Thursday, July 7, 2011

Still stuck without AC in Saint Louis

This has been a frustrating couple of weeks.  Since arriving in Kansas City we have been without the front air conditioner.  Jenny and Jamie arrived in the hottest weather Kansas City has to offer.  We bought a fan to move the cool air from the back AC unit to the front of the RV, but it was still pretty muggy.  The weather cooled down toward the end of the week of SkillsUSA and we were pretty comfortable.  We called around to find the Air Condition Controller unit as it would not show the Zone 1 (front AC).  We  found one in Springfield, MO, drove down, bought it, plugged it in and wa-la, we have front air conditioning. We stayed an extra day to visit the Civil War battlefield, Wilson Creek. The air conditioner worked great, we were cool. 
The next day we drove to Edwardsville, IL, about 15 miles north east of St Louis, MO.
We checked into the Red Barn Rendezvous RV park, plugged into 50 amp power and turned on the air conditioners – no front air. Surprised smile That was a week ago Tuesday.  Of course there was a heat wave occurring in the Saint Louis  area with heat indexes around 105 and VERY humid.  After calling around for a service person we arranged for a guy, Melvin, to come out.  He spent a couple of hours, sent me to Radio Shack for 4 telephone couplers.  He tried many things, but he finally admitted defeat, left having connected 2 wired incorrectly, and did not charge anything.

As it happened there was a service person installing an air conditioner next door and he agreed to come over when he finished, about 6 pm.   He worked about an hour trying to test continuity on all the wires, changing out the Controller, connecting it directly to the front air and it would still not work.  No charge.
So we went to Bobby’s to have our favorite sundae’s, Turtle for Tom and Blueberry for me.
Next day we called a service company that is certified by Dometic.   After working for 3 1/2 hours and a call to Dometic  it was decided it was a controller card on the unit itself and the replacement of the Thermostat controller was indicated too.  All this was determined late Friday, too late to order the parts, and of course this was a holiday weekend.
We love fireworks and this was the primary reason we came to the Saint Louis area to begin with, FIREWORKS.  On July 2 we drove up to Alton, IL, to see their fireworks. It was so hot we first went to the Argosy Casino, had valet park the Jeep (free for Member Card holders), spent $20 each playing the penny slots over 2 1/2 hours, had dinner at the buffet and watched the fireworks.  We had a great time.  The valet even picked up the Jeep and brought it back so we could unload our chairs and reparked it. And it still was very hot at 10 pm.

A big storm came through on July 3 and all fireworks were canceled so we stayed real still in the heat relying on the back air to cool the whole coach. It was not too effective.
On the 4th we decided to brave the anticipated throng of 100,000 to see the O’Fallon Heritage and Freedom Fest.  They were supposed to have the best fireworks and since they had canceled the previous night it was promised to be double the length of  show.  We parked at the local high school, took the free shuttle bus to the Sports Center, and watched an awesome show.  There were 5, 10, and 15 shots in the air at the same time. Our shuttle bus back as well as the trip back to Edwardsville was easy and uneventful.  We are sold on public transportation to take us into crowded events. Any pictures that I could include do not do this show justice.
Tuesday the air conditioner parts were ordered and we are told they should be delivered tomorrow morning around 9 am.  Now the bad news. Our insurance company for repairs, Good Sam, has always been good to work with covering repairs.  Only last month they covered the replacement of the step cover while in Coburg, OR. – $50 out the door.   Now they are telling us that they are limiting the diagnostic to 30 minutes.  This after 3 companies spent about 7 hours total before finding the problem with Dometic’s diagnostic manual and phone help.  On top of that they are only paying $90/ hour not the $95/ hour that is the going rate for all the companies we called.  We’ll let you know if we can get Good Sam to budge on their coverage.
While we were waiting for parts, we have seen 2 movies, Cars2 and Larry Crowne, both good.  We also went to the Confluence Tower north of the Lewis and Clark Memorial Park where the Missouri River joins the Mississippi River. 
Tomorrow morning our air should be back to normal and we should be On The Road Again, Caching Places That We’ve Never Been.

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