Adding A/C to my 04 Fleetwood Redwood pup

Discussion in 'Heating / Cooling Systems' started by eprovenzano, Apr 21, 2015.

  1. silvermickey2002

    silvermickey2002 Morris County, NJ

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    We installed the Coleman Mach 8 as well since it was a low profile unit. We are very happy with it.
     
  2. bols2Dawall

    bols2Dawall S.W. Ontario

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    That's the best way of doing it actually , more support . Just don't forget to drill out your corners 1st to leave a radius instead of sharp. Good luck
     
  3. smit1088

    smit1088 Well-Known Member

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    5MARC,
    The directions for the AC install in ABS tops advise that cutout style.
     
  4. 5MARC

    5MARC New Member

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    Do you know where we can find ABS top A/C installation instructions??
     
  5. eprovenzano

    eprovenzano Member

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    Getting closer... I picked up 12 gauge wiring and the proper 20 amp plug. I forget to get a 1 x 1 aluminum angle to fit into the opening to keep the roof from being crushed when tightening the A/C unit with the interior piece... I'll pick that up today, and as soon as I know we will have a few rain free days... the hole will be cut and the A/C will be installed...

    The DW asked why we need A/C, as we've been fine without it... I had an answer which actually made her smile... I said when out granddaughter needs to take a nap, I want her to be able to escape the heat, and nap in a nice cool air... [:D] Yep she laughed at that one... It is part of the reason for the A/C... as well as I want it too... [;)]
     
  6. mschepac

    mschepac South Jersey

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    Look further up in this thread from a post by me....
     
  7. eprovenzano

    eprovenzano Member

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    I had planned to install the A/C unit over the up coming weekend, but... DW mentioned it would be a good weekend to spend at the lake... So I will have to grin and bear the heat on one more camping trip before installing the A/C... [;)]
     
  8. eprovenzano

    eprovenzano Member

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    Just returned from a weekend trip, temp were 90's with extreme high humidity... Lets say DW is not asking why I'm putting in A/C, but will it be done before our next trip...

    Plans are to put it in this week, weather permitting... rain is predicted most of the week so we may need to find a large garage to slip her into...
     
  9. silvermickey2002

    silvermickey2002 Morris County, NJ

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    That's why we installed A/C last May, we were headed to Branson, MO and the DW said she will not do well in the heat and Humidity while trying to sleep. So, I did not have to create a business case to get A/C...Got the blessing before hand!! [A]

    Having A/C makes the night so much more bearable!!
     
  10. eprovenzano

    eprovenzano Member

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    My A/C install has been posponed... I figured out I purchased the incorrect interior piece.. I also figured out, that the heat pump I purchased required a separate thermostat and a controlling unit... AKA mo money... The unit is controlled via the thermostat... So until I get the parts reordered, I'll be using a fan to try and keep cool...
     
  11. eprovenzano

    eprovenzano Member

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    Just a quick update... life (work) has gotten in the way so I put the A/C on hold. We went camping last weekend. My DS, SIL, DD and GDD (grand daughter) came to visit... Temps were low 90's... DD tried to put or 9 month old GDD down for a nap... it was too hot in the pup, so we found a shady spot outside... DW said OK, order the parts so you can install the A/C [A] [:D]

    Again the unit I have is a heat pump that runs off a thermostat. I think I have the location of the thermostat and its wiring to the A/C unit figured out. I'm going to order the parts and soon will be cutting the 14 x 14 hole to install the unit... I'll post details of the install as soon as I can.
     
  12. F239141

    F239141 New Member

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    [sf] [sf] [:D] [sf] [sf]
     
  13. eprovenzano

    eprovenzano Member

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    Most of the parts arrived Saturday. I inventoried the parts and verified against the install instructions. What makes this install more difficult is the unit is controlled via a thermostat. To use a Thermostat, there's a control unit that is installed onto the metal ceiling plate for the Heat Pump. When I matched up the metal ceiling plate with the heat pump, it didn't quite match. The air return was fine, but the output was partially blocked. On my heat pump air output is on a side, while the opening in the metal ceiling plate was in the center. Yes air would eventually get to where it needed to go, but I think it would be very inefficient. So I cut the metal ceiling plate and built an adapter out of aluminum flashing to get the air directly into the distribution unit. I'm going to add some bracing to the metal ceiling plate to restore it's rigidity.

    I also need to run 12 volt to the heat pump for the electrical control unit. The 12 volt is needed to run the thermostat. The connection to the thermostat is a thin telephone style wire. My plans are to install the thermostat in the middle of the pup, on a cabinet as high as possible. I'll tuck the phone wire next to the door, and through the base cabinet. I hope to pull the 12 volt directly from the converter, or possibly from the heater thermostat. Since the converter and the heater thermostat are in the rear of the pup near the 20 amp A/C plug, both the electrical and the 12 volt wires will be run together. I'll do my best to conceal them. When the wires are run to the roof, I'm thinkin of a using an external electrical conduit run along the of the valance to the A/C brace to conceal them.

