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Old 13-08-2008, 12:39   #1
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Need opinions on AC units

Have decided to put air conditioning on my M30, anyone have a suggestion as to which model to go with. I've looked at the Mermaid systems listed with Defender, but have found out they have had a lot of units returned with problems. I've also considered a 12 volt unit, but not sure it's worth the extra. All input greatly appreciated.
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Old 13-08-2008, 13:30   #2
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King Air

We have a 16,000 BTU unit made by King Air that is now 16 years old and still going strong. It is a single unit for a 42 foot boat in West Florida and keeps the boat as cold as fridge in summer and warm as toast in the winter. Several of our friends with other competing units that are more costly have commented on how quiet ours is and the fact that there is no vibration. King air can be found at KING-AIR - The Best in Marine Comfort .

You might also want to add a Mairmaid Condensator to deal with condensate (see Mermaid Condensator / Accessories / Marine Division / Home - Mermaid Manufacturing - Home of Mermaid Marine Air Conditioning ). The Condensator is quite effective if your pump is 500 GPM or better and you're using 5/8" hoses.

Good Luck!

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Old 13-08-2008, 13:54   #3
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A Morgan 30 might do well with only 12,000 BTU unit. We use 16,000 now. You really are not going ti run A/C on 12 volts and be cool without a generator. Even then you might still be better with AC power. 12,000 BTU's per hour requires better than 3500 watts of power assuming you had a perfect efficiency unit (nothing is). That would be about 3/4 of the contents in a 4 golf cart battery bank per hour.

Wiring this up takes attention to detail where running the ductwork is mostly vexing. It's worth the money to get a decent pump for the cooling water. March makes about the best and you can buy a spare head for it should that fail. Cal pumps are cheap and tend to act that way and impossible to service. You want the salt water supply line as short as possible and it requires it's own sea strainer and through hull. All the extras may or may not come with the AC unit but the quality of them matter a great deal. These door prizes add up to serious money as does the labor to install them.

We have a Mermaid now and we had a Cruisair before. Most all of them use a similar compressor that is sealed and unserviceable. Both were reverse cycle and heated exceptionally well if the water is above 50 degrees. You should look for units with a control head that sets a thermostat. It makes the use just like at home.
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Old 13-08-2008, 14:07   #4
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Follow the previous advice regarding March pumps - I had an OEM CruiseAir (Cal) pump blow apart on me and it wasn't pretty nor safe had I not been aboard to stop the incoming flood. Whatever mfg you choose, make sure it has a stainless drip pan - some do not and will rot out on you quickly. Lastly, depending on your location, the shipping cost may be excessive so consider buying one at a boat show where the price may not be that advantageous but you might be able to avoid shipping/tax if you are lucky.
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Old 13-08-2008, 14:50   #5
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For a recent discussion on A/C Pumps see Marine Air Conditioning Problems .

Cheers!

s/v HyLyte
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Old 13-08-2008, 15:21   #6
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I've got a flagship marine 18,500, been pretty happy with it so far and they build them in house as well as being local.
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Old 13-08-2008, 15:28   #7
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I have seen a few with various degrees of rusty drip pans, a corrosion resistant pan would be a plus in my book!
Steve
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Old 13-08-2008, 15:43   #8
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I had a ducted a/c water cooled unit. One thing I discovered when living on the hard for 8 weeks in Trinidad is you cant use it because it is water cooled. If they make them to work either air or water cooled that might be something to think about depending on your circumstances... or on that small boat just go with a hatch unit, much cheaper and easier.
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Old 13-08-2008, 18:30   #9
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How many watts?

Paul,

3500 watts? Are you sure about that figure? My 16,000 btu unit draws 10 amps at 115 volts. That's only 1150 watts. Am I missing something?

Regards,
Dan
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Old 13-08-2008, 19:48   #10
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My 16k BTU unit draws around 11 amps too and approx 15 amps upon startup. This bring up the consideration of what else you are simultaneously using and whether or not an M30 has separate 110VAC power sufficient to handle the total 110VAC demand
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Old 13-08-2008, 20:10   #11
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We have a 5800 BTU window unit on a 42'. We live in Charleston where summer this time of year can be brutal. Cools the boat very nicely! Considered at 18000 BTU from Flagship Marine who after much research I found to be among the best. Now I am sold on our window unit for $140.
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Old 15-08-2008, 13:07   #12
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Would like to thank everyone for the great input, a lot to consider (of course, sweating while doing it :-)
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