Matt Johnson

How Do You Reset An RV Air Conditioner In 3 Quick And Easy Steps

Author: Matt JohnsonPhotos/Graphics: Mike HawthornePublished: May 5, 2023Updated: Dec 24, 2023

Summer is finally here, and as an RV owner, you’re probably looking forward to spending some quality time outdoors. You have been waiting for a perfect road trip all year.

However, nothing can ruin that perfect road trip like a faulty air conditioning system in your RV.

If your RV’s air conditioner is acting up and you’re unsure how to solve the problem, don’t worry. Luckily there are some quick and easy steps you can take to reset your RV air conditioner and get it functioning again efficiently.

  • Step 1. Find the reset button and turn off the power.
  • Step 2. Wait a few minutes and turn the power back on.
  • Step 3. Test the RV AC unit and adjust the settings as necessary.

Don’t worry, we’ll get into the details on each of these steps in just a moment.

It’s not complicated, but if you don’t know what you’re looking for you could be a little lost.

This will help ensure you stay cool and comfortable on your next adventure without any worries and mishaps.

The importance of resetting your RV air conditioner.

When you embark on a road trip in your RV, basking in the sun can be fun, but unbearable heat can damper the experience.

Fortunately, your RV has an air conditioning unit that can provide relief. However, there might come a time when your RV air conditioner malfunctions or fails, leaving you and your passengers in a sticky predicament. Hence, you must reset the unit immediately to ensure maximum comfort and uninterrupted performance for long hauls.

Resetting your air conditioning system ensures your comfort and saves you money. A faulty RV air conditioner can lead to increased wear and tear on the unit’s components, which, in turn, can result in costly repairs or even replacement.

Thankfully, RV air conditioning problems often result from a simple issue like a tripped circuit breaker that can be quickly remedied with a reset.

Following these steps carefully and consistently is crucial so you’re back on the road in no time.

Step 1 — Find the reset button and turn off the power.

Resetting RV air conditioners can be a head-scratcher, but armed with these simple steps, you’re good.

Before discussing how you can reset your RV AC unit, remember that there are various makes and models. Each of these models might have its own method or reset the unit. With that, you might have one of the two most popular units, a Dometic RV air conditioner or a Coleman RV air conditioner – both reasonably straightforward. We have more experience with the Coleman RV cooling system, but the same principles apply.

Reset RV AC unit.

The first step is locating the coveted reset button. Just like a needle in a haystack, the reset button is usually hidden amidst the control panel of your RV air conditioning system. Once found, hold it down for a few seconds until you hear a satisfying beep or see the light turn off.

We’ve seen these buttons in the oddest places. However, it’s always inside the camper. We’ve never seen one on the RV AC compressor or outside a trailer.

Reset RV AC breaker.

The next step is flipping the switch and turning off the AC unit. If you’re unsure where the RV AC breaker or power switch for your air conditioning system is, take a quick tour of your RV, and you’ll probably find it- it’s usually not too far away from the air conditioner itself. Alternatively, unplugging your AC unit is connected to an outlet should do the trick.

You won’t find an RV AC fuse for the most part, as the draw is a bit more than a fuse could handle. So you’re going to need to reset the breaker.

To ensure that your AC system remains unscathed, following these steps in the proper order is crucial. Turning off the power first guarantees that the AC unit won’t draw any more electricity while you reset it. This helps avoid any electrical faults and protects your unit as well.

It’s important to note that a wonky RV air conditioning unit can sometimes result from a tripped circuit breaker. If this is the case, resetting the breaker beforehand is highly recommended. Doing this ensures that the RV circuit breaker is properly connected and will supply the air conditioning unit with the power it needs to operate. Remember, once you’ve turned off the power and located the reset button, you’re ready for the next step.

Step 2 — Wait a few minutes and turn the power back on.

You want to ensure that your RV’s air conditioner is working correctly, so finding the reset button and turning off the power is crucial to fix any faults. However, it is essential to wait a few minutes before turning the power back on to ensure the proper functioning of your air conditioning system.

Most RV AC units have onboard computers – or at least the thermostat is – and pausing a few moments lets this reset the memory. We find that letting it rest for 2-3 minutes is usually enough.

While waiting, inspect your RV’s air conditioner for any visible faults or malfunctions. Ensure that the RV circuit breaker connected to the air conditioning system is not damaged. You may also want to clean its air filters to promote maximum airflow.

Waiting a few minutes allows sufficient time for the circuit breaker and other electrical components to reset while checking for any visible faults or malfunctions and promoting maximum airflow.

Turn on the AC unit.

