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Old 05-15-2007, 05:39 AM   #1
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First Trip

We finally took our AS out this past weekend. Everything worked well, with only a few issues. A couple of questions I have relate to the AC unit and the water pump. We were in full sun on an 82 degree day and the living area never cooled to my liking. I didn't have a thermometer inside, but I would guess it was around 78-80 degrees. The front bedroom was nicely cooled. I'm very glad we didn't go with the panoramic windows in the bedroom. Is it because of all the windows that it can't cool in the living area? (We kept all blinds closed and once sun went down, the AC worked very well). The next question is about the water pump. Is it suppose to run almost the entire time you have the water on and continue to run after the water is turned off? It's also very loud and vibrates at times.
(we have a 25 ft not a 27, I just edited my profile)
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Old 05-15-2007, 07:07 AM   #2
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You might want to put a portable thermometer up at the AC outlet to measure the air temperature and then report back to us. I don't have my notes handy but I believe this temperature should register somewhere in the mid to upper 50s. Other forum members will no doubt comment to confirm this. If the unit is operating to specifications and you have a 13,000BTU/HR unit, you may wish to consider upgrading to a 15,000BTU unit. The upgrade cost is reasonable and seems to make a considerable difference based on my experience in changing out our unit recently.

Regarding the water pump. When it's turned on, it should operate as long as you're running water and shut off within a second after shutting off the water source. The pumps are not quiet based on my experience. Make certain that your fresh water tank isn't low on water! When camped hooked up to shore water with low pressure, you may wish to boost your pressure at the shower head with the pump. This will add water from your fresh water tank thus boosting pressure.

Enjoy your new Airstream and Happy Trails
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Old 05-15-2007, 07:20 AM   #3
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Deploying your awnings makes a tremendous difference. The air conditioner should reduce the inside temperature by 20 degrees. Thus, if it is 90 outside, your air conditioner should bring the inside down to 70 dergrees. If furniture, bedding and other surfaces are very hot, it will take much longer to cool off the inside.
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Old 05-15-2007, 07:31 AM   #4
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tport,

You can do a performance test of your AC unit very easily. After the unit has been operating for 10-15 minutes, get a temp reading of the ambient air in the trailer at the INTAKE to the AC unit. Take 3 measurements and average them.

Then get a reading of the cool air coming from the unit. Again take 3 readings and average.

The difference of these temps (called delta T) should be 18*-22* if your unit is operating to spec. Example: if your intake air temp is 84*, the cooled air coming from the unit into the trailer should be in the 62*-66* range. If it is, the unit is working properly.

The problem might be not enough BTUs available to cool the trailer, especially in bright sunlight. As mentioned before, a 15K unit would helo in this situation.

On your water pump, it should be running the entire time that you have a faucet opened and a slight bit after to re-pressurize the system. If your vibration is VERY loud, you might check the mounting bolts that hold the pump to the trailer, as they might be TOO TIGHT. If they are, the rubber bushings that should isolate the pump to reduce the vibrations are not doing their job. Remove them and re-insert to JUST TIGHT ENOUGH so the pump will not slide around, but will be slightly loose on the bushings. It should get better.

If you still find the noise offensive, you should consider changing out the pump for a newer, demand style variable speed type. They are MUCH quieter (and more expensive).
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Old 05-15-2007, 07:42 AM   #5
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We also have a 25FB, and camp a lot in the hot Florida sun. We fashioned window covers from the silver reflective material that is used for car/truck winshield sun deflectors. We side them between the inside drapes and the windows. We also made some for the skylight, Fantastic Fan, and the ceiling vent. With this set up the A/C works very well, even on a 96 degree sunny day in Florida. Before we did this, we had the same problem as you are experiencing. This reflective material is very reasonable if you but the reflectors for class A RV windshields and cut pieces to size. This material cuts very easily. We got ours at Camping World, and did our whole Airstream for about $40.

The fresh water pump runs the entire time that you are running the water and not hooked-up to city water and is a little bit noisy and does run for a second after the water is turned off. Leave the pump off while on city water.
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Old 05-15-2007, 07:44 AM   #6
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My pump will run while water is on and for a bit after, until head pressure stabilizes. Yes they are noisy. Yours sounds normal. If you use the pump to help boost pressure at low pressure hook-up, be sure you have some water in your tank also. I know this sounds like a redundant water source, but you donít want to run the pump dry for very long.
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Old 05-15-2007, 08:01 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tport40
The next question is about the water pump. Is it suppose to run almost the entire time you have the water on and continue to run after the water is turned off? It's also very loud and vibrates at times.
(we have a 25 ft not a 27, I just edited my profile)
In my experience, with my 2002 Bambi, the pump is quite loud but it does shut off shortly after I draw on water from a faucet. I typically don't use the water pump when hooked up to city water. IMHO, there is no need to use the pump when hooked up to city water because the pressure from the city water hookup is sufficient to keep pressure constant on all water faucets hence no need for the water pump.
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Old 05-15-2007, 09:29 AM   #8
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Keep it cool

Quote:
Originally Posted by GStephens
Deploying your awnings makes a tremendous difference. The air conditioner should reduce the inside temperature by 20 degrees. Thus, if it is 90 outside, your air conditioner should bring the inside down to 70 dergrees. If furniture, bedding and other surfaces are very hot, it will take much longer to cool off the inside.
GStephens
If you keep it cool to begin with your AC might be able to thrill you. I'm with GStep on this one. I also use Reflextic foil insulation both in summer and winter. It weighes next to nothing and in the summer when you are out and about you place it in your sunny side windows to keep the suns heat out. IT WORKS! Lowes and Home Despot and places like that sell it, cuts with shears and is inexpensive. And the awnings and the cold gin and tonics ---
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Old 05-15-2007, 09:40 AM   #9
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Hello!

