RV and Camper Rooftop Air Conditioner Maintenance, Troubleshooting, and Repair

Updated on November 21, 2017
Randy Godwin profile image

Randy is a lifelong lover of the outdoors and especially camping. This article is intended to help the RVer save money and time on repairs.

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Camper Trailer and Motorhome RV AC Servicing

Since the majority of motor homes, camper trailer, or RV A/C systems are used during the hottest time of the year, it is a must to keep them in good operating order. Merely cleaning and replacing the filter is not good enough to maintain your RV AC in tip-top condition.

There are certain procedures for guaranteeing the maximum efficiency of your motorhome or camper trailer A/C unit. These steps are not as difficult to perform as you might think and will save you money and inconvenience as well.

Cleaning the condenser and evaporator annually will make a huge difference in the cooling ability of the motorhome or camper trailer RV unit. Lubricating the A/C fan motor may help extend the life and performance of the unit itself.

You will also learn a little about how these RV cooling units differ from regular household units by following the tips in this article. Be sure and check the many actual questions and answers in the comments at the bottom of this page to find a problem similar to yours if the info in not found in the main text.

Gaining Access To The RV AC Unit

Removing the shroud from a Coleman rooftop AC.
Removing the shroud from a Coleman rooftop AC. | Source

Keeping Your AC Cool

Airstream Sovereign With Coleman Mach Rooftop AC
Airstream Sovereign With Coleman Mach Rooftop AC

Brands and Models of Rooftop RV AC Units

There are several main producers of rooftop units. Coleman RV air conditioners are common on many of the best equipped motorhomes and camper trailers. The same can be said for Carrier AC units, as well as Duo Therm A/Cs. Dometic made one of the first rooftop air conditioners, as well as, camper refrigerators and ice machines.

Thankfully, all of these units are similar in function and design. Some of these cooling units may even be identical under the shroud.. Being familiar with household AC units will aid you greatly in servicing and repairing your air condition system, but there are a few differences as you will see.

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Troubleshooting RV AC Units

Before beginning any repair or maintenance step, it is helpful to familiarize yourself with the main components of the rooftop AC unit itself. A fan motor circulates the air from the interior of the motorhome or camper trailer through the RV AC unit where it is cooled and then returned into the RV interior.

The compressor performs the job of circulating the Freon through the condenser and evaporator coils cooling fins and the cycle is repeated as the thermostat setting deems it necessary.

Both the compressor and the fan motor use capacitors to provide a high voltage charge to get them moving and a lesser charge to keep them running.

Often, only one capacitor is used for both fan and compressor. It the capacitor goes bad, neither the fan nor the compressor will start. This part is easily replaced and is not very expensive to purchase in most cases.

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Rooftop A/C Shroud

The AC shroud showing retaining screw holes
The AC shroud showing retaining screw holes

Rooftop RV AC Shroud Removal

In order to clean or repair the RV AC unit, it is necessary to remove the shroud from atop the unit. Ordinarily this is a simple job requiring only a Phillips screwdriver or small wrench. Remove the four screws or nuts from the AC shroud and carefully slide it up off of the unit.

If the shroud is old, it may be cracked around the retaining screws or the vent holes on the sides and back. Now is the time to repair the bad spots before replacing the shroud.

A good quality epoxy cement, or other glue made for plastic repairs, should be used to reinforce the weak or broken place before replacing the shroud. It is also advisable to use wider washers on the shroud retaining screws to prevent further cracking.

If the damage seems too bad to repair, a new RV shroud may be the only option. A broken RV A/C shroud will decrease cooling efficiency plus pose a danger of flying off while the camper is in transit .

Accessing the Fan Motor and Fans

The Coleman Mach  A/C Fan Motor made by Fasco
The Coleman Mach A/C Fan Motor made by Fasco
The rooftop unit With Condenser Cover removed
The rooftop unit With Condenser Cover removed

Servicing and Repairing the RV A/C Fan Motor

With the shroud removed, it is easy to inspect the fan motor for any repairs or maintenance needed. Before doing any repairs or maintenance to the rooftop RV AC be sure to turn the electrical breaker off or unplug the motorhome or camper trailer from the electrical power source. The starting capacitor may be still charged with high voltage, so be sure not to touch it with the bare hands.

