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Old 05-29-2013, 12:05 PM   #1
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Air Conditioner Replacement Questions

I have a 1989 excella 1000 airstream the air condition is original unit.The pan under the A/C is cracked and wore out and in need of replacement.Leaking water inside the coach.This pan is is a discontinue item.Should i be thinking about replacing complete A/C unit.The unit on my airstream is a coleman 13.5 BTU unit.Need some advice and help on which A/C i should buy for replacement.Airstream in Jackson City Ohio recommends going with a Dometic unit low profile.Need some help , Jim
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Old 05-29-2013, 12:16 PM   #2
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It would be a hard decision for me to spend money on a 24 year old air conditioner, but I really know nothing about yours.

If you do decide to go with a new Coleman, I will advise you to NOT get the model that uses the wall mounted thermostat/computer, as the system has some problems because of the type of wire they use to power it, and it cannot be changed. Get the model that has the switch and thermostat built in.
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Old 05-29-2013, 02:31 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveH View Post
It would be a hard decision for me to spend money on a 24 year old air conditioner, but I really know nothing about yours.

If you do decide to go with a new Coleman, I will advise you to NOT get the model that uses the wall mounted thermostat/computer, as the system has some problems because of the type of wire they use to power it, and it cannot be changed. Get the model that has the switch and thermostat built in.
Don't know what type of problems you had/having with your Coleman with the digital t/stat. I have installed dozens of these (and many, many more Dometic Penguins) and have yet to see any wiring issues, unless you have internal wiring issues in your trailer.

I even had to re-wire 3 roof units in a 45' American Eagle diesel pusher, just to change back to the RVP/Coleman thermostat so that the client could see it better. No issues there either.

Maybe you need a better tech.
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Old 05-29-2013, 02:37 PM   #4
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We installed the 15K BTU Dometic Penguin unit last year with the wall mounted thermostat and the drip pan designed for Airstreams. Works great in our '72 31' Sovereign.

Chris
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Old 05-29-2013, 03:09 PM   #5
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Don't know what type of problems you had/having with your Coleman with the digital t/stat. I have installed dozens of these (and many, many more Dometic Penguins) and have yet to see any wiring issues, unless you have internal wiring issues in your trailer.

I even had to re-wire 3 roof units in a 45' American Eagle diesel pusher, just to change back to the RVP/Coleman thermostat so that the client could see it better. No issues there either.

Maybe you need a better tech.
Actually, mine are Dometic, and I miss-typed trying to address the OP having been recommended the Dometic by Airstream.

And, I had two techs work on the system last summer and neither could fix them. After talking to Dometic customer service twice, I asked someone in engineering to call me back, they did, and I learned the telephone wire from the AC unit down to the thermostat also powers the thermostat/computer on the wall.

The telephone wire and the connectors have troubles carrying the needed current to power the thermostat/computer because they are too small. (something like 24 ga.?) That's where my trouble was, and I fixed it with a $6 part from Radio Shack. I have talked with others who have had similar problems.

Dometic used that I'm sure because it is cheap and available, but the connectors especially are not designed to carry the needed current of the thermostat/computer.
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Old 05-29-2013, 03:28 PM   #6
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If I were going to place some blame......I would center it on Airstream, not Dometic. Dometic has been using the phone-style cable for years and have them installed in literally thousands of RVs with no issues at all.

The current demands of the thermostats and digital control boards in the upper units are very small as it is simply control voltage, so the small gauge wire works well. Again, I have serviced many hundreds of these units and if there are any communication problems, they can usually be traced to the cheap female X female unions that employed to connect the comm. cable from the upper units to the existing wiring in the coach. The errors usually show up at the thermostat as 'FF' on the CCC-I and 'E-1' on the CCC-II.

But as always, YMMV.................
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Old 05-29-2013, 03:48 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by lewster View Post
If I were going to place some blame......I would center it on Airstream, not Dometic. Dometic has been using the phone-style cable for years and have them installed in literally thousands of RVs with no issues at all.

The current demands of the thermostats and digital control boards in the upper units are very small as it is simply control voltage, so the small gauge wire works well. Again, I have serviced many hundreds of these units and if there are any communication problems, they can usually be traced to the cheap female X female unions that employed to connect the comm. cable from the upper units to the existing wiring in the coach. The errors usually show up at the thermostat as 'FF' on the CCC-I and 'E-1' on the CCC-II.

But as always, YMMV.................
Well, you possibly have not run into one of the problems yet, but you will. Dometic actually told me they had problems with the system, and the connectors, and that was the problem I found. And, it's more than "control voltage", the system uses one pair in the cable for the boards to "talk" to one another digitally, and the other pair is used to power the thermostat/computer on the wall.

Every notice that is the ONLY connection to it?
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Old 09-30-2013, 08:22 AM   #8
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So good wrench, which unit did you decide to go with.
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Old 09-30-2013, 08:41 AM   #9
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I have bought a coleman 15,000 btu airconditioners off of salvaged RV's (craiglist). I took off the cover and cleaned the fins on the airconditioner and hooked it up. I have did not pay over $125.00 for the used airconditioner and it works great. The most difficult part was removing it from C-class motorhome which was allowed to rot in the outdoor elements. It stunk to high heaven inside. We had to wear masks and rubber gloves.
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Old 09-30-2013, 03:49 PM   #10
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We had Jackson Center swap our old 11,500 Btu AC for a 15,000 btu Dometic Penquin heat pump. Single thermostat controls heat pump and propane furnace. It will kick on propane furnace in auto if needed because of low outside temperature.

We went to the new style inside cover. Tech said we could just stay with the old style. Very please with the new unit except the wind noise from the fan is loud. Sometimes I wonder if the wind noise is caused by the new style inside cover vs. the old style.
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Old 09-30-2013, 08:13 PM   #11
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You are going to have to have a catch pan for many of the aftermarket units or a drain kit. If you don't have a drain kit, you can just let the water run out on the roof and down the sides of the trailer. If you remove the pan you have now, you should be able to have it drain onto the roof not the inside of the trailer. Have you removed the airbox inside to see what is going on there?

Perry
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