When it is 102 outside, my temperature inside is 85. Is this normal, and if not, what can I do about it?
ANSWER: Hi Lewis, Unfortunately, RV Air Conditioners are not as efficient as Air Conditioning in most homes. The main reason is that most RVs are not as well insulated as the average home. So in an area with very high temperatures and high humidity, the AC units will have problems keeping up. To top that off, ducted RV Air Conditioners depending on duct design may be less efficient than non-ducted RV Air Conditioners keeping an RV Cool.
The general rule of thumb for RV Air Conditioners is that they will keep the RV 20 degrees Fahrenheit cooler than the outside ambient air temperature. If the RV is in direct sunlight on a hot day, the AC unit will have a tough time keeping up. A shaded RV campsite will help improve the cooling efficiency of the Air Conditioner.
Since you do not tell me how old your RV is, I am going to assume that it is at least 3 or 4 years old, which means that you may be able to improve the cooling efficiency of your RV's Air Conditioner by performing some routine maintenance as outlined below.
1. Clean the AC filters. Dirty AC filters can reduce the cooling capacity and efficiency of your Air Conditioner/s. The filters for RV Roof air conditioners are located inside the RV under the air distribution bezel on the AC unit.
Most RV Air Conditioner filters (like the one pictured above) are made of washable materials and should be washed in warm water carefully and thoroughly. Let them air dry before you replace them. If the filter is torn or will not clean up, you should replace the RV Air Conditioner Filter. You should check and clean these filters at least once a month.
2. Once the filter/s is removed on most RV Air Conditioning units, you will be able to see the evaporator coils. Get a flashlight and look at those coils to see if there is any type of accumulation of dirt or debris present, if there is use a very soft bristle vacuum attachment to carefully remove the dust and dirt.
3. If you are comfortable going on your RV's roof, you should also clean the outside condenser coils on your Air Conditioner/s. This will require removing the shroud on the air conditioner, which is normally held on with several screws.
Once the shroud is removed, you can use some compressed air to blow out debris that may have gotten into the Condenser Coils. Remember to blow the air from the inside out (that’s why you have to remove the shroud). This should be done at least once a year.
Below is a video by Professor of RVing Jim Twamley that demonstrates everything that I just outlined above.
Once you have completed this routine maintenance try running your AC again and see if the cooling has improved. If you are still experiencing cooling problems, you should take your Motorhome in and have a Certified RV Technician, check out the AC system/s on your RV.
I hope this helps.
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