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Old 06-13-2008, 07:29 AM   #1
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AC Unit On Vacation...

So I wake up this morning at 2AM to <silence>.

Which is not good because I leave the AC on at night (fan low - on all the time). This is Florida in Summer, ya know...

So I get up to investigate. Something is definitely wrong - I turn the unit off, turn it on and the fan spins up, then turns off. The display goes blank except for the blinking "zone 1" at the bottom of the screen. It shows the same behaviour in "Fan Only" and in "AC" mode.

I thought it might be power issues, but the microwave and other appliances work fine. Is there anything else I can check?

Oh. 2006 Safari 28SO. Dometic "Penguin" with heat pump.

I didn't try the heat pump or the furnace to see if they work. That might indicate if the thermostat itself went haywire...
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Old 06-13-2008, 08:03 AM   #2
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So I wake up this morning at 2AM to <silence>.

Which is not good because I leave the AC on at night (fan low - on all the time). This is Florida in Summer, ya know...

So I get up to investigate. Something is definitely wrong - I turn the unit off, turn it on and the fan spins up, then turns off. The display goes blank except for the blinking "zone 1" at the bottom of the screen. It shows the same behaviour in "Fan Only" and in "AC" mode.

I thought it might be power issues, but the microwave and other appliances work fine. Is there anything else I can check?

Oh. 2006 Safari 28SO. Dometic "Penguin" with heat pump.

I didn't try the heat pump or the furnace to see if they work. That might indicate if the thermostat itself went haywire...
ttam,

Try resetting your CCC (comfort control center) because it sounds like you have a communication error between the t/stat and the upper board in the AC.

Here is what you do: turn off the CCC at the little switch at the bottom of the CCC. Simultaneously, press in the top and bottom buttons of the CCC.

Now, with the two buttons still depressed, turn on the CCC via the little switch at the bottom. The display should read "FF" and you can now release the buttons and it should read normally.

If this doesn't work, there are other problems which should be diagnosed by an authorized Dometic service center. You can check their web site and when there, try to find a 'Team 2000' certified service center.

One potential problem might be evaporator freeze-up. This is common in hot, humid environments (FL) when the blower is kept on 'low', as there is insufficient air coming across the evaporator. This decreased flow causes decreased heat transfer from the incoming air and creates the freezing condition in the evaporator. There is a 'freeze sensor' imbedded in the evap that can shut down the unit to protect the compressor.I would NOT leave the fan on 'low' in the conditions found in FL.

Good luck!
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Old 06-13-2008, 08:08 AM   #3
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ttam,
I read of something like this in one of the Blue Berret newsletters (Phred Sez column). IIRC there are some RJ11 wires and connectors (phone type wires and jacks) under the AC cover inside the coach. They are all wired for two units with two control panels, but in coached that only have one AC unit only one connection is used, so there may be a connection / jack that is not used. The article stated that refreshing the connections some times works. It also went on to mention that you can connect to the unused jack to get the unit working. If it works in the other jack then there is an issue with an electronic board somewhere.
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Old 06-13-2008, 08:15 AM   #4
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Easy solution to that one. Just pull it up here. It was a cool, crisp 23 degrees this morning. I figure we'll get to 60-something today.

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Old 06-13-2008, 08:27 AM   #5
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Thanks folks! I'll go back to the camper during lunch and give it a try. Bates is literally right next to me, but I wanted to try dealing with this on my own before engaging them (especially since I don't have a tow vehicle to take it to them and I'm not sure how "neighborly" they'll be about dropping by).

With regards to evaporation and freezing, I thought about that too but the unit was off from 2AM till this morning and it's still acting up. It also rained alot last night, but it wasn't that cold. I assume that the AC wasn't even running when things went awry.

I'll get back to you on this - I'm sure people will want to hear the result... I always like the hear about the ending - happy or not - on Airforums.

