View Full Version : AC for the garage

07-01-2011, 12:00 AM
I have camped in my new 2011 RW405 a couple of times now and absolutely love it! The quality is great and everything is working well so far. I only have one request - that the factory brace and wire the vent in the garage so that AC could be easily added back there like it can in the bedroom. I travel with my dogs and their crates are set up in the garage with a fenced yard off of the back door. I have tried keeping the garage cool with the existing AC vent and even put an AC in the bedroom with the idea that if the rest of the unit was cool it would help cool down the garage. No such luck. On an 85 degree day I had a hard time keeping below 78 back there, but was freezing out the rest of the unit. Of course the dogs can come in the living space to cool down but there are times when it is easier to have them in the back and I want to be able to keep it cool and comfortable back there for them. As it is, it is going to cost me quite a bit extra to have the wiring done when I have the AC installed back there compared to what it cost me to install AC in the bedroom, which was pre-wired.

07-01-2011, 04:56 AM
I agree as I have a 2011 RW405 as well. I had a 2nd AC added to the bedroom too.Since the garage is designed for living quarters, it would be nice to get some additional AC air flow back there. The single vent doesn't really cut it. The 15,000 BTU main AC should be enough to keep it cool, but airflow is next to nothing.I did see photos of someone's modification to move the garage AC vent forward so the bed did not block it when it was raised.I would suggest a few things for a change:1) move the garage vent forward so it is not blocked when the bed is raised; 2) pre-wire the vent for an AC unit; and 3) move the AC vent forward so it is not blocked when the bed is raised and design it for better airflow

07-01-2011, 05:24 AM
I moved the AC discharge forward and blocked the rear vent. Helps a lot, but it is only one small vent in a 80 square foot room, which also has no insulation underneath.

I will usually put a small fan ion the garage for the dogs. Something else to try would be one of the portable AC units. One member here added a rooftop AC to he garage. Problem with that is the bunks are still in the way. That is where the portable AC might be a better option.

07-02-2011, 05:38 PM
Thanks for the ideas. I also thought of taking along one of those misting coolers, which is fine for Colorado where it's dry most of the time, but not so great if we travel to more humid parts of the country. Like you say, I may just try to find a portable AC unit. And actually, I took the rear bunks out because it's usually just two of us and the dogs and there are plenty of other spaces for guests with the loft and the sofas. Even with the airflow opened up it wasn't great and definitely wasn't as cool as my friend's Cyclone that had an AC unit in the garage - but then he's an engineer by trade and the prospect of having to run wiring for it wasn't all that daunting to him.

07-04-2011, 10:21 AM
Haven't tried it yet, but we are hoping a box fan in front of the sliding screen door between the coach and the garage in the RW395 will help move more cool air into the garage area. How easy was it to remove that top bunk? I can't imagine us ever using it either......

07-04-2011, 11:18 AM
Just 4 pins

07-04-2011, 11:41 AM
We removed ours also so the rhino would fit better. We also had to move the bottom bench/bed to the upper mount which turned out to be a little bit of a pain. I think were going to get a 9k btu stand alone a/c for tge garage and vent it out a window. Brett

07-13-2011, 07:49 PM
Well I see plenty of folks are not very happy with the Dometic A/C. I have a 305 RW and the main A/C is a Dometic 15K, as the rest of the folks here. I also opted to have a 13.5K installed in the bedroom with the same idea that it would push cold air into the garage. Well that doesn't happen. After careful research i concluded that the Dometic 15K Brisk only pushes 300 CFMs through the roof ducts. Dometic makes an HP model that pushes 340 CFM for the ducted models like ours. I don't know if the 40 CFMs extra would make a difference. But I can vouch that a Coleman model 15 (15K) pushes 390 CFMs and would definitely blow some cooler air into the garage. Yes, the A/C duct needs to be in front of the bunk beds or just add another one. I'm real happy with my rig, but A/C is something my family really needs. I'm deep in South Florida and sometimes travel to west to the hot states. I guess my change would be for Heartland to change company from Dometic to Coleman A/C manufacturer.

09-24-2011, 11:22 PM
On our last trip, I tried the portable AC in the garage and vented it out through the side vent. It was ok, but I could tell that I really wanted a permanent solution.

We just added a Dometic 13.5 to the garage, which is the same unit I originally added to the bedroom.

I had to use a flush-mount vent since the bed would crush against the non-ducted ceiling unit when it was in the raised position. Put the thermostat next to the door.

So far, the after-market addons have been 2 AC units, 2000w inverter, solar panel, MaxAir covers, and a second monitor panel for the tanks in the outside compartment. Now my wife is asking if I am done.

09-28-2011, 04:21 PM
I was thinking of doning the same. How did you wire the Dometic 13.5 in the garage?

09-28-2011, 05:07 PM
I was thinking of doning the same. How did you wire the Dometic 13.5 in the garage?

Hi bgassie,

Welcome to the Heartland Owners Forum and to the Family. We have a great bunch of people here with lots of information and all willing to share their knowledge if needed.

I'm sure you will get some help with the wiring soon. We have a lot of folks that do a lot of modifications and help each other with ideas and posting pictures of how they did it.

Enjoy the forum.

Jim M

12-09-2011, 05:49 PM
bgassie - I don't know if you ever found a solution for wiring your A/C in the garage, but I did add a 13.5K to mine. The 405 has two ceiling electical outlets in it under the loft and we only had a need for one, so covered one of the outlets and wired into the electrical run for it. It probably isn't as good a solution as wiring all the way to the fuse box and putting it on it's own circuit, but this was simpler, less costly and it works. We now have plenty of cool air for the dogs and I feel good about having them comfortable in their own space. We took the beds out of there and were able to keep it around 67 degrees in the heat of the day. We can only run two of the A/Cs at a time so it's either the garage and the bedroom or the garage and the living space, but we were cool all summer.

Back to my original comment though, because the garage wasn't pre-wired for A/C like the bedroom was, it cost me 30% more to put the same A/C in the garage than it did to add it in the bedroom. Besides that, after a season of camping I still love the 405 and (knock wood) I only had a few very minor issues with my unit that my dealer took care of under warranty with no problems.

12-09-2011, 08:11 PM
tmillio - Did you add any support to the roof for the garage ac? Why did it cost 30% more? Thanks for the help.

01-08-2012, 12:04 AM
tmillio - Did you add any support to the roof for the garage ac? Why did it cost 30% more? Thanks for the help.

I did not have to add support but because the fantastic fan is wired as 12 volt instead of 110, we left the fan in place and cut a new hole in the roof for the AC unit and so placed it in such a way the there was adequate support. Then we had to wire to the 110 outlet in the ceiling for an electrical source and put a thermostat on the wall to control the unit. That was more costly to do than it was in the bedroom because the bedroom was set up for A/C so all that had to be done was remove the existing fan, put in the new A/C unit and plug in to the pre-existing wiring that was there - that made the installation cost a lot less. If they would just do the same thing at the factory in the garage that they do in the bedroom it would be much easier for those of us that want to put A/C in the garage.