Want to add Air Conditioner to 1994 Rockwood XL 1280...

Discussion in 'Heating / Cooling Systems' started by luvs2travel, May 3, 2020.

  1. luvs2travel

    luvs2travel New Member

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    We just recently purchased a 1994 Rockwood XL 1280 pop-up camper which currently does not have an air conditioner. We want to install a rooftop air conditioner, but we don't know if the roof can take the added weight. How can we determine if the roof of our pop-up camper can take the weight of an air conditioner? My husband read that pop-up camper roofs have to be built to withstand the weight on an air conditioner. So, we are not sure if we can install a rooftop air conditioner or not. Please help if you know anything regarding our situation. Thank you!!!
     
  2. jeeper88

    jeeper88 Let's go Camping and Jeepin

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    [​IMG]Here is one with an a/c
     
  3. eoleson1

    eoleson1 Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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    I believe that most with rooftops have bracing on the ceiling to help support the weight. Personally, I would be hesitant to put an extra 400 lbs on a 35 year old roof. We used a portable AC unit that we vented through the window.
     
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  4. bols2Dawall

    bols2Dawall S.W. Ontario

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    Pretty sure the weight of A/C unit is only around 100 lb. but you're right , even that i think would be too much for an old roof
     
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  5. eoleson1

    eoleson1 Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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    One of these days, I'll learn not to trust my memory ;-)
     
  6. GreyFox

    GreyFox Well-Known Member

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    Nor is the OP's 1994 popup 35 yrs old - probably was manufactured sometime in latter part of 1993, making it at most 27 yrs old. As for adding A/C the OP would want to DIY a ceiling brace to help support the extra weight and ensure the vent hole over which A/C would be mounted is properly framed out.
     
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  7. BikeNFish

    BikeNFish Well-Known Member

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    I have no A/C on my pup but it is prepped for A/C. I would still rather use a portable unit than install a new one.

    Several reasons:

    1. I have an electric winch that already struggles to raise the roof.
    2. Less strain on the lift cables and pulleys without A/C on the roof.
    3. Portable A/C is about 1/3 the cost, depending on the BTU's.
    4. No messing with cutting a hole in the roof.
    5. If you do most of your camping in Minnesota, you may find you really don't need A/C very often. The only time I wished I had A/C was when I was in Kansas during a 90 degree plus heat wave for four days, but we got by with a fan and some cool ones just fine.
     
  8. GreyFox

    GreyFox Well-Known Member

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    Other than Fleetwood / Coleman popups many of differing brands already have a 14" square vent hole in the roof over which A/C would be installed. ;)
     
  9. BikeNFish

    BikeNFish Well-Known Member

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    Most don't.
     
  10. GreyFox

    GreyFox Well-Known Member

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    GreyFox said:
    Other than Fleetwood / Coleman popups many of differing brands already have a 14" square vent hole in the roof over which A/C would be installed.


    I said many, not most, including my own 1998 Jayco 10UD - removed the existing vent and installed a Carrier AirV in it's place. When I later sold the Jayco I removed the A/C, reinstalled the vent, and later installed the A/C on my Fleetwood Santa Fe. I'll repeat - many popups other than Fleetwood / Coleman do have a standard 14" vent hole over which one would install A/C. [;)]
     
  11. BikeNFish

    BikeNFish Well-Known Member

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    So, then I stand correct! Thanks for verifying. ;)
     
  12. jmkay1

    jmkay1 2004 Fleetwood/Coleman Utah Gold Supporting Member

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    My old Jayco was 1990 and according to the shop I took it to it did not have the needed braces for an AC. I looked into adding AC once, but then started really looking at the roof. I already saw some signs I had a leak at some point and who knows what hidden damage there could have been. I was worried even if I upgraded everything and added external braces the weight of the AC could aggravate any internal hidden damage. So I ultimately changed my mind. Kind of glad I did choose not to as the following year my lift system broke and It just wasn’t worth fixing the camper anymore. I personally just used a window unit pressed up against my screen once or twice. Not the greatest as it was a small 5000 btu unit, but it helped take a little heat out of the air. Most of the time though I camped in the mountains in the summer or by a lake or ocean so really could get by with fans as I spent more time hanging out in the water and the evening hours was usually tolerable where I camped. Then again I was not one to hang out at camp, but to go do things. Then again I don’t live or camp where the heat is intolerable. Good luck with whatever you choose.
     
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  13. James Rucker

    James Rucker Active Member

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    Our 2010 coleman e3 has four factory pilot holes drilled and capped on the inside. Still may or may not install a/c. Like many of you, I'm not sure I want the extra weight. But here in NorCal it gets warm but not usually terrible. Being a pup, it's made to travel, would love to spend some time in Or, Az, and Nv and one never knows just how hot it's going to be.
     
  14. GreyFox

    GreyFox Well-Known Member

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    All Fleetwood campers manufactured in the last 15 - 20 yrs have 4 snall capped holes in the ceiling which mark the 4 corners of a 14" square vent hole should you decide to install a vent, vent fan, or A/C. Regardless, make sure you follow Fleetwood's instructions on cutting this hole.

    [​IMG]
     
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  15. GreyFox

    GreyFox Well-Known Member

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    Not at all, "many" and "most" have entirely different meanings. :rolleyes:
     
  16. firepit

    firepit Well-Known Member

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    Pop ups need to catch up with the car industry....On the older stuff i can see it.
    But any new pop up that does not come with a AC is pretty dumb IMO.
    When we looked at new ones i was amazed how many had no AC.
    Yes i realize that some will say i rarely will need one...But it only takes needing it once
    to realize you wish you had one.

    A portable AC is a option but they take up a lot of space and are one more thing to set up
    and put away.

    I would rather have it and not need it...Than not have it and need it.

    If you are laying out cash on a brand new one settling for no AC doesn't make much sense to me.

    To the OP...There should be two braces on the roof where roof AC should sit.
    If they are there i would add AC and roll on.
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2020
  17. BikeNFish

    BikeNFish Well-Known Member

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    bheff, eoleson1 and firepit like this.
  18. Spridle

    Spridle Well-Known Member

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    Never even thought about the vent fitting the same opening. Way too much hassle, but I would be very tempted to leave the AC off for everything but our one week long beach trip.
     
  19. Marioleos01

    Marioleos01 New Member

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    How do you place your portable unit?
     
  20. eoleson1

    eoleson1 Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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    I just set the unit on top of the counter, and ran the exhaust hose to the screen.
     

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