Another A/C tip - if you return to your AS after a day out and it it hot inside. open all the windows and turn on your Fantastic Fans for a while to bring the AS to outdoor temp - then, close it up and run the A/C. Remember too to clost your skylights when you run the A/C.

I also agree about the awnings - we had the streetside and rear ones put on and with all three deployed, it makes a HUGE difference.

We use the windshield aluminum reflective material in the bedroom, but for a different reason - the large one for pickup trucks fits the rear window perfectly and keeps the bedroom dark for sleeping in on Saturday and Sunday mornings - the curtains only don't do the job. We'll be getting more for the sunny side windows too to keep it cooler in summer.

Best of luck with your new AS and use the SEARCH function here for answers to LOTS of questions - remember, the only dumb question is the one you don't ask and therefore never get an answer to!
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Old 05-15-2007, 10:23 AM   #10
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Pump Use With City Water Hook-up

On our 2007 Safari 23', we purchased the LS package which upgraded the water pump to an Aquajet pump. The owner's manuals say you can use the Aquajet pump to boost the city water pressure. With the standard pump, you should switch it off when connected to city water.

Our Aquajet pump seems to have gotten a little more noisy with use. It's still under warranty, so we've added that to the list of things to check.
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Old 05-15-2007, 10:45 AM   #11
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Camping World has a water accumulator device that hooks up to any water line in the unit. Ours had a connection right next to the pump that seems to have been made for it. It accumulates water and then pressurizes the lines so that the pump does not run all the time. As a side benefit, it quiets the pump by being something of a "shock absorber" for the pulsing of the pump. Well worth the $50 or so. I have had two of them and love them.
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Old 05-15-2007, 11:03 AM   #12
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I can tell you volumes about the A/C issue. My first trip out with my brand new 2001 27' Safari was a disaster since the unit was unable to keep the trailer out of the mid to high 80's when we were in 100 degree full sun conditions. My neighbors trailer a white SOB with a 13,500 AC unit was in the high 70's. It's hard to believe that the 13,500 A/C was the standard many years for the 34' units.

I argued with Airstream on this issue even to the point of having my dealer and Jackson Center both verify that the unit was working properly. The bottom line is that aluminum conducts heat very well and it's not unusual to find that when in full sun conditions, your A/C unit on your new trailer might not be up to snuff. When I pressed Airstream to quote me a standard that they use to determine what size A/C unit they use, they told me they had none. From that point on I tried to stay in shady sites and I also added a full length awning on the street side of the trailer.

To say the least when I ordered my Classic I opted for the 15K Penguin. Silvertwinkie who has a 25' Safari also opted for the 15K Penguin. Dependent upon your locale and where you camp out, that upgrade is money well spent. At this point (assuming you have no mechanical problems with the A/C unit), doing an upgrade will be a very expensive proposition.

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Old 05-15-2007, 02:06 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lewster
tport,
On your water pump, ...If you still find the noise offensive, you should consider changing out the pump for a newer, demand style variable speed type. They are MUCH quieter (and more expensive).
Anybody have experience with a foot operated pump for their AS? We had a sailboat with an electric pump and (like virtually all sailboats) the option of a foot pump for the sink. I don't know if it would work for hot water but for rinsing a small batch of dishes, washing hands, etc. it's all you really need. Silent and doesn't draw down the battery if you're boondocking. -Bernie
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Old 05-16-2007, 05:51 AM   #14
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re:First Trip

Thanks to all who responded. I'm definitely going to buy the reflective fabric for the windows and vents. And that darn skylight! I didn't want the skylight, but it became standard on the SE sometime before our Airstream was built in January of this year. We like to go to Camping on the Gulf in Destin for part of October and November and I was thinking I would have to ask for a shady site in the upper part of the park. We'll try all that was suggested and maybe we can stay by the beach in the sun!

Our pump sounds like it's working as it should. We never used the pump in the 5th wheel we owned, so we didn't know what to expect.

Thanks again,
Teresa & Randy
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Old 05-16-2007, 07:17 AM   #15
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You could also cut a piece of foam to insert inot the skylight(s) to stop the heat. We use them for cool weather camping to keep the heat IN.
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Old 05-16-2007, 08:30 AM   #16
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Our First Trip

Since the topic of this thread is First Trip out I wanted to post a shot of our first trip in our month old 27FB Safari. We loved it and it seems to be working great.
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Old 05-16-2007, 10:11 PM   #17
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Great photo and beautiful rig. And you look like you're having fun! Thanks for sharing.
Isn't it great?
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Old 05-17-2007, 05:39 AM   #18
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And you backed it into that spot without hitting the brown wooden post in the ground - GOOD FOR YOU! It isn't polite to ask how many tries it took, so I won't
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Old 05-17-2007, 06:02 AM   #19
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Thank you for the kind comments. It took only 2-3 tries to get it backed in and I wasn't that close to the pole but it did make me a bit nervous. Considering that I have never towed before I was rather proud it went so smoothly

Everyone is 100% correct that an AS is a novelty at a campground. We had fifth wheels across from us, motorhomes, SOB's, tents, van conversions, pop-up tent trailers but in 700 miles of driving we saw only 2 AS and they were on I-90 going the other way.

When we got back from hiking the guy in the fifth wheel told us he had checked our AS out while we were out. His first comments were how great it looked and then he asked how much $. Even though he said he knew they were real expensive, he was still low on the price by $12,000

We sure enjoy our AS and are taking it out again this weekend. Thank you to everyone on this site for the amazing amount of info being shared. What would have taken months/years to learn is available here if you just spend the time.
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