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Old 06-24-2019, 07:39 AM   #1
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Basement air service

Just got back from a couple of days on the Gulf coast.Temps in the high 90's with high humidity.During the day the A/C would only cool the coach to about 83 degrees on our 2004,5342 Dolphin.Can refrigerant be added to this unit and can it be done without dropping the whole unit out?
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Old 06-24-2019, 07:19 PM   #2
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Yes refrigerant may be added, just like a household unit. No it cannot be added without removing the unit from the coach.
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Old 06-24-2019, 08:17 PM   #3
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Thanks Ray,I went out and ran it for about 15 minutes with a new return air filter and its blowing 70 degrees at the vents.I did a little research and it appears to be a sealed system.Can a tap be added to service?
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Old 06-24-2019, 08:33 PM   #4
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I have the basement too. Mine is the same as a residential unit so any HVAC repairman can service it. You should be able to open the outside panel, mine has 2 screws up from the bottom which allow the door to flip up. Have someone hold it or use a broom handle so you won't drop it on your head. You may be able to reach the valves depending on how they inserted your unit.

Best wishes - Richard
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Old 06-25-2019, 08:25 PM   #5
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Why do you think the refrigerant is low? The Delta-temperature difference between ambient air and chilled air exiting the vents should be about 20 when the unit is operating correctly.
When you remove the air filter, can you see the inner coil? If you can, gently remove any buildup of lint and dust, taking care not to bend the fins.
To answer your question, yes an air conditioning tech may add a test/fill port to the low side and a test port to the high side.
Read that link through, it will answer most of your questions.
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Old 07-04-2019, 12:25 AM   #6
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Being in a hot MH is no fun. The high humidity is your challenge. Ray is correct, 70F (20F dif) air coming from your vents is good.

Can I make a few assumptions; you are connected to 50amp power, your A/C switch in the power cord (left rear) compartment is in the up position and you can hear both compressors start?

Since we have the same MH as you, here are some items to check to help the A/C units work their best.
With the humidity being so high make sure the A/C unit is draining all that water outside below the A/C unit. It should drain whenever the compressors and the condenser fans cycle. If its not draining make sure the small rubber flapper valve under the A/C unit isn't plugged with dirt. The valve is located under the A/C unit about in the middle of the sheet metal. It about the size of a nickle. Be gentle with it.

If you have them, lower your outside window shades. Also put out your awning. The more sun you can keep off your MH the better.
Close the front windshield curtains to reduce the heat that comes through the glass.
Turn off your dash A/C. If the knob is in any position other than 'OFF' hot humid air will enter through the dash vents
Rotate the ceiling vent over the driver and passenger seats toward the rear of the MH. Rotate all the ceiling vents on the drivers side toward the sofa and dinette. The sofa and dinette are two dead spaces and can feel very hot and uncomfortable. If it gets really uncomfortable, you can close all the ceiling vents on the drivers side and pull in the slide.
If you have one, place a small oscillating fan on the counter behind the sink and plug it into the outlet under the cabinet. This added air movement makes a huge difference.
Lower the shade for the back window (in the bedroom) to the black out position. For some reason National didn't put dual pane glass in this window.
Raise the vent in the bathroom just a little to allow the air inside to circulate.
We've used all these little tricks when its been 120F outside and also when it was 20F outside.

Hope it helps. Being really hot or really cold is no fun!
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Old 07-04-2019, 09:54 PM   #7
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Thanks Steve for the tips.I also do most of them but did not know about the A/C switch in the rear compartment.I'll try this. Thanks again.
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Old 07-04-2019, 10:19 PM   #8
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Another thing to look at is the air ducting coming from the AC to the coach ducting. They have been known to come apart or have some other cause of not all the cold air getting to the inside of your rig.
Worth a look and costs you nothing.
Happy Glamping.
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Old 07-06-2019, 03:48 PM   #9
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As I understand it,the unit has two compressors. When running on 30A power only one compressor operates, but with 50A they both operate. My unit cools lots better on 50A. If your switch is in the 30A position it will not cool as well, even if you are connected to a 50A circuit.
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Old 07-07-2019, 04:34 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CamJam1 View Post
As I understand it,the unit has two compressors. When running on 30A power only one compressor operates, but with 50A they both operate. My unit cools lots better on 50A. If your switch is in the 30A position it will not cool as well, even if you are connected to a 50A circuit.
Both 120VAC compressors run on 30A service, but you cannot run any other high load appliance as the unit's total draw is around 23-24A. It will cool just as well on 30A or 50A service. Keep in mind, the 30>50A adapter "dog-bone" splits the 30A 120VAC line to both sides of the 50A 120VAC shore power cord.

Number one compressor must be running before #2 will start.
Number one compressor is the only one running when the thermostat set temperature is within 4 of MH interior temperature, when the difference is more than 4 #2 compressor runs too.
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Old 07-07-2019, 06:18 PM   #11
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Ok guys I went out this morning and made sure the switch was in the up position,closed dash vents and had all curtains closed. Inside temp was 85 so I set the thermostat on 76. Both compressors definitely came on so I let it run for a few hours,When I came back the inside temp was up to 95 and only hot air out of the vents.I suspect it froze up.Here is a question for discussion.My AC guy discouraged me from using saddle clamps on the unit to add a charge.He said they almost always leak.After thinking about this I wondered if you add the tap and vacuum down all the Freon,then cut off the tap and soldier on the proper fittings and recharge.Anybody ever do this? would it work? Thanks.
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Old 07-08-2019, 09:20 PM   #12
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If you have a qualified A/C mechanic that is working with you I would suggest you let him diagnosis the problem before you add any type of valves or dump (recover) the freon.

This forum can offer a lot of good advice but there is nothing like being there and going step by step to determine what the real problem is, so you don't spend $s for something you don't need and won't fix your problem.
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Old 07-09-2019, 03:49 PM   #13
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Heres some additional info.Discovered the outside blower was not running and the compressors were overheating and turning off.I replaced the capacitor and the blower comes on with compressor #1 but when compressor #2 comes online it turns off. Any ideas on this?I sure don't want to take to the RV shop unless I have to, there hourly rate is $150
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Old 07-09-2019, 04:12 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by gvette85 View Post
Heres some additional info.Discovered the outside blower was not running and the compressors were overheating and turning off.I replaced the capacitor and the blower comes on with compressor #1 but when compressor #2 comes online it turns off. Any ideas on this?I sure don't want to take to the RV shop unless I have to, there hourly rate is $150

Hi Glenn-


Help me understand the sequence here... what stops working when compressor #2 starts, compressor #1 or the blower motor?



You have a Coleman Mach? One of my cousins used to build RV A.C. in their Kansas plant. The holding company is now Airxcell.



Point is they're very much still in business and I suggest you phone them during business hours, Central Time. I'm guessing your new problem is a control issue - either there is a false command or sensor reading or there are failing control board parts. Coleman should be able to help you figure out which, and possibly point you to a Coleman HVAC tech in your area.
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