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Review

Air Cooler Series 7i

This Review belongs to the REVIEWS MaCamp 2020 series – Upgrade Motor Home. Our partner RESFRI AR made sure to send its most modern air conditioner model that coincidentally best suits the recreational vehicle market in Brazil. It is a device that guarantees internal ventilation with 12V (or 24V) power and uses water from its own tank to moisten the air and lower the vehicle’s internal temperature. Among several advantages of the air conditioner, is the fact that you can refresh the environment for a long period of time (usually a good night’s sleep) with only the battery power of the vehicle and without relying on an external 110V or 220V network. Far from being an air conditioner, it is also far from being expensive when it comes to energy. Extremely economical, it works for our energy independence.

Commonly used in cabins of trucks and closed cars, such as armored / strong cars, they guarantee the freshness of the interior with both the vehicle in motion and parked. Motor homes are highly sought after to ensure comfort on nights when they stay overnight without the support of external electric light. Thus, only with battery charge it is possible to keep it on for many hours.

FUNCTIONING: The idea is quite simple. The air is captured outside and ventilated inside, not without first passing through a material moistened with water. This moisture load in the atmosphere will be able to lower the temperature of the environment a little, but it is the thermal sensation that will do most of the work. In general, air conditioners use straw as a material to be moistened. Water can be stored in two ways: in an external tank – distant and with greater capacity – or with an internal tank – incorporated and with less capacity. The latter is the case with the S7i.

THE AIR FRESH AIR S7i: The most modern model of the company has its main highlight for the minimum height of the device externally. With only 14cm above the ceiling, the air conditioner houses a 12L internal water tank that, together with the low water consumption of the S7i, can last from 15 to 60 hours depending on the conditions of the place. There are 12V or 24V versions and you can count optional remote control on the native control panel on the ceiling. To facilitate water replenishment, the device has a set of hoses that descend from the ceiling to a double connector. There, just connect a water hose and when the tank is full, the water will return through the other outlet.

INSTALLING: The air conditioner was developed to be adapted in the common skylights in truck cabins and for this reason it is often also installed in these openings of trailers and motor homes. So they do not require cutouts on the ceiling. The bedroom of our motor home has this skylight, but we don’t particularly want to give up this device that we think is essential. So we installed the product making a new cutout on the ceiling, this time in the exact shape of the air conditioner and right on the bed.

Firstly, we used the internal finishing flange of the panel to draw a mold of the ceiling cutout on the cardboard itself. To choose the exact location, in addition to taking into account the home engine structure issues, we must also think about the external and internal dimensions of the device so that it does not conflict with other elements of the vehicle. In our case, the skylight of the room dictated the position of the cutout on the spot. Once set, it’s time to put the tools and courage into practice.

We drilled four holes at the ends and removed only the underside (internal) and the “filling” from the ceiling, leaving the outer plate intact in case our service takes a long time or a rain falls. With the entire internal part already cut out, we could calmly choose where we would go through the wiring. We used the conduit of the old lamp to pass the 12V power supply to the Climatizador.

As the original wiring goes down externally next to the refueling hoses, but we would feed it from the existing conduit, we deviated the harness, making a small hole in the base of the air conditioner in a place where it would already be protected by the sealing system. After diverted, we caulk with PU for total caulking.

From the internal “tear”, we positioned the cardboard mold with three triangulated holes so that, once these holes were positioned in the “shell” of the vehicle, we could mark the edge in the same position for the cutout with the jigsaw.

After the edge is scratched, we start two holes to position the saw and start the cut itself.

After enjoying the new “sunroof” of the room, it was time to install the device in the “hole”.

After the main cutout, we positioned the device on it to support the four fixing screws. so we were able to mark exactly the respective holes that will be the key to pressing the air conditioner on the ceiling.

After gluing the rubber that will seal the device by compression to the ceiling, we made a reinforcement of PU application, even if not requested by the manufacturer.

Now it remained to tighten the screws that hold the device to the brackets that accompany the product and the installation would be near the end. There are two rulers that come with the air conditioner to serve as bars that support the interior ceiling and press the set. As our roof is “thick”, we chose to pass the ruler inside the “sandwich”.

Finally, after connecting the 12V harness to the motor power supply, it was enough to screw the finishing flange that complements the air conditioner and covers all the cutouts, burrs, holes, screws and ceiling wiring. We cannot say that “calling” was the first thing we did after completing the installation, because we had already tried it before it was even finished. The fresh air was still accompanied by that “new appliance smell”.

USING:The use of the air conditioner is immensely simple. The remote control is even easier to operate. Simply connect via the speed “+” button and choose the desired intensity. The air vents are extremely practical with four of them offering a 360 degree turn, in addition to full rotation and independent closing option. In the case of the home engine, we choose right on the bed, with an outlet for each one, both in the head and legs. The thermal comfort that the air conditioner gives is very pleasant and really refreshes considerably, especially when you stay in the room for a while. So much so that on many nights we opted for just ventilation without humidification. The minimum speed sound is almost imperceptible and is great for keeping the room ventilated,

SLEEP FUNCTION: For people like us who go to sleep with “that heat” and in the middle of the night it gets “that cold”, the SLEEP function saves. When activating the air conditioner, the key that is represented by the propeller with a clock is pressed. The LED indicator for the SLEEP function will flash once indicating that the time is set to one hour when the device will be turned off. With each new press of that button, the time will be increased from 2 to 5 blinks, indicating this same number of hours in the shutdown function. After the 5 hour adjustment, if it is pressed again, the indicator LED will remain on showing that the function is off and the engine will remain on. Whenever the engine is turned off, the Sleep function will be disabled.

