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Old 06-23-2022, 03:55 PM   #1
BigBoyAl
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Default Help with Manual on 2003 Yellowstone CC Class A

This RV rookie that is hoping to find someone that may have instructional or operator manuals for 2003+/- Model 8408 Gulfstream Yellowstone CC Class A? I purchased a nice rig last fall and slowly getting around to our first weekend run. I need help in understanding general operation procedures on about everything. Specifically right now I am stuck on troubleshooting frig, understanding if front AC works with back AC or fully independent and having trouble understanding what outlets/lights run off house batteries vs. shore power.
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Old 06-23-2022, 04:32 PM   #2
Chuck v
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Al,

The GS motorhome manual is VERY generic and not much help on the questions you have but I will attach here anyway.

All the interior lights that are 12 volt DC run off the "house" batteries, but are essentially running on shore power when connected because the Converter constantly tops up those batteries.

On my coach the front and rear AC units were separate with separate thermostats -- yours may be different.

What specific issues are you having with your frig?

Chuck
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Old 06-23-2022, 04:44 PM   #3
BigBoyAl
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Thanx Chuck,
Had issues with two of the ceiling light fixtures not working, I ordered new LED fixtures to replace for less draw and to see if that fixes issue. AC unit in back works great, front AC operates well when on by itself but sits idle once back AC is turned on, both have separate thermostats - wondering if that is design to avoid overload?

As for frig, when I turn it on all the lights come on and when I push setting to Auto and wait for 10 mins, the Check light comes on. Assumed if I was plugged into shore power AC would kick in if propane was low but no dice. I plan to remove outside cover to look for problem but not real sure I know what to look for? Also read to run stove burners for a while to purge fuel lines but that has no bearing if not running on shore power, correct?

Appreciate the manual but as you said, pretty generic. I still have to try heater, water heater to test systems before heading out - any tops on starting those, RV sat for a year before I bought it.
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Old 06-23-2022, 05:06 PM   #4
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Al,

When you say you are on shore power -- is it a full 50 amp RV hookup or just an adapter cord plugged into household power in your driveway? You need a "full connection" to run both AC units at the same time... If your coach has a generator of a least 7 KW or so, both air conditioners should work when that is running (mine do...)

What model and brand refrigerator do you have? My coach had a 23 cu ft "residential refrigerator" that only operated off of 110 volt AC -- from shore power, generator or the AC Inverter. Residential refrigerators were not common until about 2005 or so, and your rig sounds like it is one of the small (8 to 10 cu ft?) propane/electric units. The propane function of those does need the gas to light via its internal electric spark ignition (DSI is the function name) and if that does not light the Check light comes on. If your burner is dirty it may need a cleaning to light properly. The advice to run the stove on gas is meant to verify/ensure all air is out of the supply lines after changing or filling the tank -- it has nothing to do with being on shore power as far a s gas operation is concerned. If you do a web search on the model of your frig, you should be able to download a manual that will be helpful.



The same thing happens for the propane cycle on the water heater via its DSI. If your water heater has an electric mode, that needs shore power (no battery mode for heating appliances of course...) and for my coach both modes could coexist. The space heating on these coaches is typically propane, and the fan runs on house batteries to allow for heat to be used when no shore power is available. You will find the heater to be noisy and to pull the batteries down fairly fast. Are you planning to do much "boon docking" or "dry camping" where no hookups are available??


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Old 06-24-2022, 08:50 AM   #5
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Chuck,

RV is in storage and plugged into their electric 220V but I need to confirm it is a 50 amp circuit - Great point.

I haven't found ID tag on frig, guessing Dometic but not sure on model yet. It is definitely a smaller dual frig as buttons on control panel show both LP, Auto and AC. I will keep digging for frig model to get manual and open up the side to check the burner.

We probably won't need the heater just wanted to confirm it works. Honestly, I don't see us boondocking, probably the least would be electric & water with no sewer. Since we are new to all this we have to get our feet wet to know what we like / dislike.

Next will be water heater to see how it works but will open up outside to check burner on it before I try.

Thanks and will follow up after weekend.
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Old 06-30-2022, 11:03 AM   #6
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CHuck - I wanted to follow up after the weekend, been gone for a few days for work.

