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Old 12-25-2017, 11:53 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
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240V Mini-split....thoughts?

All,
Sorry, electricity is not my strongest point.

I am getting a 240V (18K BTU) mini-split for very cheap but really don't know what potential problems I will face as I plan to incorporate it. First off, I should say I intend on full-timing with no solar initially and no propane, so all electric system. I won't be boon-ducking at all. This is a 38' IC bus. Can I get an inverter to run it while driving? I am already looking at separate alternator to power the non-essential bus items like the A/C while driving.

Recommendations are welcomed.

Thanks
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Old 12-26-2017, 12:15 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Serengeti View Post
All,
Sorry, electricity is not my strongest point.

I am getting a 240V (18K BTU) mini-split for very cheap but really don't know what potential problems I will face as I plan to incorporate it. First off, I should say I intend on full-timing with no solar initially and no propane, so all electric system. I won't be boon-ducking at all. This is a 38' IC bus. Can I get an inverter to run it while driving? I am already looking at separate alternator to power the non-essential bus items like the A/C while driving.

Recommendations are welcomed.

Thanks
18k BTU is just over 5 kW.

You would need a decent sized generator to run that while driving.

In AC terms, it is 1.5 Ton
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Old 12-26-2017, 12:24 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Twigg View Post
18k BTU is just over 5 kW.

You would need a decent sized generator to run that while driving.

In AC terms, it is 1.5 Ton
Is that inadequate for the bus?

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Old 12-26-2017, 12:36 AM   #4
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Is that inadequate for the bus?

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It's fine for a decently insulated bus, providing the power to run it will take some thought. It's a 20 Amp hook-up at 240V and 40 Amps at 120 V.

In other words, it's on the limit for RV Parks. It's possible with a big generator and prohibitive relying on solar, etc.
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Old 12-26-2017, 12:48 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Twigg View Post
It's fine for a decently insulated bus, providing the power to run it will take some thought. It's a 20 Amp hook-up at 240V and 40 Amps at 120 V.

In other words, it's on the limit for RV Parks. It's possible with a big generator and prohibitive relying on solar, etc.
Thanks for the response. Maybe cheap isn't always the best deal considering the added issues.

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Old 12-26-2017, 07:18 AM   #6
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for driving down the road in summer heat 1.5 tons in a very well insulated bus will sort of maybe keep the driver a little cool.. will do nicely for the passengers.. if you locate the unit up front you have a better shot at keeping the driver cool..

in my house ive seen my 18,000 BTU mini split pull as much as 3500 watts but never any more than that..
-Christopher
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Old 12-26-2017, 09:29 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by cadillackid View Post
for driving down the road in summer heat 1.5 tons in a very well insulated bus will sort of maybe keep the driver a little cool.. will do nicely for the passengers.. if you locate the unit up front you have a better shot at keeping the driver cool..

in my house ive seen my 18,000 BTU mini split pull as much as 3500 watts but never any more than that..
-Christopher
I raised my roof 12 inches and planned on putting the 18K BTU unit in the area right above the driver. With your first hand experience, I am thinking I may need to go with (2) 12K BTU and place them at both ends of the unit. May also get a 110 if I go lower.

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Old 12-26-2017, 10:13 AM   #8
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Don't even think about batteries much less solar with loads that big.

Remember a 3500W load when running may pull a surge double that when starting up. Check out starting capacitors, may help a bit.

Robust grid power, or a very large, very heavy AC generator is the normal way to go.

There are CEN alternators that put out 400+ amps @ 24V while driving, designed for military vehicles, excellent value at $450+ NOS.

But a big enough, good quality inverter to get that to 240VAC will cost as much as many buses.
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Old 12-26-2017, 10:21 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by john61ct View Post
Don't even think about batteries much less solar with loads that big.

Remember a 3500W load when running may pull a surge double that when starting up. Check out starting capacitors, may help a bit.

Robust grid power, or a very large, very heavy AC generator is the normal way to go.

There are CEN alternators that put out 400+ amps @ 24V while driving, designed for military vehicles, excellent value at $450+ NOS.

But a big enough, good quality inverter to get that to 240VAC will cost as much as many buses.
If I am hearing you correctly, I should stick with a 110V system.

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Old 12-26-2017, 10:52 AM   #10
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If I am hearing you correctly, I should stick with a 110V system.
No, it's the Watts that matter wrt what I'm talking about, not Voltage.

Aircon is inherently a **huge** amount of energy to consume in a mobile context. You basically need to set up and carry around enough portable powerplant to supply a whole village in the third world.

Or restrict your locations to where they can supply you with robust grid power.

Or figure out how to live without aircon.

To me the whole point of mobility is following the 60's.
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