The fan should spin easily when turned by hand. Even so, it is a good idea to oil the bearings and clean the accumulated debris from both front and rear fan blades. It may be necessary to loosen the fan motor from its mountings to fully access both ends of the motor bearings.

If the RV fan motor has oil tubes to lubricate the fan, then simply put a few drops of machine oil in the tubes on either end of the motor. If the motor has sleeves instead of ball bearings, you may still dribble a small amount of oil on the sleeves where they contact the fan motor shafts. Even a small amount of oil will do wonders for these types of fan motors.

If the AC fan motor still seems to start slowly or needs a nudge to start working, it is recommended that you replace it with a new one. If the fan motor has oil tubes evident on each end of the motor, it may be rebuilt and replaced for much less than buying a new one. It all depends on the particular unit on your camper.

If either the fan motor or compressor fails to start a new starting capacitor may solve the problem. Be sure to order the right size and voltage for your rooftop unit. These capacitors may be found at your local AC parts dealer or you may find them online for greater savings. Be careful when handling these capacitors as they may still hold some electrical charge.

This Condenser Needs Cleaning

Spray cleaner and a shop-vac will do the job.
Spray cleaner and a shop-vac will do the job.

Cleaning the RV AC Condenser and Evaporator

It is recommended that you clean the condenser and evaporator fins every couple of years to maintain the efficiency of your RV air conditioner. Eventually, the cooling fins on these units will become clogged with dirt and dust.

Use a good spray or foaming cleaner, such as those shown here, to loosen the debris and then use a wet/dry shop vac to remove the loosened dirt and dust. Be sure to cover the vent leading down into the interior to keep the grime from seeping down inside.

Be careful not to bend these fine fins as they will bend easily. A special fin comb tool made just for straightening these fins may be purchased from an RV AC parts dealer or through links on this page. Once again, be careful when performing this maintenance procedure.

Bent fins inhibit the flow of air through the unit, so be sure to keep them as straight as possible using the fin comb. You may need to use a fin straightening tool to align any bent fins in the evaporator or condenser coils.

Oh No! Not A Bad Compressor

A bad capacitor is often the problem if the compressor won't start.
A bad capacitor is often the problem if the compressor won't start.

RV AC Compressor Repair or Replacement

The most costly and difficult part of an RV AC unit to replace or repair is the compressor. In many cases it is advisable to simply replace the unit instead of trying to replace the compressor. With a new unit costing about $500 to $600, spending $300 to $400 dollars for compressor replacement doesn’t make much sense.

The labor involved, plus the prohibitive cost of the compressor, can almost pay for a new RV rooftop unit. These units are very easily replaced and will have a new warranty to cover future repairs for a few years. This is usually the correct option when the compressor goes bad.

The alternative is to find a used compressor. Unless you are skilled in replacing the compressor and are able to recharge the unit with freon, this is not advisable. This step is entirely up to your skills and pocketbook. There are used RV A/C parts available online and locally in some cases.

FAQS about RV AC Repairs

Be sure and check the many questions and answers in the comment section below. Feel free to ask a question if you don't see a similar question and answer, or simply ask the question if you don't have time to peruse all of the comments.

If you've encountered a strange problem and/or solution, please leave a comment below so others may learn from it. Thanks for any advice you may have to offer too! Thanks for relating any odd problem with your camper A/C and or the solution.

Now, Enjoy Your Camping Trip

If properly maintained and serviced, your motorhome or camper trailer A/C will last for many years of camping excursions. Most maintenance can be performed by the owners if they have basic mechanical skills. Understanding how an AC unit works may just save that camping trip you have been looking forward to for so long.

Be careful and take photos of the unit before removing any parts which may cause confusion during reassembly. Be sure to protect the roof of your RV while servicing your rooftop unit. Good luck with your repairs and maintenance.

