Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 08-17-2018, 08:12 AM   #1
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Leland, NC
Posts: 64
Dometic Air Conditioner Freezing Up

We have a 2016 3011DS Forest River Forester with a Dometc air conditioner This summer we have taken several road trips totaling over 5,000 miles. Everything seemed to work well until our last trip. We first drove down to Punta Gorda, Florida and stayed 3 days. Weather was HOT and Humid. We then drove through the pan handle of Florida staying near Appalachacola. Weather still HOT and Humid. After two days we then went on to New Orleans. Again, HOT and humid. This is when problems started. The Air conditioner would freeze up and consequently had a difficult time cooling the RV. We called a mobile RV tech who checked the unit and said it needed to be replaced.( Long story why we didn't have it done by him.) So, we start heading home to Leland, NC. First stop in route was Alabama. Again, the unit would freeze up after we set up at the campground. Next stop Darien, Ga. Set up at the campground and no freezing up. Air conditioner worked fine. The weather is still HOT and humid. Any ideas why the freezing up has stopped after getting to Georgia?
We have an appt to take it to the dealer to service. I am afraid they will say nothing is wrong and the freezing up will happen again on another trip.
__________________

JerJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2018, 08:25 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
cavie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Port Charlotte Fl/Hinsdale Ma
Posts: 4,454
Quote:
Originally Posted by JerJ View Post
We have a 2016 3011DS Forest River Forester with a Dometc air conditioner This summer we have taken several road trips totaling over 5,000 miles. Everything seemed to work well until our last trip. We first drove down to Punta Gorda, Florida and stayed 3 days. Weather was HOT and Humid. We then drove through the pan handle of Florida staying near Appalachacola. Weather still HOT and Humid. After two days we then went on to New Orleans. Again, HOT and humid. This is when problems started. The Air conditioner would freeze up and consequently had a difficult time cooling the RV. We called a mobile RV tech who checked the unit and said it needed to be replaced.( Long story why we didn't have it done by him.) So, we start heading home to Leland, NC. First stop in route was Alabama. Again, the unit would freeze up after we set up at the campground. Next stop Darien, Ga. Set up at the campground and no freezing up. Air conditioner worked fine. The weather is still HOT and humid. Any ideas why the freezing up has stopped after getting to Georgia?
We have an appt to take it to the dealer to service. I am afraid they will say nothing is wrong and the freezing up will happen again on another trip.
I'm guessing your service man was correct. Freeze up is caused by low freon.
It will happen again. RV AC units are a sealed system. No service ports to add freon. The cost to add service ports and install new freon is cost prohibitive. That's why they say replace it.

You were in my backyard while in Punta Gorda. We live in Port Charlotte and summer in the Berkshires. What did you think of lovely little Punta Gorda?
__________________

__________________
2011 Keystone Sprinter 323BHS
Port Charlotte Fl/Hinsdale Ma
Retired Master Electrician.

I know you believe that you understand what you think I said but I'm sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant
cavie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-21-2018, 09:42 AM   #3
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Leland, NC
Posts: 64
Just a follow up re/ my question about the Dometic air-conditioner freezing up. This morning I took the RV to the dealer in Wilmington NC where we purchased it. The first thing the service dept said that I needed to run the air-conditioner on High Cool when we are in hot and humid weather. I have always been running it on Auto. The service dept said the high setting helps get more air circulating to help prevent the freezing.
Just curious to know if this is what others do when camping in hot and humid weather like we did in New Orleans where the freezing up problem started.?
Thank you
JerJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-21-2018, 09:50 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
alsdas88's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Phoenix
Posts: 293
Take your unit to an actual AC service center to have it looked at and the service valves installed. I am a former AC mechanic and installing the valves is an easy 1 hour process that will make the unit serviceable in the future. Dometic is intentionally not installing those valves because it is more profitable to sell a new unit. Some of it might be EPA rules as well. Notice how new refrigerators aren't serviceable either? Back a few years ago, they were serviceable. The freons are available and these units are serviceable once the $10 valves are installed.
__________________
Alan
2012 Ram 3500 DRW Crew Cab, 6.7 HO Cummins
2014 Columbus M-340RK
'69 Chevy C-10, 396BB
alsdas88 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-21-2018, 09:55 AM   #5
Site Team
 
Flybob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 10,572
When you start an RV AC in a hot humid RV you can greatly reduce the chances of a freeze up by running on hi fan and opening the dump vent completely. This allows the maximum flow of air and helps prevent freeze up. Once the temp and humidity start to decrease, slowly close the dump vent over a few hours until you reach the air distribution you desire. Running @100% through the ducts reduces the air flow and contributes to freeze up.
__________________