Eubank, that really sounds refreshing and prolly great sleeping weather (especially if you've got someone to cuddle with)!
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Old 06-13-2008, 08:43 AM   #6
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Thanks folks! I'll go back to the camper during lunch and give it a try. Bates is literally right next to me, but I wanted to try dealing with this on my own before engaging them (especially since I don't have a tow vehicle to take it to them and I'm not sure how "neighborly" they'll be about dropping by).

With regards to evaporation and freezing, I thought about that too but the unit was off from 2AM till this morning and it's still acting up. It also rained alot last night, but it wasn't that cold. I assume that the AC wasn't even running when things went awry.

I'll get back to you on this - I'm sure people will want to hear the result... I always like the hear about the ending - happy or not - on Airforums.

Eubank, that really sounds refreshing and prolly great sleeping weather (especially if you've got someone to cuddle with)!
Upon resetting the CCC, if you get an 'EE' message instead of the 'FF' then there is most definitely a communication error. At that point, remove the CCC from the wall to expose the RJ-11 jack at the back and remove/replace the jack a few times. This will clean any possible corrosion that may have accumulated on the contacts. Try again to re-set.

If the problem persists, you should repeat the procedure at the under side of the AC unit. Simply switching the jack to the other connector union there will not necessarily solve the problem, as the jack might have some minor corrosion on it also.

Do let us know...............
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Old 06-13-2008, 08:48 AM   #7
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Before I break the CCC, how does the cover come off?
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Old 06-13-2008, 09:28 AM   #8
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Found the owner's manual so it tells me how to take the cover off. It also describes the communications reset procedure! http://www.dometicusa.com/pdf/3109529.069.pdf
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Old 06-13-2008, 09:33 AM   #9
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Found the owner's manual so it tells me how to take the cover off. It also describes the communications reset procedure! http://www.dometicusa.com/pdf/3109529.069.pdf
ttam,
All else fails...read the directions...

I hope you get the AC running before the heat builds for the day.

Also IIRC if you need to get at the jacks / wires at the ceiling, you just have to remove the filter panels and you should be able to see everytghing from there. You don't have to remove the entire cover from the ceiling inside the coach.
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Old 06-13-2008, 11:50 AM   #10
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Well, I went back during lunch and tried the reset sequence, along with some playing with the jack into the CCC and the "union" that's just above the starboard filter housing. Now the unit just displays "EE" all the time. So either the CCC is hosed or the cable is (or maybe the receiving unit). I'm going to go find a new phone cable and see if that helps, along with going topside and checking the jack into the receiving unit. Will do this on Tuesday when I'm back in town.

Bates won't even entertain coming over to check things out, so if I can't complete this on my own it'll be $50 to the hauler to take the trailer 100 yards to the service area... My bad I guess, I'm the one who didn't want to buy a tow vehicle!
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Old 06-13-2008, 11:53 AM   #11
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A couple of side notes: When you hold 'Zone' and 'Mode' while turning the unit on, I get an 'FF'. Then when I stop holding down the buttons, I get the 'EE'.

I also noticed that the unit must be getting 12v in addition to the 120v. I powered off 120v expecting everything to reset, and the CCC stayed on... Turned off 12v, and it finally powered off.
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Old 06-13-2008, 12:04 PM   #12
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Called Dometic and they say that you can get to the control unit itself (and the jack) without going topside, so that's good. Will try next week.
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Old 06-13-2008, 12:16 PM   #13
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I'm going to go find a new phone cable and see if that helps
Be careful! I don't think the AC units use a cable for phones. A 4-wire cable meant for a phone is a direct pin reversal of the wires. On one jack end the wires will be RED, YELLOW, BLACK, GREEN and GREEN, BLACK, YELLOW, RED on the other end. I think the AC units use a straight through cable RED, YELLOW, BLACK, GREEN on both jack ends.
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Old 06-13-2008, 12:40 PM   #14
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Thanks for that - I'll check the color codings before I try any substitute cords...
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