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    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      29 hours ago from Southern Georgia

      Loren, the first thing to check is the capacitors as a weak cap can cause this problem. Usually cheap and easy to replace.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Loren 

      32 hours ago

      Hello, we just recently bought a pop up camper and it has a coleman unit on it although I am not sure of the year. What is the cause of my a/c working fine for a few days running constant, and then waking up warm, finding that the low and hi settings are giving off about the same small amout of cold air? What can be done about it?

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      41 hours ago from Southern Georgia

      Junkman, you'll have to find this out by searching for the model online. I don't have this info.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Junkman60 

      45 hours ago

      I have a 1992 model Coleman AC only I found where the compressor line low side clamps under a rubber grommet has worn through and sprung a leak.

      I'm going to add a service port and use a compression fitting to repair the leak how much r22 freon does this thing take so I can order the proper amount to do the job

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      2 days ago from Southern Georgia

      domsue, the other capacitor needs to be at least checked before looking into what may be a control board issue.

      Randy

    • profile image

      domsue 

      2 days ago

      Hi Randy,

      Lots of good stuff here, but I don't see my exact problem. My Dometic (Duotherm) a/c circa 2005 stopped working. The model # is 630516.321. There was a hum but nothing else. Hubby replaced the start capacitor (part #3100236.235.) we turned on the unit and nothing happened. He manually started the fan and the volts ramped up to almost 25. we immediately turned off the a/c. we tried to run it with just the fan, we used 4 volts but no air was blowing. there's another capacitor there that says "combustible fluid 50+15uf+/-6% 370vac 50/80HZ). We're wondering if replacing this second capacitor will help? thanks very much.....

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      4 days ago from Southern Georgia

      Jerry, you'll need to check the wiring diagram to see which cap starts/runs the compressor. Look online for the wiring diagram.

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      6 days ago from Southern Georgia

      Leslie, this may be a bad capacitor causing the breaker to trip. I'd try checking and/or replacing the capacitor first before trying anything else.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Leslie Saunders 

      6 days ago

      Can a dirty trailer top a/c cause all the electrical to shut off when it stops? We live on a Ranch and the fuse boxes and electrical are old. And the Breaker we had hooked up to for the past 4 years blew. Could the a/c have done that too?

      When the ac goes on for 10 min it stops and all the electricity is gone with it. Today I had no choice but to keep the ac off.The humidity and heat isn't good for my asthma. That's why I panicked on the other hand my fridge and freezer stays cold. Had no problems with anything after I did that? (except breathing)..lol. I'll follow your maintenance guide lines I hope that's all it needs? Maybe a new circuit? Let me know what you think. It's gonna be another humid day tomorrow.

      Thank you so much for your information.

      Sincerely, Leslie

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      7 days ago from Southern Georgia

      Jeremy, the wall mount thermostat is powered by the 12 volt system. Make sure you have power to the stat, and yes, stats do go bad on occasion.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Jeremy Brenner 

      7 days ago

      Hi Randy,

      I replaced my roof and disconnected my Mach 3 A/C and now when I try to reconnect, nothing comes on. I shocked myself accidentally when I still had power on so there is definitely electricity.

      It worked before I disconnected, and I am positive I wired everything correctly. Do thermostats just go out?? Is there a fuse for the thermostat itself??

      Thank you

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      7 days ago from Southern Georgia

      Tyler, this sounds like a control board problem. The thermostat send a signal to the control board which regulates the temps.

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      7 days ago from Southern Georgia

      NAMTRA, sounds like a bad capacitor. About $25 to replace.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Tyler 

      8 days ago

      I have a 2003 four winds camper the A/C will kick on and run but the lines after about 2 hours will freeze solid with ice and the fan will feel like there is nothing blowing at all.

      I have replaced the thermostat and that did not fix my problem.

      this is where it gets weird if I just turn the fan on the lines for the A/C will still freeze as well and the fan will feel again like it is not blowing at all.

      The most shocking part I can turn my A/C and heat and fan completely off nothing on at all and my A/C condenser will kick on. Im so lost and no one can figure it out. Any advice?

