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Old 04-26-2019, 08:28 AM   #1
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Adding a 2nd a/c in rear bedroom

Hey guys and gals, I have searched this forum and several others without success. I am adding a 2nd ac to replace the air vent in the ceiling in the rear bedroom. I know I will have to buy 2 soft starters in order to run the of my genny. Im thinking about the easy start 364. What I need is info on wiring and how to run the wires. It would be great if they came pre wired but that would be to good to be true. I have seen posts where several people have had 2nd acs installed by shops and I'm sure some have DIYed it. I am very handy, have tools and an inflated self confidence with just enough brains to get into trouble. Any help would be great.
Oh and I have a 2019 Forrest River forrester 3251DSLE.Click image for larger version

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Old 04-29-2019, 07:27 AM   #2
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I'll be following this thread to see input. I do know that some have used a separate power cord for the second ac. Can plug main 30amp line into 50amp outlet with adapter, and second ac into 30 amp outlet. I suppose you might could even use the 30 and 15 amp outlets if that's all they had on site.
Good luck. The one ac is the only big complaint I have about my
Forester. I heard a rumour that the new model 2019-2020 will have second ac option but still only 30 amp service and second power cord. Haven't see one yet though.
2018 Forester 3011 DS

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Old 04-29-2019, 07:50 AM   #3
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Last year I priced out everything I needed to add a second AC (non ducted Atwood) to the bedroom using a separate 30 amp cord. Talked to my dealer about doing the work and he said there is no way to wire it in without tearing into the ceiling and making it look bad so I gave up and bought a Fridgidaire portable that fits nicely up front by the driver and passenger seats. The exhaust duct goes out the drivers window and I power it with a #12 extension cord hooked up to the pedestal on the 20 amp plug. Reduces the temperature about 5 degrees which keeps the DW happy and that is all that really matters. I still would rather have the second AC in the bedroom though.
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Old 04-29-2019, 07:52 AM   #4
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You can certainly run two 13.5kw roof air conditioners off of normal 30amp RV service... but most people don't realize that their battery Charger/Converter, electric Water Heater, and other things are also running in the background, which can trip the breaker, making them think that it's not possible. Sometimes campground 30amp breakers are also weak from overuse and trip too quickly.

We've run both ours many times in the hottest and humid times with no issues, but I turn off the water heater, turn down/off the battery charger, and monitor our other outlets during that time. I turn off one a/c unit for the few minutes when needing the microwave, etc.

But, having said that, it makes sense if adding an additional 13.5kw roof air conditioner to keep it simple and run it's own 20amp extension cord pigtail so that you can use the additional 15/20amp outlet at the campground. Generally, the a/c unit can operate from a 15amp outlet as long as the fan and compressor don't start at the same time. Most newer a/c units separate the two timings, making it an easier proposition.
Even if the campground didn't have the additional 15/20amp outlet, you could plug it back into one of your outside outlets, or one inside the coach, on a circuit that is not being heavily used, and run both thru your own 30amp connection.

You could add the a/c unit on the roof, and run the pigtail/extension cord down to the ground, versus trying to handle the wiring inside the coach. The wiring could just ride on the roof, wrapped around the a/c unit, while traveling. We do our satellite antenna the same way.

I'm sure the 'easy start' products might give you more confidence, but I also think it's very possible that you don't necessarily need them.

Your generator's ability to run both will depend on it's Amperage output. A typical 4kw gas generator will have a ~33amp output, generally to a 15amp and 20amp onboard breaker set, feeding both back to your Main panel. If you are cautious about your other usages, you may find that you CAN run both at the same time while on the generator, though you may have to trip your Converter's breaker in order to keep it from also trying to charge the batteries at the same time, which may also leave you without lights and other 12v items during that time.

: ) give it a try...

(of course, there are also portable a/c units that can plug into a regular outlet and the unit is on wheels and can sit inside the coach anywhere you want it to, though it may need a vent or drip line out a door or window)
We use a lot of small 120v fans around our coach, too, as air movement is really just as important as the temperature itself.

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'14 Thor Palazzo 33.3 compact diesel 100k+miles since '14... US, Alaska, Canada...
AND a '14 Gulfstream Amerlite
AND a '07 ForestRIver Rockwood : )
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Old 04-30-2019, 12:36 AM   #5
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I have considered adding a second air conditioner to our bedroom also, however the thermostat for the ducted unit is in the bedroom and would need to be relocated. Concealing the wires is also a concern. It is only wired for a 12 volt fan.
2017 Forester 3051S
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Old 04-30-2019, 05:04 AM   #6
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Be careful. The Dunning-Kruger effect can bite you!
2020 Grand Design 337RLS
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Old 05-04-2019, 05:31 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Anderson15 View Post
Be careful. The Dunning-Kruger effect can bite you!
Yes it can if you dont know your limitations.
In those cases I leave it to the so called professionals who at least own the proper tools and equipment.
2017 Forester 3051S
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Old 05-04-2019, 11:55 PM   #8
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I have a 2017 Forrester 3011 and do a lot of desert camping. My way might be a little redneck but works just fine for me. I have a window unit, the kind you buy for your house. I keep it in my outside compartment, the one under the bed room when it's not in use. When I'm camping, I have it on a platform and put it in my emergency window inbthe bedroom. I run it off a Honda gen that I keep under the RV. I also built a window fill that goes around the AC and covers the remaining part of the open window.

When I run this AC, and my roof AC my RV easily stays inbthe 70s inside when it is 110 outside.

To help with cooling, I also keep the slides in to limit the amount of space that needs to be cooled, have limo tint all around and blacked out all roof vents.

Obviously, cant do it while driving but we do it when we are boondocking and staying in Vegas during the summer.
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