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Third Row Seats Air-Conditioning

Discussion in 'Model S: Interior & Exterior' started by sublimaze1, Jun 3, 2013.

  1. sublimaze1

    sublimaze1 8Dec2012 / Leeroy Jenkins

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    WARNING: This is ultra-ghetto and rigged to the maximum. It is a prototype for functionality only.

    I don't visit here much anymore, as a result of priorities and preference. However, this is something that a few (probably not many) would find interesting.

    In Texas, we are starting to get the heat that will bake a 6 and 4 year old when seated in the third row seating. We have been able to drive with the back windows down and 2-60 air conditioning (two windows down, 60 mph). However, at 90+ degrees, this is not sufficient. Enter the thought of creating some sort of rigged ducting to get AC to them when we are traveling long distances. For now, we have put them in the temp booster seats but I am sick of sweeping sprinkles, goldfish, and sequins out of the back seat. Chocolate milk also looks better on vinyl and cloth than leather.

    But I digress.

    Enter the need for time in the garage, with a good Partagas Series D #4, and some tools. I am better with wood, than with metal (not too terribly good at either), so wood was the base for the project.

    1.JPG 2.JPG

    I measured the vents that come from beneath the arm rests and fabricated an opening.

    3.JPG 4.JPG

    Using wood screws and wood glue, I created a box that would abut the vent. After creating this, I had decided to trim the box down from 4" to about 3/4" depth, simply to not be as heavy as it ended up being.

    5.JPG

    The ducting from the vent console to the rear of the car was to utilize a 4" ducting (dryer duct) and 4" hyroponics flanges seemed to fit the bill. I trimmed one of the flanges (so the wood would lie flush) before attaching, but later decided to attach and them trim.

    6.JPG 7.JPG 7b.JPG

    Again, this is raw, prototypical, and basic.

    Where the orifice meets the AC vent, I added weather stripping for a firm fit.

    8.JPG

    The next pics show the attachment of the head to the vent, the duct run to the back, and the view of the back (third) seats with the vent at their (kids) heads.

    9.JPG 9b.JPG 9c.JPG 9d.JPG

    Questions I anticipate (since I am not on here as often as I had been)

    (1) Cost: Aside from the wood that I had lying around, the cost was about $75

    (2) Time: About five man hours.

    (3) How does the vent stay above the jump seats: I have found that it fits nicely due to pressure. The second row seat forms a lip and the weight of the duct wedges the 6" wooden "box" nicely.

    (4) Store when not using? It fits nicely near where you keep your J1772 adapter.

    (5) Does it work? Would I post this if it didn't? But the real test will be a 108 degree day in July.

    (5) Dude, this looks like crap - are you really serious about posting this ugly thing to this forum? - Yes, it does look cheesy. And it is a prototype only. I considered coating it in pleather, but that would have necessitated me creating a finished product before testing. I would have had to fit the fabric before final installation and -well- I really didn't care how it looked if it didn't work. I also considered not posting it at all.

    (6) Is that elastic banding? Yes, that is what holds it to the vent. It snakes under the arm rests, and preserves the arm rest functionality. I initially had them attach to where you see the upper bolts, but that caused the bottom part to flip away from the seal. Putting them 2.5 inches lower, gave the correct line of force to hold the entire unit flush.

    (7) what AC settings. - really whatever you want. If you blow it at top fan speed, it will cool the back well, but you may get chilly up front. I closed the front vents, and run it at about 6, and it does the job. Provided a bit more noise, but does the job.

    (8) do the second row seats get starved from AC? There are vents below the driver and front passenger seat that blows AC when you set it to the "foot" mode. So, not this is not a problem.

    (9) does the wood mar the roof or the seat? - not as of yet. I have driven it quite a bit with it installed. If it gives me any trouble, I will fit fabric to areas that rub.

    (10) do you plan a final version? Plan - yes. Will I ever do that? I dunno. I generally drive BadA** to work and back and do not use the jump seats except on weekends or once a week or so. I anticipate not using the Subby-Tech-Ghetto-Ventilation-Situation (or STGVS) as a daily item.

    That is all for now.

    Cheers
     
  2. montgom626

    montgom626 Active Member

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    Darn, that is a funky but effective setup.
     