The issue on the AC unit up front on my coach is that thermostat runs slightly higher than rear so essentially the rear keeps coach cool enough at same setting the front never triggers on. I ran only the front and it worked fine and then adjusted thermostats and figured it out so no issues with AC anymore.

Frig is a Dometic model 1292 side by side with ice maker. I got everything fully cleaned, got propane working but after an hour frig was warm inside. I shut everything down and went back outside to take a look and noticed the dreaded yellow powder around the flame probe which based on all that I have read online means my cooling system is fried and needs replaced. Checking into cost and repair shops in my area around Peoria IL to get it replaced. Due to the width of this model, replacement of 2 way will be tough and would like to avoid the electric only residential option if I can.

One other thing, I found a light switch with a light indicator on it and wasn't sure what that might be, is that the hot water heater?

First voyage is now delayed for fridge but glad all else looks like it works well. Thanks for your help so far, I may reach out again with questions if you don't mind.
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Old 06-30-2022, 11:23 AM   #7
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The switch with pilot light is most likely a control for the electric mode on the water heater.


A replacement cooling unit for your Dometic frig model is around $1200 just for the parts, so replacing the whole unit is likely a better path. My coach had the residential 23 cu ft refrigerator and I really liked it. Of course, the coach had a large inverter, separate battery bank for the inverter and a diesel backup generator as well.


Do you do so much camping away from hookups that you need the propane refrigeration, or is it just a preference? For fire safety, the non-propane units are my strong preference as a majority of RV appliance fires are traced to those Norcold and Dometic units...


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Old 07-01-2022, 11:57 AM   #8
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Chuck - I thought I had replied to your latest message but I must have typed it out but forgot to post.

I continue to look around for what options I have to fix or replace frig. So far, the closest two repair shops have said they recommend replacing frig with residential and while I think we could get by with electrical only and rarely would be camping without electrical hookups I was hoping to keep the 2 way option and avoid potential for replacement from looking hillbilly. I have found refurbished Dometic 1292 cooling systems online but neither of the service centers I spoke with will install refurbished and manufacturer no longer makes replacement cooling system for that model.

I am going to keep checking around with some larger service centers in hopes that maybe they have better option. The estimates I have got so far range from $3500 - $5500 and that just simply seems too high and I can't help get the feel I was talking with parts replacers and not real savvy technicians.

As for the small wall switch, I will turn it on for a few minutes and confirm that is for hot water heater just to be sure.

THanks again for your help thus far.
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Old 07-01-2022, 12:12 PM   #9
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At those prices the residential option seems to be the better choice. There are lots of articles on-line on making this transition... Here are some links:
https://blog.goodsam.com/replacing-rv-refrigerator
https://www.rv.com/archive/upgrade-t...ge-in-your-rv/
...and a really good comparison from an energy perspective here:
https://rvexodus.com/2019/01/replaci...rigerator.html


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Old 07-03-2022, 10:52 AM   #10
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The absorption refrigerator is very safe if you install the Frig Defend. Prevents the fires that Dometic and Nordic have experienced.
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Old 07-03-2022, 01:49 PM   #11
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The light switch with the red indicator is the electric power on switch for the water heater. I leave it on as well as the gas for better revovery on hot water. As far as the AC front and back, i've found the house has a much better even cooling id you leave the quick cool large vent closed and let it cool through the snall vents throughout the house. The thermostat locations being so close to each other with the quick cool vents open they fight each other. They make a digital upgrade for the ac/heat thermostats that make life easier if you have the old analog. Check youtube for the installation video. I think it's hillbilly rv??.
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Old 07-03-2022, 02:47 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigBoyAl View Post
This RV rookie that is hoping to find someone that may have instructional or operator manuals for 2003+/- Model 8408 Gulfstream Yellowstone CC Class A? I purchased a nice rig last fall and slowly getting around to our first weekend run. I need help in understanding general operation procedures on about everything. Specifically right now I am stuck on troubleshooting frig, understanding if front AC works with back AC or fully independent and having trouble understanding what outlets/lights run off house batteries vs. shore power.
Hi Al
I have owned a Yellowstone CC since new in 2001. Pretty familiar with it's nuances. Chuck answered most questions but I should note that the hot water switch right to the left of the sink (on my unit) with the red switch light should only EVER be turn on when you have water in the tank.
As for the fridge, you mentioned that you turned it on and waited an hour before checking temp??? If that was on propane you need to give it much more time, like 6 hours. After it has been on for awhile checking the cooling plate in the back and see if it is cold to the touch.
Also. On the heaters, peak inside with a good flash light and check for bees nests (they like it in there)
AC you are spot on. They placed the thermostats too close to one another in my opinion.

