Question about Dometic Rooftop RV Air Conditioner

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Straight Facts Needed about recharging R-12 FREON in Duo Therm!!!

Please help me get the truth in this matter before i'm forced to uselessly buy a new rooftop rv airconditioning unit! I really can't afford that right now...If i can just make it through one mild summer, i'll be good! I have a 1987 35' Fleetwood 5th wheel with it's original, single, Dometic Duo Therm...non ducted, rooftop ac unit. It was rarely used and has been stored for over ten years! Here's my delimma...I have first read all the tips concerning these issues, as well as spoke with many rv service shops...The unit works well, 3 speed fan, 3 speed ac, and optional heat! All fan and motor speeds work...as well as the thermostat! I can hear the compressor kick on when turning the temp up/down...I took the upper shroud off and the unit is clean and free of debree inside and out! It only blows room temperature air. I'm new to the camping world...as you may be able to tell by my 87 Fleetwood Cimmeron! I figured that it would simply needed to be filled/charged with freon? not a single dealership or mobile rv service are willing to do this...they are though, willing to get and install a new unit for me. They say that even if it was recharged, what often happens is that the line they must install to enter the "closed system" usually restricts flow and causes the compressor to overheat and blow? They also say it's not cost effective as it would require 2 cans of R-12 (the older stuff) which is $100 a can...also the service call and so on...So they all say it can't or won't be done by any reputable rv business? I looked on my unit...and it already has two valves installed with the filling petcocks that are required? They say that they are not stock and must have been an add-on at some time? My question...which took me forever to get to...so sorry! Is this...am i getting a run around from everyone wanting me to purchase a new unit from them...when i have a near perfect one now with one simple problem? I looked up the R12 and found it on ebay as cheap as 10 bucks a can (old stock) anyhow...none of this fits what i'm hearing? I just want to make the best, most cost effective, and non-wasteful decision! If i need a new one...i'll get one! If i don't...who can fill the freon? Can I? Any help would be greatly appreciated...If i dont solve it soon....you're all gna find me like a roasted duck at a campground near you! Jason

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To be honest, it sounds like everyone wants to just sell you a new unit. Not alot of people carry R-12 anymore since the cost it to much for most garages to carry stock. What I suspect is that someone accessed you sealed system a while ago, hense the new valves, and you had one of the shraders leak losing your charge. Make sure you do not turn the system on if you have no charge. When you compress air, it will mix with the oil in your compressor and create acid which will eat the isulation around the windings on your compressor.

I know it sounds funny, but call Pepboys or Walmart or any large chain service garage and see if they will service your unit. Larger service bays will stock R-12 and will service existing equipment. There is no reason you need to replace your unit if everything is in good condition. Heck, if your in ever in Southern California, look me up. I have about 60# of R-12 and would charge your unit if you pay for the refrigerant.

Posted on May 12, 2010

  • rasandler Sep 27, 2010

    I have a very similar problem. I have a dometic a/c from about 2006 (already replaced once) that has lost freon. I am not sure what variety of freon that uses but I would like to get a valve added so that it could be recharged rather than having to replace the whole unit every few years. i don't use it very often which may be why it loses it's charge. if i can get it recharged, maybe i will may a point of running it for a half hour every month if anyone thinks that will help. i am in socal, in the inland empire area and will gladly travel to riverside, la or orange county for help with this. thanks!

    Richard

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SOURCE: both duo therm rooftop shrouds are splitting thru

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How to add Freon to a Air Conditioner or Refrigeration System
http://www.fixya.com/support/r5638346-add_freon_air_conditioner_or

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These are a closed system.(meaning that there is no fill valves for recharging) But a heating & cooling technician can solder them on and re-charge the system. Only problem there is to get an estimate up front, and compare it to buying a new roof unit which also comes with a new warranty, as well as keep in mind that the freon went somewhere, so there is an obvious leak that will need to be addressed as well. Most times it's wiser and cheaper in long run just to buy a new roof unit.
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