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Old 07-31-2021, 10:05 AM   #1
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A/C tripping breaker

I apologize if this is redundant. My TT is plugged into shore power. I have a 14 yo Coleman Mach 13500 btu rooftop unit and it trips the house breaker. I have replaced the start and run caps and added a hard start cap. It will run a few minutes and blow cold air but then trips the breaker. I saw a video where someone was testing the Ptcr device on top of the compressor. My question is doesn't the hard start have ptcr in it? If so, do I still need the one on top of the compressor? If its bad, could it be causing the breaker to trip? Please help!! I'm prepared to buy a new ac but would rather not. Also, could the thermostat be the problem? Grasping at straws here!! Thank you in advance for any help!!
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Old 07-31-2021, 10:09 AM   #2
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Are you plugged into 15, 30 or 50 amp shore power.


What is VOLTAGE when the breaker trips?


We need to know if this could be a shore power issue or problem in the A/C unit itself.
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Old 07-31-2021, 10:14 AM   #3
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First, insure that nothing else is using A/C power in your TT besides the AC unit. If the water heater is on AC or the RV fridge is on AC or Auto those could be using a lot of amps and your A/C unit just sends everything over the top.

Next, if your house battery(s) is in a very low state of charge then your converter/charger is probably trying to recharge the battery(s) and also using a lot of amps for that.

One last thing - if it's very warm at your home (it's a hot summer) keep in mind that circuit breakers operate on temperature and if the plug is in a hot location that can cause a quicker breaker trip.

I lied... one other last thing... how long of a power cord are you using and what gauge? Using a long extension cord of two small a gauge just adds to all of your issues.
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Old 07-31-2021, 10:22 AM   #4
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im at work so ill have to check the breaker but I assure you that is not the problem. When I have run the TT on shore power before the only thing that would trip the breaker would be my air compressor coming on because I forgot to turn it off. Nothing else is on in the camper. I am very sure the problem is with the ac. I just need to know if a bad thermostat or bad PTCR switch could cause this. Im hoping its not a bad compressor. Like I said, I have added both new caps and a hard start (Supco SPP6). On another note, the old start cap sounded like it had water in it. BTW, I live near Dallas so its not warm its hot!! Oh and Im not using an extension cord just the power cord on the TT and the battery is fully charged.
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Old 07-31-2021, 12:01 PM   #5
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Perhaps the condenser coils are dirty and with the high heat is overloading the compressor. Some of the coolness is used to cool the compressor. Could be overheating.
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Old 07-31-2021, 12:09 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by ldv5379 View Post
im at work so ill have to check the breaker but I assure you that is not the problem. When I have run the TT on shore power before the only thing that would trip the breaker would be my air compressor coming on because I forgot to turn it off. Nothing else is on in the camper. I am very sure the problem is with the ac. I just need to know if a bad thermostat or bad PTCR switch could cause this. Im hoping its not a bad compressor. Like I said, I have added both new caps and a hard start (Supco SPP6). On another note, the old start cap sounded like it had water in it. BTW, I live near Dallas so its not warm its hot!! Oh and Im not using an extension cord just the power cord on the TT and the battery is fully charged.
I would check that breaker. Turn off power, pull the cover, and pull the breaker to make sure there's nothing burnt. It's heating up and tripping after the a/c is running which is a good sign of a bad connection. The breaker itself might be bad.
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Old 07-31-2021, 12:18 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ldv5379 View Post
im at work so ill have to check the breaker but I assure you that is not the problem. When I have run the TT on shore power before the only thing that would trip the breaker would be my air compressor coming on because I forgot to turn it off. Nothing else is on in the camper. I am very sure the problem is with the ac. I just need to know if a bad thermostat or bad PTCR switch could cause this. Im hoping its not a bad compressor. Like I said, I have added both new caps and a hard start (Supco SPP6). On another note, the old start cap sounded like it had water in it. BTW, I live near Dallas so its not warm its hot!! Oh and Im not using an extension cord just the power cord on the TT and the battery is fully charged.



