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Old 02-12-2024, 12:01 AM   #1
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THOR #13869
A/C dilemma

I was testing systems for function this evening on our 2016 Outlaw 29J.

I was also running the generator to provide the 110V power and the genny needed run anyway. Everything I tried to function worked, except the main roof air conditioner unit. It would not turn on, not even the fan function worked. But the garage/bedroom wall a/c worked, and tomorrow I will be plugging in to land supply 30 amp.

The curious thing was, after setting A/C temp to lowest setting on thermostat, a/c not turning on, you could here a clicking sound emitted from the thermostat.

I took it off the wall, all wires seem to be good and intact, I removed the diffuser to see up in there too. I see the 110V wire going into a box, and another 6-wire plug going in from the a/c unit itself (it may have been a 9-wire plug with six wire ports used, I am not sure at this time).

There were no fuses blown, nor any breakers kicked. I plan to get to it with a multi meter to test further after errands tomorrow.

Does anyone have any tips on which direction I should be checking, or what I should be finding in the a/c plug in? It was too late this evening to go any further.

edit:
Getting onto youtube, I will be looking at my capacitors for their size/capacity criteria. That may be where my problem is, but I will accept anyone's suggestions as I move through this dilemma. TIA

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Old 02-12-2024, 12:04 PM   #2
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THOR #29103
My first step would be to confirm, with a tester, that I have voltage at the A.C. unit itself.
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Old 02-14-2024, 01:56 AM   #3
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THOR #13869
The next day was rainy and very windy with temperatures dropping. So even though my RV is in a semi-walled carport, it was too windy to be on top of it. I did manage to try shore power with the same results.

So today, I Got up there and took the outer shell off the a/c. Found the condensers like on the video on youtube. I took pictures of the labels on them.

I also went deeper taking covers off, with my multi-meter, I verified there is 120VAC going into the control module circuit board. Not sure if I called it by correct name, but it is where the wires from the wall thermostatic control wire in, along with the 120v coming in.

I'm not an expert with these units, I have an understanding on how they work, but for now I am taking the $30 gamble and ordered a new set of condensers. I guess I will see what's going to happen in a week. I think the wall controller is good, at least when I switched to heat, the heater came on, it's a separate unit below the fridge, sort of.

I will let y'all know what it was when I get it running. It did work prior to winterizing this past November. Thanks
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Old 02-14-2024, 06:19 PM   #4
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THOR #12726
What was your ambient temp ?
Some a/c units will not kick in if outside air is cooler than about 50 + -
Also most have a timed delay of 2 min before compressor start
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Old 02-18-2024, 02:11 AM   #5
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The ambient temperature when I began troubleshooting was mid 60 degrees.

However, I discovered a severed ground wire for the thermostat, fixed that, and now the fan function on wall switch makes it work. Being that this day dropped into the 30s, the a/c function did not turn on, even waiting over 3 minutes. Then again, I didn't expect it to because of the outside temperatures.

The condensers that I ordered will either get used right away, or they will be onboard carried as spares. I'm learning but believe I got it fixed.
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Old 02-18-2024, 04:06 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by 10scDust View Post
The ambient temperature when I began troubleshooting was mid 60 degrees.

However, I discovered a severed ground wire for the thermostat, fixed that, and now the fan function on wall switch makes it work. Being that this day dropped into the 30s, the a/c function did not turn on, even waiting over 3 minutes. Then again, I didn't expect it to because of the outside temperatures.

The condensers that I ordered will either get used right away, or they will be onboard carried as spares. I'm learning but believe I got it fixed.
Condensers? Do you mean capacitors? As in starting and running capacitors?

The condenser in an AC is where the high pressure refrigerant is cooled by outside ambient air to condense the vapor into a liquid for the evaporator.
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Old 02-18-2024, 09:16 AM   #7
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Condensers? Do you mean capacitors? As in starting and running capacitors?

The condenser in an AC is where the high pressure refrigerant is cooled by outside ambient air to condense the vapor into a liquid for the evaporator.
In is first post he mentioned capacitors so guess he got the name wrong here. Looks like he purchased the capacitors based on viewing YouTube videos. I doubt he will ever need them.
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Old 02-18-2024, 01:17 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Bob Nodine View Post
In is first post he mentioned capacitors so guess he got the name wrong here. Looks like he purchased the capacitors based on viewing YouTube videos. I doubt he will ever need them.
The name is not wrong, just the time frame.
Capacitors used to be called 'condensors' in the old days... name condensor is still used in Europe.
Electronic component that stores electricity. Can be 'condensed'
I can see the confusion in an AC unit, as it does also have liquid condensors...
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Old 02-18-2024, 03:09 PM   #9
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The name is not wrong, just the time frame.
Capacitors used to be called 'condensors' in the old days... name condensor is still used in Europe.
Electronic component that stores electricity. Can be 'condensed'
I can see the confusion in an AC unit, as it does also have liquid condensors...
Yeah, we stopped using "condenser" for capacitor back in the 50s except in the context of "points and condenser" which have been overcome by technology (solid state ignitions).
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Old 02-19-2024, 10:49 AM   #10
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Yeah, we stopped using "condenser" for capacitor back in the 50s except in the context of "points and condenser" which have been overcome by technology (solid state ignitions).
I am not young (78 in June) and started in electronics when I was 11 years old tinkering in my Uncle's garage filled with ham radio stuff. I also grew up in my father's body and fender shop and often worked on cars. Between college and the Air Force I worked as an auto mechanic for a short time. I have only ever heard a capacitor referred to as a condenser in the automobile venue. Old mechanics would charge up a "points condenser" and throw it a young unsuspecting mechanic saying "here catch" and you can guess what happens.
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Old 02-19-2024, 02:31 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Bob Nodine View Post
I am not young (78 in June) and started in electronics when I was 11 years old tinkering in my Uncle's garage filled with ham radio stuff. I also grew up in my father's body and fender shop and often worked on cars. Between college and the Air Force I worked as an auto mechanic for a short time. I have only ever heard a capacitor referred to as a condenser in the automobile venue. Old mechanics would charge up a "points condenser" and throw it a young unsuspecting mechanic saying "here catch" and you can guess what happens.
Some pack a wallop- another trick was to add long pigtails and lay on a car seat all charged up.

