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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I would like to have heating/cooling electricity and be able to use my stereo. Are people who have an SUV tent able to run there engine? My concern is the exhaust. I want to make sure it is safe co2 wise and that the exhaust does not melt/burn the tent. I think a dryer hose from home depot might be enough what do you guys think?
 

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My first thought was

WTF. Then I thought about it and thought thought on the question about the hose. There should be something safer than a drier hose. Now I'm curious too!
I vaguely remember this question from last year. I'll see if I can find the thread.
 

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I think this should be avoided, besides the risk of emissions (yes, I saw the hose question) I don't think any parks/campgrounds would appreciate it. Just think if the heat from the motor at idle all night were to cause the grass or whatever below the vehicle to catch on fire. This is just one concern, there are many others that should be taken into account.
 

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The exhaust pipe is so close (just below) where the tent tunnel tucks in that I wouldn't run the engine because of the heat factor as well as exhaust.

And as has been mentioned, it would be extremely rude in a populated campground if the engine were idling for an extended time outside of any "generator hours" that may be allowed. Element engines are relatively quiet, but not compared to nature.

My dog, Gidget, is terrified of thunderstorms and when one strikes during the day I'll let her jump in the Element and I'll run the a/c for her if it's muggy. During a downpour the engine noise is largely masked by the storm but afterward the engine noise is pronounced.

 

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I would not recommend this. It is possible to run a high temp hose from the exhaust away from the tent area but you will not be 100% safe of fumes. Idling the engine for extended periods is also not good for it, not to mention the heat the car would be producing would zap any cooling the AC had on the tent.

If you really need heating/AC and electricity for camping then maybe you should look into using sites that have electric hookups and bring a small AC unit.

You could also try camping when it isn't so hot out.
 

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It is a monumentally bad idea. Sorry, somebody had to say what everyone else is thinking.

Jerry-rigged solutions like the dryer hose are invitations for national TV news headlines, "Campers overcome by carbon monoxide using a makeshift exhaust system." All it takes is somebody passing through your camp space in the middle of the night accidentally kicking the hose to turn the tent into a deathtrap.

The noise/courtesy issue is real. The radiator fans are on if the A/C is on, and those fans are noisy. If I were in the camp space next to you, about 2 a.m. I would be dwelling on the possibility of a baseball bat as a solution to the insomnia.
 

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If your looking to run a heater or something like that what about a power inverter. You could use the jack in the back of the E or rig a marine battery in a case with an inverter mounted to the top. A buddy of mine used a quiet run blow dryer to heat up the tent in the AM. Worked great! No need to carry a heater and you can dry your head too!
 

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It wouldn't be very efficient to use the E's system to heat or cool the tent. Tents aren't insulated, and leak air. In hot weather your best bet is to maximize shade and ventilation. If the tent (and car) must be closed up due to bugs, a small batter powered fan can circulate the air, reducing the stuffiness. Your best means of dealing with cold is clothes and a good sleeping bag. For short periods you can warm the interior of the tent with a radiant heater.

To heat or cool just the Element you will need to close the tailgate. In which case you could also disconnect the tent.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
My skepticism of this being a good idea is on par with yours. However it would not be my intention to run the engine very long at all, mostly just long enough to charge the battery. Unfortunately I have never been camping so I am not familiar with rules or how the tent will actually fit to the vehicle. I never expected that when you camp you are that close to others, but that sort of input is exactly what I was looking for.

If I did find that the on board factory battery was not sufficient enough I could easily add a deep cycle battery, however recharging would still need to be done im sure. Like I said previously I wouldn't dream of running the engine for a long duration, just long enough to charge the batteries during acceptable hours. I have also found steel hoses that could be clamped to the tail pipe. Is it still naive to think I could run the engine to recharge my battery? Is there a better solution? Thank you all for your input.
 

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A dual battery set up with an isolator would work. use the oem battery for starting the car and the second deep cycle to power your radio when parked.

Check out some car stereo shops and they will help you out.
 

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Car stereos can be more annoying in a campground than the car motor. If played at a volume that entertains the whole campsite, the bass beat can carry a long ways, past your neighbor's neighbors. Even if you enjoy that style of music, it is no fun hearing just the tump-tump
 

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In any popular national or state park odds are the campsites are going to be close enough together that you can hear neighbors snore and fart. So count on any radio-stereo (and live music) or idling engines being annoying to others.

Headphones are courteous.

And pack earplugs. You may need them at night when others are discourteous or have eaten a lot of pork 'n beans.

Seriously, I keep earplugs in my teardrop trailer for camping and luggage for hotel stays.


;-)
 

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A very good point. My friends and I, when camping in the wilderness, will pack a small portable battery powered speaker set and a little mp3 player for when things get really slow around the campfire. The sound is not as good as a car stereo but it doesn't carry as far and no worries of disturbing any fellow campers that might be within ear shot. (but that isn't likely where we camp anyway.)
 

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I think that running the engine with the tent attached could be an effective way to stop mosquitoes from biting.

They prefer live prey.

If you are going to experiment with extending the exhaust, don't waste time with vinyl drier hose. It'll melt faster than the tent body will.
 

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Ha...so immediately my mind goes to the opening scene of an old Cheech & Chong movie. Anybody else remember the scene where Chong has the chopper in the house, has headphones on blaring and he's revving the hell out of the chopper. Camera pans back and you see he's venting it with flexpipe out the window directly onto the neighbors prize roses. Classic! :razz:
 

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Have you tried a Hotel?
 

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I think that running the engine with the tent attached could be an effective way to stop mosquitoes from biting.

They prefer live prey.
:lol::lol::lol:

For heating, look into a small catalytic heater that's designed to be used inside an enclosed space such as this: http://www.amazon.com/Coleman-PerfecTemp-Catalytic-InstaStart-Technology/dp/B0009PUQW8/ref=pd_sbs_sg_2

For cooling, I'd suggest a battery fan only. Any kind of A/C will suck down power faster than any battery can keep up for an appreciable length of time. Either that or as suggested above get a campsite with electric hookup and bring a portable A/C.



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