2015 Freedom Express 248RBS
TV 2015 Silverado HD2500 Duramax
TST Tire Monitors
Honda 2000I + Companion
2 100W solar panels
Flybob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-21-2018, 10:00 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Lakeland, FL
Posts: 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by alsdas88 View Post
Take your unit to an actual AC service center to have it looked at and the service valves installed. I am a former AC mechanic and installing the valves is an easy 1 hour process that will make the unit serviceable in the future. Dometic is intentionally not installing those valves because it is more profitable to sell a new unit. Some of it might be EPA rules as well. Notice how new refrigerators aren't serviceable either? Back a few years ago, they were serviceable. The freons are available and these units are serviceable once the $10 valves are installed.
Why go through the trouble? If the unit develops a leak or the compressor goes out the repair of the refrigeration system of the unit is well over the value of a used functioning unit and close if not more than a new one. A new Dometic Brisk II 13.5k BTU unit is $500 all over the internet. They are easy to change. The hardest part of the repair is lugging the new unit to the roof.
__________________
2014 Sportscoach Cross Country, 361BH
jvalich is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-21-2018, 10:34 AM   #7
Senior Member
 
Coolharts's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Siler City,NC
Posts: 393
I am dealing with the same thing right now, fortunately I have 2 A/C units and fall will be here soon. The bad unit is going to be replaced this winter. Pretty sorry for an A/C that is 2 1/2 years old.
__________________
2017 Surveyor 33RETS with Residential Refrigerator and Inverter
2005 Ford Excursion 6.0L 2WD
Nights Camped 2016 27, 2017 29
2018 25 2019 25
Coolharts is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-23-2018, 04:33 PM   #8
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Leland, NC
Posts: 64
Just an update on my Dometic Air Conditioner Freezing Up. The dealer called me to say they tested the air-con and it did in fact fail and would need to be replaced. I was told they are looking into replacing it with an Atwood of equal BTUs. I have heard that the Atwood ACs are a little more efficient and quieter. Sorry, they didn't yet have the model number of the Atwood they were going to get.
Any feedback on Atwood ACs for RVs would be greatly appreciated. I haven't been able to find much on line
Thank you
JerJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-24-2018, 07:12 AM   #9
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 49
I will just add that our 2 Coleman 13.5 BTU rooftop units failed at around 3 years old. Best choice was to replace and get the 2 year warranty. The only reason I see for early failure is that they are running on the R22 replacement (R410?) and this operates at a much higher pressure than R22, causing failure at some weak point in the refrigerant piping.
vjstangelo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-24-2018, 07:40 AM   #10
Site Team
 
Flybob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 10,572
I think the failures are related to the manufacturing process and poor materials used where they are being made. I recently replaced two dehumidifiers made in China. Both failed due to loss of freon . Prior to recycling, I disassembled them to determine the failure mechanism. In both cases the solder joints had rusted through ( clear evidence of rust). What was interesting is that the joints were connecting two pieced of what appeared to be copper tubing. From the reports I have seen here on Coleman failures, most have been due to leaks at solder joints.
__________________

2015 Freedom Express 248RBS
TV 2015 Silverado HD2500 Duramax
TST Tire Monitors
Honda 2000I + Companion
2 100W solar panels
Flybob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-24-2018, 07:44 AM   #11
Citrus County, Fl.
 
GL1800Rider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Hernando, Fl
Posts: 2,015
The Atwood is much more quieter and the BTU rating is higher even though it is still a 15K. The only complaint I have heard is with the heat pump. Due to the design the fan will come on frequently to pull an air sample to determine if heat is needed. I think you will be happy with the Atwood.

On my 2016 3011 I am on my 3rd Dometic. First one froze up after 2 months and was blowing ice chunks. Second one lasted 7 months and would not cool. That was replaced by a Penguin as Dometic had no Brisk Air II units in stock and has been working fine since it was installed.
__________________
2016 Forester 3011DS
2017 Toyota Corolla SE toad
PREVIOUS: 2015 Flagstaff 832IKBS
99 Terry 31G
GL1800Rider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2018, 06:18 AM   #12
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Leland, NC
Posts: 64
Dometic Air Conditioning

Thank you to everyone for your feedback. I guess I am lucky my Dometic AC lasted as long as it did. I have my fingers crossed that the Atwood will be as quiet and more efficient as I have read it is.
JerJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-2018, 09:54 AM   #13
Senior Member
 
Kirk S's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Savannah
Posts: 718
Quote:
Originally Posted by jvalich View Post
Why go through the trouble? If the unit develops a leak or the compressor goes out the repair of the refrigeration system of the unit is well over the value of a used functioning unit and close if not more than a new one. A new Dometic Brisk II 13.5k BTU unit is $500 all over the internet. They are easy to change. The hardest part of the repair is lugging the new unit to the roof.
X2 concerning lugging the new unit to the roof! On our old trailer, I finally paid someone with a forklift to lift off the old one and set the new one. The rest was easy!
__________________
Kirk
2017 Forester 3051S
Kirk S is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-10-2018, 01:36 PM   #14
(o˘◡˘o)
 
Grey Wolf 26RR's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 68
Another Dometic AC Failure

The mobile service guy just finished replacing my 13.5 Dometic AC AGAIN.

