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Old 03-14-2016, 03:28 PM   #11
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Good luck on the repairs. Most shops don't like to work on add-on AC systems. If the systems are tied together make sure they know the correct amount of freon to put back in. Mine is the Starcool III system. To use the air while driving both the stock & Starcool must be turned on to work or both systems will put out warmer air than they're supposed to.
I know they made a 12v DC only system and one with a compressor that runs off shore power. Not sure if the Starcool II is a shore power only unit not tied into the stock unit.
SC-III PDF manual:
http://www.sportsmobileforum.com/med...ers_Manual.pdf
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Old 03-14-2016, 07:27 PM   #12
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I got some unexpected help today. My dad wants to take the van camping this weekend instead of his big ole rig, so he picked up my SMB and had his mechanic look at. Suh-weet. It def needs a new steering box. New shocks and alignment will probably happen too. Plus, i found a steering stabilizer online that is definitely within the budget. I hope to have repairs in a few weeks.

My understanding of the ac system is this: evaporator is 12v and is shared between both AC systems (engine and the starcool unit under the back seat). The compressor is shore power. Evaporator works. Engine ac works. Starcool compressor...nope.

Once I get through steering and shocks, then onto the AC...unless by some miracle I can find one shop to do it all. Regardless, I love the big beast and want it right. Thanks again for all the pointers. I put pics up under the show and tell section.
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Old 03-15-2016, 07:30 PM   #13
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For your Starcool, I assume you checked all the breakers, including the small black one that's usually hidden with the relays and whatnot? I wouldn't automatically assume that your compressor is shot. I bought my 98 SMB with the understanding that the Starcool was shot and likely needed a new compressor. Turned out to be a seized auxiliary fan that kept tripping the breakers (common in older SMBs). There are also relays/capacitors under the van in a box for the AC side that you should check. There are a few good troubleshooting threads here in the forum that you should go through.
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Old 03-18-2016, 03:42 PM   #14
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Talked to Paul @ SMB Today

Hi All -

BrianW - yes, we tried all the things you outlined. Thanks for the tips.

I talked to Paul at SMB Texas. He said I have a modified 12 floorplan, for what that is worth.

But, more importantly, he told me not to waste my money (not his exact words), on another Starcool air compressor. From the description of the problem he agreed that the compressor is shot, and he explained that they never got a van in a hot environment, in full sun, with the top up, cold.

He suggested an AC unit on wheels, and then drill a slot for an exhaust line. I saw another post here where someone cut the PH top and put in an AC. I will do more looking around, but the forum search feature doesn't seem to work well from my phone.

I don't love the thought of drilling into my van, or giving up precious storage space for an AC unit. I do love the idea of significantly cheaper and colder fix!

SMB and all of the local mechanics/shops kept using the word OLD to describe my van. Humph. 21 isn't old.
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Old 03-18-2016, 10:04 PM   #15
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Consider the GTRV solution of an inexpensive home style window unit placed in the rear door. I would remove one window and adapt with some plywood. It will require shore power though
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Old 03-18-2016, 10:57 PM   #16
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Yes don't expect a frozen environment running the Starcool in 100*+ temps. It drops the outside temps no more than about 12* lower and that is usually not in full sun conditions. But if you park in shade the Starcool does an OK job especially with the humidity. Starting it early when the temps are cool really helps but pulling into camp with a hot vehicle is an issue. I'd still say there are other methods that might work better...pros & cons to each.
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