Are you up for a road trip around the state with family or a few of your friends?
There are a lot of sights to see, stop-overs to make, and bucket lists to check! Besides a killer itinerary, I know what you’re probably thinking. It’s the unrelenting heat that comes with the beauty of summer!
Worry no more. Lucky for you, we’ve rounded the best and quietest RV air conditioner units available on the market.
It’s obvious you’ll need one to keep you cool and sane the whole trip. A quiet option though will give you better conversations during the day, and uninterrupted rest at night. We’ll discuss vital information and specs on these AC units to help you make a responsible decision when buying one. Here are 7 of the best and quietest RV air conditioner units:
Our Top Quiet RV Air Conditioners
This first one on our list is our best overall choice.
The Dometic Brisk II has a lot of features customers can’t seem to get enough of! First of all, it gives you the choice of having the standard 13,500 BTUs or a bit higher in power like 15,000 BTU.
If you plan on taking your RV on a road trip to much hotter places, then the 15,000 BTU is what you should opt for.
This product is also highly versatile. You can opt to have it ducted or non-ducted. This throws away the worry of getting the air conditioner ahead, not thinking if it applies to your RV or not.
This unit is one of the simplest and easiest to install and maintain. It does not sacrifice power, nor any other essential features. In addition, it functions at a noise level low enough to keep your peace in check.
It has a sturdy base pan and rigid shroud. Don’t worry about durability. This one is a keeper! Besides that, this air conditioner unit is one of the affordable ones on our list.
The Dometic Brisk II comes with a high-performance motor. The fan is built with hi-tech materials and the design comes in as a brand new base pan. Put these all together and you get fresh, cool air around your RV’s space in no time!
The Dometic Brisk II comes with a 2-year warranty. A little security won’t hurt! This comes in handy just in case anything goes wrong.
Note this unit does not come with a controller or thermostat. You’ll have to buy these parts additionally.
- Quiet operation
- High cooling performance
- Easy Installation and maintenance
- No controller and thermostat
Atwood 15027 is the most powerful yet quietest RV air conditioner unit in the market. It deserves a spot on the top of our list!
This AC unit features a very high-output motor which can cool down an RV quicker than most units. Despite its power, it has the most economical airflow.
The airflow generates only a few turbulences compared to other RV air conditioner units. What this means is it cools at a rate of 360 cubic feet per minute!
Because of its energy-efficient performance, you’ll worry less about keeping any appliances running in your RV.
Quick and efficient cooling capacity also means a quiet operation both inside and outside your RV. This means you can get a cozy nap inside. Or better yet, have a relaxing cup of tea outside your RV even while the RV AC is on.
A design feature on the Atwood 15027 is its flip-down thermostat vent. This allows an effective airstream thanks to its V-shape. You don’t have to worry about having airflow on just one spot, right below the placement of the AC.
The dual-motor also lets you run a condenser fan and a blower fan separately to adjust your cooling preference. You can find all these choices on the remote it comes with.
Other functions you can control with the wireless remote are the standard temperature, timer, or sleep timer. Of course, apart from being able to switch it on and off.
Another unique feature we love is being able to set the air conditioner timer on and off in advance. The lock function helps ensure the thermostat doesn’t automatically cycle the fan.
This keeps your cooling just the way you like it at all times!
- High Output Power
- Dual Motor Performace
- Wireless Remote Control
- Ultra Quiet
- Energy efficient
- Difficult to Install Thermostat Wiring
Best Low-Profile Quiet AC Unit
Another Dometic air conditioner on this list! They surely have a top-notch reputation when it comes to these products.
The Dometic Penguin II is your go-to low profile air conditioner option. It weighs less and saves space.
We commend manufacturers for creating this unit still with the ability to compete with the higher-profile ones. It is both powerful and quiet.
This AC unit shroud’s design improves the longevity of use. Its excellent durable qualities make every customer happy with their investment!
Another factor that sets Dometic products apart is their willingness to offer customers color & size variety to choose from. They come in the classic, sleek polar white or black.
It may not seem as important as its functionality, but aesthetics are a good bonus. If you’ll be looking at it all the time, why not choose the most visually pleasing one?
Just like our previously discussed Dometic RV AC units, the Penguin II can work both ducted and non-ducted systems.
