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2014, 138WB, High Roof, Gas, SW MT
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Lots of good advice.

Here is one idea that might be worth looking at ...

They say it lasts 4 to 5 hours.
You would have to have a way to cool it before the hike.
Lots of similar alternatives on Amazon.

This is a cooling test I did on my van using the ceiling fan and windows.
It was able to get the inside temp in the van to within 5F hotter than the outside temp - I think that is about the best you will be able to do with a roof fan and windows.
I don't think that "cracking the windows" is going to do it on a hot day - I think you really need significant window or floor vent area in order to the fan to move enough air through the van to help. But, you can do some testing to find out.

I'd 2nd the painting the roof white, reflective window shades (on the outside if possible), and parking in the shade will make a large difference.
Shading the roof with solar panels may not help much...

Gary
 

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2017 136” HR
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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.

Little word of caution about the VWD sliding window vs the similar AMA window: the opening of the VWD is near the inside lever of the sliding door. So theoretically one could reach in and unlock the slider. That’s one of the reasons I chose the AMA instead, the opening is towards the rear of the door.
 

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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 😜 ) & 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
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! View attachment 86455 View attachment 86456 View attachment 86457 View attachment 86458 View attachment 86459
 

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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 😜 ) & 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
I have a similar setup, but installed two max air fans, HUGE DIFFERENCE
 

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From my perspective (I work with a rescue organization), it's not ever appropriate to leave an animal in a closed (i.e. not passively ventilated) vehicle for any length of time. Things happen...the rain stops and the sun comes out...you get delayed in returning...batteries run down...and so on. If you've never experienced it, try rolling up the windows and sitting in the van on a sunny day. You will be shocked at how hot it can get and how fast it gets there. It's just not worth the risk, and it's a horrible way to die.
 

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From my perspective (I work with a rescue organization), it's not ever appropriate to leave an animal in a closed (i.e. not passively ventilated) vehicle for any length of time. Things happen...the rain stops and the sun comes out...you get delayed in returning...batteries run down...and so on. If you've never experienced it, try rolling up the windows and sitting in the van on a sunny day. You will be shocked at how hot it can get and how fast it gets there. It's just not worth the risk, and it's a horrible way to die.
Agreed. That’s why I personally will install a remote temperature monitor and make sure I won’t be father than 15min or so from my vehicle when the pups are in there alone.
 
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Yeah, going to paint the roof white and install another fan. Can you sync up the fans to use the same remote?
I didn’t get the remote since I can just reach up and push the button, felt unnecessary. I have one blowing in and one sucking out, I just bought a bluetooth thermometer so I can get real time temperature and humidity readings if I am away from the vehicle. I’ll let you know how it works…
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 ·
From my perspective (I work with a rescue organization), it's not ever appropriate to leave an animal in a closed (i.e. not passively ventilated) vehicle for any length of time. Things happen...the rain stops and the sun comes out...you get delayed in returning...batteries run down...and so on. If you've never experienced it, try rolling up the windows and sitting in the van on a sunny day. You will be shocked at how hot it can get and how fast it gets there. It's just not worth the risk, and it's a horrible way to die.
I understand and appreciate your concern. I've been camping with my dogs for years with a truck camper and have always been careful, and they have always been fine. I'm not going to take them out and them in the van till it's fool proof.
 

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I didn’t get the remote since I can just reach up and push the button, felt unnecessary. I have one blowing in and one sucking out, I just bought a bluetooth thermometer so I can get real time temperature and humidity readings if I am away from the vehicle. I’ll let you know how it works…
Yeah, going to paint the roof white and install another fan. Can you sync up the fans to use the same remote?
Hood Bumper Composite material Rectangle Motor vehicle

Wheel Tire Automotive parking light Car Vehicle
 

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I didn’t get the remote since I can just reach up and push the button, felt unnecessary. I have one blowing in and one sucking out, I just bought a bluetooth thermometer so I can get real time temperature and humidity readings if I am away from the vehicle. I’ll let you know how it works…
What’s the range of that Bluetooth thermometer?
 

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In this area, within 20 minutes, it is too hot even with the windows wide open.

With the silver / gray color van that I had before, if you go into a store for 15 minutes, with the windows open just enough to vent the hottest air out, the seats and seat belts are too hot to touch.
 

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Leave the engine running-AC turned up to...Eleven. We just got ceramic tint on the front windshield, both front doors and the two back windows. It made a ton of difference. I thought it was snake oil-but I'm a believer in the lower heat gain in our van as a result of the tint.
 

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I have to jump in here, as a heat expert (I live in FL).... Yes ceramic tint makes a difference, even compared to just standard tint. I do all my windows. On my front windshields very light (approx 70%) just to block excess heat. On the van (white) I cover all the windows with insulated shades, have heavy insulation and 2 maxxair fans, front and back.

I have a fur baby as well, just took her to Montana last year.... I was SHOCKED when the temps were in the high 80s/90s because of a heat wave. We had to board her while we went hiking. It was unsafe. That being said, when I got back I removed one of the fans and just installed the dometic RTX 2000. It was a hefty price to pay but I have no kids so she is my child. Now she will be completely comfortable when I get back to her. As others have said equipment is prone to failure and I plan on getting a remote temp sensor. There are several on the market that essentially use a cell phone signal so you van keep an eye on it (as long as you have cell service) and will send you an alert if temps rise.

Always have a back up plan if temps do start to climb, 5 hours is a long time to get back if something fails. And unless I'm in a parking garage, I don't trust shade... shade moves, next thing you know your back in full sun.


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