 07-16-2013, 01:01 PM   #97
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Re: Lets talk AC again

Bullwhacker007. Interesting article on rat poison and phosphine. I just looked up the MSDS sheet on R 134a (National Refrigerants Safety Data Sheet, 12/20/2012) and they do not list phosphine as thermal decomposition product of R 134a. Perhaps this seven month old report is outdated and you can provide us with a more recient cite. Thanks
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Old 07-16-2013, 05:37 PM   #98
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Re: Lets talk AC again

I think a Thermo King is the way to go!
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Old 07-17-2013, 02:55 PM   #99
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Re: Lets talk AC again

Thermo King looks nice, but your'e still stuck with an engine driven compressor. Someone could make big money creating an AC system with both an engine driven compressor and a electric driven compressor. Or maybe a DC motor driven compressor that could run on engine or house battery.
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Old 07-17-2013, 03:00 PM   #100
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Re: Lets talk AC again

This is what we need.

The Civic Hybrid only uses the elecric motor when the engine is stopped. When you are moving the compressor switches to mechanical power from a belt.

Then we could run the AC from the motor while driving and the house battery when stopped.
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