Author Topic: Camping Air Conditioner? Winner? What do you think?  (Read 1729 times)

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Offline Jon Burrell - Tentworld

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Camping Air Conditioner? Winner? What do you think?
« on: December 19, 2019, 04:50:08 PM »
Hi Swaggers, 

I've recently been chatting with James who is from Western Australia and is the inventor of the low power consumption, portable air conditioner called the Close Comfort. 

This video that James features in, is a great explainer of the Close Comfort and how you'd use it.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s3Odi2wO05k

They sell two models, one that has thermostatic control and costs $699 and another which just goes flatout until you turn if off for $549. 



You can visit the website for Close Comfort here:  https://www.closecomfort.com/au/shop-products/

They were originally designed for the purpose of providing cheap personal cooling around the home, or in countries where mains power is less reliable.  For instance, most of South Africa is suffering from load shedding, where they shut off entire suburbs for hours at a time.  This means most households have generators for their fridges, and sometimes have some spare capacity for a small air conditioner - for those very humid unpleasant nights.  But of course, if they wanted to run their household air conditioner - the generator required would be massive.

The Close Comfort uses 300W though, so the power consumption is lowish - but still pretty hefty if you're wanting to run it from batteries.

My question to you, is would you like to see these featured in our stores & more importantly - can you see yourself using one for camping, and being able to supply enough power to it to run through the night?  How would you power it?

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts. 

Happy Camping! 

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Offline tryagain

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Re: Camping Air Conditioner? Winner? What do you think?
« Reply #1 on: December 20, 2019, 05:00:09 AM »
Hi Swaggers, 

I've recently been chatting with James who is from Western Australia and is the inventor of the low power consumption, portable air conditioner called the Close Comfort. 

This video that James features in, is a great explainer of the Close Comfort and how you'd use it.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s3Odi2wO05k

They sell two models, one that has thermostatic control and costs $699 and another which just goes flatout until you turn if off for $549. 



You can visit the website for Close Comfort here:  https://www.closecomfort.com/au/shop-products/

They were originally designed for the purpose of providing cheap personal cooling around the home, or in countries where mains power is less reliable.  For instance, most of South Africa is suffering from load shedding, where they shut off entire suburbs for hours at a time.  This means most households have generators for their fridges, and sometimes have some spare capacity for a small air conditioner - for those very humid unpleasant nights.  But of course, if they wanted to run their household air conditioner - the generator required would be massive.

The Close Comfort uses 300W though, so the power consumption is lowish - but still pretty hefty if you're wanting to run it from batteries.

My question to you, is would you like to see these featured in our stores & more importantly - can you see yourself using one for camping, and being able to supply enough power to it to run through the night?  How would you power it?

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts.

My take is that it is basically a cooling fan, not really low enough power to run off a standard battery setup, so you would need a powered site. If you have a powered site, then you can get much bigger capacity portable AC at the same price point that will use more power but cool a lot more effectively, and as the site is unlikely metered, then the increased electricity costs are covered by the site.

If you are running off of a generator, again you can probably run a portable unit with a larger cooling capacity, might use a bit more fuel but probably not a massive consideration.

Portable ACs do have a drawback by expelling hot air outside and therefore drawing fresh but unchilled air in, but it doesn't look like this is really any better by just expelling the hot air into the same space. The small tent is a little bit more interesting of a set up, but not sure how practical bit would be in reality.

I think that there might be a market for a small portable AC in the camping and caravan space, but one where it draws and expels the warm/hot air outside and just cools and recycles the air inside would be the ideal, similar to the way the the diesel/gas heaters work.

Offline Jon Burrell - Tentworld

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Re: Camping Air Conditioner? Winner? What do you think?
« Reply #2 on: December 20, 2019, 12:13:28 PM »
My take is that it is basically a cooling fan, not really low enough power to run off a standard battery setup, so you would need a powered site. If you have a powered site, then you can get much bigger capacity portable AC at the same price point that will use more power but cool a lot more effectively, and as the site is unlikely metered, then the increased electricity costs are covered by the site.

If you are running off of a generator, again you can probably run a portable unit with a larger cooling capacity, might use a bit more fuel but probably not a massive consideration.

Portable ACs do have a drawback by expelling hot air outside and therefore drawing fresh but unchilled air in, but it doesn't look like this is really any better by just expelling the hot air into the same space. The small tent is a little bit more interesting of a set up, but not sure how practical bit would be in reality.

I think that there might be a market for a small portable AC in the camping and caravan space, but one where it draws and expels the warm/hot air outside and just cools and recycles the air inside would be the ideal, similar to the way the the diesel/gas heaters work.

Thanks TryAgain, yeah, one hefty battery system to be able to power that for 8 hours for sleep.  Although I guess it could be nice to shoot at you during the day under the shelter?

The tent is actually pretty nifty - James showed it to me, folds the same as Popup shower tents etc.  It would work very well at home on your queen bed.  No doubt it'd be much cheaper to cool than the entire room.  I suppose for renters too, if they dont have AC and/or lack of ventilation it could be a good way to go? 

Offgrid use would also be good, if you've got a large solar bank - and generator for top up. 

But yes, I am struggling to see it being used directly for camping.  Power consumption really has to be more like tops 10 amps per hour, and even then... thats still a big battery system. 

But I've been wrong before about what can and will be taken camping!! To get the opinions from the brains trust!! 
Happy Camping! 

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Offline Marcus73

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Re: Camping Air Conditioner? Winner? What do you think?
« Reply #3 on: December 20, 2019, 06:37:35 PM »
It’d be a no from me. It’s great in theory but once again not practical for what I do.


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Offline geopaj

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Re: Camping Air Conditioner? Winner? What do you think?
« Reply #4 on: December 20, 2019, 09:39:00 PM »
I reckon you’d be better off with a normal portable refrigerated a/c. 

This one is $299 from Bunnings, is 7000btu, and is only 3.5kg heavier. It is 800w, vs Cool Focus 300w - which means the Arlen one would use more power (wouldn’t matter in a caravan pk and could still be run of many generators) and would have muck more effective cooling capacity. With a hot air outlet hose, the Arlen would probably be easier to use in tent/camper/caravan too.

https://www.bunnings.com.au/arlec-7000btu-portable-air-conditioner-with-timer-and-remote_p4442034
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Offline Anakist

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Re: Camping Air Conditioner? Winner? What do you think?
« Reply #5 on: December 21, 2019, 11:51:04 AM »
Has a draw of 1800w for 5 - 15 msec. Sounds like just a normal on or off compressor and is 240v.

And the website is light on details and heavy on marketeering. They haven't made an outstanding product, they have just made another cheap portable aircon, and made it too small to cool a room. I agree with all the other comments - too big for camping and too small for household. Can you imaging having to fight your way out of that tent in the middle of the night for a pee?

James

Offline Jon Burrell - Tentworld

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Re: Camping Air Conditioner? Winner? What do you think?
« Reply #6 on: January 04, 2020, 04:52:51 PM »
Thank you all for your feedback - yes it is a particular set of circumstances in order for this unit to be appealing.  I had thought maybe there was more people who would have these circumstances when camping - but seems not! Glad I Asked!





Happy Camping! 

Browse our range, and shop online at:
https://www.tentworld.com.au/
Find your local Tentworld Camping Store at: 
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