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Old 09-05-2012, 01:40 PM   #43
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2008 25' Safari SS SE
Ocala , Florida
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I've been dealing with this on my 2008 Safari here in sunny Florida (that's spelled H-U-M-I-D). A small drip through the air filter onto the floor while it's running and a trickle outside while it's running. When it cuts off the water comes gushing out the outside drain at the tire.

Here's what I've learned. When the AC is running the fan tends to create a vacume that keeps the water in the pan. That explains the trickle outside. The pan is only fitted for Airstreams so probably not a perfect design. When the unit cuts off, and also the fan, it "releases" the water. There's your gush of water.

I noticed that if the fan gets too full it will overflow onto the roof. This is by design. My problem turned out to be the overflow holes up top were clogged, not the drain tube. The pan would fill up but drip into the inside of the trailer instead of out on the roof.

Normally it's such a small amount of overflow you never see it because it evaporates or goes to the gutters running the length of the trailer.

My fix was to remove the top cover including the black cover over the fans and pour a few gallons of water into the pan (which is partially visible). This cleared the overflow holes and also make a nice bubbling sound as it went down the tube.

So far so good, no more leak.

Before you go climbing up on the roof check the drain tube first since that's the most common problem with critters and gunk getting inside and the easiest to fix. A length of cable TV coax with the end cut off will fit snugly and clean it out if compressed air can't do the trick.

Lastly, the only time this seems to be a problem is in very humid and hot conditions when the AC runs for long periods. When it cycles on and off periodically the drain pan never has time to fill up.
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Old 09-06-2012, 09:51 AM   #44
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2010 30' Flying Cloud
Newport Beach , California
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Leaking AC

I recently resolved a 2 year battle with the AC on my 2010 FC. Here are a couple observations:

If you are like me, you spent more for your Airstream than your car yet never have AC problems with the car. In fact, we never have to think about it. That's the way the Dometic AC should work: worry and trouble free. I shouldn't have to set the vents a certain way, adjust the thermostat differently on humid days, or cycle the compressor. My expectation is that I should be able to turn it on, set the temp wherever I want, set the vents wherever I want, and let it run as long as I want, and have no leaks.
Dealers can't fix this problem because Dometic and Airstream say they are baffled by it.
Reproducing the problem is very difficult because atmospheric conditions play a major role in the recurrences.
The latest theory from Dometic is that water condenses on an exposed plate that has since been insulated on 2012 models.

Airstream was initially reluctant to address the problem, but I sent video directly to Dometic and Dometic immediately responded. Dometic gave instructions to the dealership and eventually shipped a new AC when the problem couldn't be fixed. The new AC works as expected; I turn it on and forget it. No leaks into the interior space.

Recommendations:

1. Video tape the leakage. Send it to Randy, national service rep at Airstream and have him contact Dometic.

2. Insist on a replacement unit.

3. Don't ignore the problem, it doesn't just go away.
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Old 09-12-2012, 02:19 PM   #45
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Cogan Station , Pennsylvania
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I'm having a similar issue with the A/C in my 2010 Flying Cloud FB. It will run then occasionally blow hot air. When it cycles off I get the gush of water at the drain valve. What gets me is I see ( and hear) the units in other campers around me running just fine at a constant rate.
I also agree that we shouldn't have to go through a kabuki dance of setting to keep our ASs comfortable in hot/humid environments.
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Old 09-14-2012, 02:49 PM   #46
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There's been a fairly constant number of posts on this thread and others about the late model Dometics in Airstreams leaking or not working properly. I wonder if other RV's are having problems with them too?

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Old 09-14-2012, 03:19 PM   #47
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2012 30' Flying Cloud
Lake St Louis , Missouri
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Based on the previous post, the 2012 units have a change incorporated that fixes this problem. I have a 2012 and have not had this issue (yet?). Just wondering if it's really fixed for 2012 and later?

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Old 09-14-2012, 04:17 PM   #48
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Fountain Inn , South Carolina
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I had a new Dometic Penquin 15K heat pump installed on my 2002 Safari 25 at Jackson Center in early August. I have run it in very humid conditions. On hot humid days it will run for a number of hours to cool down the trailer after a day on the road. We have had many hours of operation in August / Sept and have not had any trouble with it spilling water inside the trailer.

I left the original 2002 drain pan in place based on the AS tech's advice. The tech installed a new Dometic roof gasket under the new heat pump. I also had them install the new style air distribution box (the plenum inside the trailer) with the heat pump.

So far the performance of the new heat pump has been great.
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Old 09-14-2012, 06:20 PM   #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AirEgger View Post
Based on the previous post, the 2012 units have a change incorporated that fixes this problem. I have a 2012 and have not had this issue (yet?). Just wondering if it's really fixed for 2012 and later?

