Jump to content


Icon Welcome to the FMCA Motorhome Forums!

Register now to gain access to all of our features. Once registered and signed in, you will be able to create topics; post replies to existing topics; upload pictures; manage your profile; get your own private messenger; create blogs; and more. Sign up now! Already have an account? Sign in. This message will be removed once you are signed in.


Photo
- - - - -

1997 Roadtrek A/C Replacement


  • Please log in to reply
12 replies to this topic

#1 Rolacoy

Rolacoy

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 52 posts
  • Location:East Texas

Posted 14 August 2009 - 08:52 PM

We have a 1997 Roadtrek 190. The air conditioner that was in the MH was the original unit a Fedders. It was running just fine but was making a noise sometimes, vibration. I decided that I needed to remove it and see what was making the noise. I also thought that if I removed the 12 year old A/C unit that surly I could find a newer unit that would draw less ampage and have a higher BTU rating. My narrative below is for our Roadtrek, others may be different.

REMOVAL:
Disconnect the electric of course. Remove the rubber around the grill on the back of the MH. This proved to be pretty easy, it is an interlocking strip of rubber. You can take a small screw driver and separate the rubber, then just start pulling it out. Its a little hard to get started, but comes out very easy.

There is, what appears to be a metal pan, to catch the condensation form the A/C, under the whole A/C unit. It runs from the front where it is raised in front of the A/C unit, inside the coach. It extends all the way to back grills. It drops down to under the lower back grill and reaches to the full width of the coach body in the back. It seems to work very well and be well engineered. There are two baffles, one on each of the A/C. The back of the A/C unit overlaps them about an inch. The baffles are attached to pan, I am not sure how they are attached, bolts, rivets or what. However there is a lot of black silicone all around the bottom of them.

The back end of the A/C is attached to the baffles in two or three location with the same silicone. Take a knife and cut the silicone, this frees the back of the A/C.

Go inside the MH and remove the the thin strip of wood trim that runs across the bottom of the A/C, there are screws into it from the inside of the cabinet on both sides.

There is a piece of foam rubber that is right in front of the A/C in the pan. It just lays there, I think that it must be there to stop water that might surge forward in a quick stop. Once that is removed there is about two inches between the front of the A/C and a metal lip that sticks up about an inch. This is a good time to remove the doors off both sides of the cabinets. Most all of the screws that are used are the type that have square slots, so if you don't have the tips, just go buy some before you start.

This metal lip is a piece of sheet metal that was about 2 inches tall and the width of the opening for the A/C. It is folded so that it is an inch tall channel. On the front of the metal pan that catches the condensation from the A/C is a lip that is bent up about 3/8 of an inch. The metal channel fits down over the 3/8" lip. It seems that after the A/C was originally installed, they put the channel down over the 3/8" lip then they used the black silicone to seal the whole front to retain the water.

I was happy to find out that the silicone was not put inside the channel. The silicone was only put on the inside. I pried the channel off the lip. This operation bent the channel quite a bit. To repair the channel, to use later when I installed a new A/C, I slipped a metal yard stick inside the channel, said it on a flat surface and used a hammer to straighten that channel. The metal yardstick kept the channel from having a tight fold. Now the hardest part is two strips of wood that fill the space between both sides of the A/C and the cabinet walls. I read someone's else's post about removing the A/C and having to be very careful not to tear the headliner of the MH. The hard part is that the strips of wood are held to the A/C by three screws that go from inside the A/C and into the wood on each side. There is no way to remove the screws until the A/C is out of the MH. Then there are two screws on each side inside the cabinets. I removed the screws inside the cabinets.

I am told that the A/C is secured in this way so that in a crash the A/C remains where it is. Good idea, no one wants a 60 pound A/C flying around inside the coach. This is where the headliner get torn, the wood strips are tight against the headliner. If you try to remove the A/C with these wood strips still on the A/C slide something in above them to protect the headliner. I did it the hard way, I located the three screws, took a flat blade screwdriver and hammer, with these right where I thought the screws came thru, I broke the wood strips in 4 pieces and removed them. Still be careful with the headliner. once the wood was removed I used a saw to cut the screws off flush with the A/C cabinet. This kept them from scratching the wood cabinets. I know, it was a heavy handed way to remove the wood strips. However, remember I was feeling my way with no instructions.

