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Old 07-07-2012, 02:52 PM   #1
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Coach A/C not cooling

Finally got our rig back from the alignment shop (ouch). Hooked up to shore power & fired up the A/C since I had some work to do inside and it is pushing 100 today.

Uh oh. Tepid at best. Odd too, 'cause it did work on our trip home from purchasing it at the end of June. I thought maybe somehow my shore power wasn't delivering, so I tried running the genny, but there was no change in the A/C (not that I expected any).

I definitely hear the compressor kick on when I slide the switch from "fan" to "cool".

I need to get the rig state inspected anyway, so I could take it to an RV dealer & have them look at the A/C while I'm at it. Before I do, though, does anybody have thoughts as to what might be the problem? I'd rather DIY if I can - my wallet's wheezing a bit.

Thanks in advance!
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Old 07-08-2012, 09:56 AM   #2
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The hotter it is the worse the A/C works... remember it is sitting up there in full sunshine ... that said you may want to have them check the freon level in the unit...
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Old 07-08-2012, 10:46 AM   #3
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Yeah, I kinda figured that... Still, it ought to put out something - I mean it couldn't even cool it's own ducts.

Update - I went on the roof this morning & pulled off the cover. Fan & compressor are definitely running. Only thing I noticed is that there is a clamp-on fitting on one of the refrigerant lines - looks like the port where you'd recharge the system. Anyway, the line has what I'd take to be compressor oil on it starting at the fitting and running maybe 10" away.

I'm wondering if maybe the clamp-on fitting is leaking a bit and has leaked away my refrigerant.

Anybody know if these things can be recharged at home or if you have to have special equipment? If I can do it myself, I'd try to fix the fitting connection & recharge... Otherwise, it's off to the shop it goes...again.
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Old 07-10-2012, 10:53 AM   #4
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An update... In researching my issue, I discovered that the roof air units are basically like reconfigured window units for your sticks-and-bricks. As such, they (or at least mine) are not designed to be recharged if the refrigerant leaks out. You can put a saddle valve on (like mine has) but evidently they are prone to leakage (like mine does). Options are (a) remove sadde valve & solder in a proper Schrader valve, or (b) replace the unit. I did find someone who was willing to recharge the system for $160 or solder in a proper valve for more - but it would have been more than half the cost of a new unit. I decided that the risk was too high that I'd put a bunch of money into fixing this issue & then have something else go bad. I've opted to buy a complete new roof unit instead.

My 2000 Jayco came with a Coleman model 8335-8915. The unit was made by Recreational Vehicle Products / AirExcel. After some research online, I believe it's a 15,000 BTU model and has been replaced by a Coleman 48204 Mach 15. The specs on the 48204 are almost identical, and that's what I've ordered to replace mine - hopefully it will be a straightforward "bolt-in" (more like grunt-in) and should be able to re-use the old interior ceiling unit.

I'll try to post an update after my installation adventure. I expect the worst part to be dealing with the heavy awkward units & getting them on & off the roof. Our house has a deck over part of the driveway that is approximately at roof height. I think I'll try to cozy the Jayco up to the deck so that we can pass the A/C units back & forth and not have to deal with ladder gymnastics. We shall see...
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