Troubleshooting Common Problems with Keystone RV Air Conditioner

Owning a Keystone RV is an exciting prospect, offering the freedom of the open road and the comfort of a home away from home. However, like any complex machinery, the RV’s air conditioning system can encounter issues over time. These problems can disrupt your travel plans and lead to discomfort during your journey. In this article, we will explore seven common problems that Keystone RV owners may encounter with their air conditioner, along with their causes and detailed solutions.

Problem #1: Insufficient Cooling Performance

One of the most frequent complaints RV owners have is the air conditioner’s inability to provide adequate cooling inside the vehicle. Even when the system is running, the interior temperature remains uncomfortably warm. This problem can be particularly bothersome during hot summer days or in regions with extreme temperatures.


  • Overworked Compressor: The compressor is the heart of the air conditioning system, responsible for circulating the refrigerant and cooling the air. In hot weather conditions or with prolonged usage, the compressor may become overworked, leading to reduced cooling performance.
  • Blocked or Dirty Air Filters: Air filters are essential for trapping dust, debris, and allergens, ensuring clean airflow inside the RV. When air filters get clogged or dirty, the flow of air is restricted, making it harder for the air conditioner to cool the space effectively.
  • Refrigerant Leakage: A refrigerant leak reduces the cooling capacity of the air conditioner, resulting in inadequate cooling. The leak can occur due to age, wear and tear, or improper installation.
  • Undersized Air Conditioner: If the RV’s air conditioner is undersized for the interior space, it may struggle to cool the entire area efficiently.


  • Park in Shaded Areas: To reduce the workload on the compressor, park your RV in shaded areas whenever possible. Avoiding direct sunlight can significantly improve the air conditioner’s performance.
  • Clean or Replace Air Filters Regularly: Regularly inspect and clean the air filters, or replace them if they are too dirty. This will ensure proper airflow and help the air conditioner maintain optimal cooling.
  • Seek Professional Assistance for Refrigerant Leaks: If you suspect a refrigerant leak, it’s essential to contact a qualified HVAC technician. They can locate the leak, repair it, and recharge the system with the appropriate amount of refrigerant.
  • Consider Upgrading to a Higher Capacity Air Conditioner: If the current air conditioner is unable to provide sufficient cooling, consider upgrading to a higher capacity unit that better matches the interior space of your RV.

Problem #2: Air Conditioner Blowing Warm Air

In this scenario, the air conditioner operates, but instead of cool air, warm air blows out of the vents, rendering the unit ineffective in cooling the RV’s interior. This issue can be frustrating, especially when you rely on the air conditioner to beat the heat during your travels.


  • Thermostat Issues: The thermostat serves as the control center for the air conditioner, signaling when to turn on the compressor to cool the air. If the thermostat malfunctions or loses its calibration, it may not send the proper signals to engage the compressor, resulting in warm air blowing from the vents.
  • Faulty Compressor or Compressor Capacitor: A malfunctioning compressor or a defective compressor capacitor can lead to inefficient cooling or no cooling at all.
  • Clogged Condenser Coils: The condenser coils are responsible for releasing heat from the refrigerant, allowing it to cool down and circulate again. If these coils become clogged with dirt and debris, they can hinder proper heat dissipation, resulting in warm air from the air conditioner.


  • Check the Thermostat Settings: Ensure that the thermostat is set to the correct cooling mode and that the desired temperature is lower than the current room temperature. If the thermostat is not functioning correctly, replace it with a new one.
  • Have a Qualified Technician Inspect the Compressor: If you suspect a compressor issue, seek the expertise of an HVAC professional. They can diagnose the problem, repair the compressor if possible, or replace it if necessary.
  • Regularly Clean the Condenser Coils: Clean the condenser coils at least once a year or as needed to remove accumulated dirt and debris. This will optimize the air conditioner’s heat dissipation and cooling efficiency.

Problem #3: Air Conditioner Not Turning On

When attempting to start the air conditioner, it fails to power up, leaving you without the much-needed cooling during hot days. This issue can be concerning, especially when you’re in the midst of your travel plans.


  • Electrical Problems: The air conditioner’s power supply can be affected by blown fuses or tripped circuit breakers. These issues can disrupt the flow of electricity to the air conditioner, preventing it from turning on.
  • Defective Thermostat: A malfunctioning thermostat may not send the signal to start the air conditioner, leading to a failure to turn on the system.
  • Wiring Issues: Damaged or faulty wiring can interrupt the power supply to the air conditioner, resulting in its inability to start.


  • Inspect and Replace Blown Fuses or Reset Circuit Breakers: Check the RV’s electrical panel for blown fuses or tripped circuit breakers related to the air conditioner. Replace the blown fuses or reset the circuit breakers to restore power to the unit.
  • Test and Replace a Malfunctioning Thermostat: Test the thermostat to ensure it’s working correctly. If it’s faulty, replace it with a compatible model to restore proper functionality.
  • Have a Professional Inspect and Repair Wiring Issues: If you suspect wiring problems are causing the air conditioner’s failure to start, contact a professional RV technician. They can diagnose and repair any electrical issues with the system.

Problem #4: Unusual Noises from the Air Conditioner

Grinding, squealing, or rattling noises originating from the air conditioner can be bothersome and indicate underlying problems. These noises can disrupt your comfort and indicate potential issues that need attention.