Now the A/C is completely loose. I was surprised, too! There are two strips of rubber on each side of the A/C, one in the back and one in the back. They are stuck to the sides of the cabinets with a self-adheasive. I removed the front two once the A/C was out, but left the rear ones. I probably should have left the front ones also. But I was not sure at this point if I could find a replacement A/C with a higher BTU rating or would repair the old one and put it back into my MH.

I was told that it would take two people to remove the A/C, one pushing and one pulling. Not true, I was able to remove it by myself. The only problem that I had was the metal strip that runs across the bottom of most window units. It sets against the window sill to hold it in place. I had to pry the metal strip up over the condensation pan front lip. Two people would have been easer, but I was in a hurry, that is my normal state. The old one is out, I cleaned it, put it in my garage window and it runs great and was not very dirty. No noise, I think that it was vibrating against the condensation pan.

NEW A/C UNIT:
I found an LG brand at Home Depot for about $250.00. It is a LWHD 1009R. The size of the original unit's size was 12" tall, 20" wide, 17 1/2" deep - BTU 7500 - amps 7.5 - Watts 880. The new LG unit is 12 3/8" tall, 19 9/16" Wide, 19 3/8 deep, 1009 BTU, amps 9.6. First thing that I did was to run it using the generator. The generator ran the A/C just fine, I turned it off, a couple of minutes later I turned it back on, killed the generator. I let it set for 10 minutes and it started fine and also ran the micro-wave. I guess the A/C had to let the pressures equalize.

INSTALATION:
First, the hole that the old electric wire went thru the cabinet wall is not big enough for the plug on the new unit. It is one of the new plugs with a trip relay built into the plug. The new A/C also has a metal strip across the top that holds in the window sill, three screws hold it on, take it off. Be sure there are no sharp burrs or anything that might cut the headliner. Next, clean out the condensation pan. Put the electric plug thru the larger hole in the cabinet, then get your son-in-law that just happen to come by your house and have him to lift the new A/C into the hole. Now, it's in the hole far enough that it will not fall out, the son-in-law can be dismissed. I slid it back into position and ran the A/C on shore power for about an hour. Worked just fine.

A lot more to complete the installation, any suggestions welcomed and questions also.
  • 0

#2 Rolacoy

Rolacoy

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 52 posts
  • Location:East Texas

Posted 15 August 2009 - 08:53 AM

One of the things that I forgot to mention is, This is mid August and retailers usually put all of their A/C units on sale in the Fall to get ready for new models next year. I was waiting until they went on sale and hoping that I would not miss the sale. But Home Depot told me that if I bought one before they went on sale that I could bring in my sales receipt when they did go on sale and they would adjust the price. So we went ahead and bought the A/C.

We also were going to replace the micro wave. Home Depot also told us that if we signed up for a credit card and spent $299.00 we would get a $20.00 gift certificate and a gift off one of the tables. A/C $249, Micro Wave $39, 4 cans of paint, some light bulbs, etc and we spent $346. We got the $20, the gift worth about $10 and I will be watching for them to mark down the A/C's.
  • 0

#3 Rolacoy

Rolacoy

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 52 posts
  • Location:East Texas

Posted 15 August 2009 - 10:40 AM

Inside the Coach: The LG A/C has two pieces of metal under the front about 3" from the front. These catch on the window sill when it is installed in a house. I was concerned that they had too little of a foot print the set in the condensation pan and might wear a hole in the pan. If you remember I removed two pieces of rubber from along the sides of the A/C. I cut one of them in 4 pieces, the 4 pieces are about 2 1/2" long. The pan has grooves about 1 1/2" wide running from the front to the rear for the water to run in. *** it happened the the two pieces of metal on the bottom of the A/C set down in the grooves. I put two of the pieces of rubber under each of the two pieces of metal, adhesive down. This should cushion the A/C and keep it from rattling and protect the pan. Which was the main reason that I took the original A/C out.

In the Back: I used the other one under the back of the new A/C to cushion between it and the pan, adhesive down. I believe that there is plenty of room for water to run around the rubber strips. I put a "glob" about 1 1/2' around of silicone at the top, center and bottom between the baffles and the A/C in the back.

