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Old 02-23-2020, 06:46 PM   #1
Bus Nut
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Join Date: May 2019
Location: Lake Geneva, Wisconsin
Posts: 334
Year: 2008
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Saf-T-Liner HDX
Engine: CAT C7 300hp w/retarder
Rated Cap: 46 + 1 36,200 lbs
Passive Solar Working

It is still winter here in Wisconsin but I was able to enjoy 70F inside the bus without having to resort to any heating aside from the passive solar gain that this nice sunny day provided. Of course it was the warmest day so far this year with the temperature outside peaking at 48 F.

This got me to thinking about the approach of spring and summer. When the outdoor temperatures rise I am afraid that I will be cursing that solar gain which worked so well for me today.

I would like to live in the bus sometime later this year,but first I have to install insulation. Since I don’t have a heated indoor space in which to work on the bus, I am presently waiting for warmer temperatures so that I can spray insulating foam. I am sure that this will make a big improvement in controlling the interior temp, but I am worried that a mere 2 inches of foam in the roof is not going to keep me as cool as I hope.

And there are the windows to consider as well. I intend to remove about 40% of the windows. This will certainly help reduce heat loss in the colder weather. I am hoping it helps with controlling heat in summer too.

I think I have to insulate for the worst case scenario, because with solar electric panels on the roof, I am not going to be able to rely on shade as much as I might otherwise.

Awnings are another consideration. If I can keep the summer sun off of the window glass with the use of some kind of awning it may be something worth looking into.

Much to think about. Constructive input from experience Skoolies is welcome and encouraged. — Matt
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Old 02-23-2020, 07:48 PM   #2
Bus Crazy
Join Date: Sep 2018
Posts: 1,312
Year: 2007
Coachwork: Thomas Built
Chassis: Minotour
Engine: Chevy Express 3500 6.6l
Get Reflectix insulation and cut panels to fit your windows. You could do that double stick Velcro top and bottom to make a roll of that stuff cover multiple windows. It will also help with heat loss/gain through conduction and possibly with infiltration if you do a good job making a seal
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Old 02-23-2020, 08:11 PM   #3
Bus Crazy
Join Date: Sep 2018
Posts: 1,312
Year: 2007
Coachwork: Thomas Built
Chassis: Minotour
Engine: Chevy Express 3500 6.6l
If you haven’t painted your bus yet, choose a really pale color that won’t absorb the sun so easily
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Old 02-23-2020, 10:25 PM   #4
Bus Geek
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 2,736
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Thomas Built Bus
Chassis: Freightliner FS65
Engine: Caterpillar 3126E Diesel
Rated Cap: 71 Passenger- 30,000 lbs.
As a temporary measure we ran guy wires just above the electrical channels. On this wire, we hung a roll of Reflectix to cover the windows in the "moving van" part of our bus, some 20 feet or so. We did this on both sides. It made a big difference in passive heating and passive cooling as well. So, lining the windows with Reflectix would help.
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