By Chris Dougherty
Chris Dougherty is a certified RV technician. Here is a letter he received from a reader while he was serving as RVtravel.com’s technical editor.
I am very new to full-time RVing, three months. I recently left Prescott, Ariz., and am now down in Naples, Fla. In the last couple of days I have seen water dripping from the air conditioner into the coach, and last night I put a pail under the unit and must have a least a cup of water in it.
The unit is a Coleman and the coach is a 17-year-old Winnebago Minnie Winnie. I am not sure what’s inside the roof box to cause this dripping of water or if this is due to high humidity levels. Any help you can give would be most appreciated. —Paul Hooper
Well, this is fairly common, but the fix takes some time and know-how. The air conditioner will produce a fair amount of condensate, especially when operating in humid conditions like those found in Florida. The problem is most likely due to a plugged drain on the pan of the unit, but could be the result of a bad bottom seal. Both should be checked.
The tightness of the A/C can be determined by removing the ceiling assembly and checking both the thickness and compression of the bottom seal of the unit (a black or white foam seal between the A/C and the roof), and the tightness of the four securing bolts. To access the drain, the unit must usually be disassembled so the drain (and fin pan if so equipped) can be cleaned and/or bored out, or disconnected from the roof and flipped so the drain can be accessed that way. This is best accomplished by a Certified RV Technician, or a qualified HVAC technician who is willing to work on an RV air conditioner.
That said, there are service manuals and diagrams available for many models on the Internet, and you may be able to find something there to assist you, if you plan on doing the work yourself.