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Old 10-16-2012, 12:09 PM   #1
1987 29' Airstream 290
El Cajon , California
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 60
Images: 14
Talking Solo AC Install

As I stood there looking ten feet into the sky at the top of my 87 290 motor home I thought getting the new Coleman 13,500 AC unit up to it's perch would be impossible for one man, with the never ending advice of my wifely supervisor pushing me on! In a never ending effort to save money I called my local reopair shop and they quoted around $300 to install the unit. My mind was easily made up, but I was apprehensive, to say the least. Then I thought about those poor souls who built the pyramids! Leverage was the key to my success. I parked my pickup truck next to my MH. Then with the parking brake on I extended my 16 foot aluminum ladder from the bed of the truck to the landing zone on the roof on my MH. I tied a rope to the compressor of the AC unit, threw the rope up the ladder to the top rung , looped it around the rung and brought it back to the truck bed and wrapped it around the tie off in the bed of the truck. I pushed from the bed of the truck while my wife took up the slack in the rope and up it went to the top as easy as pie! Laying easily on the roof so as not to dent the fragile skin I took the rope off the new and tied it to the old, and repeated the process in reverse to get the old AC down and into the truck bed. Forty minutes and four big bolts later I was chilling in the Motor home. Another problem solved and three hundred saved!

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Old 10-16-2012, 12:29 PM   #2
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1966 24' Tradewind
1995 34' Excella
Lynchburg , Virginia
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 3,356
Great job Eric. Glad you rose to the challenge. Most of the time we tend to take the easy way out and just write the check. Now you have the satisfaction of doing the job yourself, saving $300 (to fund another camping trip) and sharing your solution here on the forum. A Utube video would have been interesting.


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Old 10-16-2012, 12:57 PM   #3
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2006 23' Safari SE
Biloxi , Mississippi
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 8,278
Images: 33
Not exactly "solo" but still a job well done.

Do you know what a learning experience is? A learning experience is one of those things that says "You know that thing that you just did? Don't do that."
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Old 10-22-2012, 10:39 AM   #4
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1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 4,573
Images: 1
Yes, it feels a long way up!
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Old 10-22-2012, 02:40 PM   #5
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1974 20' Argosy 20
Richmond , Kentucky
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 7,834
First time I replaced the A/C gaskets on our 310 I built a scaffold above the motorhome so I could do everything without touching the roof (yes I have a lot of scaffolding to play with!). I spent more time errecting the scaffolding than I did replacing the gaskets.

The next time I had to replace one of the gaskets I just set a padded extension ladder against the side of the 310 and climbed up and did the job.

This spring when I swapped the air conditioners from the 345 over to the 310 I just used planks that straddled the two coaches and slid the A/C units back and forth.

Bottom line is once you get used to replacing them a time or two it becomes a simple chore.

Ericjan2, good job on coming up with your own solution to the problem. I doubt if any two people will do the job the same way.

Air forums # 1674
1974 20' Argosy Motor Home
1974 31' Excella trailer (parting out, as of 4/1/2015 I have wheels, brake drums, windows & holding tanks left to sell)
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