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Do Pop Up Campers Have Air Conditioning?

Published on November 1st, 2021 by Ray & Tammy Roman
This post was updated on January 20th, 2023

In this post we are going to answer the question do pop up campers have air conditioning?

Driving around in pop-up campers is a great way to experience various recreational activities, from hiking and fishing to camping and even snorkeling.

do pop up campers have air conditioning

However, you may be wondering how to keep your pop-up camper cool when the sun is at its highest. After all, not all pop-up campers come with air conditioning (or the necessary insulation to retain the cool air).

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The good news is that most high-end pop-up campers are equipped with factory-installed air conditioning (at least the newer models do). Even if your pop-up camper doesn’t have air conditioning, there are plenty of ways to install one yourself.

In this post, we’ll walk you through the three different types of pop-up camper air conditioners that can keep you cool and comfy in the summer.

Portable Air Conditioner

Portable air conditioners for pop-up campers can keep you cool by providing you with cold air right where you need it.

An installation kit makes it easy to set portable ACs where you need them quickly. Some models also have wheels so you can move them around the pop-up camper, making them a great alternative to wall-mounted ACs.

Portable ACs remove both warm air and moisture through a window kit. You will need to attach a drain hose to purge all the moisture away from the pop-up camper.

Or you could collect water the old-fashioned way using a bucket. The bucket may have to be emptied every few weeks, depending on the time of use and humidity.


  • Portable ACs between 6,000 BTUs and 10,000 BTUs are perfect for small spaces in pop-up campers.
  • No installation is required since most portable ACs come with a DIY kit. Simply unpack the AC, connect it to a standalone generator, and turn it on!
  • A portable AC can be moved around the pop-up camper with ease – that’s what it’s designed to do.
  • Don’t like the AC ruining the interior of your pop-up camper? Portable ACs are small enough to be placed out of sight and out of mind.
  • Budget-friendly solution


  • Portable air conditioners feature all the nuts and bolts of the cooling system in one casing. This means that it will cause a lot of noise, especially because the compressor and motor rattling against the casing. Not very convenient when you’re trying to get some shut-eye.
  • Depending on the vent hose size, you may have to place the portable AC next to a window – this may be inconvenient for some people.
  • Portable ACs are energy hogs compared to central air conditioners, especially because they struggle to exhaust the warm air. The constant uphill battle to purge the warm air means that the compressor is constantly overworking and drawing in more energy than necessary.
  • If not properly ventilated, some ACs can circulate toxic fumes around the camper, so proceed with caution.

Wall-Mounted Air Conditioner

Wall-mounted air conditioners are meant to be a more permanent fixture in your pop-up camper. They can be installed in a window or cut out in your wall, with the bulk of the unit sticking out of a window with a fan and filtration inside to keep you cool.

Wall-mounted ACs can be quite heavy and very inconvenient, especially if you have to remove them from your pop-up camper’s window before driving.

They are a bit tricky to install and you may need the help of an expert. We recommend a custom-build to permanently and safely install the wall-mounted AC.

With that said, you can’t argue against the price point of most wall-mounted air conditioners – they are affordable and get the job done.


  • They don’t cost nearly as much as roof-mounted air conditioners
  • Part of the unit can be installed outside the window, giving you more space to yourself
  • Because part of the unit is installed outside the pop-up camper, you won’t hear much of the noise


  • Wall-mounted air conditioners are not very powerful compared to roof-top ACs, but they are more powerful than portable ACs.
  • They are very heavy. This can be a problem if you have to remove them from the pop-up camper when driving.

Roof-top Mounted Air Conditioner

Roof-top mounted air conditioners are great for pop-up campers because they don’t take up any floor space, nor do they block your windows.

They keep a low enough profile while also providing clearance to your pop-up camper. Provided you choose the correct roof-top mounted AC unit, they can be reliable and cool a large amount of space in a short amount of time.


  • These AC units are highly efficient and can cool off the entire floor space in a short period.
  • A major advantage of placing the AC system up on your pop-up camper roof is that no one can hear it from inside.
  • Maintenance work can take place out of sight.
  • Roof-top mounted air conditioners usually have a higher capacity.
  • They save floor space since the unit is installed outside (unlike portable ACs).
  • You can install multiple roof-top mounted AC units to cool very large pop-up campers.


  • It’s easy to ignore routine maintenance for roof-top mounted ACs.
  • Maintained is difficult because the AC is not accessible (since it’s installed on the roof).
  • Roof-mounted ACs are a bit expensive.
  • Without someone checking in regularly, a condensation line from your roof-top mounted AC can leave puddles of water on the roof.
  • Standing water is bad for your pop-up camper’s roof and can cause the roofing material to rot away.

Do Pop Up Campers Have Air Conditioning? Wrapping Up

The market for pop-up campers for air conditioners is thriving, and you can expect to see surprising innovations such as IoT and climate control. But it can be easy to feel a little intimidated when buying one.

This is why it makes sense to set aside a budget, then consider the size of the room. Give preference to air conditioners that also offer a heating option for winter usage.

We hope you’ve learned more about the types of air conditioners for pop-up campers.

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