Dometic Penguin II install?

kadave

New member
Hey all,

I just installed this unit on my roof (not easy to lift this thing!) but am unsure how to wire it. I hoped you might be able to help me figure out what I need based on my two intended uses. After connecting the main unit to the internal assembly, there are three wires that I need to run for power.

Scenario 1: Run AC unit while driving - Probably similar to how Sprinters come factory when purchased with an auxiliary AC rooftop unit? My gut tells me to run some romex up to the connections under the driver seat.

Scenario 2: Shore Power - it would be nice to plug-in and cool the family when camping in the summer. Could I make this work with an inverter/charger? Maybe there’s a better option?

Note: While I do plan to have a modest 12v battery system (LEDs, fan, water pump), I have no intention of trying to run the AC from batteries.

- kadave


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Shawn182

Member
That AC requires 120v to operate. Does not matter if you are driving or parked, a vehicle does not produce 120v power to run it.

A factory AC unit uses a mechanically belt driven compressor off the engine when running, the Dometic use a compressor driven from a 120v power source.

Options are a shore power connection and/or a large enough inverter connected to an adequate battery to supply the power, but that requires 100AH of Lithium capacity per hour of run time desired. That is why most RVs that have AC units also have an onboard generator to run them. They are power hogs.
 
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sanomechanic

Active member
Hey all,

I just installed this unit on my roof (not easy to lift this thing!) but am unsure how to wire it. I hoped you might be able to help me figure out what I need based on my two intended uses. After connecting the main unit to the internal assembly, there are three wires that I need to run for power.

Scenario 1: Run AC unit while driving - Probably similar to how Sprinters come factory when purchased with an auxiliary AC rooftop unit? My gut tells me to run some romex up to the connections under the driver seat.

Scenario 2: Shore Power - it would be nice to plug-in and cool the family when camping in the summer. Could I make this work with an inverter/charger? Maybe there’s a better option?

Note: While I do plan to have a modest 12v battery system (LEDs, fan, water pump), I have no intention of trying to run the AC from batteries.

- kadave


View attachment 141608
You need to invest in a good generator. A 2000 watt will run full throttle and be noisy. A Honda 3000 watt would tow the line and not be overloaded.
 

kadave

New member
Well shoot. Thank you so much for the feedback.

I guess I’ll have to stick with shore power-only then. Any idea if it requires 30 amp 120 or can I get away with 20 amp 120 connections?

Any value of getting an rv power converter vs a inverter/charger vs a gas generator?
 

sanomechanic

Active member
Well shoot. Thank you so much for the feedback.

I guess I’ll have to stick with shore power-only then. Any idea if it requires 30 amp 120 or can I get away with 20 amp 120 connections?

Any value of getting an rv power converter vs a inverter/charger vs a gas generator?
Look at the rating on AC. I'm sure 15 amp breaker will work. Unless you are going to carry a lot of batteries. You will not have enough to power the AC unit efficiently. AC drinks power
 

4wheeldog

2018 144" Tall Revel
Well shoot. Thank you so much for the feedback.

I guess I’ll have to stick with shore power-only then. Any idea if it requires 30 amp 120 or can I get away with 20 amp 120 connections?

Any value of getting an rv power converter vs a inverter/charger vs a gas generator?
Running AC off of solar and batteries is currently the holy grail of boondocking.
It is possible, but very expensive and only will run for relatively short periods of time.
You would really need to invest in LI batteries, maybe a Tesla unit to make it work well.
And by the way, there is a T1N forum, as well as build out forums that would be a more appropriate place to post this.
 

SSTraveler

2014 LTV Unity Murphy Bed
My Penguin ll 13,500 btu AC with heat pump run from the 30a shore plug. I added a MicroAir EasyStart, https://sprinter-source.com/forums/index.php?threads/73240/#post-771507, which dampens the big, greater than 21a spike when compressor kicks on, amp spike from the compressor to around 17a with steady State operation at 14a (see photo for EasyStart power chart comparison with 15,000btu AC power). Now I can run the AC off a 120vac/20a circuit or a 2500w Inverter (12vdc to 120vac) or a 2500w (120vac) generator. I installed the EasyStart because I wanted to be able to run my AC from my 20a standard garage outlet without tripping a breaker and/or it gives me the option to use a campground campsite, and run the AC, with only a 20a outlet (of course I need an adapter to go from 30a plug to a 20a standard outlet plug). I wanted versatility for operating the AC when only a 20a standard plug is available. I also want to upgrade to a 3000w inverter and at least 200ah of Lithium house batteries to begin with (160ah for ~1 hour of AC operation depending on how much compressor cycles) to be able to run the entire rig, including AC for short periods. If you wanted to run the AC while driving you definitely need an Inverter (minimum of 2500w), at least 200ah of Lithium batteries and at least a 40a DC to DC charger, for Alternator to Lithium house battery charging, to be able to run the Dometic while driving. Here is a link to my install of the EasyStart, post#14, https://sprinter-source.com/forums/index.php?threads/73240/#post-771507. There are lots of YouTube videos on the benefits of adding an EasyStart and operating RVs on 2500w generator/2500-3000w inverter andLithium battery banks. Something to consider!20191210_071855-900x600.jpg
 

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