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Old 03-13-2005, 07:17 AM   #1
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we have winnebago with basement air but are looking at new coach with roof air(two). For those of you that have had both-which do you prefer and why. We really like the basement air but this is our first coach so we dont really have any comparison.
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Old 03-13-2005, 07:17 AM   #2
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we have winnebago with basement air but are looking at new coach with roof air(two). For those of you that have had both-which do you prefer and why. We really like the basement air but this is our first coach so we dont really have any comparison.
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Old 03-13-2005, 07:34 AM   #3
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Tom,
I have had both and am pleased with the basement air. We had a Georgie Boy Cruise Air with roof air and felt it did not properly cool the coach. On our 02 Chieftain, we had basement air and loved it. Had better control on cooling, etc. We now have a 05 Adventurer with basement air and again are please with it.
My wife likes the smooth exterior appearance on the roof also.
Hope this helps
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Old 03-13-2005, 08:13 AM   #4
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I really like the basement air. I think it is an upgrade over roof air. I don't know why more manuf. don't use it. It is quieter, no water running off the roof, lower MH height, controlled from the thermostat on the wall.
It cools very well and would definately make a difference in my decision on a motor home purch.
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Old 03-13-2005, 08:38 AM   #5
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We've had both and prefer the basement HP. Don't use air that much but we do find the HP is great for warming up the coach and certainly beats the heat strips we had in our previous MH.

Having said that we do have two ceramic heaters for cool nights. There is no question that the noise can keep you awake - which is certainly the case with the rooftop units as well.
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Old 03-13-2005, 02:56 PM   #6
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We just upgraded from an Adventurer with basement air to an Itasca Sunrise with roof air. We could have gone with another Adventurer but having the basement unit underneath our bed woke us up every time it started. Roof air units (to us) are not as noisy when in bed.
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Old 03-13-2005, 04:01 PM   #7
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Guess we aree used to sleeping in noisy places. Basement air or heat pump running does not bother us much at night. Finf whole MH more comfortable even heat and cooling. Roof air. Always had to blast the front TV so you could hear it. Cool up front and warm in rear with roof air.
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Old 03-13-2005, 04:13 PM   #8
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Tom,

I've been using the heat pump in the basement air unit like crazy. It does about 85% of our heating for us. I like the basement unit for that reason if none else. The A/C works well too!

What noise?
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Old 03-13-2005, 04:38 PM   #9
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I have found the basement air to be noisy while sleeping in my Class A. My new Minnie has ducted rooftop air, so I will have a better comparison soon!
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Old 03-13-2005, 05:02 PM   #10
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FWIW, I have had both systems and much prefer the basement A/C & HP. It has been a cool winter here in Florida, the HP kept us completely comfortable with only the touch of the thermostat switch. It takes it from there. I have no problem with the sound of it running under the bed. Makes no more noise than my top airs in previous M/H's. In hot weather, the A/C is more than up to the job. It does not have to over come the sun beating down on it.
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Old 03-13-2005, 07:28 PM   #11
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......AC wise it is best to take hot air off ceiling and cool/dry it and drop it over the people in coach..... with heat it is the opposite......A/C and Heat are the same thing it all depends on ducting and fan volume in a motorhome and a house to some extent.....what most don't do is take the heat off the ceiling and suck it to the basement cool/dry and pump it back to the ceiling-letting it fall on the people and allowing for mixing.....easier said heat from the floor up and cool from the ceiling down....the mixing allows better usage of the air.....geof kaye
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Old 03-14-2005, 06:22 AM   #12
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I would say my HP workes better than our gas furnace. More even heat front and rear. Gas furnace keeps rear nice and warm. Front is a lot cooler. Winnebago gas heating SUCKS Royal.
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Old 03-14-2005, 08:01 AM   #13
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We've had both. Roof A/C in our previous Brave and basement A/C in our current Meridian. I like the basement A/C. It's quieter. when we looked for a new coach I avoided models with roof A/C. Noise in the bedroom is not an issue with either of us.
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Old 03-14-2005, 10:22 AM   #14
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I am a big fan of basement air. Compare central air in your home to window units. There really is no comparison.

