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Old 03-11-2016, 10:45 PM   #1
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Location: Albany, GA.
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Another Dometic A/C unit out

I have not used my camper since August due to a medical reason-yuck, a light heart attack. The unit has been sitting level in it's parking place in my back yard since August. Today, March 11, I went out to start everything up for a trip out for a five day Easter weekend. The A/C unit started up and sounds fine, it just will not cool. The back story: I bought this unit in January 2015 and in July '15 the A/C did the same thing. A local shop got a replacement unit from Dometic under warranty and had the unit changed out in about five hours. Plenty of cold air then. I used this unit one more time, the August trip then parked it. Heart attack in September and quite frankly the camper was not #1 on my mind for months. Now I'm ready to go camping. NOT. The replacement unit is blowing 81 degree air out and the outside temp was 78 degrees. I called the shop where the work was done and he informed me that I was the fifth person that he had done the warranty exchange on the A/C unit that has called back with the replacement units not working. He will call Dometic Monday morning to see if they will ship a unit ASAP as they did last time. It only took three (3) days last time. Open statement to Dometic: When are you going to admit that there have been problems with a large amount of your A/C units? When are you going to change the warranty methods so that a replacement unit has the same two (2) year warranty as the A/C on a new camper? My understanding is that I have a two (2) year warranty on the A/C unit which started Jan. '15 and runs through Jan. '17. But, the replacement units are only warranted until the original warranty runs out no matte when the replacement unit was installed. I'm through venting now.
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Old 03-12-2016, 09:41 PM   #2
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I'm in the Atlanta area and have a slightly over a year old 13.5K Dometic cool only unit I just removed from our Forester MBS. $280 complete if you want it. Can meet you in Warner Robins/Macon area if needed. PM if interested.
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Old 03-14-2016, 09:55 PM   #3
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"Believe It Or Not": The local factory authorized guy called Dometic to obtain another replacement 15k unit. Dometic tells him that they are only replacing units one time, that's all. They instructed him to put a " tap valve" on the unit to recharge the refrigerant. By doing this the refrigerant can be recharged as often as necessary. This would be at MY expense, NOT Dometic. Remember now that the current, non-cooling A/C unit is only seven (7) months old. NOT an acceptable solution to the problem. I'm going over tomorrow and he will call Dometic so we/both of us can talk to someone.
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Old 03-19-2016, 11:15 PM   #4
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Update: I went to the shop and Steve got Dometic on the phone. He asked them again to ship a replacement core, this is the unit without all the covers and intake grill etc. The lady told him again with me listening that they would not ship a core and for him to just add the tap valve, charge the unit and get it cooling. He then told the lady that the customer was standing beside him and he would like for her to tell me what I had just heard on speaker phone. She told him she was turning this over to her supervisor. The supervisor guy comes on and asks Steve to update him as to what is going on. After Steve explained the situation all over again and this was the second unit to go bad on my unit within eight (8) months Mr. supervisor says there has been a misunderstanding. He says he is authorizing another core and will have it shipped ASAP from their Tennessee warehouse. It should arrive Tuesday morn via FedEx. Why do we, the customer, get treated this way. The original warranty from Jan. 2015 thru Jan. 2016 should cover this with no questions asked. I am also one customer who believes a replacement unit should have a two year warranty from installation date.
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Old 03-19-2016, 11:18 PM   #5
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Aw, that smiley face should have read "eight (8) months".
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Old 03-23-2016, 11:02 PM   #6
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Well the new unit did come in early Tuesday morning and they had the unit installed and running by 2 p.m. I went out to pick it up and with an infrared thermometer they showed me that the cold air exiting the dump was at a nice 33 degrees. Yep, 33 degrees. We closed the dump and checked each register in the unit. We allowed the unit to push air through the ducting to bring the temp down and we had 33 degree air coming from ALL the registers. I'm skeptic! I go to my truck and get my own infrared thermometer, which I believe my Fluke vs. their General. UH, OH--I got the same reading +/- one degree. I have always been trained that IF you can get cold air from any A/C unit at 52 degrees +/- 2 degrees then the system is working. So I bring it home, park it in the driveway as we are leaving Thursday morn for a five day trip, and hook up the electrical. I set the thermometer to 64 degrees and leave it run overnight. This morning at 8 A.M. the temp in the unit is- - -62 degrees by the thermostat on the wall and a digital thermostat of mine sitting on the kitchen counter. Front bedroom at 64, rear bedroom at 64. I think I'm good to go. While signing the warranty work papers Steve, the repair guy, tells me that he has had five units on which he has replaced the A/C's twice within the last two years. All FR products, all Dometic 15K units. He also showed me the Technical Service Bulletin, or TSB, he received from Dometic stating that it appears they had a bad run of 15K units that the evaporator coil did not get properly cleaned at the factory. This allowed some type of unknown residue to remain on the copper lines and cause premature erosion of the copper lines which created a very tiny leak. I've been in a factory where they build the evaporator coils for automotive use. Yes, the do dip the evaporator coil in a cleaning solution then they are washed with hot water to remove the cleaning agent. The main purpose of this is to assure that the flux used in the soldering of copper joints is completely washed off and neutralized. The flux is necessary to join the copper tubing and the tin/lead, antimony solder properly. IF there is a tiny amount of flux left at a joint then the flux can/will cause some copper erosion and a tiny leak. But my training tells me that this usually take a year or so for this to happen. I still believe that the 15K units were undercharged at the manufacturing site in China.
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