    One other issue I 'm having is the thickness of the electrical control unit. It's approx 2" thick, and it mounts on to of the metal ceiling plate just under the the heat pump. My ceiling is an inch thick, and I'm guessing after the roof gasket is compressed there's an additional 1/2" of space.. So I'm a little short of required space... To correct this I've decided to utilize some 3/4" birch finished plywood as an internal spacing buffer and for added strength. I'll attach the plywood to the internal A/C ceiling braces, plus I'll route a channel into the wood to conceal the power, 12 volt and thermostat wires.

    So yes this is taking longer than expected... but its a little more complex too... At this point I need to pick up the phone wire with connectors (Std phone wire will not work), some conduit, and trim to hide the screws when I attach the plywood to the A/C braces and some wires for the 12 volt. I have the internal bracing for the 14x14 hole, the electrical wiring and plug, 3/4" plywood (I just need to cut it to length).

    I'm still waiting the the thermostat to arrive, but in the interim I'll cut the wood to length, paint it and will route the channel. Once I cut the 14x14 hole in the roof, I'll temporarily mount the wood, trace the opening and cut it to ensure it matches the 14x14 exactly.

    We're getting there, but yes its taking way longer than planned....
     
  14. eprovenzano

    eprovenzano Member

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    If anyone is wondering, yes this thermostat can control the LP furnace too. I would need to run the wiring to the control unit in the base of the heat pump. I thought for now I'd leave them separate to make sure I get the A/C heat pump working 1st.
     
  15. eprovenzano

    eprovenzano Member

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    One last hurdle cleared... Based on emails and correspondence from Dometic, the control unit they recommended to me was to have 10 DIP switches. They send me an install document showing the unit. It shows that one of the switches tells the system it's connected to a heat pump... ok that's and easy setup. When I receive my control unit, it only has 8 DIP switches, and none say heat pump. I email Dometic and explain the problem, and was told I cannot have the correct control unit, and to return it. I did deeper and find instructions from Dometic on my A/C Heat Pump unit... it requires the use of the control box I have, and it would have 8 DIP switches... I email the supplier to confirm and they send me another document showing the install and the control box should have 8 DIP switches.

    After several emails with dometic, they discovered that oh yea, The unit they recommended to me is being phased out and being superseded with a different unit and yes it has 10 DIP switch setting, and mine would have 8... WOW... I understand they make a lot of different products... but damn we need accurate info. I now have the final instructions, and should begin the install process soon...
     
  16. eprovenzano

    eprovenzano Member

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    Prior to closing the pup (it's stored off site) I took meticulous measurement of the distance between the A/C rood rails, and where the 14x14 opening will be. Last night I took a piece of 3/4" birch cabinet grade plywood and cut it to size, and cut the 14x14 opening. I'm an accountant, but I must admit, my cuts were within a 1/16" of an inch of my measurements... Tonight I'll paint the board white to match the ceiling.

    After reading the literature on the thermostat, I found that as an option, it can also handle the LP furnace. I need to look at the existing wiring to the old thermostat. If it's what I'm expecting to see, I'll run the required wiring to connect the furnace to the new digital thermostat as well.

    This projects keeps getting larger and larger... but it will be nice when its done...
     
  17. eprovenzano

    eprovenzano Member

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    I installed my A/C Heat Pump over the weekend... 1st just a little background info (so no one has to read the the entire thread here's a quick recap). I have a 2004 Fleetwood Redwood highwall pup. It's A/C ready with the proper A/C supports and a dedicated 20 amp outlet.

    Trying to be cheap, I picked up a new never installed Dometic Duro-Therm 15,000 BTU non-ducted heat pump off Craigslist. I was looking for an A/C unit, but could pass up the deal. It sat for a few years, but I could tell it was never installed. It did not come with the interior ceiling assemble, but I thought that's not an issue... Based on the model number I was given, I ordered the interior ceiling assembly but something just didn't seem right. When I purchased the unit, I got the model number from the seller, and based on that ordered the ceiling assembly. WRONG... he gave me the incorrect model number... I contacted Dometic with the correct model number in hand, and found this unit requires a comfort control box and the unit itself is run via a thermostat, plus it uses a different ceiling assembly than the one I purchased... I was able to send the incorrect ceiling assemble back and receive a full refund. The correct parts, (comfort control unit, thermostat, and ceiling assembly) would run an additional $250. After much consideration, I decide to order the correct parts and begin the installation.

    This time just to be sure I order the correct parts, again I contact Dometic, and again they gave me the same part numbers as before. I ordered the parts, and begin to download installation instructions. The instructions reference that this system can also manage the gas furnace. If the outdoor temps go below a certain set point, the thermostat will switch off the heat pump, and will start the gas furnace. Based on the instructions, the control box has 8 switch setting, one for the furnace. I flipped that switch, and begin to plan the wiring... Of course it requires 110, (20 AMP) wired to a plug to be plugged into the 20 AMP outlet. The control box requires 12 volt (hot and ground), plus wires to run the furnace. Let's not forget there's also the wiring to thermostat. It uses a standard telephone 4 pin connector... except, one end has to be removed, flipped 180 degrees and reattached...