Inside the Coach: I replaced the folded metal strip over the pan lip. Then I used a generous amount of silicone to seal the back side of the folded metal to the old silicone. I did not put any silicone between the folded metal strip and the pan lip. I may want to remove the A/C sometime in the future and that would make it much harder. The only thing that is going to hold the A/C in the forward to back position is the 6 "globs" of silicone. In a wreck I do not want the A/C hitting me or my wife in the back of the head. Someone on another forum put a piece of pipe in front of the A/C. It is anchored in the cabinets on both sides. This seems like a good idea.
  • 0

#4 Rolacoy

Rolacoy

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 52 posts
  • Location:East Texas

Posted 15 August 2009 - 07:55 PM

Inside the Coach: I replaced the wood trim strip at the bottom in front of the A/C, it fits real tight, you have to tap it into place. Then it is held by two screws, one on each side from in the cabinets. Here is how I did the pipe. I bought a 24" piece of 1/2" galvanized pipe, it was pre-threaded, and two plastic 1/2" plastic caps. I cut a piece of 1/8" flat plastic, 2" wide and 6" long. I locked the two pieces of plastic in a vise and drilled a 15/16" hole, with a spade bit, 1 1/2" from one end. Then I drilled 3 - 3/16" holes along the center of the plastic. I also drilled a 15/16" hole in the cabinet on each side. These holes are about 1/2" above the wood trim strip and just forward of the trim strip. I put the pipe thru the holes in the cabinet and slipped the flat plastic over the end of the pipe. I used three 3/4" sheet metal screws to attach the flat plastic inside the cabinet. Screw the plastic pipe caps on each end of the galvanized pipe and that part is done. I used the flat plastic to re-enforce the wood of the cabinets. I was afraid that the wood that is only about 1" from the hole that I drilled to the front edge could break away taking the pipe with it.
  • 0

#5 Rolacoy

Rolacoy

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 52 posts
  • Location:East Texas

Posted 16 August 2009 - 08:48 AM

Calking: I used GE Silicone II, a Aluminum & Metal Silicone. I do not know if it is old or what the problem is with it but it has been nearly 24 hours and it is still sticky, so use some other kind of silicone. So I am waiting to finish the job. I did re-install the cabinet doors and use the original wire holders to secure the wiring, you should do this because things will get caught on the wires if not done. You should remove the seat/bed cushions and cover the floor, there are a lot of wood chips, I didn't do this. Now it will be a worse cleanup job. I cut some foam rubber about 1 1/2" square with an electric knife long enough to fill in around the A/C. I put a piece on each side and one across the top. I pushed them back about 4". With the A/C mounted there is about 3/4" on each side and 1" across the top. I will put a piece of foam across the bottom. there is about 1 1/2" between the front of the A/C and the back side of the folded metal. As stated before, I think that this foam, besides stopping air from leaking in and out, it keeps water from rushing forward and coming up over the folded metal in a quick stop.

I went to Home Depot and bought a piece of outside corner trim. This trim is some kind of extruded hard foam with fake wood grain stuck on the outside. It will match the MH interior very well.
  • 0

#6 Rolacoy

Rolacoy

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 52 posts
  • Location:East Texas

Posted 18 August 2009 - 07:27 AM

I am still stuck, the silicone still has not cured. It is curing but very slow. It would be a real job to try to remove the silicone, but I amy have to do just that. However, we have no plans to use the MH till the end of September, surly it will cure in the next couple of weeks.
  • 0

#7 Rolacoy

Rolacoy

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 52 posts
  • Location:East Texas

Posted 23 August 2009 - 09:17 AM

I called GE about the silicone and a tech person told me that, the old silicone is never going to cure. I asked how to remove it and he said to wipe it out and clean with "Wood Alcohol". Not too bad of a job. The biggest problem was not getting it on any part of the MH. I disassembled the pipe brace that I put in front of the A/C. I removed the wood strip that runs across, at the bottom of the A/C and put a piece of Duct Tape on the upholstery material that is below the wood strip. The un-cured silicone is a mess. Get lots of paper towels and a trash can.