Any specific questions feel free to message me. We love our unit!!
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Old 07-04-2022, 10:36 AM   #13
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We have a 2000 GS Palm Breeze class A. We bought it 12 years ago. I searched online and found the owners manuals for all the components and we carry them where ever we go. Two tips I would share for a new person....get a surge protector since some campgrounds have questionable wiring that can lead to surges particularly in a storm. We bought a Watchdog brand off Amazon. Also our power converter is at the foot of the bed. Its important to keep that front grate clear including no overhanging bedding. Also under the bed its important to keep anything from crowding that unit. They do run hot and produce heat out the front grate. The hotter they run the sooner they wear out is what we were told. So keep it as cool as you can. Good luck, have fun and enjoy the ride!
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Old 07-07-2022, 05:07 PM   #14
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All - I appreciate the feedback, on the frig after I ran the propane for an hour or so the inside of the frig actually got warm and when I shut it off and went outside to see if anything was apparently wrong I noticed the yellowish, sulfur colored powder around the burner & this is why I believe the coolant system is fried. I am tempted to purchase the refurbished cooling systems out there and pull frig to repair myself, there are numerous Utube videos out there to help and feel pretty confident I can do the work. Residential frig is a good option but concern is for finding something that fits reasonably well after trimmed out to avoid it looking barnyard. Still doing reasearch on both options but sure would like to hand off issue to professional to fix but do not want to spend $5k for it.

I appreciate all the other feedback, bought the 50 amp surge protector and all other systems are a go. I haven't filled water tank and tested hot water heater, plan to clean it out first check for the dreaded wasp/bee nests once inside.
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Old 07-11-2022, 10:04 AM   #15
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I am hoping someone can give me some guidance on replacing the fridge. Replacing our bad 2-way with residential is starting to look like the way to go for price and reliability issues. I do not see us camping without hookups so thinking this is the best route, just have to find correct size fridge. My bad 2-way already has a plug in for the electrical that works, can I use that to power the new residential fridge? I believe this outlet is already wired into coach to energize while running and to the generator, just wondering if I will need to add batteries and another inverter just for the new refrigerator?

I would prefer to hire all this done, if anyone can recommend a good shop to replace the refrigerator near St. Louis or Chicago; please advise.
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Old 07-11-2022, 10:31 AM   #16
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Al,


I am sure you will get lots of help on how to convert to a residential frig for your rig. Let me start with your questions about inverters. Does your rig presently have an inverter? Almost every RV has a CONVERTER which takes shore power in and makes 12 volts to maintain the house batteries and power the low voltage lamp fixtures in the coach. Larger RVs also can have INVERTERS which are powered by batteries and make 110 volt AC for small appliances in the coach. An built-in inverter will usually be about 2000 watts or so, some larger... They can be powered by the house batteries, or from a completely separate battery bank as was the case in my Tour Master.


If you have an INVERTER in your RV at present, what does it run when it is active? What rating is it in watts? Does your coach only have two battery banks? Typically this would be the chassis battery bank (for starting the rig's engine) and the house battery bank for running the interior lights, etc. If you wish to have at least a day or so run time on a residential refrigerator without starting the generator or connecting to shore power, then a third bank (or a substantially increased capacity house bank) is recommended.


The refrigerator in my Tour Master was huge by RV standards -- a 23 cu ft side-by-side residential unit so it consumed a fair amount of power when it ran. As with any RV application of refrigeration, keep the door closed as much as possible when not connected to shore power.


Any 15 amp 115 volt circuit should be adequate for running the residential refrigerator, so the one in that compartment now should suffice. Is it on a separate breaker? Do you know for sure it is live when the generator runs?


Let us know more details about your rig as you determine them...


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Old 07-12-2022, 02:40 PM   #17
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Chuck,

Thanks for all your help, I found a manufacturer of new, not remanufactured cooling systems for the Dometic 1292 for under $1500 (Dutch Aire) so I went ahead and ordered parts for it.

