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Old 05-18-2017, 11:55 AM   #1
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More Dometic A/C problems

TT: 2015 FR Coachmen Freedom Express 310BHDS. Bought new in January 2015, first Dometic unit went out in June '15, second Dometic unit went out in August '16. Warranty expired January '17. Have plans for a five day trip to Florida leaving May 25. Pulled the TT up into the driveway last Saturday to start getting everything ready and set to thermostat to 72* to make sure the A/C was working, in the driveway also puts it in full sun until late afternoon. Later that day while inside I noticed that it wasn't as cool as I thought it should be so I checked all the temps. Outside was 92*, inside TT temp was 78*. So I get the trusty digital thermometer out and check the temps. Air into the Dometic unit was 78* and the cooled air temp was 67*. Hmm, that's only an 11* differential, not good. I ran the unit until late that night and it did not get any better so I set the thermostat to 80* and called it a day. Sunday was somewhat the same. Monday the high temp at 4:00 P.M. had hit 92*. The TT inside temp was 80*. The air going into the unit was 80* with the cooled air coming out at 70*, not good again. I've been running this Dometic unit each day now to help me decide to go camping or cancel out. Late yesterday afternoon while sitting at the dinette table looking at the ceiling grill I had an idea. I've always thought that some of the cooled air was going right back into the return air grill. I made me up a piece of cardboard and used duct tape to tape it so that there was a divider below the ceiling grill to separate the air movement. Yes, I have removed the ceiling grill and using foil tape covered every possible area that could be a cross-over. About two hours after taping up the cardboard I went in and the temp in the unit had dropped 2*, the outside temp had not dropped. Hmm, more thinking now. Could there be that there was more cooled air entering the ambient air intake than I had thought? So late last night I made a box from 1/8" plywood to install over the ceiling grill to make sure the ambient air entering the grill and the cooled air did not get mixed at the grill. This morning at 10:00 A.M. the outside temp was at 80* with the TT inside temp at 78* with the thermostat set at 80* from last night. I installed the box over the ceiling grill and set the thermostat to 72*. In my opinion there seemed to be more air coming from the cooled air side then there had been. Sitting on the dinette seat I could actually feel it blowing on my feet whereas I had not felt this before. The box is designed so the intake air is approximately a foot from the cooled air outlet. I'm still using the original filter and cover. My plans are to incorporate the filter into the inlet side of the box. At 11:30 A.M. I went back in to check and the inside TT temp was 73*, it seems to be working better. The differential between the inside temp/air going into the A/C unit was 73* and the cooled air coming from the A/C was at 69*. That's only a 14* differential and I would like to see that somewhere around 17*--20* differential, which is what is on paperwork Dometic sent me some months back. So, I'll keep checking this the rest of today but as of right now it does seem that this has helped and may help me make the decision to go out next week.
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Old 05-18-2017, 12:13 PM   #2
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You have done some good work here. Thank you for posting your results. I think I am going to use your method with my unit to help it out. Mine blows cold, but when the outside temps get into the 90's, the unit just seems it cannot keep up with the heat load and runs constantly.
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Old 05-18-2017, 12:23 PM   #3
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I take it that your air is not ducted. If not, then that would make a big difference.
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Old 05-18-2017, 12:31 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A32Deuce View Post
I take it that your air is not ducted. If not, then that would make a big difference.


It may be dependent on the RV, but at 92 degrees, ducted is not the way to go. As we have found with our Fiver, the quick cool dump is much more efficient, only utilizing the ducted option at night as it is less noisy.
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Old 05-18-2017, 01:00 PM   #5
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We do that for a quick cool down, like when we first get there. Once it cools then back to ducting. One difference I see is I am all white out side with awnings at all the Windows, reflective on back bed window and heavy cover over windshield. Does cool better then 10 below outside temp like some report!
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Old 05-18-2017, 01:05 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lgray View Post
It may be dependent on the RV, but at 92 degrees, ducted is not the way to go. As we have found with our Fiver, the quick cool dump is much more efficient, only utilizing the ducted option at night as it is less noisy.
This is good advice for ducted systems.

Stop and think about it... the sun is beating down on a 90ļ+ day... the temperature of your roof in the direct sun is many degrees hotter than that.

The ducts are just a few inches (if that) below the surface of the roof. The air in those ducts quickly absorbs the heat of the surrounding area and before you know it... less than ideal air blowing out the other end.

Using the 'Quick Dump' feature is the way to go during the heat of the day.
Take a fan, set it on the floor and distribute the cooler air (cool air falls) throughout the R/V. You'll be much cooler.
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Old 05-18-2017, 01:14 PM   #7
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Just some info for ya. Our TT was purchased in 2013. The first ac went out on first trip, replaced under warranty.

Fast forward to June of last year, ac started icing and not cooling. Dometic had a rash of bad 15k units, I convinced dealer to contact Dometic for warranty work due to track record. Dometic replaced unit and I requested upgrade to Penguin 15k if I paid difference.

Long story short, contact dealer and see if they, Dometic, will cover.
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Old 05-18-2017, 02:14 PM   #8
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Let's take these in order: "alsdas88", Thanks for the comment. Before going so far as to build anything, cut a piece of cardboard at least six inches high and the width of your ceiling grill then tape it in place to see IF you can tell any difference. You are correct that 90*+ temps play havoc with these systems.
"A32Deuce", Yes my system is ducted. Post #4, #5, and #6 are good replies as to a ducted system in hot weather.
"Ida Ratherbe Camping", My selling dealer is 90 miles away and I uses a local Dometic authorized repair guy, whom I've known for years, to change out the previous two (2) Dometic units on my TT. Steve called Dometic, with me sitting there, after changing out the second unit to see if he could get me an extended warranty. NO such luck. Having my third unit put on in August of '16 left me with only about five (5) months of warranty on my A/C unit. I made calls to the selling dealer and they told me that they have a long list of customers who have had A/C units changed out who would like to have extended warranties also. Dometic has NOT, to my knowledge, give anyone an extended warranty on their Dometic Brisk Air II 15K replacement units. Dometic has admitted that they have a problem with 15K units built within a certain time period but Dometic will not stand up and warrant the replacement units, to the best of my knowledge. The campground I'm heading to for next weekend (Jellystone Park/Madison, FL.) has some trees so I may get lucky and get to have some shade to help.
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Old 05-18-2017, 02:50 PM   #9
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I am on my 3rd Dometic AC. Purchased as a new order and received June 15. That AC froze up Sept 15 and was replaced. The replaced unit stopped cooling May 16 and replaced by a mobile tech in a campground. Dometic was out of Brisk II units so they sent a Penguin. Has worked great since.
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Old 05-18-2017, 03:00 PM   #10
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For the OP... I assume it used to work... This tells me it isn't an overloaded condition. That only leaves a few options... low refrigerant flow/charge, low air flow condenser or evaporator or both, low compressor capacity.

If it were mine(understand I would work on it), but surely you know someone who does a/c work on the side(not cars). I would install quick taps and see what's going on. If it is low...then there is a leak. Fix leak and recharge(or chunk for new). If its dirty then clean it. If it's a bad compressor.. chunk it.
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