At this point I'd remove and replace the breaker- it's probably tripped a bunch of times and they wear out. I wouldn't blame the a/c unit yet. BTW, I'd clean the filter too if you haven't. We just replaced the breaker in my daughter's trailer this summer and it's fine now.
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Old 07-31-2021, 12:37 PM   #8
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As others have stated, the circuit breaker certainly could be the issue, but to add to this statement, the breaker may be fine and simply not large enough (not that you should install larger breakers than what the wiring can support).

If you are connected to a circuit that is protected with a 15a breaker, that breaker is actually designed to trip at around 80%+ =12 amps and higher (with time). So if you A/C used to run off this same circuit then it was likely pulling less than the 12 amps and you also need to keep in mind that an A/C will draw more current the higher the ambient temperature is. Bottom line, a lot of 13.5 and larger A/C's can't run on a circuit with a 15a breaker, it may run for a while though.

My suggestion would be to do a little more testing before changing things or buying another A/C. I would suggest that you purchase a clamp style amp meter and see how many amps the A/C is pulling and the voltage as well. Knowing the numbers is really the only way to know if there is a problem or not (other than of course if you see a damaged component). ~CA
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Old 07-31-2021, 12:47 PM   #9
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Craig's suggestion of checking the amperage is good. Watch as it runs and if it slowly climbs then suddenly climbs just before the breaker trips, then you have a worn out compressor.

A thermostat will not trip your breaker.
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Old 07-31-2021, 01:06 PM   #10
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Check inside your home breaker box to see if you have a 15 amp or 20 amp circuit to garage. Most garages have 20 amp to support power tools. Use 20 amp outlet if you have one, and a heavy gauge extension cord.
Disconnect the battery leads before running any tests on the ac.
Disconnect all 120vac loads on Your tt breaker panel, except for the ac.
Turn on ac fan only.
Then turn on ac
If your breaker still trips it’s probably a bad breaker. Remove and replace.
If it still trips after replacing, problem is with the ac. Maybe start capacitor.
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Old 07-31-2021, 01:10 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ldv5379 View Post
im at work so ill have to check the breaker but I assure you that is not the problem. When I have run the TT on shore power before the only thing that would trip the breaker would be my air compressor coming on because I forgot to turn it off. Nothing else is on in the camper. I am very sure the problem is with the ac. I just need to know if a bad thermostat or bad PTCR switch could cause this. Im hoping its not a bad compressor. Like I said, I have added both new caps and a hard start (Supco SPP6). On another note, the old start cap sounded like it had water in it. BTW, I live near Dallas so its not warm its hot!! Oh and Im not using an extension cord just the power cord on the TT and the battery is fully charged.
Using an adapter to a House 15A outlet???

Hot weather/ 13.5K btu ----11amps with 120VAC
**lower AC higher amp draw
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Old 07-31-2021, 03:30 PM   #12
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Good suggestions. Checked the breaker, its fine. Already cleaned the filter, coils. Again i have replaced the run and start caps and added a hard start. The compressor cycles off after about 5 minutes. When turning it on with fan in auto the fan blows but checking the unit the compressor is not running. Again I ask, I have a hard start connected. What f the ptcr is bad on the compressor? can I remove it bc the hard start has one or does it need to be left in place. the breaker tripping just started and Ive had this TT for 4 years. The house breaker is 15A but has ALWAYS worked. This problem started last weekend at a campsite but it was tripping the internal 20 A breaker
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Old 08-01-2021, 08:43 AM   #13
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Ok I bought a clamp meter to check the amps being pulled by the compressor. Started fine pulling 10-12 A. after about 2-3 minutes, the amps spiked to 19 and the compressor cycled off. It did not trip the shore power 15 A breaker. So could something be causing the spike (like a bad PTCR switch on compressor) or is the compressor toast? Also, the thermostat was set on auto and when the compressor cycled off, the fan on auto kept running like the compressor was still on. Thank you everyone for you replies and help.
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Old 08-01-2021, 09:05 AM   #14
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Ok, next question is what is the voltage at the unit when the amps start to go up. As the voltage drops, the compressor and fan motor will draw more amps. Also, a 14 year old unit maybe on it's way out. Since you recently replace the capacitors, I will assume they are OK.

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