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Old 09-13-2015, 04:02 AM   #1
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Default Coachmen Saratoga ducted air conditioning

I am thinking about buying a 1996 coachmen Saratoga which has ducted air conditioning in the ceiling, I think there are three or four vents throughout. I'm wondering how efficient it is compared to regular RV air conditioning. It is the only class b I've ever seen with this type of ducting, I've seen it in bigger motor homes.

Also, I am wondering how useful the layout is with the twin beds in the front area of the van.
I would more than likely leave them in the twin bed position and not convert them into a queen sized bed.

It has no inside shower but I have had 3 Class B RVs and I never used the inside showers in any one of them so I do not need one... I've used outside showers quite often to rinse my feet off and to pre-clean dishes.

Also, it does not have a mounted coffee maker but I suppose I could just sit one on the counter or mount one somewhere.

It also has a generator with 400 hours.

Attached are pictures of the van.
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Old 09-13-2015, 08:49 AM   #2
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I have the same model and year in tan. Mine has no ducting but has low profile AC duct . Too bad you don't have a picture of it. I'm sure we're all interested. We leave the back rests in the garage and use it as 2 single beds. The way the back rests are shaped makes a strange bed. We also don't want to crawl in and out of bed. We really like tge floorplan that's why we like tge Travato 59k so much.
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Old 09-13-2015, 08:54 AM   #3
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Looking closer at the pic towards the rear I don't see the air distribution thingy hanging down. I don't know how well that cools considering there is no roof insulation but at least you won't bump your head.
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Old 09-13-2015, 12:52 PM   #4
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Thanks for the feedback re. the floor plan. I just sold a 96 Leisure Travel that had a transverse couch that electrically folded down and I didn't like that arrangement. Twin beds are way better. I had a 96 Pleasure Way with twins and I really liked it.

In the Coachmen with the twins forward it appears to give an appearance visually of more space.

I had read at the Good Sam Open Road forum that the when the twins are converted to a queen that it is uncomfortable due to the shape of the backrests, just as you had said.

The person that was posting the thread said that the older models had the forward twins that the back rests mechanically folded to the center of the aisle and that this setup was more comfortable In the queen position but I saw pictures of that type of setup and it appears that in the twin position the sleeping area is narrower due to the backrests not being removable so in order to sleep you would always have to fold one of the backrests down to sleep on a single twin or fold into the queen sleeping arrangement. Also, when only one of the twins is folded down it appears that there isn't much room to walk front to back in the aisle to access the toilet. This is all conjecture on my part as I'm just using pictures I've seen as a reference.

I live in the Florida Keys far away from everything and I don't have a chance to look at many class b's. It's very rare to see one of these popup that is relatively close to me: 250 miles. If I don't move on this one I may not get another chance to buy one but who knows?
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Old 09-13-2015, 02:05 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stanw909 View Post
Looking closer at the pic towards the rear I don't see the air distribution thingy hanging down. I don't know how well that cools considering there is no roof insulation but at least you won't bump your head.
No insulation in the roof, that is a serious consideration. If there isn't insulation then it seems that the cold air that is travelling thru the ducts may get heated up and therefore may be not be as cold when it reaches the register. Maybe the ducted air would keep things cool at night but not during the day.

I live in the Florida Keys and it gets HOT down here. My previous class b had a hard time keeping it cool during the day and it was non ducted.

So I guess the only way to find out if the ducted air conditioning is efficient in HOT weather is to talk to somebody who has that set up.

I wouldn't want to purchase this RV if the air conditioning would not keep up during the day, but I may buy it anyway because I really like the floor plan. Hard decision.
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Old 09-13-2015, 08:16 PM   #6
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I have a 95 Saratoga without ducted AC and it cooled it when it was over 100 deg on a trip a couple years ago. Can't say anything on the ducted version, I never knew it existed.
As for the bed it is very comfortable whether you are using it as 2 singles or queen size. Getting in and out of the full queen size is another story though. Despite that fact, we often use it as a queen and store stuff under the middle. It does make it inconvenient going from front to back but that is very minimal.
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Old 09-13-2015, 08:52 PM   #7
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Hi glg,
You were travelling in 100 degree weather? Did you run a generator (if you have one) while you were travelling? That's a good report re. your vans ac efficiency.

Re. your folding couches: if you just want to use one couch for sleeping or laying down do you have to unfold it? If you do unfold only one couch can you still walk through the aisle to the rear bathroom?
Thanks,
Noel
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Old 09-13-2015, 09:03 PM   #8
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If you pull down the trim on the power vent fan it is possible to blow in insulation. I insulated mine using batting but could not get it all the way to the back without taking AC off. My wife has rheumatoid issues so for her minimal crawling is Huge for her. The floorplan is very open. There is one coach battery below the floor below that back cabinet in the rear. I put 2 6volts where the cabinet goes and made a cabinet to hold it. Mine came without that cabinet.
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Old 09-13-2015, 09:32 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by stanw909 View Post
If you pull down the trim on the power vent fan it is possible to blow in insulation. I insulated mine using batting but could not get it all the way to the back without taking AC off. My wife has rheumatoid issues so for her minimal crawling is Huge for her. The floorplan is very open. There is one coach battery below the floor below that back cabinet in the rear. I put 2 6volts where the cabinet goes and made a cabinet to hold it. Mine came without that cabinet.
Thanks for the info re insulation.and the batterys... I'm wondering that when the coach was being built that they might have added insulation to insulate the ducting. I won't know until I look, or I could ask Coachmen.

So there are 2 options, batting and blown in insulation? ?
Thanks,
Noel
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Old 09-13-2015, 09:42 PM   #10
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Bet on them not insulating the roof. Did you see the ducting in person? These vans are pretty rare compared to Roadtrek's and Pleasureway. I'd go see it and try it out.
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