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Old 05-29-2020, 10:18 AM   #1
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portable ac while driving

working on e450->food truck. going to remove rear ac, need the room. this will probably take out my dash ac. that's no big deal. going to have portable ac when hooked to shore power. for when setting up/breaking down. no use during service with vent hood running.

question if I install inverter ( no real use for one now). can I run the portable ac off it while driving?I would partition the front off. I have the drivers seat at one two seater seat directly behind it that I left in.
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Old 05-29-2020, 10:19 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by besterfe View Post
working on e450->food truck. going to remove rear ac, need the room. this will probably take out my dash ac. that's no big deal. going to have portable ac when hooked to shore power. for when setting up/breaking down. no use during service with vent hood running.

question if I install inverter ( no real use for one now). can I run the portable ac off it while driving?I would partition the front off. I have the drivers seat at one two seater seat directly behind it that I left in.
I don't see how a portable would do much especially while moving. We tried to use one to cool a bathroom and it didn't do much.
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Old 05-29-2020, 11:10 AM   #3
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Have you looked to see if the rear unit is a separate system using it's own compressor? So there might be two compressors on the engine. If so removing the rear unit will not effect dash air. If it does use the same compressor, you may be able to cap the lines going to the rear unit and keep everything else. Of course you need to evacuate the refrigerant first.

I think a portable a/c just is not going to do much for you.
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Old 05-29-2020, 02:33 PM   #4
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keep the factory air conditioner..



if you simply need the interior room then remove the rear inside unit but keep the under-bus condensor.. most times the evaporator lines are screwed on so you can keep the underside condensor and remove the rear inside unit and keep the dash air.. your portable A/C will laugh in your face....



there's a reason even a cutaway bus has a 45,000 BTU rear unit and a high output 15,000 BTU dashboard A/C.....
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Old 05-29-2020, 04:38 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by EastCoastCB View Post
I don't see how a portable would do much especially while moving. We tried to use one to cool a bathroom and it didn't do much.
I agree with ECCB on this. Some owners of older motorhomes with weak or inop engine-driven A/C simply fire up their generator, connect it to their shore power plug, and power the rooftop unit while driving. In some cases, it may actually get better fuel economy.
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Old 05-29-2020, 04:54 PM   #6
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My genny uses 1/2 gallon per hour running the rooftop a/c

If I had really good factory air I would keep it.
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Old 05-29-2020, 08:48 PM   #7
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I've got a portable heat pump AC that I bought with the idea of making it built and grab air for the condenser in the best way possible. I was going to put it a bit behind driver. Alas, life has interrupted working on the bus, but to me it seems like a fun project that might work -- at least better than most portables.
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Old 05-30-2020, 06:32 AM   #8
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what kind of portable? the biggest issue with most portables is they are single hose so you are taking your conditioned air and sucking it out the window.. 2 hose units work better.. minisplits offer the best chance of cooling, esp if you can mount the inside unit above the header panel up front. and portion off a "cab" for the driver you stand a chance oif at least feeling the cool air on you..


getting outside air to the condensor for a portable is certainly important for it to be the most efficient.
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