Cool My Camper

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Frequently Asked Questions

Suitability

Will the unit work with my model motorhome/caravan/camper?

There are too many variables for us to confirm the brackets will fit the windows in specific models. If the bottom of the window is level and does not have a blind housing at the base there is a good chance the brackets will fit without issue. On accommodation with a folding or rolling blind at the bottom of the window removing the clamp on the bracket often means the unit will fit the window. We do however offer the facility for customers to borrow (with a returnable deposit) a pair of brackets to check suitability.

Do these work? Are they any good?

These units work well but do not match the performance of larger roof top air conditioning units. If it is hot outside these units bring welcome cooling air to a space where you can take shelter. In larger accommodation this may cool the lounge area only but it will reduce the temperature throughout the van. Unlike a mechanical or water cooled fan these units use refrigeration to remove heat from your space. Unlike a fan, air conditioning removes moisture from the air, lowering the humidity inside your habitation. One benefit of having a/c at a lower level is the cold air can cool you more rapidly rather like the blast of cold air you get from a cars air conditioning vent. Remember you can check Trust Pilot for reviews from customer's including their recommendations and findings.

Can I see this unit working and test it out before I purchase?

You can visit our showroom in Essendine, near the Georgian town of Stamford, see a unit working and understand whether it is right for you.  The demonstration unit is sited on the side of a caravan and in a room so you will be able to feel the benefit of the cooling and understand further how the brackets work.  Please call our office if you would like to visit we are open office hours Monday to Friday.

What temperature will it take my van down to?

We, nor anyone else, can claim that your accommodation will achieve any specific target temperature during the day because there are just too many variables to take into account. Solar gain through the poorly insulated roof, wall and windows of caravans and motorhomes is significant and any air conditioning unit is going to have a fight to try and achieve a low target temperature. Suffice to say, during the day these units will provide comfort cooling for you or your animals*. Once the sun goes down they will achieve the set target temperature. *Please note we do not recommend leaving animals in a vehicle alone all day just in case, like some European sites, the power trips!

I don’t have a suitable window. Can I disconnect the cord and pass this through a hole in the wall?

This is a refrigerant air conditioning unit. The umbilical cord between the two units contains 3 lines for refrigerant, two 230v flexible cables and a discharge tube for condensate. Disconnection of these components cannot be undertaken by the end user as refrigerant gas will be released and this will present a danger to the user and the environment. For a permanent installation customers can ask a suitably qualified person to remove the gas and disconnect the pipework. This will enable the pipe work to pass through a wall and be reconnected. The unit will then need re-gassing to operate. This operation would only make economic sense in a permanent installation i.e. a barge, static caravan or garden buiding.

Is it easy to install and remove?

Yes and like most things this becomes easier with practice.

With a helper: Go outside. Fit the hanging brackets to the exterior unit with the knurled knobs supplied. Positioning both units temporarily on a table can make this easier. Pass the interior (fan) unit through the window to your helper on the inside. Lift the exterior unit up and hang on the window.

On your own: Stay in your van. Fit the hanging brackets to the exterior unit with the knurled knobs supplied. Pass the exterior through the open window and hang on the window. Then position the fan unit on the brackets supplied or on a table/worktop.

How much do these weigh?

The combined weight is 19.4Kg.

Can the unit be hung on my motorhome’s cab door?

The units are not suitable for hanging from the top of a partially opened glass window.

Is it possible to see a unit working before I buy one?

We have a demonstration unit available in our premises. The unit hangs on a section of a caravan wall.

Can I use this on a boat, barge or yacht?

Yes if you have use of shore electrical supply or have an appropriate inverter you can use this unit on your vessel.

Can these units be used while my vehicle is in motion?

The mounting brackets supplied are not designed for use while a vehicle is in motion. It would be reckless and dangerous to use this equipment when on the road.

Can these units be permanently fixed in place in a static caravan or chalet?

The mounting brackets supplied are not designed for permanent use. Some customers have undertaken fabrication of brackets to suit their needs.

Does the inside unit have to be positioned above the outside unit?

Condensate water that collects inside the indoor (evaporative unit) is pumped out periodically when the water reaches a certain level. So the indoor unit can be positioned lower than the outdoor unit if needed.

