Originally Posted by Jrmay25
Heat strips are addons that go inside the AC housing and produce heat. I believe most are rated around 1500w which is standard for a space heater but I think the problem is the incoming fresh air blows across them too heavily for them to be very effective. Any I have had do ok if the outside temp is no colder than 55* or so. When it gets much colder than that they seem to blow mostly cool air.
Rustic Eagle's post is exactly what I experienced just a few days ago. I bought one from a local RV dealers parts stock and installed it into my Airxcel (Coleman) rooftop A/C. It was easy. My ceiling unit was made to accept a heat strip; it came with a receptacle for the plug. So, I dropped the ceiling unit, bolted the heat strip into place, plugged it in, put the ceiling unit back in place and turned it on. It started blowing cold air. I thought it needed time to warm up, but it never did. So I assumed the electrical feed or circuit might be bad, but it tested OK. I removed it and returned it. (It was a stock part so they took it back. The parts rep told me if it was a special order, it could not be returned.)
I have to agree with Rustic Eagle that the volume of air dissapates any heat before you feel it. On a follow-up call, a factory rep told me they aren't effective until about 60 degrees.