The gentle purr under my pillow is a great mask of campground noise when the kids are out late.

I find it cools much better than previous rigs with roof air. I had it near the top of my short list of must-have items.

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Old 03-15-2005, 04:40 AM   #15
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I've had both. Our 2003 Suncruiser 33V had basement air while our 2004 Allegro Bus has twin rooftop ducted air units. Both had heat pumps. I wouldn't necessarily say that one is better than the other but they are definitely different, therefore you'll find varying opinions of them.

Basement air has both drawbacks and advantages:

It takes up a basement storage space, and that was real valuable on a 33' coach. In theory it is easier to cool down there because it's not up in the hot sun and A/C units always are rated at a given temperature differential. However, I've found the efficiency of the basement air to be less than the rooftop units I now have so that's a wash. The idea of having a lower profile roof line is nice but once you add a satellite dome, vent hoods, etc that all goes away. You do hear less "whoosh" or air noise with a basement air but you hear more mechanical noise with it because the pump is right under your bed. Also, if the primary compressor goes out you cannot operate the second compressor because they are staged, and not independently controlled.

Unlike basement air, there are more differences between the various rooftop air units. I can only relate to how my Allegro Bus works. It has dual Dometic Penguin low profile 15,000 BTU A/C units with heat pumps and everything is ducted through the ceiling plenums. I get more airflow noise but less mechanical noise. I get the same, if not better, cooling as my basement air. The "theoretical" advantage of having the A/C in the basement and out of the hot sun is offset by the fact that the basement air isn't as efficient as the dual Penguins. Each unit is independently controlled with dual zone thermostats so you won't freeze out someone in the bedroom while trying to keep the guests sleeping on the coach cool at night. Plus, if one dies, I can always run the other one because they are independent and not staged. And, I get my basement storage back.

In summary, they both cool about the same and one type of noise is replaced by another but neither one is what I would call noisy. The biggest thing is the basement storage space that you give up but other than that I wouldn't let the type of A/C affect which coach you want to buy. Just pick the coach you like the best and go with it. I would listen to both A/C units though because there is a difference between the various rooftop units. If you like the coach and don't mind the A/C noise unique to that coach - buy it.
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Old 03-15-2005, 04:54 AM   #16
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Well now that you have heard from both sides have you come to any conclusions?
Just wandering
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Old 03-15-2005, 06:41 AM   #17
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We have had both.One of the short comings of basement air is the loss off storage space. We had a 32' Sun Cruiser and would have like the storage area. It was a little noise in the Bed room .
Our new MH is a 39' Journey, that also has basement air.We have plenty of storage so we don't miss the room. The air operates much quieter.
We have used it in the desert at 110 degrees and it works fine.The heat pump is hard to bet on those chilly morning.
We prefer the basement air but in a Small coach I would give it some thought.
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Old 03-15-2005, 09:57 AM   #18
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to bsmith8--we are going to go out again and test the 40ft Knight for the noise level with roof air. I really like the basement air so we ll see what happens. We also are going to look at the 37ft adventurer which is gas but does have close to the floor plan we want and basement air. all of this may be mute if we dont find a buyer for our present coach since I will not trade it (so I say now!)
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Old 03-15-2005, 11:59 AM   #19
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Can I ask which 37ft you are looking at?
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Old 03-15-2005, 01:17 PM   #20
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WE have never had basement air so can not offer opinions there. I do like the idea of having 2 units on the roof where if one fails you are not totally dead in the water and I am one who loves all the basement storage that is available. That said my question is why have not more manufacturers gotten into the basement mode? It seems like only the Winnebago brands have it available. Is it a standard on Winnebago products or is it an option? Ken Roberts, '04 DSDP...
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