Can I use this upside down, on its side or laying down?

Unlike a 3-way fridge this unit is a pumped refrigerant system so does not rely on gravity to work. However both units need to be used vertically so that the compressor is effectively cooled by the oil and the condensate can be collected.

Will this work on a 12 volt system? Can I run this on a solar panel? Will this work on an inverter?

All units require 230v mains electrical supply. Customers can of course use an inverter to utilise power from batteries and solar panels to provide the 230v required. Be sure to size the inverter and batteries to suit your needs. We recommend the use of a pure sine inverter as they are kinder to electronic components.

I’m worried about security; will I be able to shut my windows when using this? Can the equipment be stolen?

On most windows the fasteners can be positioned on the second (trickle ventilation) catch providing as good a level of security as a plastic window can provide. On some window designs the catches can be fully closed. Theft of the outside unit is unlikely as the compressor and condenser unit (outside) is physically connected to the evaporator fan unit (inside).

Does the Cool My Camper unit come with a bag for storage?

A bag is not provided with the air conditioning unit however if you would like to purchase one we would suggest Bags4Everything who can be found on line or another similar company.

Operation

Is it noisy?

The standard unit is relatively quiet and makes as much noise as a dishwasher operating in the next room. The high output unit is louder but still manageable and both units can be switched to a lower fan speed once the temperature has been brought down to something more comfortable.

Does it heat?

No. There is no heat pump on this equipment. In the winter months our users leave this at home and use the habitation heating or take a fan heater away.

Can you control the temperature?

When first switched on the unit operates at the fastest fan speed and maximum cooling. The push button controls allow users to select a certain temperature that is maintained by the unit. This flexibility allows the user more control i.e. providing a lower level of cooling after dusk.

Does this unit dehumidify the accommodation? Does the unit have to be switched off to empty out water?

Unlike a fan air conditioning removes moisture from the air and lowers the humidity inside your habitation. Condensation forms on the cold surface of the evaporator (the inside fan unit) and runs down into a collection tray in the bottom of the unit. When the condensate water reaches a certain level the water is pumped out of the unit through the umbilical cord to the compressor unit outside. Here the cold water trickles over the fins on the condenser which helps cooling and washes away loose dust.

Note: When packing up to move users should switch the unit off for at least 20 minutes before packing away to allow any ice crystals on the evaporator to defrost and run off into the collection tray. Then simply hold the fan unit out of the window and remove the rubber bung under the fan unit to allow this to drain away before stowing the unit for travel.

Can I leave this outside if there is a shower of rain? Is it safe?

The exterior unit has an IP rating that makes it safe for use outside and the unit does not need to be removed if it is raining. The unit should not be subjected to a direct jet of water under pressure from a hose or a jet wash.

I have a table or worktop directly under the window. Will we get better results if the fan unit is used there rather than on the window bracket?

The fan on these units is quite powerful however you will get even better performance if the unit can sit on a table or worktop just inside the window.

Is there a lot of vibration?

Not really the compressor unit does have rubber feet to space the unit off the exterior wall which can reduce vibration further with correct adjustment.

Installation

Can I detach the umbilical cord?

The umbilical cord between the two units contains 3 lines for refrigerant, two 230v flexible cables and a discharge tube for condensate. Disconnection of these components cannot be undertaken by the end user as refrigerant gas will be released and this will present a danger to the user and the environment. For a permanent installation customers can ask a suitably qualified person to remove the gas and disconnect the pipe work. This will enable the pipe work to pass through a wall and be reconnected. The unit will then need re-gassing to operate. This operation would only make economic sense in a permanent installation i.e. a barge, static caravan or garden building.

Can these units be installed on my roof?

Both units must stay upright when in use. This would make this type of installation difficult but a few have tried and succeeded.

How flexible is the umbilical cord?

The fixed umbilical cord between the two units is flat and contains 6 lines detailed above. The condensate tube and electrical flex are fully flexible. The gas lines are nylon 6.0mm tubing the likes of which are used in pneumatic control systems, fuel lines, and are described as flexible. In practice this means that relatively tight bends can be made but sharp corners are not possible.

