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Old 06-21-2015, 05:37 PM   #29
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gr.austin., truly appreciate your reply, especially the not-to-worry part.
Still, some say nay and others say yay - so still am a bit confused.

Am heeding your last point most of all. Am only using A/C when absolutely necessary, and it is off when the trailer is unoccupied. Luckily, I don't need it at night. Just open up those big, beautiful windows and the cool night air flows in.

Happy camping to you too. I hope to do the North by Northwest tour someday - see Mt. Rushmore.
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Old 06-26-2015, 12:54 PM   #30
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Air conditioner is doing well, thank goodness.

Colorado plateau heatwave has drifted into B.C. Temps will be high 90s this weekend.
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Old 06-28-2015, 12:05 PM   #31
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Same problem

I just had a problem with A/C freeze up on our last outing . Fan was on high cool, filters were new ,the coils are clean , and the roof seal is good. It's 10 years old so am I most likely looking at a coolant leak and time to replace it?
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Old 06-28-2015, 12:37 PM   #32
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Air Conditioner Went From Big Blast to Small Blow

Initial thoughts might be a leak. The freeze up is a common indication of low refrigerant levels on any A/C unit, be it in an RV or home. As far as replacing, that's another matter. I would consider replacing if you have experienced marginal cooling. An example if I had an Airstream that was 27-34 feet long, you probably have a 13.5k unit. 15k units are available and after opting for that side with my 30' Classic with that unit I know that it was a wise move.

Another issue is how often have you used your unit. We do much of our camping in cooler climes, or during cooler seasons. In that case there isn't a lot of run time on the hardware. In that aspect alone, I'd be opting for repair since mine is also 10 years old.

I don't believe any major enhancements have been made from a power standpoint so you aren't going to gain much there. Also note that you do have a drain pan assembly that you would have to deal with on a replacement unit.

One other thought is if you wanted to entertain a heat pump, this would be a chance to upgrade to a unit with heat pump capabilities.

So that's some considerations that may help you in the process.

Jack
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Old 06-28-2015, 01:45 PM   #33
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Heat pump

We have the heat pump on our 30 ft classic.how does it work?
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Old 06-28-2015, 02:06 PM   #34
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Heat pump is nothing more than a reversal of the refrigerant flow. In air conditioning mode the inside coils are chilled. The heat absorbed by those coils is extracted by the fan blowing though the outside coils. In the winter the warmth from outdoors is pulled through cold outdoor coils. That heat extracted is exhausted inside though those inside coils.

Typically as it gets colder outdoors, it gets harder to gain as much heat into the refrigerant. Soon you pass a point of diminishing returns and you need to use the furnace. We choose to use the furnace once temps drop below 40F. A heat pump can save a lot of propane. Between the electric option on our water heater an the heat pump, we only use about one tank of propane a year.

The nice thing is the heat pump is thermostatically controlled. A standard air conditioner usually has a heat strip which provides electric resistance heating. Problem with those we have found in the past is that when you turn on the heat strip, you manually have to run it off once the trailer heats up. That becomes a real pain since I've not seen a heat strip on thermosatic control.

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Old 06-28-2015, 02:26 PM   #35
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We had problems with our Flying Cloud 28' cooling last week while camping outside DC. Of course it was 100 degrees most days. We sprayed the trailer with water to cool it off and that helped. What could be the problem?
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Old 06-28-2015, 03:02 PM   #36
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If you have a 13.5k unit and were in full sun, you were most likely experiencing symptoms of having an AC unit that is too small for those kind of conditions.

I make this assumption assuming that you were in a campground supplying proper power levels, and you only have a patio awning on your trailer.


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Old 06-28-2015, 03:57 PM   #37
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The easiest, fool-proof way to determine if your A/C unit is low on refrigerant is to measure the amperage draw of the compressor when the compressor is operating. In most Dometic units, this is the blue wire coming directly from the K-5 relay located on the relay control board (older units may have a black wire instead).

As the amp draw of a properly operating compressor is temperature dependent, (the FLA rating on your data plate, or Full Load Amps is generally 12.5-13.5 amps, depending on the actual unit you have when the outside ambient temperature is at 95F) you will need to use a digital multi meter with an amp clamp (or find a tech that has one) to get an actual reading of the compressor draw.

If you have indeed experienced a refrigerant leak and the ambient temperatures are above 80F, you will probably see compressor draw in the 5-7 amp range. If this is the case, it's time to replace your upper unit, as they are not field repairable since there are no process valves in place to allow for gauges and refrigerant replenishment, or leak location and repair.
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Old 06-28-2015, 04:09 PM   #38
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Air Conditioner Went From Big Blast to Small Blow

Gee, Lew that's pretty sobering. So you are saying that a valves couldn't be spliced into existing tubing to allow diagnostic work? Are there replacement refrigeration units being built? I thinking along the terms of refrigerator cooling engines that can be replaced rather than replacing the entire refrigerator itself? It's a shame that we've now reached the situation where any leak in the refrigeration system puts us in a throw away mode.

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Old 06-28-2015, 04:41 PM   #39
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Jack,

Sorry but true! There are NO units built for the RV market presently that have Schader valves in place. Yes, you CAN cut the crimped and sealed ends off the high and low side tubing and solder in the valves.

First, you have it use a piercing valve to evacuate ALL remaining refrigerant from the system (per Federal law, it is a $10.000 fine to knowingly release refrigerants into the atmosphere), then seal those holes, add the Schrader valves, fill the system with nitrogen and dye to locate the leak, repair the leak, pressure test again, remove the nitrogen after purging and finally re-fill the unit and test. And that doesn't address the labor to either remove the unit from the roof and then replace if, or dragging all of the required equipment ( which is substantial) up on the roof.

After all of this, you STILL have an older unit that might just leak again soon in another location!!!l

It is no longer cost effective to perform all of the above, as a new upper unit is far cheaper and comes with a 3 year and optional 5 year warranty.


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Old 06-28-2015, 05:16 PM   #40
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Lew, if you are replacing and if you are happy with the performance of your AC/Heat pump unit, are you better from a cost standpoint to replace with a unit built by the same manufacturer that is most like your failed unit? I'm thinking specifically about you may be able to reuse the drain pan and thermostat thus saving some cost and labor?

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Old 06-28-2015, 07:27 PM   #41
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Depends on the year of manufacture of the original unit. Dometic changed their control boards along with the new Comfort Control Center II(CCC-II) and they are not retro compatible with the older 5-button CCC-1.

If you get a new unit, your base pan should still work but you will need to order a CCC-1 compatible relay board for the new unit. It's a pretty easy swap out.


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Old 06-28-2015, 07:28 PM   #42
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Good to know. Thanks!
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