The Latest Caravan RV Air Conditioner: Dometic Ibis 4 ReviewCaravan & Camping Products , Caravan Air Conditioners
The Dometic Ibis 4 is the latest Caravan RV air conditioner model to hit the Australian market. The Dometic Ibis 4 makes improvements on many of the industry-leading features of the highly sought-after Dometic Aircommand Ibis 3; which has been a leading air conditioner for caravan and RV’s in Australia for many years. The Ibis 3 built a strong name for itself for being extremely reliable and performing in even the harshest climates!
So what exactly does the the Dometic Ibis 4 offer over and above its predecessor? Lets take a look…
Dometic has improved many of the industry-leading features of the Ibis 3 and incorporated them into a new lightweight roof top unit. These features include it’s excellent cooling capacity at 2.6kW, airflow optimisation and low operating noise. Let’s compare the two Ibis models:
Dometic Ibis 3 vs Dometic Ibis 4:
Performance & Design:
Dometic knows just how hot the Australian climate can get and as a result, created both air conditioner models to perform in even the harshest conditions. The Ibis 4 introduces a first for the RV industry: a dual-cylinder horizontal compressor. This powerful addition uses inverter technology to balance the unit out and reduce the level of vibration. This helps reduce the noise of running the unit whenever the compressor kicks in. A major benefit in most customer’s books!
The internal air distribution box of the Ibis 4, has been redesigned with fewer parts. This helps simplify the assembly process for the user. This new ADB also optimises the airflow within the vehicle.
Both models offer reverse cycle cooling and heating, however the Ibis 4 features four fan speeds including a new turbo-mode, which allows for accelerated cooling inside the vehicle.
Both models have very similar cooling capacity, with version 4 at 2.6 kW and version 3 at 2.7 kW. This is using the ISO5151 testing standard – this method is under standardised controlled conditions and allows more direct comparison between models. Both models of Ibis are suited to RV’s up to approx. 7 metres in length.
Dimenions & Weight:
A massive feature of the Ibis 4 is the light build of the unit. The Ibis 3 weighs 48kg, while version 4 is significantly lighter at only 40kg. This was achieved through the use of expanded polyproylene (EPP) materials. In addition, Dometic was also able to reduce the rooftop dimensions of the Ibis 4: 758 x 230 x 1112 mm. The Ibis 3 takes up more space at: 848 x 222 x 1120 mm.
This reduction in size helps minimise the likelihood of damage from overhead obstacles such as branches. Plus, it allows the driver to make smaller clearances in garages and carports. Note that the previous version (the Mk 3) was already one of the lowest profile rooftop RV aircon models in the market, so to improve on that again is bound to prove popular with RV owners.
Both models are suitable for 360 x 360 mm roof openings, however the Ibis 4 also offers fitment of an additional size: 400 x 400 mm. This extends the installation options for customers searching for an RV roof top air conditioner! Dometic lead the way with this feature when they released the Dometic Harrier A/C model a few years ago, making it suitable to fit 360 × 360 mm and 400 × 400 mm roof openings straight out of the box without the need for additional components or accessories. Now the Ibis 4 model has this feature as well.
Unfortunately caravan air conditioner manufacturers don’t provide dBA ratings with their Air Con unit specifications, which is a pity because it is a hot topic among caravan enthusiasts. However, we know from our testing and feedback from hundreds of customers that the Domeitc Harrier and Ibis 3 models are very quiet with their operation. Now this latest release Dometic Aircommand MK4 model with new-generation compressor and inverter technology ensures that vibration is further minimised. You won’t be woken by this unit while cooling your van on hot summer night!
The Ibis air conditioners are renowned for their user convenience. Both models offer the user the choice to control the unit via touch controls on the air distribution box or a remote control. The Ibis 4 takes the offering to a new level with electric touchpad controls. The older model has push button control on the ADB.
Verdict & Summary:
The Ibis 3 already set the bar pretty high, but Version 4 has impressed with some nice refinements. The unit is the only Ibis model to feature a turbo-mode fan speed and the only model in the market that features the new-generation compressor. All of this leads to impressive cooling. Plus, the ultra thin design helps reduce the load weight of your caravan and reduces the changes of damage to the unit.
The Ibis 4 is quickly gaining traction in the Caravanning & Motorhome markets. So with these appealing features of the new Version 4 model, why would you buy a model 3 Ibis?… the answer is price. It is unsure how long Dometic will continue producing Version 3 models, but as at the time of this article (early 2019) there are still models available, and they are priced at around $500-$700 cheaper than the new version 4 model. You can check the current prices of the models by clicking HERE.
To summarise, the KEY BENEFITS of Dometic Aircomand Ibis 4 are:
- A powerful dual-cylinder horizontal compressor which reduces vibration in your RV rooftop when the a/c unit starts and changes speeds, which reduces noise. The compressor also incorporates inverter technology which significantly reduces start up power requirements – this Ibis 4 model will easily start and run off a 2000w inverter generator.
- The use of durable lightweight EPP material has helped to significantly reduce the weight to 40 kg, dropping eight kilos when compared to the IBIS 3
- Suitable to fit 360 × 360 mm and 400 × 400 mm roof openings straight out of the box without the need for additional components or accessories.
- Slightly lower rooftop profile: improving on an already sleek design on the Ibis 3 version\
- The new Ibis 4 version has what Dometic calls a ‘turbo fan ’speed feature which accelerates the cooling of the van… so while the actual cooling capacity between the older and newer Ibis models are the same, the turbo mode slightly quickens the cooling process.
- Simplified assembly due to the reduced number of ADB parts
Of course the new Ibis 4 model is more expensive than the Ibis 3. You can compare prices by visiting our Caravan RV Aircon Range HERE.
Need more help selecting a RV or caravan air conditioner? Visit our site and chat to one of our RV product experts on live chat on give them a call on: 1300 400 122
To compare the new Ibis 4 model against the preceding Ibis 3 model, the below video might also be helpful, which looks at the version 3 unit:
DISCLAIMER* Please note, this advice is general in nature and we strongly recommend consulting the product manual and where relevant, a professional installer.