    • profile image

      NAMTRA 

      8 days ago

      Hey there, we slept with the fan on low on my Dometic A/C and it turned off this early morning and an electrical burning smell. It seems the low fan doesn't work and will now pop the breaker. High fan and auto work fine as does the A/C. The burning smell has me worries though on the low fan (don't want a fire). I took the cover off and everything looks fine...no burnt wires. I have surge protector so I don't think that is the issue. Any thoughts? Thanks for your help.

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      8 days ago from Southern Georgia

      Richard, more than likely the compressor capacitor is bad. About $25 for the cap and usually easy to replace.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Richard Painter 

      8 days ago

      My roof top ac triped the btaker when reset it the conpresser want kick in dose it have a relay to kick it in

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      8 days ago from Southern Georgia

      Carrie, considering the expense of replacing the compressor, you'd be better off installing a new AC unit.

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      8 days ago from Southern Georgia

      Rebecca, can you tell if the compressor is coming on or not? If it isn't, you may have a bad capacitor.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Carrie 

      8 days ago

      We have a Coleman pop up and the air only runs 2 min and trips breaker we check the coils no problem the capacitor looks good so we tested power to the compressor and that’s where the problem lies there is a short somewhere inside of it where can I get a new compressor

    • profile image

      Rebecca Jackson 

      8 days ago

      Hey there,

      Day before last, I had the coils cleaned on my unit and it was running beautifully until this afternoon. It sounds normal and the fan out put is normal but the air coming out is just...coolish. It's not bad in here if I'm just sitting around but the minute I get up to do anything, I start to sweat. Is my compressor going bad?

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      10 days ago from Southern Georgia

      JennaNsgv, I suspect the fan motor capacitor is bad. About $25 or so an usually easy to replace.

      Randy

    • profile image

      JennaNsgv 

      10 days ago

      Hello Randy, ok my air conditioner did drip water in my rv from air unit, a week or two prior. My air was on and I started hearing a skreetching noise so i turned it off. I try it again an hour or two later. It starts just fine, it blows cold air, yet it runs for 1-2 minutes tops, then squeeks and stops blowing. Please help

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      10 days ago from Southern Georgia

      No problem, PA! :)

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      10 days ago from Southern Georgia

      Sharon, try cleaning the coils--there are two of them which look like radiators--with a no-rinse coil cleaner from Amazon or ACE Hardware. This may help the cooling efficiency and certainly won't hurt.

      Randy

    • profile image

      PAJohn 

      10 days ago

      I certainly appreciate the help Randy.

    • profile image

      Sharon 

      10 days ago

      What genenerly keeps the ac if you cant add feron cold on hot days it seems like it just doesnt stay cold inside till night time it gets cooler

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      11 days ago from Southern Georgia

      PAJohn, apparently the compressor was going bad at the time. Only an educated guess of course.

      Randy

    • profile image

      PAJohn 

      11 days ago

      Any idea why the unit ran for 24 hours then started to fail?

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      11 days ago from Southern Georgia

      PAJohn, I'm afraid you have a bad compressor as it seems to be pulling more amperage than normal. This is causing the lights to dim and the breaker to trip.

      If you can borrow or rent an amp meter, you can see if the compressor is indeed drawing more amperage than is stated on the compressor or on a plate nearby. If so, a new AC may be in your future.

      Randy

    • profile image

      PAJohn 

      11 days ago

      Hello, I just joined and need some guidance. I have a 1995 Dometic a/c on my RV. I’ve owned the RV 3 years and the unit ran well. Late last year we noted some heavy vibrations when running, then a hot electric smell so we shut it down for the winter. Two weeks ago i opened the box and found the starting condenser connectors melted. I replaced the condenser yesterday with a new one with exact same specs. The a/c started right up and we were back to freezing cold air. It ran 24 hours then started to cycle normal speed then slow down then normal. When the motor slows the lights dim. I shut the breaker. Then reset it and started the a/c. It now does the same cycling and dimming then the breaker pops. Can you give me some things to check?