  • Loose or Damaged Components: Vibrations during operation can cause various components within the air conditioner to become loose, leading to rattling or knocking noises. Additionally, worn or damaged parts can produce unusual sounds during operation.
  • Debris or Foreign Objects: If foreign objects or debris get caught in the air conditioner’s fan blades, it can lead to scraping or squealing sounds as the fan rotates.
  • Unbalanced or Failing Motor: An unbalanced motor can cause vibrations and produce noise during operation. A failing motor may emit grinding or screeching noises.


  • Tighten or Replace Loose or Damaged Components: During routine maintenance, inspect all accessible components of the air conditioner. Tighten any loose parts or replace damaged components to eliminate noise issues.
  • Carefully Remove Debris or Foreign Objects: Turn off the air conditioner and carefully inspect the fan blades for any debris or foreign objects. Gently remove any obstructions to restore smooth and noise-free operation.
  • Schedule a Maintenance Check for the Motor: If you suspect a problem with the motor, schedule a maintenance check with a qualified technician. They can balance the motor or replace it if necessary to eliminate noise issues.

Problem #5: Uneven Cooling Distribution

Certain areas inside the RV may experience uneven cooling, with some spots significantly colder or warmer than others. This can lead to discomfort and dissatisfaction with the air conditioner’s performance.


  • Blocked or Obstructed Vents: If vents are blocked by furniture, curtains, or other objects, the airflow may be restricted, resulting in uneven cooling distribution.
  • Damaged or Faulty Ductwork: Damaged ductwork can allow cooled air to escape before reaching its intended destination, leading to uneven cooling.
  • Inadequate Insulation: Areas with inadequate insulation can allow cold air to escape or hot air to infiltrate, contributing to uneven cooling inside the RV.


  • Ensure All Vents Are Unobstructed: Regularly check all vents to ensure they are not blocked or obstructed by any objects. This will allow proper airflow and help maintain consistent cooling throughout the RV.
  • Have the Ductwork Inspected: If you suspect issues with the ductwork, have a qualified technician inspect it for any leaks or damage. They can repair or replace the ductwork as needed to improve airflow and cooling distribution.
  • Enhance Insulation in Problem Areas: Identify areas with inadequate insulation and take steps to improve it. Adding additional insulation to problem spots can help maintain a more consistent and comfortable temperature throughout the RV.

Problem #6: Excessive Condensation or Water Leaks

If you notice excessive condensation forming on the air conditioner or water leaks inside the RV, it indicates potential issues with the unit. Excessive moisture can lead to mold growth, damage to interior surfaces, and discomfort for occupants.


  • Clogged or Blocked Condensate Drain Line: The air conditioner produces condensation as it cools the air. This moisture is typically drained away through a condensate drain line. If the drain line becomes clogged or blocked, water can accumulate and lead to excess condensation or leaks.
  • Damaged or Worn-out Seals: The air conditioner unit should be properly sealed to prevent water from leaking into the RV. Over time, seals can become damaged or worn, leading to water leaks during operation.


  • Clear any Clogs or Blockages: Locate the condensate drain line and check for clogs or blockages. If you find any, carefully clear the drain line to allow proper drainage of condensation.
  • Replace Damaged Seals: Inspect the seals around the air conditioner unit for any damage or wear. If you notice any issues, replace the damaged seals to prevent water leaks and excess condensation.

Problem #7: RV Air Conditioner Freezing Up

The air conditioner’s evaporator coils may freeze up, leading to reduced cooling efficiency or the complete failure of the unit. A frozen air conditioner can result in an uncomfortable indoor environment and potentially cause long-term damage to the system.


  • Insufficient Airflow: Inadequate airflow across the evaporator coils can cause them to freeze. This can happen due to dirty air filters, blocked vents, or a malfunctioning blower fan.
  • Low Refrigerant Levels or Leaks: Low refrigerant levels or refrigerant leaks can lead to a drop in pressure within the evaporator coils, causing them to freeze up.
  • Malfunctioning Blower Fan or Fan Motor: A malfunctioning blower fan or fan motor may not circulate the air properly, leading to freezing of the evaporator coils.


  • Clean or Replace Air Filters Regularly: Regularly clean or replace the air filters to ensure proper airflow across the evaporator coils. This will help prevent them from freezing due to restricted airflow.
  • Have a Professional Inspect and Repair Refrigerant Leaks: If you suspect low refrigerant levels or a refrigerant leak, contact a professional HVAC technician. They can locate the leak, repair it, and recharge the system with the appropriate amount of refrigerant.
  • Repair or Replace Faulty Blower Fan or Fan Motor: If the blower fan or fan motor is malfunctioning, have it repaired or replaced by a qualified technician. Proper airflow is crucial to prevent freezing of the evaporator coils.


As an RV owner, being aware of the common problems that can occur with the Keystone RV air conditioner empowers you to take appropriate action when necessary. By regularly maintaining and servicing your RV’s air conditioner, you can ensure its reliable performance, allowing you to embark on your adventures with the comfort and coolness you desire. Remember to address minor issues promptly and seek professional assistance for more complex problems to keep your Keystone RV air conditioner running smoothly throughout your travels.

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