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Old 08-25-2010, 07:01 PM   #29
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I thought I'd give an update on the ongoing Dometic Penguin Low Profile air conditoner problems that I've had. After I put the call out here, I called a local RV guy about my a/c. He kindly came to the campground to take a look. He couldn't find anything wrong with the unit when the inside cover was off. Strangely enough, the instruction booklet that came with the a/c said the fan should run continuously, but the air compressor would come on & off when needed. Actually, the entire unit shuts off when it reaches the proper temperature. Dometic says that this is how it's supposed to operate. I would have NEVER bought an a/c that turns completely on & off like that. It will wake everyone up every time it goes on & off. Okay, that's part of the issue. The next part is this: when the inside cover goes back on, the unit only worked for about 5 minutes. The repair guy couldn't figure it out. He left me without fixing the problem & $75 later, I only had air with the inside cover off (which I lived with for the remainder of the trip). Once I got home, I brought the trailer to Adventure RV in Joliet, Illinois for actual repair. Now, mind you, this is a brand new unit. They tinkered with the a/c for 7-8 hours & talked back & forth with Dometic until Dometic finally told them it was an adjustment in the internal thermostat that needed to be done. I told the guy who came to the campground that (because somewhere someone told me to call a guy in Oregon for advise & he said that was a common problem w/penguins) that could be the problem, but he had no idea what I was talking about. Anyhow, the AS dealer told me that Dometic didn't want to pay them for the entire time they worked on the a/c since my dad installed it. The problem wasn't with the installation, but with the thermostat! I'm going to go pick it up tomorrow & they want me to pay for an hour of labor ($128). I already paid $75 to the other guy (who did nothing to help). All of this for an air conditioner that was brand new! What should I say to the guys who have my trailer? Isn't their fight between them & Dometic? How come I'm in the middle of a warranty problem? What would you do?
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Old 08-25-2010, 07:27 PM   #30
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I would not pay for the charges. It might help if you called Dometic and discussed it with them and mention that this whole endevour is being documented on this forum where several thousand potential customers are listening.They might just agree to pay the charges due to a public relations nightmare if they do not.
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Old 08-25-2010, 08:19 PM   #31
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I'm afraid they won't give me back my trailer if I don't pay them.
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Old 08-25-2010, 09:58 PM   #32
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I'm going with Jill tomorrow for moral support (and some experience with difficult situations!) Any other advise for our trip?
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Old 08-25-2010, 10:10 PM   #33
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Warranty

I would call Dometic and explain that the dealer wants to charge you for a warranty they should be honoring.
Assure them that you do not feel responsible for any fees associated with repairing the defective unit and do not intend to pay. That is what a warranty is for.
If the installation is mentioned just say that has nothing to do with the problem and is not an issue as none of the charges or problems are related to the installation, otherwise don't discuss it.
You might mention storage fees will likely be added to the warranty repair unless they contact the dealer and honor their warranty so sooner is better.
Make sure they have the dealer's contact information and the service manager's name.
Then contact the dealer and let them know you have contacted Dometic and that Dometic should be contacting them to resolve the problem.
If either side sounds like they are not going to help you might mention the better Business Bureau, sometimes it helps.
Finally write down names dates and what was said by both parties just in case you need it in court.
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Old 08-25-2010, 11:30 PM   #34
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Hi, you need to pay the bill and get your trailer back, or in the long run, it will cost you more. Now with the trailer in your possession, you need to explain to them: (1.) It is a known fact that the installation had nothing to do with the problem. (2.) It is a known fact that is was a defect in the unit, even if it was an adjustment. (3.) Also, I should not have to pay for a warranty repair that took so long because of the lack of product knowledge by the mechanic who worked on it. (4.) I will take legal action, if necessary, to recover the overcharge, because of this lack of product knowledge.
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Old 08-25-2010, 11:46 PM   #35
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It's Dometic you should be talking to. If you don't pay the repair, the mechanic probably has a mechanic's lien, meaning he can keep your unit and sell it for the charges. Start out nice with a call to Dometic. If the customer service people don't /won't help (their website says they are "customer-driven"), then go to the Dometic corporate site and grab the CEO's name & find his email address in Sweden: take it to the top. If Dometic is still not willing to do the right thing, tell them that you will be posting on Airstream and other rv sites as well as contacting Trailer Life to ask them to help resolve the issue. You can suggest that settling this issue is less costly than the loss of reputation. Then tell them you've already had some on-line discussion and several people in the USA and overseas are waiting for the outcome and will base their buying decisions on the Dometic response.
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Old 08-26-2010, 12:36 AM   #36
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Hi, actually, I think it is a dealer thing. They will get their pay for the warranty claim, but they want more, for their mechanic's lack of product knowledge.