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      12 days ago from Southern Georgia

      Tony, are you sure the thermostat is operating properly?

      Randy

    • profile image

      Tony 

      12 days ago

      I am not getting low voltage out of the board i have replaced the board and is still the same can not find the transformer can you help

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      13 days ago from Southern Georgia

      Scot, other than the compressor drawing too much amperage, I have no clue.

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      13 days ago from Southern Georgia

      Joe, you can't unless you have the proper tools and know-how. Better to let an AC repairman do this for you.

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      13 days ago from Southern Georgia

      Bob, do you mean one of the ceiling assembly bolts which compress the gasket between the unit and the roof? Perhaps a screw extractor?

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      13 days ago from Southern Georgia

      Gary, more than likely you have a weak start/run compressor capacitor.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Scot 

      13 days ago

      If the capasator isnt bad what else could it be

    • profile image

      Joe 

      2 weeks ago

      How do you add freon to ac unit

    • profile image

      Bob 

      2 weeks ago

      Replacing seal on dometic roof unit and have broken blind bolt and wondering if you have any suggestion how to remove. It is one of 4mounting bolts.

    • profile image

      Gary Morris 

      2 weeks ago

      I bought a 2002 Forest River Americana GS LX33 5th wheel. New to this living. it has a great duct-ed ac ceiling unit. I runs great and cools great, Just the other day it started starting and stopping when trying to start up. Sounds like old mechanical contact breakers trying to click on and off. Yet when I move the thermostat down, or if I have it off and switch to cool it starts right up and runs fine.

      Do these units have contact breakers in a startup relay?? Maybe dirty contact breakers, or Thermostst dirty on the slide?

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      2 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Scot, may be due to a bad capacitor. Check and/or replace the capacitors.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Scot 

      2 weeks ago

      I have a unit that will run fine rill it kickes off.then when it trys to kick back on will blow the breaker on generator. Or when hooked in to main the breaker will blow. But if i turn it off and turn it back on it will run fine till it kicks off and tryes to kick back on

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      2 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Tom, check the capacitors first to see if they are working properly, but I don't see why the ac works while sitting still and not while moving. I'd be interested if you do find the solution.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Tom 

      2 weeks ago

      My rooftop ac works fine on the generator while parked, but When I drive down the highway the AC trips the braker ???

      I had geaerac test the generator. It is putting out 117 / 120 Volt's with the AC running. This AC year is a 1997. Ang suggestions?

    • profile image

      Cltskybear 

      2 weeks ago

      Thanks....went in about 3 hrs later and cut it on just to see...and it came on and worked fine. Will have to get system checked because although it’s working now, something caused it to quit working for at least a day.

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      2 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Citskybear, check the capacitors first, and if they're okay, then make sure the thermostat is receiving 12 volts from the 12 volt power supply. If this isn't the problem, then the control board may be the issue.

      Randy

    • profile image

      cltskybear 

      2 weeks ago

      Have a 2017 Forest River Vengeance toy hauler. I leave it plugged in at home with a new heavy duty surge protector and the A/C on 73. Had a storm last night and electricity blinked off. Noticed today that trailer is hot and the A/C central unit is not blowing. I unplugged electrical and replugged it, checked fuse and circuit breaker. When turned on at the thermostat, it makes a noise after a while, but does not blow any air, warm or cold. My second A/C unit works fine, but was not on when electricity blinked. Any other ideas?

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      2 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Crysta, try oiling the fan motor sleeves on both ends. If this stops the squealing, the sleeves may be worn. Oiling them occasionally may keep the motor running for awhile.

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      2 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Jamie, yes it's possible and probable.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Jamie 

      2 weeks ago

      We just took our 01 Catalina lite camping and we plugged in and tried turning the Ac i it smelled terrible after checking the roof unit we found a blown capacitor is it possible that it is just the capacitor and not the compressor???

    • profile image

      Crysta 

      2 weeks ago

      My husband works out of town and lives in our travel trailer. The air conditioner is cooling just fine but it makes a squealing sound when it is running.Where do we need to start trouble shooting the problem? This is our first dealing with a used travel trailer. Thank you for any advice!