You are given the option for 13,500BTU or the high capacity 15,000 BTU too. This goes to show how the Dometic brand is keen to make sure every RV owner can use its products.
Even though Penguin II doesn’t come with its own remote control, it’s not much of a burden. Because of its design, it’s quite easy to reach and adjust. Its thermostat controls; however, come with a wall controller on this unit.
What sets the Penguin II low-profile air conditioner apart is its aerodynamic abilities. It can reduce wind drag. The result? You save fuel. It won’t slow you down even during long trips.
You’ll be glad to know this model is one of the most economical RV AC units in the market.
Since the Penguin II is fully automated, you’ll find it very easy to use. Surely, you can enjoy the cool air without disrupting your peace.
Let’s not forget its appealing minimalistic and attractive design too. Have you got your eye on this RV AC unit yet?
- Low-Profile design
- Easy to Use
- Quiet yet powerful
- Reasonably priced
- No control board
If cargo capacity is a concern, then the Brisk II is the one for you! This air conditioner may not be the best in terms of noise, but it deserves a spot on our list for being the lightest.
The Brisk II air conditioner housing is made from EPP foam. This contributes to its lightweight design. It weighs in at just 77 pounds! On average, one unit weighs in around 80-120 pounds.
Again, like all other Dometic products, you can install the Brisk II either ducted or non-ducted. So whether you want one of these AC units to cool a specific room or the entire RV, the Brisk II can work for you.
It is good to note that this particular unit comes with a complete non-ducted ceiling kit. You don’t have to worry about buying additional parts. And because it is lighter than most, it is easier to install this one.
Apart from those, the Dometic Brisk Air II comes with a heat strip. This feature allows you to keep your RV cozy even in cold evenings.
- Comes with complete non-ducted ceiling kit
- Includes heat strip
- Easy to Install
- Not so quiet operation
The Atwood 15026 Air Command is the best Non-ducted low noise choice among the RV air conditioners on this list.
It is also worth mentioning that since 2017, Atwood air conditioners have been sold by Dometic. This is; however, an older model. Keep this in mind if you want to do your own research.
The cooling capacity of this AC is up to 15,000 BTUs per hour. What’s amazing is it operates on a single 2000 watt generator. Talk about efficiency! This unit was specially designed to be one of the most energy-efficient RV air conditioners in its class.
This is actually an important thing to take note of. The Atwood outputs a high level of cooling performance, but functions as the quietest. That’s not something you see in most RV air conditioners in the market.
You can get the Atwood 15026 with a heat pump. This assures you a comfortable camping experience in temperatures between 25 and 159 degrees Fahrenheit.
A heat pump is more energy efficient compared to a furnace. It conserves up to 4 times of energy, as it pulls warm air in from the outside. Unlike a furnace that needs to generate its own heat.
Included in a non-ducted system are flip-down thermostats and remote controls. The Atwood Air Command fits in most standard RV roof cutouts. This air conditioner also comes with a 2-year warranty.
The only downside to consider though is how heavy this air conditioner is. It weighs in about 99 pounds when installed. Before getting one, just make sure the roof of your RV can support its weight.
- Very quiet
- Energy efficient
- Cooling capacity of 15000BTU
- Comes with heat pump
- Easy installation
- Not for ducted installation
The Airxcel Mach 15 model has a cooling capacity of 15,000BTU. It has a power consumption at about 1800 watts. You can get the optional 1800 watt heat strip for 5600BTU of heating capacity for colder seasons.
The Airxcel Mach 15 is your ideal, versatile unit. It can produce a lot of power without creating a lot of noise. It has a strong airflow, to provide cool air in just seconds without disturbing anybody’s nap and relaxation.
Although its original design was meant for ducted systems, you can use it for non-ducted systems too.
However, when it comes to height, the Airxcel Mach 15 is 15 inches tall. It is not particularly the most aerodynamic option. But if you’re just keen on keeping your RV cool and cozy, this is still relatively a good option!
Besides, this RV air conditioner comes equipped with a 1/3HP fan motor inside a streamlined shape. This means excellent cooling efficiency and enhanced airflow. Thus, you consume less electricity.
