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Old 04-06-2020, 08:17 PM   #1
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2017 28' International
Cypress , Texas
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Dometic A/C's are Junk?

Had 1 of our 2 Dometic A/C-Heatpumps replaced this past week, after it had been limping along awhile but finally quit cooling at all on our last short trip. The unit is on our 2017 International 28.

The repair shop (a local Dometic service center found on Dometic's site) did a good job of making it fairly hassle free for us, and we had purchased an extended warranty through a 3rd party...so it wasn't a costly affair for this replacement.

My main concern is that the repair shop said the "Dometic's are known to be junk, built in China" (I haven't checked the China part out yet, but may be true). From reading all the other posts on this forum regarding Dometic, it's obvious they are junk and when they leak refrigerant, there's usually nothing to do except replace them.

My question is: WHY does Airstream continue to install these crappy A/C units in such an expensive RV??? Airstream's not the only ones; I see all brands of RV sites with people complaining about Dometic's junky systems.
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Old 04-06-2020, 08:24 PM   #2
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We have a 2016 and have had both units replaced TWICE. They were all replaced under warranty.
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Old 04-06-2020, 08:32 PM   #3
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The Dometic Penguin II on my 2013 is still running strong. Ran it hard last summer. Hoping it keeps working.
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Old 04-06-2020, 08:36 PM   #4
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I’ve never had a problem with them...
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Old 04-06-2020, 08:51 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by kscherzi View Post
The Dometic Penguin II on my 2013 is still running strong. Ran it hard last summer. Hoping it keeps working.
Same with my 2014. Seems to have a fairly strong reputation.
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Old 04-06-2020, 09:30 PM   #6
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My 1995 has its original Dometic
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Old 04-06-2020, 09:58 PM   #7
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What would be the alternative?
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Old 04-06-2020, 10:42 PM   #8
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Coleman is a much better unit. The only downside, is that the thermostat integration isn't nearly as smooth as dometics for 2 units.
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Old 04-07-2020, 04:11 AM   #9
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To respond to the OP, I have been disappointed at how junky everything made by Dometic/Atwood is for the RV market. I had a bluewater cruising sailboat with some Atwood stuff made for the marine market and the quality was good. Stuff was built to last. It seems that Atwood recognized the requirement to build at a lower unit cost for the RV market and quality suffered. I really do not know whether the marine market stuff was also made in China, but Chinese manufacturing is one way Atwood has achieved low cost...poor quality.
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Old 04-07-2020, 09:19 AM   #10
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I also had my Dometic heat pump on my 2019 International replaced after less than a year. At least their refrigerator has been reliable so far.
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Old 04-07-2020, 09:26 AM   #11
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Had a Colman installed at an Airstream dealership.
Then, I had Mothership re-install. Because, Airstream dealership didn’t remove Dometic mounting brackets.
Lesson learned; always go to Mothership!
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Old 04-07-2020, 09:33 AM   #12
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2016 30' Classic
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kellycox7 View Post
Had 1 of our 2 Dometic A/C-Heatpumps replaced this past week, after it had been limping along awhile but finally quit cooling at all on our last short trip. The unit is on our 2017 International 28.

The repair shop (a local Dometic service center found on Dometic's site) did a good job of making it fairly hassle free for us, and we had purchased an extended warranty through a 3rd party...so it wasn't a costly affair for this replacement.

My main concern is that the repair shop said the "Dometic's are known to be junk, built in China" (I haven't checked the China part out yet, but may be true). From reading all the other posts on this forum regarding Dometic, it's obvious they are junk and when they leak refrigerant, there's usually nothing to do except replace them.

