Quietest RV air conditioner: Air conditioners are essential and play an important role in every household. While newer models aren’t as noisy as older models, they sometimes can be noisy when you need ultimate silence.
In this article, I’ll be showing you different methods of air conditioner soundproofing using simple DIY soundproofing materials readily affordable and available on the market and also review the quietest RV air conditioner on the market today.
Things you need to know about RV air conditioner soundproofing
Before you embark on your soundproofing journey, here is what you should know. There are different types of air conditioners, and each AC presents unique problems in terms of quieting. Regardless of this, all AC’s have some things in common:
- They have compressors which are noisier than fans, and when almost worn out, they can be impossible to quiet down. Replacement will be the only option.
- Older AC’s are louder than newer units. This is because they are in the last days of their life cycle.
- Sometimes it cheaper to replace the AC than remodeling it against noise.
- Fan blades can be noisy when coated with dirty and can become imbalanced hence destroying the bearings. Clean them to reduce sound and also increase durability.
Some of the Quietest RV Air Conditioner Reviews
1. Dometic Polar White 15,000 BTU Conditioners
If you want an air conditioner that both efficient, quiet, and compact enough for small spaces, then Dometic RV air conditioner would be the perfect pick for you. It’s one of the quietest and lightest air conditioners for recreational vehicles.
Its housing is made of EPP foam, which makes it light. It weighs only 77 pounds. Additionally, this unit offers two cooling options- the 13,500 and 15,000 BTU and can be installed ducted or non-ducted, so either you want the unit to cool a specific room or cool the entire RV-this AC will work just fine.
- Lightweight, compact, and ultra-quiet
- Two power option available
- It can be installed ducted or ductless
- It’s only for cooling
2. Furrion Chill FACR14SA-PS RV Air Conditioner
The Furrion Chill gives sufficient performance at only 14.6 Amps- its energy efficient. Besides being energy efficient, this AC unit reduces operating noise up to 61 decibels (dB), and therefore you won’t worry about the AC being noisy.
The Furrion CHILL is pleasantly quiet, cools RV down faster, and its sleek aero design differentiates the AC from other rooftop units. It comes with 14,500BTU capacity and utilizes dual fans allowing it to operate more efficiently.
In addition, the RV air conditioner is designed to fit both ducted and non-ducted systems. It’s painted with a durable UV coating that protects scorching summer sun hence preventing it from fading.
- It’s quiet- operating at 61 decibels
- Fits both ducted and non-ducted cooling systems
- Energy efficient
- It doesn’t have the interior piece that controls the temperature and fan. However, you can purchase these separately.
3. AIRXCEL 08-0080 Mach
If you don’t care about aerodynamics and want an AC unit for your RV that’s going to get the job done quietly, the Airxcel is a good option for you.
It has a power consumption of 1,800 watts and a cooling capacity of 15,000BTU and heating capacity of 5,600BTU. It’s designed for both ducted and non-ducted heating and cooling systems.
In terms of aerodynamics, this unit isn’t designed for that purpose, unlike the Dometic and Furrion AC. However, there are several things that make it unique: it’s a lightweight and quiet RV air conditioner.
- It’s a 15,000 BTU AC
- It’s lightweight
- Designed for ducted systems only
- Not too aerodynamic
4. Atwood 15026 Non-Ducted A/C Unit
If you’re looking for a non-ducted quiet AC unit for your RV, then this Atwood air conditioner is a good option for you.
It should be noted that since 2017, Atwood AC’s have been sold by Dometic, but this one seems to be an older model when Atwood still sold their air conditioners. I had this model installed in my RV back in 2016 and served me for two years before I could upgrade. I found it to be quieter than its predecessors and perhaps it’s the quietest RV AC on my list.
Performance-wise, it might not be the best, however, if you are looking for just quietness and don’t care about anything else, I would highly recommend this AC. One thing I hated about this unit is the weight. Therefore if you’re going to buy it, make sure that your RV roof is going to support it.
- It has a cooling capacity of 15,000 BTU
- It’s very quiet
- It’s highly suitable for local applications
- It’s heavy- weighs about 99 pounds
- Not for ducted systems
What to look for in a quiet RV Air Conditioner/ Quiet Camper AC Unit
Before you invest your hard earned money in an Air conditioner unit, it’s important to keep the following in mind. Below are some of the key features and specifications that you should consider when buying a quiet camper AC unit.