Many users consider this the Quietest RV AC with an HP fan motor in the market.
Compared to other RV AC units, this may not be as light or as aerodynamic, but it delivers a low noise level.
You can purchase accessories and an optional assembly along with your unit. Additional assembly kits such as ceiling assembly, or control panels with wiring are available. This will make sure your AC unit fits perfectly!
- Quiet operation
- Very powerful
- Energy efficient
- weight and height
Our second Airxcel on this list. This RV AC unit has plenty of the same qualities as the previous one. But it has extra features that make it worth considering.
The Airxcel Mach 3 Plus is made with all-copper tubing and gas-flux brazed joints. This ensures longevity and durability for use. Many satisfied customers say it could last them five to ten years.
Just like the Mach 15, this AC unit creates a powerful airflow at 320 CFM. You won’t break a sweat. So get cool air in no time!
Besides that, the Mach 3 comes with heating capabilities too. In this case, electrical heating capabilities. It makes it incredibly convenient and versatile. All of these features come at a reasonable price, so what’s not to bargain for?
In the end, the Mach 3 is a very competitive product alongside top-notch RV AC units.
Unfortunately, there have been a few complaints about its noise during operation. If that’s not much of a big deal for you, for its low price, its other features are worth considering.
- Electrical heating available
- High-performance airflow
- Complaints about noise
Things To Look For In RV Air Conditioners
Before making the final choice, it is important to understand all the terms, benefits, and features of our recommended RV air conditioner units. Here are some specs we will discuss to help you decide which RV air conditioner best suits your needs:
Ducted or Non-Ducted
There are two main types of RV air conditioners. The ducted and the non-ducted.
In a ducted installation, the RV air conditioner connects to the RV’s indoor ducting system. This way, it distributes cool air evenly throughout the whole area.
If you have a big RV, this would be ideal. A ducted RV air conditioner allows you to control the temperatures of multiple rooms. Air passes through the duct system, usually in pipes across the RV’s floors, walls, or ceilings.
In a non-ducted installation, the AC unit just blows the air in whatever direction the output nozzles are facing. It does not go through the piping. A non-ducted RV air conditioner is ideal for cooling a specific room, or a smaller RV.
If you have a camper or motorhome, it is definitely more practical and economical to get a ducted air conditioner.
Weight, Size, and Height
Before getting an RV air conditioner, make sure your RV has the cargo capacity and the space for the AC unit. Your RV might have difficulty carrying its weight, or you might have limited space. Either way, it’s an uncomfortable travel experience.
Height is also as important since most of the RV air conditioner models available are rooftop AC units. An increase in the height of an RV negatively impacts its aerodynamics and fuel efficiency. Surely, you wouldn’t want this for your trip!
Height clearance is something you should be mindful of too. If your RV is tall, it may cause you some problems when passing under bridges or tunnels. Let’s avoid any scratches on your RV rooftops and AC units.
BTU Power, Cooling Capacity and Noise
BTU stands for British Thermal Unit. This measure helps you decide which air conditioner suits your RV based on its size and average local weather conditions. Ultimately, the final decision on which RV AC unit to buy will depend on its cooling capacity. Here’s a chart that will give you more or less an idea of the required BTU for the area of your RV:
On average, an AC unit has 13,500 BTU power. This is quite enough to cool down a large RV.
The area is one thing to consider. Here are a few more tips:
- If you plan on visiting high humidity areas, or places with extreme temperatures, you will need an air conditioner with a much higher BTU power. Increase BTU by around 10%.
- If the design of your RV rooms are heavily shaded, reduce BTU by 10%.
- If the room’s regular occupancy is more than two persons, add 600 BTUs per person.
- Add 4000 BTU if you intend to put an AC unit in the RV kitchen.
Now in regards to noise level, no doubt all air conditioners make noise. The higher the BTU power being used, the more likely will it make noise. However, some manufacturers keenly design units to be quiet.
A quiet AC unit would mean better sleep at night. Little AC unit noise can just blend into the background. Some even consider it as soothing as white noise.
RV AC units consume a lot of energy to function. This could be a cause for concern if your RV uses a portable generator.
It might be best to consider an RV air conditioner than consumes less power. This saves you a lot of money in the long run. There are environmentally friendly options in the market too.
