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Old 06-23-2015, 05:15 AM   #1
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I'm Melting! AC stops after few minutes?

We are unable to test our original 1980 AC at home because we do not have a 30 amp outlet to hook up to. (It had not been run for at least 10 years prior to us buying the trailer) While camping last weekend, (and hooked up to 30 amp) we tried the AC. We turned it on low cool and it ran for just a few minutes, then shut off. After trying it on high cool, fan, any setting, it would not turn back on. It did not trip the circuit breaker, but we have no idea where to start to check it.

It was warm in the trailer when we turned it on, so it should have run much longer.

We did repairs to our fridge a few weeks ago and I had to disconnect the AC thermostat wires (at least, I think that is what they were according to the service manual, one white, one black), but reconnected them securely when we were finished with the fridge.

We tried searching other posts, but were hot and frustrated, so our apologies if we missed it.
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Old 06-23-2015, 05:25 AM   #2
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What brand A/C is it? Does it have a remote thermostat or is it part of the ceiling assembly? Does the fan still run, or did everything shut off?
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Old 06-23-2015, 06:17 AM   #3
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Did you check the circuit breaker on the power pole at your campground site? Sounds like you tripped a breaker. You can test your AC at home by purchasing a 30amp to 20amp adapter. Walmart or any camping store will have one. Then you can plug it in to a household outlet. (110 outlet on 20amp breaker in your house panel)
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Old 06-23-2015, 06:24 AM   #4
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Old 06-23-2015, 06:41 AM   #5
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Did the whole ac unit quit working or was it just the fan? When it quit could you still hear the compressor running? If so it could be the fans thermal breaker tripped its internal to the fan. It will reset automatically when the fan motor cools back down. Mine did this it was because there was about 15 pounds of pine needles inside my ac unit on the roof and the bearings needed oil.
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Old 06-23-2015, 12:10 PM   #6
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It is not a good idea to use that on a 15 or 20 amp household circuit. I fried a receptacle doing that. 30 amps is too much draw on a 15 or 20 amp standard receptacle. Then, I had an electrician install a 50 amp receptacle.
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Old 06-23-2015, 12:40 PM   #7
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The AC draws about 15 amps during start up
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Old 06-23-2015, 01:36 PM   #8
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The AC draws about 15 amps during start up

Sorry, but that is incorrect. On start, the fan initiates at about 3 +/- amps. When the compressor starts, it has a transient load of over 50 amps which then becomes FLA or full load amps of between 10-13 amps, depending on the size of the compressor and the outside ambient temperatures.

The data tag on the unit will give specific values for FLA, LRA (locked rotor amps) and fan. The large amperage required for starting is usually compensated by the capacitors, but if you have a meter the records inrush current for AC circuits and is also RMS, you will see the large transient draw for starting.

That is not to say that you can't operate a roof A/C from a household 20 amp circuit. You must be certain that the circuit is indeed 20 amps, and you will need a 10 AWG extension cord to assure that there will be little to no voltage drop by the time the voltage reaches the trailer.


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Old 06-23-2015, 02:00 PM   #9
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AC Problem

Well, if in fact the AC has not run in 10 plus yrs., the seals could be bad and refrigerant has leaked out. I would take the trailer in and have the AC checked out. As mentioned in another response, I would have your electrical outlet for the trailer upgraded to 30 amps if you have one AC unit and 50 if you have two units. You should run the AC unit at least 1 to 2 times a year, to lubricate internal parts and seals.
Good luck, AC repairs are not cheap.
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Old 06-23-2015, 02:47 PM   #10
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What brand A/C is it? Does it have a remote thermostat or is it part of the ceiling assembly? Does the fan still run, or did everything shut off?
I will have to double check the brand - I have Dometic written down, but I think that was for the fridge parts I was searching for.

There is not a remote thermostat, it is part of the ceiling assembly. The entire AC shut off after a few minutes, though other electronics in the trailer were still working (a vent fan).
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Old 06-23-2015, 02:50 PM   #11
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Did the whole ac unit quit working or was it just the fan? When it quit could you still hear the compressor running? If so it could be the fans thermal breaker tripped its internal to the fan. It will reset automatically when the fan motor cools back down. Mine did this it was because there was about 15 pounds of pine needles inside my ac unit on the roof and the bearings needed oil.
The whole unit quit working and we could not hear the compressor run after the shut down...

We replaced the shroud last year and cleaned out and around the AC, so we don't think there is much clogging it.
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Old 06-23-2015, 02:53 PM   #12
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We're afraid that service will not be cheap, but would love to have it operational. (or purchase a new one) Our trailer only has the one unit and we would definitely use it often throughout the year as it also has a heater built into it.
Keeping my fingers crossed...
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Old 06-23-2015, 03:16 PM   #13
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Had the same thing happen to me this weekend. We were running our Ac and as we turned on the water heater the AC went off. All breakers in the trailer were fine. It was the campground power that had flipped a breaker. We changed over to propane on the water heater and were able to restart the AC.
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Old 06-23-2015, 03:17 PM   #14
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I've been running the AC on the Safari today while doing a repair on the cabinets. I hooked up the trailer's 30 amp #10 power cord to an adapter, to a 25' #12 drop cord, then to a 15 amp receptacle on a 20 amp circuit. I turned off the converter so there would be no load other than the AC. The AC was running continuously, so there has been only one startup cycle. No breakers tripped, even though it ran it 4-5 hours. It was nice and cool inside the trailer and it's 95 outside.
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