OK, it is cleaned out, next I tested the new tube that I bought to be sure that it would cure. I put the three spots of silicone in the back on each side. I re-placed the folded metal strip that goes on the metal lip on the condensation pan. I was glad that I did not put silicone inside the folded metal strip. It would have been very hard to remove. Inside I re-sealed the front of the condensation pan. I waited till the silicone cured, about 24 hours and reassembled the front of the A/C. I still have to put trim on the sides of the A/C and re-install the grill in the back.
  • 0

#8 Rolacoy

Rolacoy

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 52 posts
  • Location:East Texas

Posted 23 August 2009 - 09:29 PM

I can add some photos if anyone is interested. But I don't know how to add them.
  • 0

#9 Rolacoy

Rolacoy

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 52 posts
  • Location:East Texas

Posted 28 August 2009 - 09:51 AM

I got the trim installed on the inside on both sides and the top. Home Depot has some outside corner trim that is used to finish an outside corner on walls inside the house. They have several choices of corner trim. I chose the plastic type with a stick on wood grain that matches the cabinets. An 8' was under $10.00. By turning it with the corner toward the A/C unit it fits against the cabinet wall. Cut them to fit but cut top to fit inside the trim across the top. The trim across the top has the corner up. Before you put the side trim in put 3 small "dabs" of silicone on the cabinet sides about where you want the trim to rest. As you slide the vertical trim in it will slide across the silicone. When the silicone cures the trim will be secure. I did not put any silicone on the top trim, it is locked in by the side trim. These fit nearly perfect and finish the inside.

Now to finish the outside. All that remains is to replace the grill in the back. First pay attention to how it was originally installed ! I did not think about that. If you look at the end of the rubber molding you will see that it has a grove in the top and the bottom, they are not the same. One grove is a narrow 5/16" deep by less than 1/16". The other is nearly the same depth, but is wedge shaped. I looked at the lower grill rubber trim and decided that the narrow grove should go to the outside over the fiberglass top of the MH. The wedge shaped grove should hold the grill. I might have been wrong. I am not sure that I put mine back right, but I got it back in place. It was probably the most difficult part of the whole job. No doubt the person that puts these in at the factory would have had a good laugh watching.

Clean the rubber molding, the edge of the fiberglass top and the grill. Then use a good amount of silicone spray, this will help it go back together. Now, this is how I did the job, there has got to be an easer way, don't tell me now, I don't want to know, kidding. I put the end at the bottom about in the center to start. Figure out how you want it to go on before you start, you DO NOT want to do this twice. It did not go on easy, the edge of the fiberglass is rough, it didn't want to start and the corners were tough. Once the rubber molding is in place install the grill, HeHeHeHe, sorry. I started with the top at the right side, the top went in pretty easy. At this point the grill is about 1/4" left of where it belongs. I also got part of the grill into the bottom grove. Push the grill to the right and work it into the grove on the right. the corners are a problem, but it was not too hard. Use a table knife to help work it into the grove. I didn't chose a table knife to keep from cutting the rubber molding, my hand in case it slipped.

Once the right end is in place just start working the bottom of the grill into the rubber molding. Take much care and don't put much pressure inward on the grill or the rubber molding. You don't want to push the grill out of the rubber molding and inside the top of the MH. If you do that, you get to start over, not fun. With the table knife I was able to twist the knife and get about a 1/4" in at a time. The top corner and the left end of the grill went pretty easy. The bottom left was not easy. Now you have to "zip" the lock on the rubber molding together. This went pretty easy, I used the table knife and sometimes just my fingernail. You will get a lot of black off the rubber and silicone on the back of the MH. I used some rubbing alcohol to clean up. Now get down and thank God that the job is done.

The job is complete using a 10,000 btu A/C. The original A/C was 7.5 btu. I ran it on the generator a couple of days ago setting in the sun. It was 95 degrees inside the MH when I started the A/C. It was about 90 outside. After running for an hour the inside temperature was 75 degrees. That was cooling the whole inside of the MH with the curtians open. If I had used the bathroom door to close off the bedroom area only it would have done much better. If you start this project and want to e-mail me to clear up any of the steps that I have listed, please do so, send your phone number and I will call you back.
  • 0

#10 happytrailstoyou

happytrailstoyou

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 3 posts

Posted 08 September 2012 - 01:41 AM

Our 1995 Roadtrek Fedder A/C did not cool our cabin.
We have a quote of replacing this with installation for about $500.00.

