Keeping pets safe without AC

I’ll be converting a box van and am wondering if I can keep it cool enough for my cat to be safe while I’m at work by circulating the air with just a couple fans in the roof or wall. I would have an AC to kick on at a critical temp, but I’d prefer that it rarely needs to run as long as I can keep the interior temp the same as the exterior. I’ll also use a temp gauge that i can monitor on my phone. Finally, I’ll be living in austin TX where temps can stay over 100 for several days in a row.
I’m new here and this is my first post, thanks for virtually being here for me!!

Greetings & Welcome!

I would go with several floor or bottom side wall vents on one side, and a high vent on the other with the fan blowing out.

Even with that, shade is pretty much mandatory without active cooling. I’m South of Miami and use a swamp cooler. It’ll keep my interior comfortable no matter what it’s doing outside. It only draws about 1 amp @ 12vdc on low, just under 2a on high.


"Smiles are contagious, pass them on!" ~ Van_Dweller

Great idea! I’ve done some research and I’m a bit confused. What I found said that it won’t cool the whole area but only the individual sitting near it. Turbokool’s site says it works best in drier climates where humidity does not exceed 75%. Have you had an difficulties with this? Are there any tips in using a swamp cooler you could pass on?
Thanks for the help!

I just found another thread where you explained indirect swamp coolers, VERY interesting. Did you build you own or purchase it? Do you have any links to products or diy help?


The direct type swamp coolers definitely work best at lower humidity’s, but the humidity doesn’t seem to matter as much with the indirect type.

Mine cools my whole van nicely.

I built my current one myself, out of a tall kitchen trash can. I built it tall so it could hold a lot of water, and sit on the passenger seat with the vents at the top of the window. My van doesn’t have factory air conditioning, so I also use mine while driving when necessary. I just seat belt it into the passenger seat.

I don’t really have any links, but I MIGHT have an interesting tip, although it is untested by me. Mine currently uses a cooling pad, which must be changed every year or two, but a newer design uses just a mister without a cooling pad.


"Smiles are contagious, pass them on!" ~ Van_Dweller