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      2 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Carl, you need to check the fan motor capacitor before replacing the motor.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Carl 

      2 weeks ago

      Ac worked fine. The other day it sounded like a squeak. Then it began sounding like t was working very hard. Now it turns on. Runs right for a few seconds. Sounds strained. Runs right. Sounds strained. Then stops running at all. Cleaned filter. Opened up. Removed the metal casing and it ran ok. Tried to clean the coils. Replaced metal casing. It began doing the same as before. Took the motor out (was gonna take it in to get a replacement) decided to try to run it and it ran fine for many minutes. Returned the motor to the original spot. Put all coverings back on. Same thing as original. Bad fan motor?

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      2 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Kenny, try some long range wasp and hornet spray. I believe it will reach up to 20 feet.

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      2 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Mike, have the compressor capacitor checked as it's usually the problem when running off the generator.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Kenny 

      2 weeks ago

      I have a massive bees nest under the plastic cover of the ac unit. Not sure how to get rid of them because even climbing on the roof is inviting massive swarms. Thoughts?

    • profile image

      mike turner 

      2 weeks ago

      i have a 2001 R Vision 26' Class A motor home. my problem is with generator running after warm up period when i turn on the A.C. , the A.C.will run for approx. 10 minutes and then trip the breaker on the on board Generac generator(5000 Watt)...i have alson hooked it up to a 3000 Watt honda generator and it trips it...any suggestions????

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      2 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Benny, check the thermostat first and then the capacitors.

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      2 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Chelsea, you'll need to get an AC repairman to recharge your unit unless you have the correct tools and know-how.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Benny Miller 

      2 weeks ago

      Last night i turned my thurstat down to 70 and this morning it was on like 37 wouldn't go any higher and the lost was like 17. Running but not cooling. Any suggestions. Help please.

    • profile image

      Chelsea Phipps 

      2 weeks ago

      Hey Randy thanks for letting me know, i appreciate it. Is it hard to put freon in the camper? Whrre do i find that

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      2 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Chelsea, this sounds like a low Freon charge. When the charge is getting low, the AC will get really cold for awhile before it loses enough Freon to stop cooling.

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      2 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Thanks for returning and relating the solution, Patricia! My help others with a similar problem. :)

      Randy

    • profile image

      Chelsea Phipps 

      2 weeks ago

      Hey Randy, i have a 2015 salem cruise lite by forest river. Last weekend i took my camper out my ac was workibg amazing, had it on high and cold and whn you went in there it was like winter. But this weekend, it cools down but doesnt get cold cold like before. Ive cleaned the filters, went on roof and checked ac everything looked fine, i dont have an ac thermostat on my wall, its a ceiling on with turn nobs, im at a loss of what to do.

    • Patricia Bricker profile image

      Patricia Bricker 

      2 weeks ago

      Hi again Randy, wanted to give you an update. It was the thermostat. The old one wasn't allowing the AC unit to run, so grabbed a new one yesterday and installed it this morning. Fixed the chattering relay too. We're cool as cucumbers. Thanks again!

    • profile image

      Chelsea 

      2 weeks ago

      Hey, i have a 2015 Salem Cruise lite by forest river. I took it camping last weekend and my ac worked amazing, on high it was like winter. But this weekend, it cools down but doesnt get cold cold. Ive cleaned filters, got on thw roof and everything looks fine, but its just not cooling at its peak performance, i dont know what else to do. Its a domestic ac

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      2 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Riley, it does sound as if the compressor is the problem with your AC. If you can borrow or rent a clamp-on amp meter, you can see if the compressor is drawing more amps than is normally required. If so, then the compressor is toast.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Riley 

      2 weeks ago

      Hi Randy, I have a duo therm quick cool on a 2007 Montana. I think it is the original AC unit. I have had problems with my AC tripping my 20 amp breaker it is on. When I turn on the system the fan will run for 5 minutes before the compressor kicks on. Then I start hearing groans and after 5 minutes the breaker will trip. I have replaced both capacitors with no change in operation. If I turn on the fan by itself if will run fine for hours. I feel like I have a bad compressor but wanted your 2 cents. Also reading from your forum I saw you posted about a bad thermostat or control board. What are the signs of a bad one of those? Could one of those possibly be bad on mine? Just wanted to check before I got fed up and bought a new unit. Any help would be much appreciated.

