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Old 04-04-2020, 07:21 PM   #1
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New Dometic AC prevents MicroAir install

I was installing a Brand NEW 15K Dometic Penguin II yesterday and in prepping the unit to install a MicroAir 364 SoftSTART I noticed the unit did not have a Start Capacitor or PTCR dispute the wiring diagram showing them.
Not wasting anytime I called my buddy Kevin at MicroAIR for a quick consult.
He informed me that the NEW Dometic AC units have incorporated “Dometic’s” own proprietary soft starter and you CANNOT install a MicroAir system. I not sure how I feel about this.....
I have not been able to run the unit for testing because the unit also requires a CCC2 10 button thermostat and it has not arrived yet.

As soon as I can I will report on the ability to run the unit off a single 2000 watt generator.
Here’s a few pics of the board.
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Old 04-04-2020, 07:47 PM   #2
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Did they say when they started manufacturing them this way?

We had to replace our AC last summer and I didn't try reinstalling the MicroAir EasyStart unit because it would void the warranty. However, I've noticed that it starts up much smoother, without the loud knock, then the original unit on which I did install the EasyStart. I haven't tried running the AC from our MultiPlus 3000 inverter, but I'm now wondering if it would work.
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Old 04-04-2020, 07:53 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeaLevel View Post
Did they say when they started manufacturing them this way?

We had to replace our AC last summer and I didn't try reinstalling the MicroAir EasyStart unit because it would void the warranty. However, I've noticed that it starts up much smoother, without the loud knock, then the original unit on which I did install the EasyStart. I haven't tried running the AC from our MultiPlus 3000 inverter, but I'm now wondering if it would work.
I’m not sure when they started but if you look and there is no start cap that would be your first clue.
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Old 04-04-2020, 08:29 PM   #4
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The Dometic SmartStart and the MicroAir 364 are quite similar. The concept and design is the same, the specs are very similar, they perform nearly the same and reduce inrush by the same 65%. I don't know which is more reliable, but there are advantages to having all components supported by the same company.
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Old 04-05-2020, 03:16 AM   #5
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Many of us asked why OEM's did not just include such devices in their design. Maybe they heard us???
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Old 04-05-2020, 10:20 AM   #6
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About 2 years ago we ordered a Dometic-labeled hard start kit for our 2017, but when we pulled the covers off, found that there was already one in place. Sure enough, the 13.5 unit will run fine powered by just a Honda 2000i as we found when boondocking at WalMart in Eldorado, KS last summer.
When I had to replace the Fantastic Fan under warranty, now owned by Dometic, the CS rep, I spoke with confirmed that some AC/heat pump units began coming out in 2016 with these kits installed. Go figure...
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Old 04-05-2020, 10:49 AM   #7
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Perhaps that is why we could run the 13,5 ac on our 2018 26 with a honda 2200i. I'll have to try the 15 unit soon.
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Old 04-05-2020, 10:50 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeaLevel View Post
Did they say when they started manufacturing them this way?

We had to replace our AC last summer and I didn't try reinstalling the MicroAir EasyStart unit because it would void the warranty. However, I've noticed that it starts up much smoother, without the loud knock, then the original unit on which I did install the EasyStart. I haven't tried running the AC from our MultiPlus 3000 inverter, but I'm now wondering if it would work.

We had to replace our AC last summer and I didn't try reinstalling the MicroAir EasyStart unit because it would void the warranty. However, I've noticed that it starts up much smoother, without the loud knock, then the original unit on which I did install the EasyStart. I haven't tried running the AC from our MultiPlus 3000 inverter, but I'm now wondering if it would work.[/QUOTE]

If your AC doesn't have a factory installed softstart built in, then you can install a MicroAir unit. I've had my sister-in-law, who's an attorney, who said under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, Dometic would have to prove (not just tell you) the problem was caused by MicroAir. Makes sure you know and understand your rights. The manufacturers figure you don't know and aren't happy when you are.

Also talk to MicroAir about how they stand behind their product doesn't cause problems.

I've been through this when another company claimed an add-on I installed on a vehicle had caused a failure. I brought up the Magnuson-Moss Act and was transferred up to a higher level. When they denied the claim again, I called back, asked if they could prove the add-on was the cause of the issue and was told take it to a dealer who said the add-on was not the cause of the problem. The vehicle manufacturer, who will remain GM, finally agreed to fix it when the dealer and I pointed out GM had issued a TSB on the same problem for the past 3 years. They fixed it and paid for the 53 days of car rental (a Mustang GT) due to the vehicle being out of service. Plus they offered me a $3000 discount on any new GM vehicle I would buy in the next 90 days. Went and bought a Ford.
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Old 04-05-2020, 11:00 AM   #9
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This sounds like good news.
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Old 04-05-2020, 11:16 AM   #10
ers
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So... we bought a 2019 FC in Dec 2019. How would we know if we have the new Dometic Penguin II with built in SmartStart w/o going on the roof and opening things up looking for a Start Capacitor? Thanks!
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Old 04-05-2020, 11:18 AM   #11
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If so many users are running the airconditioners & generators at / past the ragged edge .
Why do you figure that someone else should pay for the failures that your misuse creates ?

The 15k Penguin , according to the manufactures site runs on 1762 watts , OK part of the problem no mention of starting [ typically this has been about 3000 watts ] , this is what the capacitors are to help , but is not a fix .

Obviously most know little or nothing about electronics and go by - internet chat .

Then the Honda EU2000 is 1600 watts running , 2000 watts starting .