My question is: WHY does Airstream continue to install these crappy A/C units in such an expensive RV??? Airstream's not the only ones; I see all brands of RV sites with people complaining about Dometic's junky systems.
What brand would you prefer to see?
The two Dometics on my 2016 Classic work just fine
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Old 04-07-2020, 09:34 AM   #13
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The OP discussed 1. Dometic product, and 2. Foreign Procurement.
Dometic - Our air distribution was so poor on the 2016 Penguin II that we placed on our 1964 Overlander, that we had to shut forward vents to get air in the back of the trailer. Same process if we wanted to get air in the front of the trailer. Online customer server person told me that was the way they were designed. Coming from an Aerospace manufacturing background - I informed her how unprofessional that sounded. IF we had to constantly move the vents, they would be very robust and NOT held in place by flimsy, easily broken nubs that hold them in place! SOLUTION: We visited the Dometic booth at the Tampa RV show in 2019, and told a veteran customer service guy our tale of woe, and he sent us a new ODB, that solved our problem. They also covered the installation cost by the local Dometic authorized repair company. PLUS, we had a problem with our Dometic refrigerator. It would not switch from electric to propane. They also provide a new CCA and installation cost.
Foreign Procurement - Two important points yet to be discussed on foreign procurement of product.
1. Does the reduced cost of the product from overseas supplier also cover the increased cost of warranty? Every aerospace manufacturer adds a percentage to their bids to cover warranty (bids include labor, material, profit, and some other items). Dometic might be approaching warranty of 50% of their product cost - not to mention transportation costs?
2. Do all manufacturing companies reward senior managers/executives for reducing costs and increasing business indices such as ROI, ROS, Free Cash Flow?
Final Question on manufacturing in China - anyone know where iPhones are manufactured? I have not seen a comparison of iPhone manufacturing processes and Dometics in China.
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Old 04-07-2020, 09:37 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kellycox7 View Post
Had 1 of our 2 Dometic A/C-Heatpumps replaced this past week, after it had been limping along awhile but finally quit cooling at all on our last short trip. The unit is on our 2017 International 28.

The repair shop (a local Dometic service center found on Dometic's site) did a good job of making it fairly hassle free for us, and we had purchased an extended warranty through a 3rd party...so it wasn't a costly affair for this replacement.

My main concern is that the repair shop said the "Dometic's are known to be junk, built in China" (I haven't checked the China part out yet, but may be true). From reading all the other posts on this forum regarding Dometic, it's obvious they are junk and when they leak refrigerant, there's usually nothing to do except replace them.

My question is: WHY does Airstream continue to install these crappy A/C units in such an expensive RV??? Airstream's not the only ones; I see all brands of RV sites with people complaining about Dometic's junky systems.
My Dometic AC Units run hours on end daily year around without any issues. The circuit board had to be replaced on one of them within a few months of purchase other than that no issues under heavy use.
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Old 04-07-2020, 09:38 AM   #15
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Maybe I'm living on the edge? I'm still running on the 15K Penguin Heat Pump unit that was on my 2004 Classic when I bought it new. Maybe that's when they were still good? I really don't know. I wondering whether inside storage helps keep things intact?

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Old 04-07-2020, 09:44 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kellycox7 View Post
Had 1 of our 2 Dometic A/C-Heatpumps replaced this past week, after it had been limping along awhile but finally quit cooling at all on our last short trip. The unit is on our 2017 International 28.

The repair shop (a local Dometic service center found on Dometic's site) did a good job of making it fairly hassle free for us, and we had purchased an extended warranty through a 3rd party...so it wasn't a costly affair for this replacement.

My main concern is that the repair shop said the "Dometic's are known to be junk, built in China" (I haven't checked the China part out yet, but may be true). From reading all the other posts on this forum regarding Dometic, it's obvious they are junk and when they leak refrigerant, there's usually nothing to do except replace them.

My question is: WHY does Airstream continue to install these crappy A/C units in such an expensive RV??? Airstream's not the only ones; I see all brands of RV sites with people complaining about Dometic's junky systems.
We've never had an issue with our A/C in the 2017 Flying Cloud...
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Old 04-07-2020, 09:47 AM   #17
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We've had zero issues with the Dometic unit on our 2012 23D.
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Old 04-07-2020, 09:49 AM   #18
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Portland , Oregon
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You bought a very expensive RV not one of high quality. This is what I’ve learned since owning my 2017. Also the dealer is not qualified to do major repairs from my experience.
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Old 04-07-2020, 09:57 AM   #19
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2017 19-footer, had our Dometic stop pushing cool last year.

Luckily, one month left on the warranty.
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Old 04-07-2020, 10:03 AM   #20
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Dometic running good!

2015 Flying Cloud with two Dometic units. Both running fine after five years.
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