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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi folks! Just got a Promaster that came converted. It is a 136wb with fixed sliding door window and fixed cargo door windows. It was a Maxxair fan over the bed in the rear. I got sun shades for all the windows, but even with the front windows cracked, the shades on, and the fan blowing it still gets pretty hot in the van. I used to have a Northstar TC650 pup up truck camper in my truck and it was super well ventilated with a single van and stayed cool, even on the hottest desert camping days. My assumption would be that I need to add windows that open and/or add another roof fan? I did just order these Overland Screens Airvents | Sprinter, ProMaster, and Transit Vans as I heard this makes a pretty big difference in keeping the van cool (with the fan running). We will likely leave our two mini schnauzers for up to 4-5 hours at a time. Normally its at a unpaved trail head, but sometimes in the woods and sometimes not. What are some of the best ways to keep these dudes comfy and cool? Thanks!
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Van #2 2021 EXT
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You have a dark colour van. Some have painted the roof white on dark coloured vans (there is a product).

There is also an area up front (highest part of the van's roof), that is pretty much perfect for another fan. One Fan blows air in & the other sucks air out.

Cover the windows with reflective covers

A/C System & Genset

We understand your concern ,, Also have a little dog (I don't really look like my avatar 馃槣 ) & are concerned about leaving him in the van.

If you are looking into A/C;

@jracca
@Chance
@GaryBIS
and there are some others here that are into that, maybe they will chime it
 

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2017 136鈥 HR
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As great as those front window vents are, they force you to leave the cab, which is the hottest part of the van due to all the glass, open to the rear. It would help to close the front off with a thermal curtain.
Perhaps there is a spot you can cut a floor opening for a cool air intake, it has been done by some. Or swap out the solid sliding door glass with an opening window.

But even with excellent ventilation the van will never be cooler than ambient outside temperature (IF it鈥檚 parked in the shade!) without air conditioning. I鈥檓 in the planning stages of installing a window AC, which I plan to run off 3 100Ah Lithium batteries for a couple of hours if needed.

As @RV8R mentioned, you have a dark colored van which is much harder to keep cool. I second painting the roof white with something like Henry鈥檚 TropiCool.

Lastly, as a fellow dog owner, I highly suggest to get a RV temperature monitor that alerts you on your phone when the inside exceeds a certain temperature.
 

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2016 136 HT Gasser
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A recent thread.

 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
A recent thread.

I quite like this idea. Going to research this a little more. We are only gone for a max if 4-5 hours at a time.
 

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2014 Ram Promaster 2500 159" diesel
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I would do a temp check on how hot the van gets and how long it takes to get there. Here's some cheap one-use temp loggers. The digital last for 16000 data points and can be stopped and started for multiple records. The paper one lasts 10 days you would need to pull the battery to stop and start. The dogs won't tell you they just wag their tail. A pan some saltillo red tile unglazed type, and water poured over the tile will give the dogs a cool place to lay.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I would do a temp check on how hot the van gets and how long it takes to get there. Here's some cheap one-use temp loggers. The digital last for 16000 data points and can be stopped and started for multiple records. The paper one lasts 10 days you would need to pull the battery to stop and start. The dogs won't tell you they just wag their tail. A pan some saltillo red tile unglazed type, and water poured over the tile will give the dogs a cool place to lay.
I have been logging quote a bit with the thermostat that's in my fan remote. If I have some battery powered fans going, in the woods, windows cracked, maxxair blowing 100%, all windows covered, the maxxair thermostat has the van temp at 78 when it was 74 outside. The sensor is in the fan body itself, so the highest/hottest point of the van. I will try one of those thermometers at a low point in the van where the dogs will be chilling in their dog beds. A parking lot was no go, same setup was 88 degrees in the van (just without the battery fans running) when it was 80 degrees outside.
 

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Van #2 2021 EXT
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I have been logging quote a bit with the thermostat that's in my fan remote. If I have some battery powered fans going, in the woods, windows cracked, maxxair blowing 100%, all windows covered, the maxxair thermostat has the van temp at 78 when it was 74 outside. The sensor is in the fan body itself, so the highest/hottest point of the van. I will try one of those thermometers at a low point in the van where the dogs will be chilling in their dog beds. A parking lot was no go, same setup was 88 degrees in the van (just without the battery fans running) when it was 80 degrees outside.
Another way in increasing cooler intake air is thru the floor (or close to it) & exhaust the warmer ceiling air thru the roof.. PMs typically have exhaust only ports in the bottom of the rear pillars. I suppose they are exhaust only to deny engine combustion gasses to enter the interior of the van. But the 鈥減ath鈥 exists as an interior relief path for built up interior air pressure.