NOISE: The air conditioner can be considered either ultra quiet or noisy. This is because it has different levels of ventilation intensity and certainly at most it makes a lot of noise. However, we only activate the maximum when we need to fight against excessive heat, usually when we connect with the very hot environment. At this moment, noise is the least important. Already in common use, we have not passed the third level of ventilation, these are very smooth. Much softer than 12V fans and quite similar to home fans. When the straw moistening system is activated, it is possible to hear the noise of the water pump – which takes no more than 5 seconds.

INTERNAL PANEL / LIGHTING:The inner panel has backlit buttons. The red light of especially soft intensity, ensures visibility of the functions and simply does not disturb anything in sleep. Word from those who even bother with that TV stand-by LED. We have all the functions on the internal panel. The air conditioner is switched on using the “+” (8) speed setting and switched off using the “-” (7). We still have the timer activation button (6) in case we fall asleep and do not want the device to remain on for the rest of the night. Finally, we have the button (5) that turns the ventilation humidification function on or off. In addition to the command buttons, we have LEDs indicating the lack of water in the tank (2), the activated or not function of humidification (air conditioning) (3), Moment of water injection in the straw (3 flashes) and also the SLEEP function ( 4).

CLIMATIZATION OR VENTILATION: We can choose whether we want the function of humidification of ventilation with water for air conditioning. However, if you only want dry ventilation (just like a regular fan), just disable the “water” function using the first key, represented by just one drop. The function will be signaled triggered or not by the LED also represented by the single drop. The air conditioning function occurs when the pump is activated from time to time and its noise will be heard. Whenever it is working, the single drop LED will flash. Whenever the air conditioner is switched on again, the water function is active again, requiring you to turn it off if desired.

WATER – FUNCTION AND FUNCTIONS: When the internal tank is filled, the sensor indicates through the LED with the symbol of several drops on. When water is missing, this LED flashes indicating the need for refueling.

WATER RECHARGE:As it has an internal tank, the air conditioner has a “whip” equipped with its hoses that are found in a plastic tip with rubberized caps. They serve for one to fill the tank and the other to serve as a return (thief) after full. The set measures 2.5m and can be either distributed over the roof and outer side wall of the trailer or home engine or, in the case of a designed vehicle, passed through internal ducts with a direct connection to the RV water system. In our case, we opted for a third way. We leave the whip placed right next to the skylight in the bathroom stall with a slack in the hose so that we can pull it in at the time of refueling. This way, when the water in the tank runs out, we can supply it immediately or in the next bath so that we will not need to leave the vehicle or have an external hose. Even if there is no water in the place, we can use the water from the home motor box pressurized by the pump, just by pulling the harness through the skylight and filling it with the shower hose. In our case, we made a small adapter that we threaded in place of the shower and quickly connected to the hose of the Resfri Ar.

REMOTE CONTROL: The Control is very small and practical. It is important to say that it is an OPTIONAL item and does not come with the air conditioner and must be purchased separately. With intuitive buttons, six of them have function in the S7i, out of the total eight. Following the numbering in the photo below, we have the “on / increase speed” button (8); “Off / on” (7); “Air conditioning / humidifying function or just ventilation” (5); “Sleep function” (6) and finally the key (9) that has an exclusive function of the remote control, which turns the engine on and off at the last set speed. Measures only 8.5cm X 4cm. It comes with a velcro glued on the back, with the outside already with double-sided tape to stick to the location of your choice.

INTERNAL LIGHTING: The internal lighting incorporated in the device is optional in this model. This was not the case for our device, as recreational vehicles always have native direct and indirect lighting, which makes this make no difference. In our case we have a main luminaire and two more indirect lighting in the room, dispensing with lighting in the air conditioner. This function is available on the remote control because it serves all models of the brand with or without options, but it has no effect on our S7i.

EXTERNAL LIGHTING: Some models of Resfri Ar air conditioners have an illumination on the external housing, simulating a signaling from the roof of the truck cabin. The S7i doesn’t have this light and it wouldn’t even make much sense, as the model is extremely low. In the use of motor homes and trailers, this becomes even more unnecessary, and even this lighting can be activated without knowing it, using battery for nothing. This function also exists on the remote control that serves all models of the brand, but with no effect on what we tested.

Positive pressure: One of the advantages of using the air conditioner in motion in both trailers and motor homes is the positive pressure that the device produces when the vehicle is completely closed. As it drives the air from the outside in, it tends to escape through the cracks and ventilation common in RVs, preventing the entry of dust from the road. Especially when taking dirt roads, keeping the air conditioner on with the vehicle all closed can prevent dust from entering, as well as smoke odors for example.

PRE-PAINTING: The Climatizador comes in white color that already matches any vehicle and accompanies the RESFRI AR sticker separately, because if the owner chooses to paint it in pain with the car, he can stick the manufacturer’s logo on top.

FEATURES: Dimensions: 64cm (L) X 88cm (W) X 14cm (H); Empty Weight: 16kg; Water capacity: 12L; Water consumption per hour: from 200 to 800ml; Water autonomy: 15 to 60h; Engine type: Double turbine without resistance; Voltage: 12V (also has a 24V model); Maximum Rated Current: 10A; Minimum consumption: 0.15Ah; Average consumption: 3.4Ah; Maximum consumption: 10Ah; Air flow: 400m³ / h.

PRICE: At the time of this review the product was sold on the internet from R $ 999.00 + Shipping to R $ 1,200.00 + Shipping.

WHERE TO BUY: In the countless physical and virtual stores that represent RESFRI AR products and that can also be searched on the official website system: WHERE TO BUY…

REVIEW – PRODUCT: This equipment was sent by RESFRI AR, which relied on MaCamp’s know-how to test its products in the Reviews section. Tests were done on our Motor Home Turiscar Caribe in the State of Rio de Janeiro.