The very first service manager that I worked for at a Lincoln, Mercury dealer told us that we were not allowed to charge the customer for our education.
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Old 08-26-2010, 01:36 AM   #37
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bob is on the money. pay the bill with a credit card, take the trailer home and then start calling.
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Old 08-26-2010, 06:48 AM   #38
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Alright, I'm going to go pick it up first thing this morning. I'll pay with a credit card if they still insist upon making me pay. I'll let you all know what happens!
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Old 08-26-2010, 08:52 AM   #39
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I was going to get a low profile AC today. I had found both a Carrier and a Dometic. After following this thread...I am not going to buy a Dometic. It's the principle of the whole thing.
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Old 08-26-2010, 03:44 PM   #40
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Well, Jill went to bed (she works night shift as an RN) after we got home with her trailer. I'm giving the report for her: We went to the AS dealer & first toured the new AS's--that was GREAT fun! Then we got up our nerves to go & get the trailer. Jill trailed behind me, not ready for a confrontation. I told the man that we were there to pick up Jill's trailer & he began to look up her bill. I told him that I didn't think she should be responsible for any bill since the a/c was under warranty. He said that it took so long to diagnose the problem & Dometic would only pick up part of the hours that it took that he was trying to recoupe some of the difference from Jill. I then used Bob's quote & told him that Jill shouldn't be responsible for the cost of educating the techs! He flinched at that one! Then he said "Okay, I guess I'll take it off." YEAH! Something FINALLY went her way with this dumb a/c! She thanked him, I told him to go after Dometic for what they owe him (and told him that more than once). Dometic has the absolute worst customer satisfaction I've seen recently. We spent literally hours on the phone with them to resolve this issue while we were camping, with no satisfaction. Jill still has to try to be reimbursed from the tech up in Michigan (another frustration to come). I know that the AS dealer also spent tons of time on the phone with them. The a/c needed an adjustment that probably took the tech 10 minutes to do, but Dometic took forever to diagnose the problem. They should know their a/c's & symptoms perfectly! Well, at least today ended well!
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Old 08-26-2010, 04:30 PM   #41
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Girl Power!

Ancient joke: What are the three fastest ways to get a news item spread around?
Answer: Telegraph, Telephone and Tell A Woman.

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Originally Posted by beckybillrae View Post
Well, Jill went to bed (she works night shift as an RN) after we got home with her trailer. I'm giving the report for her: We went to the AS dealer & first toured the new AS's--that was GREAT fun! Then we got up our nerves to go & get the trailer. Jill trailed behind me, not ready for a confrontation. I told the man that we were there to pick up Jill's trailer & he began to look up her bill. I told him that I didn't think she should be responsible for any bill since the a/c was under warranty. He said that it took so long to diagnose the problem & Dometic would only pick up part of the hours that it took that he was trying to recoupe some of the difference from Jill. I then used Bob's quote & told him that Jill shouldn't be responsible for the cost of educating the techs! He flinched at that one! Then he said "Okay, I guess I'll take it off." YEAH! Something FINALLY went her way with this dumb a/c! She thanked him, I told him to go after Dometic for what they owe him (and told him that more than once). Dometic has the absolute worst customer satisfaction I've seen recently. We spent literally hours on the phone with them to resolve this issue while we were camping, with no satisfaction. Jill still has to try to be reimbursed from the tech up in Michigan (another frustration to come). I know that the AS dealer also spent tons of time on the phone with them. The a/c needed an adjustment that probably took the tech 10 minutes to do, but Dometic took forever to diagnose the problem. They should know their a/c's & symptoms perfectly! Well, at least today ended well!
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Old 07-18-2011, 03:33 PM   #42
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And the final update on Jill's Dometic Penguin low profile a/c.....
The entire unit shut down when the set temperature was reached. I have a Coleman on my trailer & the fan runs continuously and the compressor turns on & off for temperature control. Jill spoke with the people in Elkhart, IN where she purchased the a/c. The lady there referred her to an a/c expert in the area (the mecca of almost all SOB trailers) & he told her that was NOT how the unit was supposed to operate. He got a new interior guts from Dometic & sent them to Jill. My husband installed it (just some screws & wires) and it now operates as it should.....continuous fan & compressor turning on & off to control the temperature. This concludes almost 1 year of fooling with that a/c!
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