  3. Cheerose

    Cheerose Member

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    How much does it affect your rear-view?
     
  4. Kaivball

    Kaivball Member

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    Maybe you should just keep the kids in the second row to begin with... :)
     
  5. Jason

    Jason Member

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    Wow!
    Thanks for sharing, true not the prettiest but it does seem like you have it very functional.
    Now you got me thinking :) - pull cover off back of console under vents - maybe tie in to duct directly at floor level, then how to get it to 3rd row...

    (pic from Dr. Taras)
    rears.jpg

    Just FYI-
    I've already had my console out (no pic's) - I put rear hi-pwr USB for the 2nd row seats - older kids have to charge ipads
     
  6. AnOutsider

    AnOutsider S532 # XS27

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    sprinkles and chocolate milk!

    Seriously though, ghetto, but if it gets the job done, it gets the job done. As with the rear heated seats, I suspect this is something we'll see on future Model S's (unless they slowly do away with the rear seats all together)

    Could you document that at some point? My wife is constantly in need of a charge for her phone and her iPad (which keeps the little one entertained). I'm sad Tesla removed these and would love a nice solution to bring them back.
     
  7. Kipernicus

    Kipernicus Model S Res#P1440

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    This is great! Thanks for posting. I was thinking of this too and glad that you shared your experience.
    I only use the jump seats when the regular back seats are already full, so I wonder how inconvenienced they will be to have the ductwork by their heads.
     
  8. Trnsl8r

    Trnsl8r Blue 85kwh since 12/8/12

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    Necessity is the mother of all inventions. Thanks for posting (and for making T look bad, not having thought of this in the first place. Holzhausen, you taking notes?)
     
  9. wraithnot

    wraithnot Model S VIN #5785

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    Very entertaining post! I definitely appreciate the DIY spirit. If you didn't want to impact rear visibility, you could probably strap your rear wooden box to the front of the center rear headrest and then move the vents so they are positioned between the center rear headrest and the two jumpseat headrests. And if someone is feeling really ambitious, they could hide the hose inside of some sort of rear seat center console.
     
  10. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    Very interesting and inventive! Many mini-vans and SUVs have vents like that right in the headliner, but the Model S probably doesn't have any room to spare for ductwork up there. I suppose if one doesn't mind a small "transmission hump" in the back seat floor, some ducting could be run there and into the third row area under the back seat.
     
  11. Aussie

    Aussie Member

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    Great idea. Going under the floor and somehow coming out in the back would be perfect. And doing 2 USB charge points and a cup holder in the process.
     
  12. nkohlimd

    nkohlimd Member

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  13. mattjn

    mattjn Member

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    Pretty weird that the best car in the world requires someone to do something like this just to get air conditioning in the back seats.
     
  14. EarlyAdopter

    EarlyAdopter Active Member

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    If I was 6 and looked back and saw that I'd probably have nightmares for a week. :)

    Oh, that's it - just draw a smile below the two ducts and it'll look a whole lot more kid friendly.


    Untitled.png
     
  15. Francis Lau

    Francis Lau P-1456

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  16. nkohlimd

    nkohlimd Member

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    Reading the product reviews, users see almost a 30 degree difference. More if you freeze the sponge. If it works, order a few extra sponges to store in a cooler for longer trips. Agreed that the world most advanced car should have thought of a more eloquent and practical solution.
     
  17. DEinspanjer

    DEinspanjer Member

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    Purchased this a couple weeks back. It works pretty well, but a poor substitute for a real AC vent. One nice feature is that it comes with a little USB power dongle. I have a 15 foot USB extension routed from the center console under the floor mats and throught the seats to allow it to be plugged in.

    Sent from my SPH-L710 using Tapatalk 4 Beta
     
  18. jhs_7645

    jhs_7645 VIN: #3305

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    Another approach all together would be to install a series of small 12v fans around the sides of the rear seats (near the C pillar) which would circulate the air in the car. Enough fans and it would easily be enough to keep the temps in the car even and let the car's AC temp take care of it. The trick would be arranging the fans such that you are maximizing the exchange of air from the front to the rear.
     
  19. twinklejet

    twinklejet Member

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    In summary: expediting diffusion.
     
  20. nkohlimd

    nkohlimd Member

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