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Keeping the RV Cool Without Using the AC

Propane doesn't come cheaply, and using it to cool your RV on a hot summer day isn't always a good option. If you want to stay cool in your RV without the costs of propane, we’ve got some tips and tricks for you. Keeping the RV cool without using the AC is possible!

Basic Things To Do

There are some pretty simple things you can do to keep your rig cool when it's out in the sun. While these tips require little to no preparation, you will need to use your head when it comes to parking your RV and making use of available shade.

When you get to your campsite, park in the shade! If you haven’t already picked your site and you can choose one on the spot, go for the one with the most shade to help keep your RV cool and comfortable without the use of A/C or a fan.

Make Shade
Use your awning to block the sun from shining in through your door or windows and heating it up inside. If you don’t have an awning or you can't position yours to block the sun, make your own shade! String up a tarp between your RV and some nearby trees to block the sun from baking your RV. While not the prettiest-looking option, it works!

Try to make as many meals as you can outside over the campfire or using your exterior camp kitchen. If you can avoid using your interior stove or oven, you'll help to keep the inside of your RV cooler. Or go one step further and plan to have cool meals that don't require cooking, like salads, sandwiches, smoothies, and more. Try this Campfire Chicken & Potatoes dinner or these In the Fire Bake Potatoes for hearty meals that don't require turning on the oven.

Circulate the Air
If your RV is equipped with ceiling fans, use them! Just getting the stale air inside your RV can make a huge difference in how hot it feels. If your RV does not have built-in fans, buy a few portable fans that you can set in window frames or clip onto tables. Use them together to create a draft. Position one so it’s pulling air in from the shady side of the RV and pushing hot air out on the sunny side.

Make Your Own A/C

Having a portable homemade air conditioner can keep your RV cool as well as your tow vehicle if you need it. Planning on pitching a tent? This homemade device works in a tent too!

What you need:
Inexpensive, hard-plastic cooler
Small desk fan
4” PVC elbow
Silicone caulk

Step 1: Place the elbow and the fan on top of the cooler lid and trace around them.

Step 2: Once you have your spots drawn, use your drill to punch one hole in each circle on the line.

Step 3: Cut the circles out with your jigsaw.

Step 4: Place the fan, facing down, in its hole and use your caulk to hold it in place.

Step 5: Used the caulk to secure the PVC elbow in the other hole.

Step 6: Once everything is dry and stable, put ice in the cooler and turn on the fan!

The fan pushes the hot air down into the cooler where the ice cools it. Then the cooler air is sent out through the PVC elbow.

Do you have any tips or tricks for staying cool in an RV without using A/C? Let us know in the comments below!

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