To match your power source with the consumption, consider the starting & running wattage and the number of amperes that the AC unit requires. If you’ll be adding a heater, consider its power needs as well.
If you travel great distances with your RV, also consider compatibility with various power sources in different countries.
Some RV air conditioners can provide both heat and cooling.
An AC unit with a heat pump or heat strip means you can keep yourselves warm and cozy when the temperature drops. This is particularly useful if you plan on traveling during different seasons throughout the year.
Note this is an extra cost. If you only plan on using your RV during the summer, a regular RV air conditioner will do. Save on the bucks!
Not all RV air conditioners have built-in air purifying systems. This is a great extra feature, especially for those who are sensitive to odors or are prone to allergies.
An air purifier improves the quality of air inside your RV. It takes away the risk of a health hazard, and maintains fresh and clean breathable air, no matter what the conditions are outside.
Here are some of the frequently asked questions of consumers before making an informed final decision.
We all understand an RV air conditioner is quite an investment. We want to help you understand the product as much as we can.
Q: What are the benefits of an RV Air Conditioner?
Summer time is ideal to go on a road trip. There’s so much to see, and experiences to relish. But there just might be one concern. The unbearable heat that often drives everybody insane!
Whether you are going camping, or on a road trip, an efficient RV air conditioner is a necessity. You will surely appreciate the cool air inside your RV after a few hours of sightseeing.
An RV air conditioner for long overnight trips also helps you get some quality rest and sleep. It makes your RV feel like you’re in the comforts of your home! After long hours of driving, this is something you deserve!
Air quality inside the RV also improves with an AC unit installed. All the more if you have one with a built-in air purifier.
Fresh, moving air positively impacts those living on board. For those extremely sensitive to dust and allergies, an AC unit is a big help.
Q: Who makes the best and quietest RV air conditioners?
These three brands are among the top manufacturers of RV air conditioner units in the market. These are what we recommended above. Here’s a little background on each brand to help you feel more comfortable in making a decision.
Dometic was established way back in 1919. Its long history gives the company an advantage in making high-quality products at a reasonable price. With a special focus on RVs, the company’s mission is to ensure the ease of mobile life.
Brothers, James and Seth Atwood, established Atwood way back in 1909. Over the years, it has offered the automotive world excellent products.
It was recently sold under Dometic. Thanks to its good name and reputation, they still offer their products under the Atwood brand.
Airxcel is a holding company with products that also cover many categories outside of the automotive market.
Besides air conditioners, the company makes:
- Water heaters
- Ventilation systems
- Cooking appliances
- Rooftop products
- Window coverings
- Fiberglass Reinforced Plastic (FRP)
- Composite panels for RVs.
They are committed to providing their customers with the best product possible.
Q: Why is the AC unit on the rooftop of the RV?
First of all, let’s get to know the difference between a rooftop AC unit and an under-bench AC unit.
The biggest advantage of a rooftop air conditioner is you do not need to dedicate indoor storage space for it. If you need every bit of space available in your RV, be it for things or more passengers, a rooftop option is your best bet.
The under-bench models will need installation inside your RV.
Also, you can install rooftop AC units either ducted or non-ducted. Meanwhile, the installation of under-bench models only supports ducted types.
Rooftop RV air conditioners also allow easier access and maintenance. By placing the AC unit at the top of the RV, we eliminate the problem of having to push the cool air upwards. In effect, following this design creates efficient airflow.
Additionally, this helps AC units run longer with less energy than the ones placed in doors.
The only downside perhaps is the added height. This might obstruct your vehicle’s windows and aerodynamics so know what you can manage.
Always weigh in the pros and cons.
But no doubt, with a good branded rooftop AC, along with its excellent features, you’re sure to have a pleasant RV road trip!
Our Top Choice
An investment in a good and long-lasting RV air conditioner will give you amazing road trip and sightseeing memories.
Can you imagine being stuck for hours in an RV on a hot summer day without a single whiff of cool air? It will drive you nuts!
With every product recommendation made in this article, consider your RV worries solved! But if you want the best of the best, the Dometic Brisk II Rooftop Air Conditioner is our bet.
It is by far, the most powerful, most durable, and quietest air conditioners among its contenders.