Cooling capacity is an essential factor in any AC unit because it’s the only reason why people invest in them. It’s measured in British thermal units per hour (BTU). Below is a chart that will help you determine the best amount of BTU you should opt for when shopping for an air conditioner. (Source)
|Area (square feet)||Capacity (BTUs per hour)|
|100 up to 150||5,000|
|150 up to 250||6,000|
|250 up to 300||7,000|
|300 up to 350||8,000|
|350 up to 400||9,000|
|400 up to 450||10,000|
|450 up to 550||12,000|
|550 up to 700||14,000|
|700 up to 1,000||18,000|
|1,000 up to 1,200||21,000|
|1,200 up to 1,400||23,000|
|1,400 up to 1,500||24,000|
|1,500 up to 2,000||30,000|
|2,000 up to 2,500||34,000|
To measure the indoor are of your recreational vehicle is a very simple task. Simply multiply the length and the width to get the area in square feet. If you’re going to install the AC in a single room of your RV, simply calculate the area of the particular room.
According to Energy Star, to get the best out of your air conditioner use the following tips
- Reduce the BTU capacity by 10% if the room is heavily shaded
- Increase the BTU capacity by 10% if the room is sunny
- If more than two people occupy the room, it’s advised to add 600BTUs for every additional person
- If you will use the AC unit in the kitchen, increase the BTU’s by 4,000
Rooftop versus under-bench Ac
Rooftop AC’s don’t take up space, unlike under-bench units. If you’re highly limited on space, it’s recommended you choose a rooftop RV air conditioner. In addition, rooftop models can be installed either ducted or non-ducted, unlike under the bench models which can only be installed ducted.
However, there are several downsides of using rooftop units.
- They can obstruct rooftop windows
- Add your RV’s height hence affecting aerodynamics
- They are not the best for heating
Ducted versus Non-Ducted
Whether ducted or not, this is just a matter of preference and either way, and you get cooling required.
However, it’s important to note that ducted AC is connected to your vehicle’s ducting system in order to evenly distribute cool air. On the other hand, non-ducted blows air in whatever direction the nozzles are facing.
The height of an air conditioner is an important factor as it will determine if you can install it under the bench or rooftop. When installed on rooftop, the height will influence aerodynamics hence affecting the overall fuel efficiency of your car.
In addition, height clearance is also very important. For example, if your RV is tall, you will have problems when cruising under certain bridges or tunnels when you have a tall rooftop AC installed. So if your RV is tall, make sure that you check the height of the air conditioner you’re interested in.
How To Quiet RV AC: 4 Ways To Reduce RV Air Conditioning Noise
There are different ways you can make your RV AC quieter. Noise is measured in decibels (dB). According to the studies conducted at different universities such as Simon Fraser University and Purdue University, sounds between 115-140 decibels can cause ear damage (Source).
Even though most of the air conditioning units are rated between 70- 75 decibels (compared to TV or living room music), this level of noise can still be a disturbance. So how can you decrease it? Read below to find out.
1. Choose the location carefully
Carefully select the location of your heat pumps and air conditioners when installing them. It’s important to install any RV thermal control system away from part of rooms with frequent activity. This will help reduce noise disruption in your day.
2. Use a noise blanket
It’s a rule of thumb that, when you want to soundproof anything, the more the mass, the better and so does the rule apply when soundproofing a recreational vehicle air conditioner.
Adding a layer of soundproofing blanket is an easy job when it comes to sound-insulating an AC.
You can use this soundproofing acoustic blanket to help you deal with the noise problem. These sound blankets are cheaper and will eliminate the noise problem in very few simple basic steps.
You will need to install the sound dampening blanket around the compressor of your RV air conditioning unit. Wrap the blanket around the compressor, and you should see up to 40% noise reduction. However, if you’re having a problem locating the compressor, its best to your technician install it for you. Wrapping the compressor will insulate it and reduce compressor noise without compromising the AC’s performance and efficiency.
I would recommend the Brinmar SBUHD Universal AC. It’s designed for compressors and can fit different model and sizes of RV air conditioners.
The blanket is fitted with hook and loop closures that will easily attach. Because it’s designed specifically for AC compressors it is designed with air circulation in mind and hence no overheating will occur.
3. Perform regular maintenance
Like your RV, an air conditioner requires maintenance as well. Some AC systems get clogs, some parts wear out, and this may cause the unit to become noisy because they are not functioning to the optimum.
Regular maintenance including changing filters, clearing seasonal debris, clearing drains will not only ensure that the RV functions optimally but also make it operate much quieter. Some of the benefits of regular maintenance of your RV air conditioning include:
- Improved air quality
- Noise reduction
- Longer appliance lifespan
- Energy efficiency
Final thoughts on quietest RV air conditioner
That’s it from me today. I hope you now have a better understanding of air conditioner noise reduction and some of the best quietest RV air conditioner you get on the market today. You can learn more about quiet products and soundproofing. You can check my article on quiet performance mufflers for RV here.