AirEgger
Airstream makes change during a model year and it is possible that early 2012's don't have the change and later ones do. A call to customer relations may help find out when it happened and what VIN has the fix so you can tell if you have one with it or not.

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Old 09-14-2012, 07:10 PM   #50
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I have a 2012 FC and the Dometic roof unit expels 4 oz. or so of water down through the interior plastic shroud whenever it shuts off from HP mode. This is usually at night, with outside temps of in the 40s with high humidity (coastal).

Since it doesn't leak while running any length of time, I do not think the drain is plugged. This discharge on shutoff pours out the moment the motor shuts down. It always discharges on the curb side of the shroud.

I am going to do the initial investigation on my own, because I haven't yet heard of any dealers having a solution to this. It's quite costly to run up and down to the dealer.

I like the idea of video taping it, because you know, you'd never get it to happen when at the dealer!
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Old 09-15-2012, 05:54 AM   #51
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Lake St Louis , Missouri
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Gene, thanks for the suggestion to contact AS re 2012 cut-in point for ac leak fix. Will contact them on this and also check the cut-in point for the rear compartment rubber seal that supposedly fixed the leak in that area. I'll post the serial number info if I can get it.

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Old 09-25-2012, 05:41 AM   #52
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2011 23' FB International
Nellysford , Virginia
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We just encountered HP drainage issues on our first long (3 week) trip in our 2011 23' International. Water drips out of the unit as well as through the adjacent roof seam! Drippage (?) occurs from the heating mode, as well as the AC mode. We are very concerned about mold growth in the ceiling as a result of this leak/drip!

Our closest dealer (Safford in Northern VA) is 3 hours away, and was not particularly impressive when we bought the unit.

Am I better off contacting Airstream directly first on this problem, or will they not do anything until a dealer has looked at the unit?

Any advice is appreciated!
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Old 09-26-2012, 06:10 PM   #53
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You can call customer relations and ask them—is it still under warranty? I assume you are talking about the roof seam inside next to the A/C. It could also be coming from the skylight which in years past was often installed very badly—they would screw the screws down too tight and crack the plastic.

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Old 09-26-2012, 07:59 PM   #54
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Thanks for the reply! It still is under warranty (bought new in May). We haven't had any signs of leaks before now, and the vent is on the opposite side of the AC unit from where the ceiling is leaking (this unit doesn't have a skylight).
I think I will call up AS customer relations tomorrow and see what they have to say.
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Old 09-27-2012, 10:04 AM   #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1civilengr
We just encountered HP drainage issues on our first long (3 week) trip in our 2011 23' International. Water drips out of the unit as well as through the adjacent roof seam! Drippage (?) occurs from the heating mode, as well as the AC mode. We are very concerned about mold growth in the ceiling as a result of this leak/drip!

Our closest dealer (Safford in Northern VA) is 3 hours away, and was not particularly impressive when we bought the unit.

Am I better off contacting Airstream directly first on this problem, or will they not do anything until a dealer has looked at the unit?

Any advice is appreciated!
As you may have read, I've had a couple year experience with getting my AC leak resolved. Here's what I recommend:

1. Video tape the leak with your cell phone when it occurs.
2. Email the video to Airstream and to Dometic.
3. Contact them both and have them work out the solution.

This is a difficult problem to resolve because it's generally not reproducible at the dealer, it depends on specific atmospheric conditions not always present, and many Airstreams are not used regularly enough for owners to identify it as a chronic problem.

Dometic has the ultimate responsibility for resolving this and I think a company of its size has the engineering talent to correct the problem. My 2012 AC unit has not had the leaking issues so far. However, the new AC no longer drains exclusively down the drain tube so I get condensation runoff. In addition, the DIP switches were not set for the HP to operate and the thermostat no longer fits where the old one did. Unfortunately, I've learned it's less frustrating to lower my expectations than try to resolve these outstanding issues.
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Old 09-27-2012, 11:59 AM   #56
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Originally Posted by hansenk View Post

Dometic has the ultimate responsibility for resolving this and I think a company of its size has the engineering talent to correct the problem.
Airstream shares responsibility. They bought and installed the unit. They have an obligation to make sure the product works properly in their trailers. They may have made some changes for an Airstream installation as well.

These problems have occurred often enough in the past year or more. There should be a fix by now and every dealer should know it and be ready to fix it. If that hasn't happened, then Airstream is not doing their job.

I agree Dometic has the resources to find a fix, though Airstream may not. Nonetheless, between them they should have come up with something by now.

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