    I collect all needed parts, wiring, and even decided to replace the gasket on the unit… (Why, no real reason then just to be sure it seals. I take the telephone wire, cut it, spin it 180 and splice it back together. I wire onto the control box 12 volt (hot and ground) and furnace wires as well as a 110 12/2 wire to the control box. The heat pump plugs directly into the control box.

    Now for the more normal A/C installation... My pup is A/C ready with the proper rood support, and it has the 4 plugs marking the location of the cutout. I remove all cushions, and attempt to cover everything as best as I can. I pull the plugs, take a deep breath and drill the 4 holes through the roof… (Cutting a hole into a perfectly good roof is not easy). I used a 1/2 bit, but I wished I would have used a 3/4 inch bit. I lowered the roof (leaving the beds extended) and climb onto the roof to cut the opening. My roof has a center strip so marking the 14x14 was a bit of a pain, but just plunged in and cut the opening. I then needed to remove 2 inches of the center strip on each side of the opening . I used a cut off wheel, cutting approx. ¾ of the way through. I then used a pair of pliers to bend the strip back and forth until it would break off… I cleaned up the opening, and put caulking in the center seam. I then used foil tape to seal around the entire opening. (No it’s no needed, but I had it so I used it) I was surprised as to how stiff the roof was. I had to crawl onto the roof to cut the opening, (I’m not a small guy) but not once did I feel as though the integrity of the roof was being compromised with me one it.

    On the inside of the opening I added 4 1x1 aluminum angle strips to keep the roof from being crushed when the A/C is tightened. I did cut and prepare a wooden support that spans between the A/C supports, but decided not to use it at this time. (I may add it at a later date). Next the control box goes in. It has a freeze protection sensor that goes into the evaporator coil, and an outside temp sensor that connects from the heat pump to the control box. Then the metal interior ceiling piece gets mounted… Instructions say to cut the foil, foam divider to fit the opening. Of course being cautious I cut it too long and had to do this part of the install twice…

    Once piece of advice... Don’t be afraid to cut the opening to 14 1/4 x 14 1/4 or more. When I installed the metal interior ceiling piece my opening was very tight, too tight. I made it work, but only after I trimmed the ceiling back with a knife and used a lot of force to get everything to slip into place. I now have the unit mounted, with a mess of wires (not knowing the distance of the wiring I needed I purchased 25’ lengths) hanging from the ceiling. Since my ceiling cover is just that, a cover that directs the air, I plan to test all wiring prior to hiding the wires. I want to ensure it operates as expected prior to finishing the install.

    So next up for me is to connect the 12 volt, 110, and thermostat and to hopefully listen to the sweet sound of a purring A/C heat pump unit.
     
  18. eprovenzano

    eprovenzano Member

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    Pic of the wooden support I ended up
    not using

    [​IMG]

    Pic of the interior ceiling with two of the four holes drilled
    [​IMG]

    Pick of the completed cut opening
    [​IMG]

    Unit centered over opening
    [​IMG]

    Interior plate on, wires left handing for now
    [​IMG]

    The mounted heat pump
    [​IMG]
     
  19. drosengrant

    drosengrant One Day at a Time

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    Very nice job
     
  20. eprovenzano

    eprovenzano Member

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    Just an update...

    When I 1st installed the unit I did not utilize the wood panel... I have since gone back and installed the wood panel between the rails to further stiffen the roof. Was it necessary, no... but since I went through the trouble to build it, I may as well use it... I did cut a groove in the wooden panel, (aligned with the opening in the rail) to hide the wires. I then ran the wires inside the A/C support rail. Remember my unit since it utilizes a separate thermostat which requires its a own 12 volt source of power (there's a separate telephone wire the connects the unit to the thermostat), and since this thermostat can also run the existing furnace, I ran the electrical wire, the required the 12 volt wires and future wires for the furnace together...I dropped the telephone thermostat wire down next to the door as I'll build a stand to house the thermostat and let it sit on top of the counter. Along the roof section (just above the valance) the wires were run inside a conduit to help conceal them. I routed the wires into the corner of the pup, ran them down into the bench seat... Next to the bench seat is the 20 amp outlet for the A/C. In the end of the bench seat is my fuse panel / converter. The 12 volt wires were run into the converter and an unused fuse connection was used. Powered up the thermostat and all is well...

    I stood back and admired my work when I realized I committed a huge SPUT... When I ran the wires down the corner into the bench seat, they would interfere with, and keep the the bed from sliding into the pup. The wires are inside of the bed rails.. So when I wanted to lower the roof I'd catch the wires... SPUT!!! So after a few choice words, and a few laughs... I've decided to add a 4 prong plug (similar to a trailer plug) to accommodate the necessity of plugging and unplugging the 4 wires so the bed can be closed... SPUT averted

    I still have a few small odds and ends to do, but I now have an A/C unit that will keep me cool in the hot temps, and a heat pump that will keep me warm until below 40 degrees. All I need to to is set the thermostat to the desired temp, and enjoy myself. And for those colder temps I still have the propane furnace to keep us warm.

    It's been a journey... with a lot of bumps in the road... but its done and I'm not ready to enjoy the fruits of my labor for years to come.
     

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