Once you’ve waited a few minutes, turn the power back on and switch the air conditioning unit back on.

If everything has been done correctly, the RV air conditioning unit will start working, and you’ll feel cool, clean air from your RV’s air conditioning system. Keep in mind that we’ve heard several Dometic RV AC owners claim that their unit doesn’t turn on right away and that it might take a few minutes for it to fire up. We recommend turning it on and giving it around 5-10 minutes to kick back on.

However, in rare cases, the fault may persist after executing the reset procedure. In such cases, it is best to seek professional help.

Remember, testing the air conditioning system after resetting is crucial, and make necessary adjustments based on your preferences to ensure maximum comfort during your journey. Waiting a few minutes for the circuit to reset and checking for any faults may seem insignificant, but they are crucial steps that ensure the proper functioning of your RV’s air conditioning system, promoting maximum comfort during your journey.

Step 3 — Test the RV AC unit and adjust the settings as necessary.

After turning the power back on, wait a few seconds before flipping the switch on your RV AC unit. Patience is critical here; letting the system return online before testing it is important.

Once it’s on, listen closely to the hum of the fans and compressor to ensure everything is running smoothly. If you notice anything strange, like odd noises or warm air streaming out of the unit, there could be an issue that requires a closer look.

Keep in mind that your RV AC system isn’t exactly the same as a traditional AC unit. It operates less efficiently and will take longer to achieve the desired temperature. Don’t get discouraged — instead, adjust your settings and be prepared to wait it out a bit longer than you might with a regular AC system.

Take the time to change the temperature from cool to warm and back again, or fiddle with the fan speed. Ensure the vents aren’t blocked by anything inhibiting the unit’s ability to cool your living space properly.

It’s all part of the process! With patience and a little testing, you’ll find the optimal settings for your RV’s AC unit. After all, you want to ensure it’s running smoothly and effectively, especially in the hot summer months when you’re on the road.

What if it’s a faulty RV AC?

There are times when the AC unit simply runs its life. If so, you’ll need to find out what component failed and replace it. You’ll generally know this if you try to reset your RV air conditioner and come up empty handed.

Most of the time, you don’t need to replace the entire system, simply the failed component.

For example, if your AC unit isn’t blowing cold air but it’s running, there’s a chance the fan on your compressor is bad. That’s a simple fix with a new motor. We even had the fan on the motor break, which was a $30 fix. It was in the middle of the Texas summer, so it was quite a scare.

The bottom line, there’s a difference between your RV AC malfunctioning and a single component failing. If you can’t determine which it is, you might need to call a pro to check out your rooftop AC unit.

Keep cool this summer!

Resetting your RV air conditioner can be a quick and easy fix to get your air conditioning system back in working order.

You can reset your RV AC unit by following the three simple steps we outlined. Not only that, it can potentially save you time and money by avoiding a service call.

As an RV owner, knowing how to troubleshoot and maintain your RV air conditioning system is essential. Learning how to reset your RV AC unit is just one step in keeping your RV comfortable and enjoyable during your travels.


Matt Johnson

Senior Content Writer

Matt is an experienced camper and glamping enthusiast with a Master's degree in Wildlife Science from Texas A&M University. Authoring posts for GlamperGear, he shares his wealth of knowledge on picturesque campsites, luxurious accommodations, and the best gear for outdoor adventures. His passion for nature and knack for comfort in the wilderness make him an expert guide for your next camping endeavor.

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5 thoughts on “How Do You Reset An RV Air Conditioner In 3 Quick And Easy Steps

  1. James McDonald

    Great post! Just a tip to add, it’s also worth noting that some Dometic RV air conditioners may require you to hold the zone and mode buttons simultaneously to reset. My RV air conditioner resets this way but I don’t think they all do this. Thanks for sharing this! Need any help we can with our RV air conditioners in this scorching heat wave.

  2. Jerry Dixon

    Don’t forget that you always ensure your RV’s power supply is stable and sufficient before resetting the RV air conditioner, as fluctuating voltage can sometimes cause issues.They can be finicky when it comes to power. Great tips

  3. Jimmy D.

    I’ve been struggling with my RV air conditioner for a while now. These steps seem really helpful and easy to follow. I’ll definitely give it a try!

  4. rvman_81

    Waiting a few minutes before turning the power back on is a great tip. I’ll make sure to do that to ensure the proper functioning of my RV’s air conditioning system. It’s getting a bit colder now, but great to know for next summer.

  5. AdventureSeeker

    I never knew that resetting my RV air conditioner can help save me money by avoiding costly repairs. Thank you!

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