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Old 06-03-2024, 08:40 PM   #1
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5th Wheel, Running A/C while driving

Thinking about running AC while driving.

Later this week will be driving from Zion to Las Vegas. About a 2 1/2 hour drive. Towing a Pinnacle 5th Wheel. Pinnacle has 3 AC units. Because of the high temps, 110 deg. Thinking about doing the drive with 1 AC unit turned on.

Could run the AC from the generator. Or, could run from inverter. Have a 3000 watt inverter, 600 AH of battery, and 60 amp DC-DC charger from truck to 5th Wheel.

Leaning towards running AC on inverter.

Curious what others think about running the AC while driving and if so which power option.
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Old 06-04-2024, 02:15 AM   #2
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I have run 2 off my generator while driving, most the last hour or so. Just like running them in a motor home while driving. Sounds like your inverter set up can handle it.
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Old 06-04-2024, 05:22 AM   #3
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We do the same as Learjet, remote start it some time before our destination to cool things down. If I were running in 110 degree heat I darn sure would have two running. Always ran the genny and roof A/Cs on our previous motorhome to keep cool while driving.
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Old 06-04-2024, 05:24 AM   #4
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Both ways will work for a few hours. I would try both.
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Old 06-04-2024, 10:04 AM   #5
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Since I am not set up to run an A/C while moving, I can not provide my experience. But I suspect those that have tried it will tell you it is good to go. Those who will not try it themselves will tell you not to do it.

Personally, If I had an inverter setup that I trusted could run an A/C, I would give it a whirl for 30 minutes or an hour on one A/C. Even getting a short start on cooling is helpful. On the other hand, I am not sure I would run an on board generator to power a fifth wheel A/C, but I am sure there are thousands who do and I suspect if I knew the road conditions were excellent I may even give that a short try. The last hour in to LV is decent.

We had to overnight last week in 107. with a 4PM arrival. It was hot, but airflow of the AC helps even when the temperature is not cool yet. Plus, the Bedroom cools significantly faster, so we hung out in there to enjoy the post set up beer and it was not too bad.
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Old 06-07-2024, 08:13 AM   #6
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98 when I got to my destination yesterday. Ran both ACs 45 mins before arrival and it helped a lot. Plus generator needed to be run. Got to my spot and the 50 amp plug was burnt like I never seen before. I kept the gen running and waited for maintenance to change it out.

Then I got busy cleaning the hydraulic fluid off the front of the trailer and truck. Got sprayed by a piece of construction equipment with a busted line. Oh the adventures
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Old 06-07-2024, 08:24 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RDTC View Post
Thinking about running AC while driving.

Could run the AC from the generator. Or, could run from inverter. Have a 3000 watt inverter, 600 AH of battery, and 60 amp DC-DC charger from truck to 5th Wheel.
ning towards running AC on inverter.
.
Running the AC? good idea

Running on Inverter? Not so sure.

A 1500W load for your AC can draw upwards to 125A from your inverter. A 60A bridge from your Truck to Trailer is not going to handle a 60A load for very long, yet having additional load on your coach batteries. I would play it safer and use the On board Generator and run 2 of your AC's since much of your travel will be over 110F.
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Old 06-07-2024, 09:40 AM   #8
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Well, the inverter option did not work. The inverter over heated and shut down. The drive was 2 1/2 hours. Not sure how long the inverter ran before shutting down. The high temperatures with the heavy loads, was too much for the system to handle.

Had to cool down the inverter before I could setup. Took about 20 minutes with a battery powered leaf blower. Batteries were at 72%.

The ideal option would have been to run the generator and probably 2 AC units.

Learjet, was the construction equipment working on the side of the road or in tow on a trailer.
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Old 06-07-2024, 12:59 PM   #9
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Well, the inverter option did not work. The inverter over heated and shut down. The drive was 2 1/2 hours. Not sure how long the inverter ran before shutting down. The high temperatures with the heavy loads, was too much for the system to handle.

Had to cool down the inverter before I could setup. Took about 20 minutes with a battery powered leaf blower. Batteries were at 72%.

The ideal option would have been to run the generator and probably 2 AC units.

Learjet, was the construction equipment working on the side of the road or in tow on a trailer.
Thanks for reporting back. Did you try running the A/C the whole drive?
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Old 06-07-2024, 02:55 PM   #10
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Well, the inverter option did not work. The inverter over heated and shut down. The drive was 2 1/2 hours. Not sure how long the inverter ran before shutting down. The high temperatures with the heavy loads, was too much for the system to handle.

Had to cool down the inverter before I could setup. Took about 20 minutes with a battery powered leaf blower. Batteries were at 72%.

The ideal option would have been to run the generator and probably 2 AC units.

Learjet, was the construction equipment working on the side of the road or in tow on a trailer.
Side of the Road, tried contacting TX DOT...what a joke. Anyway, went to leave in the truck, batteries dead...had to replace those today...adventure continues
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Old 06-07-2024, 10:39 PM   #11
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Motorhomes run their AC’s off generator while traveling all the time, a 5th wheel is really no different
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Old 06-08-2024, 09:43 AM   #12
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Motorhomes run their ACís off generator while traveling all the time, a 5th wheel is really no different
There are potential differences.

Motorhome generators are typically OEM affairs, engineered and installed to withstand the motions associated with road travel. A generator installed in a 5er MAY be engineered and installed to accomodate this as well, but also may not, especially if it was a retrofit. A fifth wheel tends ti have a much harsher ride than the front of a motorhome.
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Old 06-08-2024, 10:21 AM   #13
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certainly sounds like he has a OEM generator installed.. i know i had one in my RSTS and it was mounted very well, Never had issues running while moving down the highway.. Ended up removing and installed 800Amp battery power with solar and never looked back.. Still carry a small generator on trips i know the heat will require AC for longer than 3 hours.. Point is, he has no issues running the AC while traveling, especially if he runs it off his inverter source..
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Old 06-08-2024, 12:07 PM   #14
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certainly sounds like he has a OEM generator installed.. i know i had one in my RSTS and it was mounted very well, Never had issues running while moving down the highway.. Ended up removing and installed 800Amp battery power with solar and never looked back.. Still carry a small generator on trips i know the heat will require AC for longer than 3 hours.. Point is, he has no issues running the AC while traveling, especially if he runs it off his inverter source..
Okie dokie.
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Old 06-13-2024, 11:36 AM   #15
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With our last toy hauler, I ran the gen and air frequently going down the road. Never had a problem.
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Old 06-15-2024, 03:03 PM   #16
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We drove from Atlanta to Ocoee,TN yesterday at peak heat of around 95*, and ran the generator with both ACís for the last hour of the trip in our Seismic 395. It made such a difference in the temp when we arrived. I also have 50 amp plug at our house where we store it, and ran the temp around 68* before we left for a head start.
We moved to GA from Vegas right before Covid hit, we donít miss those 118* summer days. Anywhere in or out of that valley is a minimum 3 hrs access the desert. We used to haul to Hurricane, UT a few times a year, so we know that drive through the gorge very well. Where in Vegas are you staying? The only nice place really is Oasis RV Resort.
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Old 06-15-2024, 08:11 PM   #17
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Just me. I open both the bathroom vents while traveling. Pre set the 3 A/Cs at in my case at 68. Plug in as soon as I get in my site, A/Cs start running and I take my time hooking up Water and Sewer. Never takes much time cooling off. Also not a fan of running the generator while driving. Again just the way we deal with hot travel days
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Old 06-16-2024, 09:43 AM   #18
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that a nice surge, 3 ACs starting at the same time...don't recommend that.
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