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      2 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Denise, have the capacitor(s) checked first. About $25 to replace and an easy chore in most cases.

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      2 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Daniel, I suspect the thermostat as well. It could also be the control board as well though.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Daniel Ritter 

      2 weeks ago

      Hi Randy, My Mach 3 Plus is less than nine months old. The A/C and low speed fan work fine but when I switch the thermostat to high speed the fan stops spinning and hums. I had a mobile RV tech swap out both capacitors and inspect the wiring and circuit board for anything obvious. High speed still doesn’t work. Is there any chance my thermostat is defective? It seems like the hum I get when switching to high means the unit is getting a signal from the thermostat and the problem must be something other than the thermostat. Is my assumption correct or should I try swapping out the thermostat?

    • profile image

      DENISE Fontaine 

      2 weeks ago

      We are new pop up owners and are working hard to get this unit up and ready to take our kids camping. The AC unit when i turn it on has a very quiet hum, no fan or compressor sound. No air flow, where should we start, i tried to spin the fan to get it started qith no luck.

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      3 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Roger, I have no clue what's causing it or if this is out of the ordinary.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Roger 

      3 weeks ago

      It works fine and reaches the desired temperature. It beeps once after it shuts down about 20 seconds later. I have cleaned the inside filters.

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      3 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Roger, is the AC shutting off because it reaches the desired temp, or when you manually turn it off?

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      3 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Stacy, the thermostat works on the 12 volt system and needs a 12 volt power source to power it. If your converter is powering the lights properly, then it's not because of bad batteries.

      More than likely the compressor capacitor is bad if the compressor is not starting. About $25 for the capacitor and easy to replace.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Roger 

      3 weeks ago

      I have a Coleman air conditioner on my camper. It beeps once about 20 seconds every time it shuts off. Is that normal or is it trying to tell me something. I just bought the camper this year so I don't know if it has been serviced in the past or not. It works fine and I have cleaned the inside filters.

    • profile image

      Stacy 

      3 weeks ago

      If my batteries are bad will my ac compressor not kick in? Does the thermostat need the batteries

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      3 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Karen, if you have an unused vent and also a 50 amp hook-up, yes you should be able to add another unit.

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      3 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Jimmy, if the compressor isn't coming on then this may be a bad capacitor. About 25 bucks or so and easy to replace.

      As far as cleaning the AC is concerned, both coils can be cleaned with a no-rinse coil cleaner found on Amazon or at a local ACE Hardware store.

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      3 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Patty, if the new stat doesn't solve the problem then this may be a control board issue. Let me know if I can be of further help.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Karen Chervinskis 

      3 weeks ago

      Im looking to purchase a new Class A R.V. We had one that we recently sold. The two A.C. units were working as they should, however in the heat it didnt stay cool enough. Can anyone tell me if its possible to add a third a.c. unit?

    • profile image

      Jimmygraffius 

      3 weeks ago

      The a.c. in my Teton homes San Gabriel 3 fifth wheel was working great but is now blowing warm air in the bedroom .The front a.c. works better than it did before.

      My question is how do you clean out the a.c. unit. I recently got the fifth wheel and know it was stored for a few years without use.

      Thank you for your time and any assistance.

    • Patricia Bricker profile image

      Patricia Bricker 

      3 weeks ago

      I forgot to add that the Tstat is probably close to 20 years old, and we plan on replacing it with the correct digital model from Airexcel within a couple of weeks.

