I’m been waiting 4 years for this . . .

or Snap, Crackle, Pop, Bzzzz !

This morning started out nice and easy, at least until about 11. That was when the front AC came on for the first time today.

And that was when I heard the Snap, Crackle, Pop, Bzzzz from overhead. Oh, yeah, and the burning smell, too. Definitely a burning smell.

The first thing I did was to turn the front AC off, and then the rear AC on with the thermostat turned down so it would keep running. Since the front and rear AC ducts are cross-connected, this puts some cold air up front too.

I was pretty sure I knew what the problem was, but since it was warming up quickly I decided to wait until this evening when it was cooler to go up on the roof and take a look.

My next task was to get on the phone with Direct TV to try and get them to send me a new DVR. Mine has started randomly rebooting three or four times a week. I had already talked to them last Friday and thought it was all set up. I was just waiting until we got to Apache Junction for two weeks since I didn’t know if they would ship it to me, or send a tech out.

But this time they started out telling me that it wasn’t rebooting often enough to be replaced. Basically they said I had to wait until it started rebooting 3 or 4 times a DAY.


As soon as I was told that, I asked to speak to a Level 2 supervisor. Any time you’re talking to tech support and aren’t satisfied, always ask for a Level 2 person. And if Level 2 can’t help, ask for Level 3.

Level 1 guys have no power. They are usually reading from scripts that cover standard problems and have no technical knowledge. Last week they were probably asking, “Do you want fries with that order?”

Anyway, within about 5 minutes with the Level 2 guy, he was taking my name and address and said my replacement DVR would be shipped out Overnight Express, and should be here tomorrow. We’ll see.

About 1:30pm Jan and I headed out for sightseeing and shopping. We drove over to the Gilbert area, just driving around, and finally ended up at SanTan Village.

SanTan Village 2

SanTan Village is an inside-out shopping mall consisting of over 1,200,000 square feet of shops, stores and restaurants. Configured like a small town, it seems to be the new version of the old style mall.

SanTan Village

After driving up and down several streets, we were happy to see a couple of our favorite restaurants. You’ve got to like a place that has a Famous Dave’s BBQ and a Grimaldi’s Pizzeria on the same block.

We first made a stop at Barnes & Noble to pick up a couple of magazines, then headed across the street to the Wal-Mart for a few things before heading back to the rig for the night.

After a dinner of left-over Chinese from Tucson, it was time to tackle my AC problem. My thought (and hope, because it would be easy and cheap to fix) was that it was the Start Capacitor on the AC compressor.

Back in May 2009 when we were in Titusville FL, the Start Cap in the rear AC went out. Finding a local RV parts store that had a replacement, I bought two, figuring that the front one would go soon.

And it only took 4 years.

I got my extension ladder out to get up on the roof because I really don’t trust the 14 year old screws that hold the rig ladder on.

AC Repair 1


Nothing but RV’s and RV parks as far as the eye can see.

AC Repair 2


The first task was to get the four screws out and get the shroud off the AC,

AC Repair 3


so I could get to the AC chassis.

AC Repair 4


Getting the access door off, the first thing I noticed was a big mud dauber nest. But since it was only attached to one of the wires, it didn’t look like it had anything to do with my problem. Probably a remnant of our oil rig gate guarding gig last year.

AC Repair 5


I loosened the wire strap holding the unit’s capacitors and pulled them all out. There are three caps in this unit: the start and run caps for the AC compressor, and the run cap for the AC fan.

AC Repair 6


This is the new one that I’ve been saving for four years, just for this moment.

AC Repair 7


There are only two wires so it was an easy replacement.

AC Repair 8


And here’s everything tucked back in and fastened down, ready to go.

AC Repair 9

Buttoning everything up and replacing the shroud, I got down and went inside, and crossing my fingers, turned the AC on. And in just a couple of minutes, I had cold air.


Then it was time to join Jan back outside and enjoy the beautiful sunset.

Apache Sunset

Life is good.


Thought for the Day:

“Tyranny is defined as that which is legal for the government but illegal for the citizenry.” – -Thomas Jefferson



7 Responses

  1. ah. . .glad it was an easy fix. You seem to be in one of those modes on this trip. . .let’s see what’s gonna go out today mode. . .we’ve had those trips too. I always tell folks who say they wanna RV. . .if you’re gonna get all wound up over every little thing. . .this is not the lifestyle for you. . .’cause it’s not a matter of IF. . .it’s a matter of WHEN! Right?

  2. Time to order a replacement part for the replacement part

  3. George,

    Already got one coming from Amazon.

    The original replacement cost me $23.95 from the RV parts place.

    The exact same one from Amazon is $2.68.


  4. Wow! You sure are talented Greg, and what a score on the replacement part! The things you learn in blogs are terrific! Thanks for sharing your fix today…

  5. Jeannie,

    Glad to be of service.

  6. San Tan Village is now my favorite place in Phoenix because their Apple Store not only fixed my iPhone when I broke it during an update but they let me plug into their electricity and use their wifi to charge all my stuff and do all my updates. Thanks, Apple.

  7. We saw the Apple store as we were driving around but I was afraid to get too close otherwise I might burst into flames. LOL

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