Shade parking is very important of course.

Regarding animals in vehicles; Anything manmade can fail of course, so if you are relying on 鈥淭ech鈥 & dealing with your dogs lives what is your failsafe if 5hrs out?

There are weather situations, where the timeframes are critical. We just opt out & hang with our Pup.
 

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We have a white 159 with a Fresair in the back and a Maxxair up front. I was up in Flagstaff, AZ over the weekend (we live in Phoenix), went for about a 2.5-3 hour ride, highest temp outside got to around 82, came back and our dog was great. Parked in the shade, both rear windows open, Fresair on (fan function only) and insulated shades in all the windows. Obviously no matter what kind of setup you have, we wouldn't be leaving any animal in a van down in Phoenix during the summer. Typically if its over 85ish outside I wont leave him in there longer than an hour and this is with the Fresair pump on blowing cold air into the van.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
We have a white 159 with a Fresair in the back and a Maxxair up front. I was up in Flagstaff, AZ over the weekend (we live in Phoenix), went for about a 2.5-3 hour ride, highest temp outside got to around 82, came back and our dog was great. Parked in the shade, both rear windows open, Fresair on (fan function only) and insulated shades in all the windows. Obviously no matter what kind of setup you have, we wouldn't be leaving any animal in a van down in Phoenix during the summer. Typically if its over 85ish outside I wont leave him in there longer than an hour and this is with the Fresair pump on blowing cold air into the van.
We don't camp with the pups if it gets over 80 degrees, and it's in the desert in early spring where temps are sub 75 or the mountains in the summer with temps that are sub 80 degrees.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Another way in increasing cooler intake air is thru the floor (or close to it) & exhaust the warmer ceiling air thru the roof.. PMs typically have exhaust only ports in the bottom of the rear pillars. I suppose they are exhaust only to deny engine combustion gasses to enter the interior of the van. But the 鈥減ath鈥 exists as an interior relief path for built up interior air pressure.

Shade parking is very important of course.

Regarding animals in vehicles; Anything manmade can fail of course, so if you are relying on 鈥淭ech鈥 & dealing with your dogs lives what is your failsafe if 5hrs out?

There are weather situations, where the timeframes are critical. We just opt out & hang with our Pup.
The man made part is definitely in our minds. We don't camp with the dogs if the forecast is over 80 degrees, at that point its just us. But even when it's 70-80 out, it's important to us to ventilate the van properly so they are happy.
 

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Like others have said changing the color to white will significantly reduce the temp inside the van. Another low tech option might be to build an ice chest ac. It鈥檚 basically a fan that blows across ice in an ice chest. If you are in a dry climate increasing humidity will also help. The ice chest ac may also increase humidity too. Not sure if that will actually benefit a dog as well as a human since dogs don鈥檛 sweat. You would also have to reduce ventilation or you Would be bringing in dry hot air.
 

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2016 Promaster 159" WB High Roof
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I quite like this idea. Going to research this a little more. We are only gone for a max if 4-5 hours at a time.
I'm sure the Viper remote start has evolved in the last decade, but I used to have one of these on my family's 06?ish honda civic and the remote start would turn off after a certain amount of time
 

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2016 Promaster 159" WB High Roof
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Haven't had this happen to me but - even if you have this dialed in perfectly, a wildcard might be the nosy good Samaritan who doesn't realize it and breaks a window to 'save' your pup. I suppose if all windows have shades, this might not be too likely.
that's when a note/sticker saying "if the dog's alone, the A/C is on" is a good idea
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I ordered a sliding door window that has a slide opening to assist with the ventilation. I am also ordering solar panels for the roof, so there will be very little roof area that isn't covered by vent fans or solar.

 

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2016 Promaster 159" WB High Roof
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I ordered a sliding door window that has a slide opening to assist with the ventilation. I am also ordering solar panels for the roof, so there will be very little roof area that isn't covered by vent fans or solar.

i highly rec painting the roof white, i think people rec henry's tropicool, before mounting solar
 
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