    • profile image

      Patty 

      3 weeks ago

      Hi Randy! Great info you share, thank you. Now for my question: We replaced our Mach 3 about a year ago. We live-aboard and run solely on shore power (voltage at pole is good). The unit works fine (makes cold air and blows it into the trailer). About a week ago, the thermostat (started acting up and now will only operate the AC unit when set at 63 ish. It cuts the unit off when the trailer has cooled off (to what temp I have no clue), but the relay at the control board in the return air hole clicks quickly a few times and won't trigger the unit on. I've been manually turning it back on at the Tstat. The unit runs all day because we're in Central Florida, so the AC unit itself is doing it's job. I plan on cleaning the Tstat and the control board components this weekend, but if this doesn't work, what shoul our next step be? Thanks in advance, Patty.

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      3 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Jeff, I had another person with the same problem a week or two ago. I suspect the thermostat--on the 12 volt system--is still sending a signal to the AC. I didn't hear back if this was indeed the case.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Jeff Stahl 

      3 weeks ago

      Turning A/C on at campsite last weekend. Compressor kicked on but no fan. Turned fan to the "ON" position and it cooled camper off so I left it that way for the night. During that night it started pulling too much power. At first I thought it was just the compressor kicking on but it happed multiple times in just a few minutes. You could hear it and even see the lights go dim. Next morning turned everything off including the breaker and heard a clicking sound inside the camper at the unit even with the breaker off. Any ideas?

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      3 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Zachary, I can't tell you how to check the control board.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Zachary 

      3 weeks ago

      Found the circuit board but lack knowledge how to test it. Is there a way to test it?

    • profile image

      Zachary 

      3 weeks ago

      I apologize in advance for the narrative, but I'm stumped.

      Our front A/C is a Coleman mach

      Had a bad fan motor - I freed it up with some lubricant enough to keep it going until the new one came in the mail.

      We had a power outage at the campground - a wire burned up at the transformer. AC was blowing weak and warm once the power was back on.

      Replaced the fan motor and found the next morning that two of the three capacitors had blown.

      Replaced all three capacitors.

      Had another outage - again wire burned up at the transformer.

      We moved campgrounds and ran the Generator for the move, running the front A/C during the 90 minute drive.

      A few hours after we set up, ACs shut off and neither AC would turn on. I checked the breaker box - shut off the main and pulled out/checked every fuse. I flipped the main breaker back on and both units started blowing again, but now the condenser on the front unit is not kicking on.

      I'm not 100% on how to check the thermostat. Videos/articles I find online are mostly for residential style AC units. imagine there's a circuit board somewhere in this unit. What should I check/replace next?

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      3 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Steve, it could be the cap causing the voltage draw. I'd check or change it before checking anything else.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Steve 

      3 weeks ago

      Coleman AC Unit. Turn on the the fan runs. Then after a couple minutes it drops rpm and starts dropping the RV voltage. I'm thinking bad compressor cap. What do you think.

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      3 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Edward, unless you have the proper tools and gauges, as well as the know-how, it's best to have an AC repairman add Freon for you.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Edward Ross 

      3 weeks ago

      Randy, good info., how do I check and add Freon if needed to my Coleman rooftop mach series a.c.?

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      3 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Tim, all AC units use the same size cutouts so this isn't a problem. As far as the old units go, if they're working at all they should be able to be repaired. And yes, parts are still available for them. Thermostats for the new AC's are not a problem.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Timxgo 

      3 weeks ago

      I have a 1992 motor home with Duo Therm/Dometic model 610445.305 product # 991721.054 units. They work intermittantly. Are they worth trying to repair? Are parts available? Would newer units fit in the cutouts? What about thermostats?

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      4 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Sean, this is often a weak capacitor causing the breaker to trip on the generator. Try checking the compressor capacitor first. About $25 and easy to replace.

      Randy

    • Randy Godwin profile imageAUTHOR

      Randy Godwin 

      4 weeks ago from Southern Georgia

      Landon, if you didn't have the thermostat turned down to a very cold setting, and the coils are clean, then yes it may be a low Freon charge.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Sean 

      4 weeks ago

      Question: I’m hoping someone can point me in the right direction. My camper ac trips my generator after being on for about 10-15 mins. If I put the fan on it works fine only when I switch it to ac it runs for about 10-15 mins then trips. Anyone ever experience this problem?

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