RV has a 2000 Watt inverter that some lights, fridge, AC and entertainment. It appears that it is barely big enough for them. Currently I have the chassis batteries and then another two "house batteries" on inverter as you said, based on input from a couple of tech's I would need to add batteries and another inverter if I wanted to run the residential for more than 6 hours of residential fridge and that makes residential lots more expensive. USing existing fridge also eliminates need to remove window to get residential inside and eliminates need for woodwork.

I have a buddy that is a John Deer Mechanic that promised to help me install which gives me much more confidence with the wiring. I guess we will see soon enough as they have parts in stock and should ship in a week or so. Perhaps I can still get out this summer to do some camping with peace of mind.

Thanks again.
Cheers.
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Old 07-12-2022, 05:27 PM   #18
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Al,


I doubt that your Inverter runs your air conditioner...most AC units take well over 1500 watts each by themselves, and perhaps more to start. Neither of my two air conditioners were set up to run on my factory Inverter, and would only be available on shore power or on the generator power from the 7500 watt diesel generator.

Typical inverter power consuming candidates are either short duration loads of moderate watts like the Microwave oven, or even lower load units like the entertainment electronics and perhaps a few wall outlets. My coach came with a 2000 watt inverter which was sufficient for the large residential frig...the run time is a factor of how much battery bank storage you have and not the peak capability of the inverter. The Tour Master inverter battery bank consisted of four each 6-volt golf cart batteries in series/parallel providing up to 450 amp-hours of 12 volts.

Inverters are not 100% efficient, so the produced AC watts is going to be less than the consumed watts of the inverter. At 90% you might get about 5 KW-HRS of total AC power. A refrigerator does not run continuously, and can average about 500 to 600 watts per hour, so 8 hours of run time is possible.

Battery charging is also not 100% efficient, you can rule-of-thumb figure that you need to charge a deep cycle battery at up to 150% of what you took out to replenish it. Solar charging is a possibility, but you need a big array. Even using the generator to do it takes hours sometimes. My bank would charge at about 85 amps initially and taper to somewhat less than 20 amps continuous for the first several hours.

Your present gas-absorption refrigerator has the following dimensions, attached below:

Many smaller 'counter depth' domestic refrigerators are similar sizes and can fit the opening with little or no cabinet modification. Note that 'counter depth' units will fit in any RV doorway with the refrigerator door removed...you don't need to take out any windows.

Some appliances are indeed a tight fit through an RV door,,,my front load Maytag clothes washer had only about an inch of clearance when I took out the old unit and replaced it with this more full-featured unit.

Chuck
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Old 07-13-2022, 08:43 AM   #19
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Chuck

Thanks for response, I am sure you are correct on the inverters not powering AC units, I do have a microwave so perhaps that accounts for demand. If money weren't an object, I would likely go the residential route with a solar array and dedicated inverter and batteries. Once we can use it and determine if we like the RV life, we can consider a future upgrade and I doubt I will get credit for any fancy upgrades when I sell this old of a rig. I appreciate the dimensions of the Dometic 1292, I used the same chart to try to find something close, the countertop fridges are even more expensive but a 22.5 or possibly 23 cu. ft. model would be very close in dimension and depending you can probably find one that will fit inside with doors off.

I remain optimistic that will be camping in a few weeks once I get this fixed and then begins the real learning process. We still have a bunch to learn about how to setup, travel and supply the RV but looking forward to that instead of fixing.

One other question, I have had the AC units running while working on the RV the past few weekends and when I was on the roof installing my vent covers, I noticed the runoff from the AC units was pooling at the side of the roof. The 2-3 inch wide band of dicor is damming up water and not letting it runoff preventing it from getting to edge gutter. No apparent leaks in the roof and I believe the RV was mostly level but concerned with water pooling. I was wondering if a trough of some kind should be installed to channel the water off the roof from the drip pan? Just curious if you have heard of anyone dealing with this before?
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Old 07-13-2022, 09:07 AM   #20
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Al,


There should not be any 'dams' of aftermarket roofing repair keeping the condensate from running into the gutter on the roof of your coach.


However, unless you are permanently parked in a very humid climate and have lots of mosquito infestation, those little areas that get wet from condensate will dry out and not be a worry even if a small amount of liquid is kept from running off. Rain travels the same surface to run off your roof too...so if any area is over a fraction of an inch deep you might look into doing something about it. It is hard to park so absolutely level that the curve of the coach's roof does not deal with most of this...


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