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How to Replace RV Air Conditioner

Whether you’re a seasoned RV enthusiast or a novice traveler, knowing how to replace your RV air conditioner can come in handy when you encounter issues with your current unit or if you’re looking to upgrade to a more efficient model.

In this guide, we will provide step-by-step instructions, helpful tips, and essential information to ensure a successful replacement process.

So let’s dive in and learn how to replace your RV air conditioner like a pro!

How to Replace RV Air Conditioner: Step-by-Step Guide

Step 1: Gather the Necessary Tools and Equipment

Before you begin the replacement process, it’s crucial to gather all the necessary tools and equipment.

Here’s a list of items you’ll need:

  1. Screwdriver set (flathead and Phillips head)
  2. Adjustable wrench
  3. Socket set
  4. Duct tape
  5. Safety goggles
  6. Work gloves
  7. Replacement RV air conditioner unit

Step 2: Turn Off the Power

For safety reasons, it’s essential to turn off the power supply to your RV’s air conditioner before starting the replacement process.

Locate the electrical breaker panel in your RV and switch off the circuit that controls the air conditioner unit.

Step 3: Remove the Old Air Conditioner Unit

Now it’s time to remove the old air conditioner unit from your RV.

Follow these steps:

  1. Access the roof of your RV and locate the air conditioner unit.
  2. Remove the protective shroud covering the unit by unscrewing the fasteners.
  3. Disconnect the electrical wires and carefully set them aside.
  4. Loosen the bolts securing the unit to the roof using an adjustable wrench or socket set.
  5. With the help of a friend, lift the old unit off the roof and place it on the ground.

Step 4: Prepare the Roof for Installation

Once the old unit is removed, you need to prepare the roof for installing the new air conditioner unit.

Follow these steps:

  1. Inspect the roof for any damage or debris. Clean the area thoroughly.
  2. Measure and mark the dimensions of the new unit’s base on the roof.
  3. Apply a layer of butyl tape or sealant around the marked area to create a watertight seal.

Step 5: Install the New Air Conditioner Unit

Now it’s time to install the new air conditioner unit onto your RV’s roof.

Follow these steps:

  1. Lift the new unit onto the roof with the help of a friend. Make sure it aligns with the marked area.
  2. Secure the unit in place by tightening the bolts with an adjustable wrench or socket set.
  3. Connect the electrical wires to the corresponding terminals, ensuring a secure connection.
  4. Use duct tape to seal any gaps between the unit and the roof, providing additional protection against water leaks.
  5. Replace the protective shroud and fasten it securely with screws.

Step 6: Test the New Air Conditioner

After installing the new air conditioner unit, it’s important to test it to ensure it’s functioning properly.

Follow these steps:

  1. Turn on the power supply to the air conditioner at the electrical breaker panel.
  2. Set the desired temperature on the unit’s control panel and wait for it to start cooling.
  3. Check the airflow and ensure that cool air is coming out of the vents.
  4. Listen for any unusual noises or vibrations, which could indicate a problem with the installation.
  5. Monitor the unit for a while to ensure it maintains the desired temperature consistently.


Can I replace my RV air conditioner by myself, or do I need professional help?

While it is possible to replace your RV air conditioner by yourself, it’s recommended to seek professional help if you’re not experienced in handling electrical and HVAC systems. A professional technician can ensure a safe and proper installation, minimizing the risk of damage or injury.

How often should I replace my RV air conditioner?

The lifespan of an RV air conditioner can vary depending on usage, maintenance, and environmental factors. On average, RV air conditioners can last between 10 and 15 years. However, if you notice a significant decrease in performance or frequent breakdowns, it might be time to consider a replacement.

Are all RV air conditioner units the same size?

No, RV air conditioner units come in various sizes and cooling capacities. It’s crucial to choose a unit that is compatible with your RV’s dimensions and power requirements. Refer to your RV’s manual or consult with a professional to ensure you select the right unit for your specific needs.

Can I upgrade my RV air conditioner to a more energy-efficient model?

Absolutely! Upgrading to a more energy-efficient RV air conditioner can help reduce power consumption and save you money in the long run. Look for models with high Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) ratings and additional features such as programmable thermostats and eco-friendly refrigerants.

Are there any maintenance tips to prolong the lifespan of my RV air conditioner?

Regular maintenance is crucial to ensure the longevity of your RV air conditioner. Here are a few tips:

  • Clean or replace air filters regularly.
  • Keep the condenser coils clean and free from debris.
  • Check and tighten electrical connections.
  • Inspect and clean the evaporator coils.
  • Schedule annual professional inspections and maintenance.

What should I do with the old RV air conditioner unit?

Properly disposing of the old RV air conditioner unit is important for environmental reasons. Contact your local recycling centers or HVAC companies to inquire about proper disposal methods. Many facilities offer recycling programs for old air conditioning units.


In conclusion, knowing how to replace your RV air conditioner is a valuable skill for any RV owner.

By following our step-by-step guide and considering the FAQs, you can confidently undertake the replacement process and ensure a smooth transition to a new and efficient air conditioning unit.

Remember to prioritize safety, seek professional help if needed, and perform regular maintenance to keep your RV air conditioner in optimal condition.

Now, go ahead and enjoy a comfortable and cool journey on the road!