How long is the umbilical between the two units?

Units are currently available with an umbilical cord 1120mm (44 inches) long and are suitable for installations where the exterior compressor unit hangs on the window on the brackets provided. The internal fan unit can be positioned on the detachable window brackets or can sit on a table or worktop near the window. The fan unit can only be positioned within 2 feet of the window.

Other mounting options caravan owners with a front lounge and a flat A-Frame can often sit the compressor on the towing frame and position the fan on the table or shelf inside. Some caravan owners who do not have a suitable faring have told us that they use a cheap picnic table and position the condensor unit on this.

How thick is the umbilical cord?

The cord is flat and is 9 mm thick and 50mm wide

Power

Will the unit work on European voltage? Can the unit work on 110v?

In 1994, to remove a perceived barrier to trade between European countries, the European Commission (EC) decided to ‘harmonise’ the standard UK mains voltage of 240V and the European standard of 220V at 230V. All units will operate on UK and EU power supplies. The equipment cannot be used on 110v – a step-up transformer would be required.

What is the power required 220v or 12v or both?

As above the unit will work on 230v AC – this means it is safe to operate on 220v and 240v. Customers can of course use an inverter to utilise power from batteries and solar panels to provide the 230v required. Be sure to size the inverter and batteries to suit your needs. We recommend the use of a pure sine inverter as they are kinder to electronic components.

How many amps does it draw? What is the peak and start-up power?

This unit will operate all day on a 3, 5 or 6 amp electrical hook-up without tripping a MCB. There are five electrical components in the system: Compressor, Condenser Fan, Evaporator Fan, Condensate Pump and the Control Panel. When running the units will draw 1.53 amps. Users need not worry about tripping MCBs when the unit is first switched on as the intelligent system soft-starts the electrical motors and thus keeps start-up (or inrush current) under 3 amps for less than a second.

Warranty & Maintenance

What is the return policy?

Customers can change their mind within 14 days of delivery and return unused items to us for a no quibble refund.

What warranty or guarantee is offered?

A two year return to base warranty is offered with all units. For equipment outside of warranty we are able to service, repair and replace components on customer’s equipment and offer favourable labour rates and a courier collection and delivery service. Please contact us for details.

My car air conditioning needs the gas to be topped up every couple of years. Is this the same?

In all air conditioning systems a small amount of refrigerant gas is lost from the system each year. When air conditioning units no longer run cold or the air from the evaporators is not as cold as you would like it is time to re-gas the system. These air conditioning systems use pneumatic tube manufactured from nylon so have a low loss of refrigerant gas. Users should not need to re-gas a unit until it is at least 3 years old.

Important EU Law put in place in 2010 to protect the environment effectively means that end users should not remove or release fluorinated refrigerant gas from air conditioning equipment. While equipment to re-gas a system is readily available from retailers the costs are prohibitive and these kits do not come with the guidance required (nor the adapter required to fit a push-on automotive service valve to the Schrader service valve on a/c units). In short – get your unit re-gassed by someone who knows what they are doing and qualified to F-Gas - C&G 2079 Cat I & II. Existing customers can bring their units to us where we will recover, re-gas and leak check their unit while they wait for £38.40 inc VAT - please contact us if you wish to book this service.

Are spare parts available?

There are no user serviceable parts and we will only supply a selection of replacement components to companies or individuals who are qualified to undertake repairs and hold a F-Gas - C&G 2079 Cat I & II qualification. That said, we are able to service, repair and replace components our customer’s equipment and offer favourable labour rates with a courier collection and delivery service. Please contact us for details.

Delivery

Can I arrange for a unit to be sent to my European campsite?

Yes, if you are on site and desperately need to cool down we can arrange a courier deliver to your campsite. Please contact us for a competitive price.

Commercial and distribution

Do you have a distributor in USA/Australia/Africa?

No, not yet. We are a UK based and deliver to all European destinations served by our logistics company.

Are you looking for agents in USA/Australia/Africa?

If you are interested in becoming an agent contact us with your proposal and company details. While we are not actively seeking agents we may consider opening dialogue with interested parties.