If more people were taking responsibility , the cost of everything could be less , but not when so many are pushing responsibility on others ;(

In almost any engineering , in this case electrical , there is / should be , built-in 20-20% HEAD-ROOM = over state consumption / understate production .
In the case of RVers with regard to AC & generators - many are doing just the opposite .
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Old 04-05-2020, 01:29 PM   #12
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I don't know when the heat pumps changed but our 2019 had Micro Air installed by factory service center as well as one heat pump replaced under warranty.
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Old 04-05-2020, 04:48 PM   #13
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The manufacturers employ engineers who add the same margins to the advertised load ratings. Honda derates their generator also (though the marketing people seemed to have missed the memo), So the Heat Pump on soft start has a mean inrush of 2,100 Watts and runs at about 1630 when cooling a hot trailer and a tad under 1450 when the trailer is cool. All this makes the 2000i not a terrible fit, though a unit rated for 2200 / 1800 continuous would be a better fit, like say the 2200i which has replaced the 2000i. Something a little larger would be better still as there is not much left to power power say the converter.
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Old 04-05-2020, 07:02 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrwayne View Post
Perhaps that is why we could run the 13,5 ac on our 2018 26 with a honda 2200i. I'll have to try the 15 unit soon.
Just wondering if our 2018 25FB Serenity 15k AC is already equipped with the dometic softstart too? Only way to find out is climb up and remove the cover and look? Was about to buy a microair. Thanks for saving me the $, but you all know I’ll spend it somewhere else anyway. Lol
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Old 04-05-2020, 08:42 PM   #15
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Good for you

As an AMSOIL dealer for over 35 years I've had to battle this for my customers. Of course at the time having an automotive radio talk show helped.

I’m not here to sell AMSOIL but I DO like and believed in the Micro Air people. Have had had to tell my Airstream friends about the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act.

If an company employee states you HAVE To use their product then the company must provide it to you for free. That usually raises eyebrows. Had a Toyota dealer tell me our AMSOIL oil filter would void warranty. I said great news you install yours for free right. They backed down. Thanks for bringing this to the forum's attention.


Quote:
Originally Posted by xyzabe View Post
We had to replace our AC last summer and I didn't try reinstalling the MicroAir EasyStart unit because it would void the warranty. However, I've noticed that it starts up much smoother, without the loud knock, then the original unit on which I did install the EasyStart. I haven't tried running the AC from our MultiPlus 3000 inverter, but I'm now wondering if it would work.
If your AC doesn't have a factory installed softstart built in, then you can install a MicroAir unit. I've had my sister-in-law, who's an attorney, who said under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, Dometic would have to prove (not just tell you) the problem was caused by MicroAir. Makes sure you know and understand your rights. The manufacturers figure you don't know and aren't happy when you are.

Also talk to MicroAir about how they stand behind their product doesn't cause problems.

I've been through this when another company claimed an add-on I installed on a vehicle had caused a failure. I brought up the Magnuson-Moss Act and was transferred up to a higher level. When they denied the claim again, I called back, asked if they could prove the add-on was the cause of the issue and was told take it to a dealer who said the add-on was not the cause of the problem. The vehicle manufacturer, who will remain GM, finally agreed to fix it when the dealer and I pointed out GM had issued a TSB on the same problem for the past 3 years. They fixed it and paid for the 53 days of car rental (a Mustang GT) due to the vehicle being out of service. Plus they offered me a $3000 discount on any new GM vehicle I would buy in the next 90 days. Went and bought a Ford.[/QUOTE]
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Old 04-06-2020, 08:53 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reeltimer View Post
Just wondering if our 2018 25FB Serenity 15k AC is already equipped with the dometic softstart too? Only way to find out is climb up and remove the cover and look? Was about to buy a microair. Thanks for saving me the $, but you all know I’ll spend it somewhere else anyway. Lol
If you have a high quality inductance ammeter you could measure it but access to the wires is not a simple matter either. If you have a surge protector with current and voltage readouts, it may update fast enough to read inrush. Mine does.

Might be easiest to remove the cover and have a look.
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Old 04-06-2020, 09:00 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reeltimer View Post
Just wondering if our 2018 25FB Serenity 15k AC is already equipped with the dometic softstart too? Only way to find out is climb up and remove the cover and look? Was about to buy a microair. Thanks for saving me the $, but you all know I’ll spend it somewhere else anyway. Lol
I have a 2019 Classic 30 and neither AC had soft starts installed by domestic. I added the micro Air to my front AC.
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Old 04-06-2020, 09:45 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reeltimer View Post
Just wondering if our 2018 25FB Serenity 15k AC is already equipped with the dometic softstart too? Only way to find out is climb up and remove the cover and look? Was about to buy a microair. Thanks for saving me the $, but you all know I’ll spend it somewhere else anyway. Lol
For what it’s worth my 2018 FC25 did not have the soft start AC, I added the Microair myself which solved all my generator issues.
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Old 04-06-2020, 10:38 AM   #19
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Guys this is a NEW thing. Like real NEW. The unit install might be one of the first few is my understanding. Micro Air was aware of the concept but was unaware that Dometic had launched the product.
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Old 04-06-2020, 12:43 PM   #20
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I have a brand new 2020 trailer, which makes me wonder if there’s a chance I have this new version with the factory “Smart Start”, especially since I have two Easy Starts in the mail right now. So, this is definitely not scientific, but since my trailer is parked somewhere that I can’t get to the top I figured I’d just plug it in to a 15A outlet and see what happens.

I can (happily for my bank account) report that both the 13.5k and 15k ACs were able to run (not at the same time of course) off a 15A circuit without popping the breaker. I’m still going to check under the covers to confirm when I am able, but this leads me to believe that I do have the new model with the factory Smart Start.
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