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Old 06-08-2014, 01:18 PM   #1
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A/C Problem in Alaska

Any ideas appreciated please - We have a 2005 Dolphin LX 6376 with Coleman Mach basement a/c. Before we left on our trip to Alaska had the unit serviced and they found there was a capacitor that was nearly burnt out and had it replaced and the unit was working just fine. Turned the a/c on in Fairbanks and instead of the usual humming noise the unit sounded like a clanging, grinding sound. Turned the system off immediately.

Got underneath and looked at the unit to see if any road gravel had gotten into the unit since we had hit some rough roads. I was able to spin the air scoop wheel that is protected by a wire mesh screen and it turned smoothly and there was no rattling from gravel or any other source that I could see. Wife turned the cooling unit on while I watched and the wheel turned and rattled, stopping then started and then running with the grinding sound. Turned the unit off. Don't know how I would even access this part of the unit as it is behind the front coils and did not want to start a job that I could not finish.

Any ideas on what could be causing this and how to fix or if it needs services professional? Not sure I can get good servicing while in Fairbanks or Anchorage. A/C in Alaska is not likely too big an issue but it will be once we hit the lower 48 on the trip home.
Thanks,
Brad
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Old 06-09-2014, 11:21 AM   #2
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When the fan is powered on it spins at a higher rpm then spinning it by hand. It's possible that it is picking up some debris at the higher rpm's. Could also be bad or dry motor bearings. You may or may not be able to hear that by spinning the fan by hand. I do not have a basement AC so I can't tell you from experience how to remove the unit. From what I have read you should be able to slide the unit out and be able remove the top cover to access the fan motor. Maybe someone that has done it can give you advise on how to do it.

Chuck
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Old 06-09-2014, 11:26 AM   #3
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There is only one RV Service place that I know of in Fairbanks located on Peger Rd.

HERE is their web site.

I have shopped there before but never had any service work done.

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Old 06-09-2014, 11:44 AM   #4
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Sounds like the outside blower squirrel cage bearing, or somehow some gravel got into the squirrel cage through the bottom screen. A bad blower motor can also make a sound similar to what you describe. There are two blower motors and squirrel cages, the outside and the inside. The unit must be pulled and top removed to get at everything. On a Winnebago some slide out the side, and some drop down. My wiring can be left connected when the unit comes out the side. They are normally not complicated to pull out, but can't say for sure how yours is installed. Parts normally must come from Wichita KS. Things like bearings of course may be available locally.
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Old 06-10-2014, 03:48 PM   #5
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Thanks guys for the information and advice. Tried to get into Artic RV yesterday, however they have no openings until late next week and we have to move on. I do have a service appointment at Karen's RV in Achorage to fix a slide topper issue and another appointment with Great Alaskan Holidays for the a/c. I am intending that if it is some road debris that got into the housing that it will drop out somewhere along the line as we bump and roll over these roads. Also will be putting some finer hardware cloth mesh over the existing screen to prevent additional stuff from getting in after the first stuff comes out. May add some of the extra mesh below the engine compartment to keep that free from flying road debris.
Wishing you all happy travels.
Brad
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Old 06-21-2014, 11:35 PM   #6
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It doesnt happen very often but I used to service residential ac's, occasionally the fan blades or blower wheels would come loose on the shaft if not tightened properly or installed/reinstalled properly, I assume you're spinning the fan blade but if the blower wheel is loose.... Does it still put out decent air pressure?
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Old 06-22-2014, 12:15 AM   #7
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Brad
here is a link basement air conditioner removal and bearing replacement.
https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&p...zBiZTYxYzU5ZWQ
It was written by Bill Elsenpeter, a great contributor to Irv2. Bill recently passed but his knowledge will live on in this forum.
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Old 06-22-2014, 10:03 AM   #8
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I just pulled my unit and replaced both squirrel cages. It is a fairly big job as the whole top of the unit must be removed. The thing slides out but it is HEAVY and the wiring should have enough slack as previously stated. Hope for the rock deal cause that could do it. The squirrel cage you can see is metal from Coleman and they told me the blades can come loose. The replacement cage is plastic.
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Old 06-22-2014, 10:25 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rgvtexan View Post
Brad
here is a link basement air conditioner removal and bearing replacement.
https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&p...zBiZTYxYzU5ZWQ
It was written by Bill Elsenpeter, a great contributor to Irv2. Bill recently passed but his knowledge will live on in this forum.
So sorry for the comment on Bill, he is alive and kicking. I got my Duner and Dunners mixed up.
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Old 06-23-2014, 12:10 PM   #10
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Thanks!

Just reviewed the detailed a/c removal instructions and are grateful to have them even though they make my head spin. It's great to have to give to the techs up here in Anchorage as an assist to them when they get the coach. Not sure if they will even have the parts and the time in our trip to get it fixed. May have to wait till we get back to the lower 48.
Thanks for your wonderful resources and help.
Brad
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