Homemade Portable Air Conditioner – DIY Tent AC

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Going camping requires you to have some essential items and a portable air conditioner is no exception. However with most brand-new air conditioners requiring hundreds of dollars, making a homemade portable air conditioner is a much better option, particularly if you are on a budget. Yes, these are equipment that you can make on your own, as long as you have some ideas.

For more information, this article will take you through a DIY step by steps guide on how to build a homemade portable air conditioner. Doing so will save you some dollars and you can do it quickly based on your speed. Build something to cool your tent.

Table of Contents

Necessities when making a Homemade Portable Air Conditioner

To build a portable air conditioner for cooling your camping tent, you will require the following items:

  1. An old icebox cooler
  2. Small fan
  3. A modest solar panel
  4. Some ice
  5. 90-degree bend duct (elbow)
  6. Drill
  7. Jigsaw
  8. Knife

A Perfect Guideline for How to Make a DIY Tent Air Conditioner

In this circumstance, we are thinking that you have managed to collect the things you want to make your tent air conditioner. To make the air conditioner, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Mark down the Holes for Your Fan as well as Duct on the Ice Box Cooler

The first thing you will want to do is cover the holes for both your fan and the duct you will use to build the cooler. When measuring the holes, strive to be as perfect as possible. Being authentic will help you avoid difficulties while sealing the holes.

The hole for the fan should be set in a way that it does not support the fan to go all the way in. Most cooling fans come with 2 guard metal traps (in the back as well as the front), joined collectively by a collar that is normally bigger than that mesh. Attempt to mark your hole so that the fan’s collar holds on the box as well as only the front mesh guard gets in the cooler.

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Note: If you don’t find an old ice cooler box, you can utilize a Styrofoam ice chest as well. The plan is to use a box that can prevent heat transfer as much as possible – this can keep the ice from melting. Metal, as well as plastic boxes without any insulation, won’t work.

Step 2: Drill and After That Cut the Holes Out

After checking the holes, you will be required to drill and then cut the holes out. If you worked for a plastic icebox, a combo drill and a jigsaw should help you out. If you are doing the Styrofoam box, all you will require is your camping knife.

With your combined drill, drill a hole on the side of the marking. Following, use the jigsaw in order to cut the rest. It is worth noting that if you do not beget power tools, you can always use a little handsaw to cut the holes.

Step 3: Fit the Fan as well as the 90-Degree Bend Duct

If both your holes come with the right size, the duct, as well as the fan, should go in easily. At this point, you will require deciding whether you want to seal the holes.

On the plus side, sealing the holes can block unnecessary heat transfer – this can help boost the time required to melt the ice block. On the negative side, it will make the homemade portable air conditioner more massive.

Step 4: Get the Ice In

This DIY tent air conditioner will utilize the idea of heat transfer to assure you have the right temperature after setting up your tent. The bigger the cold outside you have in the air conditioner – in this case, the more ice you have inside – the colder the air brought in by the fan will get.

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If possible, try to use a large block of ice in the homemade portable air conditioner. This will make sure that the ice will not melt too quickly. Additionally, the air brought in by the fan will produce a bigger surface to touch.

Since carrying a big piece of ice to the campsite may not be practical, freezing some water bottles may be an excellent alternative. You can utilize the water bottles after appearing at the campsite as well as putting the parts of your tent together.

Step 5: Connect the Fan to a Battery or Solar Panel

As remarked previously, the air conditioner has the ability to run on either a solar panel or a battery. A solar panel is a better choice thinking that you won’t need to worry about the power running out.

If you decide to use a battery, you must make sure the battery can last long enough – if the battery runs out, your DIY tent air conditioner can stop working.

Expectations While Using this DIY Tent Air Conditioner

When built perfectly, the tent cooler will keep your summer tent cool completely. In ordinary, the cooler can reduce the warmth from 80 degrees Fahrenheit to 42 degrees Fahrenheit.

If you handle a big chunk of ice, it should take about 5 hours to melt entirely. This will depend on how overheated your tent is. If you want to go camping solo in an area featuring amazingly high temperatures, the ice may dissolve much faster.

To enhance the effectiveness of the air conditioner, you can apply something to lift your ice block off the bottom of the cooler. This way, you can increase the surface area coming into contact along with the air as well as hence reducing the temperatures even further. The downside to lifting the ice block is that it may melt much faster.

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Frequently asked questions


Question: Can you make Air conditioner?

Answer: Yes, it is desirable to air condition a tent. If you are not on a budget, you can buy an air conditioner. If, however, you are on a budget or you want to save more money and air condition the tent, you can build your air conditioner. In this guide, we have described the steps that you have to follow to build an effective air conditioner.

Question: How Can You Make A Tent Cooler?

Answer: During summer camping, you can build your tent cooler in several ways. The most efficient ways include:

Utilize an air conditioner. If you brought a lunch cooler along with you, place it in the tent as well as open it. The chill from the ice will lower the temperature. If you take a battery-operated fan, apply it to circulate the air in your tent. Open the tent’s vents as well as the door.


Question: Do You Place Ice in Front or Behind A Fan?

Answer: In order to cool your tent more efficiently, you should place the ice in front of the fan. The fan will blow air over the ice – this method will cool the air. Over time, this will lower the overall temperature in your tent.

OutdoorSavvy Overview:

Camping during summer days can still be an enjoyable outdoor activity as long as you own reliable air conditioning equipment. I say so because the tent normally gets irritating when it is too hot. Owning a homemade portable air conditioner can be one of the best alternatives to keep your tent cool.

Our research has tried to take you through some serious steps on how to make a portable air conditioner from scratch. Remember, such a gadget should help you solve the temperature problem without breaking the bank.

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