It is worth the hassle of do it yourself or leave it to the "experts"

I hope you can provide pictures which could be helpful.
  • 0

#11 tomfmal

tomfmal

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 1 posts

Posted 20 July 2013 - 08:06 PM

Hello All,

I just became a new member because I wanted to share my experience as I just took out the AC on my 1992 Roadtrek (original Fedders). I just bought the Roadtrek a week ago and just love the darn thing...  AC had a broken master control and there doesn't seem to be any replacements in the entire world so guess what.....

 

My situation was a little different. I didn't do the steps in the order I'm going to layout, but after doing the job, I can look back and lay it out as follows:

 

1. First of all, taking off the rear grill was a waste of time. In mine, there was no silicone attaching the rear of the AC to the pan or the baffles. It was not held at all in the back. I suggest that you don't start with this step until you do the following and then see if it will pull out from the front. 

2. Remove both left and right storage doors

3. Remove as many screws as you can from the panels inside the storage compartments that are on either side of the AC. 

4. Drill a 1/2 hole near the top of each panel near the front, so you can get a finger in to pull with. Make a small notch in the very corner of each panel, with a razor knife, because when you try to pull the panel out, you'll hit the support piece. Pull the panels just a little at push up on the ceiling to help...

5. You'll see 2 screws at the top of each piece of framing around the AC unit. If you look inside the AC, you'll see these screws protruding through. Remove these 4 screws. Note that you can't remove the entire panels because the speaker boxes are in the way. You can pull the panels back enough though with one hand while removing the screws with a stubby screwdriver square tip.

6. remove the screw which holds the door frame to the ceiling closest to the AC on each side.

7. remove the 2 screws which hold the door frame piece which is right alongside the AC on each side. These screws are underneath - you would see them when sitting at the dinette. 

8. Gently shift the entire door framing just about 2 inches away from the AC on each side.

9. Now you can see and easily cut the thick layer of silicone that attaches the AC to the AC frame pieces left and right. 

10. Remove the bottom trim , 4 screws, that runs underneath the AC and over each dinette seat.

11. Now you can see and cut the thick layer of silicone that connects the AC to the lower frame. Cut and pry up with a screwdriver.

12. Pry a little with a screwdriver between the AC and the left and right frame pieces to make sure the connection is broken.

13. Now the hard part is done - just wiggle and pull the unit out. Use a claw hammer on the lower lip op the AC pulling a little at a time from each side. 

 

I'm looking for a replacement now - will go with an 8,000 or maybe a 6,000. I will put it back the same way I removed it.

 

Good luck everyone and I hope this update will help...  The post above was looking to remove a unit from a 1995. I don't know what Roadtrek might have done differently between 92 and 97...


  • 0

#12 DickandLois

DickandLois

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,564 posts
  • Location:Where ever the wheels stop ?

Posted 20 July 2013 - 09:31 PM

Hi Tom,

 

Welcome to FMCA.

 

Thanks for your information. That is what make this Forum work!

 

Every entry adds to the data and information base.

 

Rich.


  • 0

#13 happytrailstoyou

happytrailstoyou

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 3 posts

Posted 22 July 2013 - 05:53 PM

1995 Roadtrek A/C Replacement:

 

I was very imitated by the whole process.  I sized the situation again and again.  Finally took the move.  Removed all of the wood framing.  Took vise grips and bent the metal lip downward, wiggled the unit without too much trouble.   I cut the wiring, wiggled the unit some more and dropped it out.

 

The cavity for the A/C needed some cleaning,everything looked pretty goo.

 

 

New unit, 5000. btu, window unit. Fits in with lots of space, moved it toward the back as there is a vent on top and wanted some space between the vinyl head cover.

 

Used sponge and pipe insulation to fit the gaps.  Had to widen the plug hole to fit the new style.

 

Turned the metal lip up, screwed in the wood facing and all is secure,


  • 0




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users