"Plugs, points, condensor" was the first thing to replace when working on old distributor/ point ignition cars. Rotor and cap too. Caps could crack and all over until replaced. Another nifty trick was to run a pencil around the inside between the contacts the D-cap and no matter what- car would not start.

I also had a Model T- spark coil that I would use on insects (ants mostly)- but learned all about grounding when I stepped onto the lawn with the 6V lantern battery (metal case) with the thing all connected and buzzing. Lucky it was DC current- I let it go fast!
If AC, I might not have let go!

I also found that condensors/ capacitors were good fireworks too- knife switch, long 18/2 zip cord and 110VAC house current outside-(way before GFCI) they make a big bang when they blow up!!
I blew off the eraser (metal) end of pencil rooching around inside a live radio chassis once too.

I also figured that making my own rocket igniters from radio tube nichrome wire, match-head & model cement poultice was way cheaper than the Estes ones- the pathetic and slow 6V launch power box was replaced with that same 18-2 wire and knife switch setup.
It was almost like the rocket knew before I threw the switch and it was skybound. PHST-WOOSH! No more waiting for the 6V to 'warm up' the igniter! I could get about 1-2' of wire out of a tube. Had to be careful which kind of tube I broke to get into as well- some were condensor tubes with grid caps!

I was probably 10 when I did all these crazy things. That's how I learned about electricity... I've been hit with 120VAC and 240VAC too when fixing up my home. Breaker off now whenever I do anything any more. Son became a licensed electrician. He taught me more by leaving his NEC code books lying around. Now- about my dyslexia and switches... still alive after 70 years of testing Darwin's theories.
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Old 02-20-2024, 12:28 PM   #12
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Mark's post reminded me of what my buddies and I would do when we were about 14 or 15. There is no way this could happen today in our world of terrorism and all the restrictions that come with that.

We went to the local drug store and purchased charcoal, sulphur, and potassium nitrate and walked just down the street from the drug store to the hardware store and purchased dynamite fuse. We would then go home and make black powder and fill jars with it and make a hole in the lid and inserter the dynamite fuse. We would then light the fuse and throw them in a pond to watch the boom. We also made rockets and launched them.

Do you know what your children are doing?
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Old 02-20-2024, 01:10 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Bob Nodine View Post
Mark's post reminded me of what my buddies and I would do when we were about 14 or 15. There is no way this could happen today in our world of terrorism and all the restrictions that come with that.

We went to the local drug store and purchased charcoal, sulphur, and potassium nitrate and walked just down the street from the drug store to the hardware store and purchased dynamite fuse. We would then go home and make black powder and fill jars with it and make a hole in the lid and inserter the dynamite fuse. We would then light the fuse and throw them in a pond to watch the boom. We also made rockets and launched them.

Do you know what your children are doing?
We didn't have to do that much work. In the mid-60s we lived in Barbados where fireworks were legal. I was 10-11 with 3 younger brothers. We'd head down to the local hardware store and buy some bottle rockets - not the little pencil thin ones - the ones that had the body of a Roman Candle. We experimented with those rockets adding multiple, and bigger charges to the end, making double decker rockets, etc. Somehow, I still have all my fingers and both eyeballs.
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Old 02-20-2024, 01:58 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Nodine View Post
Mark's post reminded me of what my buddies and I would do when we were about 14 or 15. There is no way this could happen today in our world of terrorism and all the restrictions that come with that.

We went to the local drug store and purchased charcoal, sulphur, and potassium nitrate and walked just down the street from the drug store to the hardware store and purchased dynamite fuse. We would then go home and make black powder and fill jars with it and make a hole in the lid and inserter the dynamite fuse. We would then light the fuse and throw them in a pond to watch the boom. We also made rockets and launched them.

Do you know what your children are doing?
Ha- I knew I wasn't the only one... to piggyback on that- I'd pack the chute section of my rockets with fireworks too- 4th of July every day now.

Before I was in HS, some kid covered the bottom of a local bridge with mud using a home-made device and underwater fuse. No reports of anyone walking along at the time... I also discovered I could make a crude rocket from a magic marker casing and match-heads. It could go up about 100'! I also had Jetex rocket engines and would strap to slot car chassis and send down the road. My science teacher liked that one. Lucky to still have all my fingers and eyes and hearing as well.
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