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DIY Air Conditioner From A 5-Gallon Bucket For Under $25

It can be expensive both in price and in energy to cool your RV when the weather warms up.  Many smaller RVs receive very little in the way of A/C and are left with open-air cooling or small fans to get the job done.

Regardless of your situation, you may find some interest in this very clever and cost-effective 5-gallon bucket turned DIY air conditioner idea.

DIY air conditioner

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YouTube user DesertSun02 is the force behind dozens of DIY solar power, off-grid, survival, and green living projects. He uses very simple techniques and easy to find materials such as cardboard, bottles, wood, and glass.

One of our favorites is his DIY air conditioner made from a 5-gallon bucket. For around $25 (assuming you do not have any of the needed materials laying around the garage), you can generate approximately 5 hours of cold air.

The idea works through a very simple design with a process of forcing air over a frozen gallon milk jug and out through three exhaust ports.

DIY air conditionerItems needed
  • 5-gallon bucket with a top
  • Bucket liner or bait bucket that can fit inside the 5-gallon bucket (serves as an insulator)
  • 2” PVC pipe long enough to cut into 4-6” sections
  • A small electric fan that has a removable base so it can sit flush against the bucket (6-10” fan)
  • Box cutter/Utility knife
  • 2 1/8” and 2 1/4” hold saw bits
DIY air conditionerHow to make the DIY air conditioner
  1. Drill 2-1/4″ holes in the bucket to support the exhaust ports.
  2. Drill 2-1/8″ holes in the insulating liner that goes inside the bucket which also hold the exhaust ports.
  3. Cut a hole in the bucket lid so your fan sits flush against the opening.
  4. Insert exhaust PVC ports. May require glue.
  5. Insert loose ice, ice packs, or frozen gallon jug into the bucket.
  6. Connect the lid and place the fan flush to blow air into the bucket.
  7. Turn on the fan and feel the cold air blowing from the exhaust ports.
See also: 5 Things You Can Do With A 5-Gallon Bucket In Your RV



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