First one (OEM) lasted four months; Second lasted one year; Third lasted 18 months. We'll see about this fourth one.

All were replaced under warranty from Dometic. Glad I got the extended Dometic warranty after the first failure.

Each unit suffered refrigerant loss. The return/exhaust temperature was down to only 8-10 degrees difference.
__________________
2016 Cherokee Grey Wolf 26RR
2010 F150 Platinum 4x4
Grey Wolf 26RR is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-10-2018, 07:07 PM   #15
Senior Member
 
Coolharts's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Siler City,NC
Posts: 393
My dealer suggested I go with a Coleman and they have a retrofit kit to work with a Dometic thermostat and ducted cover. They are seeing a lot of Dometics fail.
__________________
2017 Surveyor 33RETS with Residential Refrigerator and Inverter
2005 Ford Excursion 6.0L 2WD
Nights Camped 2016 27, 2017 29
2018 25 2019 25
Coolharts is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2018, 08:16 AM   #16
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: NJ
Posts: 365
Quote:
Originally Posted by GL1800Rider View Post
The Atwood is much more quieter and the BTU rating is higher even though it is still a 15K. The only complaint I have heard is with the heat pump. Due to the design the fan will come on frequently to pull an air sample to determine if heat is needed. I think you will be happy with the Atwood.

On my 2016 3011 I am on my 3rd Dometic. First one froze up after 2 months and was blowing ice chunks. Second one lasted 7 months and would not cool. That was replaced by a Penguin as Dometic had no Brisk Air II units in stock and has been working fine since it was installed.
I think the Atwood was a great unit for cooling. Unfortunately I agree w/ others here that the heat pump function is complete garbage. And for me, it has nothing to do with the air sampling (even though that IS annoying). The Atwoods have their thermostat IN the unit's return duct. Which works great for AC b/c you're getting the warmest air in the coach blowing across the stat, thus keeping the compressor on until the coach is nice and chilly. Unfortunately this awesome feature for cooling is complete junk for heating as, again, you're sucking the warmest air in the coach over that stat. I could never get my heat pump to sit at the temperature I set it at. 78 degrees on the control pad ended up being around 68-69 on the wall.

As good as the Atwood was for cooling, I don't miss it. I found the Coleman to be much more predictable w/ regards to set/forget. And I've also had good luck w/ Coleman/AirExcel products. I was happy to see the Coleman on my Greyhawk.
__________________
2020 Rockwood Mini Lite 2509s
2019 F-150 3.5 EB SCREW Max Tow - 1797 payload
Blue Ox SwayPro w/ 1000 lb bars
s1njin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-13-2018, 08:21 AM   #17
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Leland, NC
Posts: 64
Well, we had the ATWOOD AC installed and were going to plan a short trip to test it over a few days camping. We live in North Carolina and unfortunately FLORENCE paid us a visit. Thankfully we got through the storm OK. As we were looking at our schedule trying to figure out when we could take a short trip, MICHAEL shows up which spared our area.
Before all the storms I did manage to bring the RV home and ran the new AC with the generator for about an hour. All seemed to work well. However I would have preferred to run it a few days at a campground to give it a good test.
Now the weather has cooled down considerably. We have a trip planned in December to go down to Myrtle Beach for a weekend. Might not be able to test the AC but we will see how well the heat pump works.
In reading all the posts, I guess we were lucky our DOMETIC lasted two years. Sure hope the new ATWOOD lasts longer. Time will tell
Happy Camping
JerJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2018, 03:44 PM   #18
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Leland, NC
Posts: 64
I have run the new Atwood AC a few times by using the generator and have just realized I don't see water from the AC running off the roof of the RV like to Dometic AC we had would do. Does this new Atwood AC not produce condensation like the Dometic did or could there be something more serious not knowing where the water is going? Help! I hope I am not filling the ceiling up with water.
JerJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2018, 03:57 PM   #19
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Port Richey Florida
Posts: 640
Quote:
Originally Posted by JerJ View Post
I have run the new Atwood AC a few times by using the generator and have just realized I don't see water from the AC running off the roof of the RV like to Dometic AC we had would do. Does this new Atwood AC not produce condensation like the Dometic did or could there be something more serious not knowing where the water is going? Help! I hope I am not filling the ceiling up with water.
Condensation is dependent on humidity. If itís not as hot and humid then your not going to see as much water off roof.
__________________

Decon Blue is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
air conditioner, dometic, forester

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Forest River, Inc. or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:35 PM.


×