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Old 04-08-2016, 16:53   #1
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Questions about Ocean Marine 'Away' mode

My '01 boat has an Ocean Marine AC/heat system. The manual vaguely refers to the 'Away' mode, saying it will come on occasionally to reduce the temp a few degrees and lower humidity, then turn off.

Since Ocean Marine is no longer in business, I can't call them. So:

How well does 'Away' mode work?

How many degrees does it reduce the air temp?

Is it only for hot weather, or will it engage the heat cycle?

Any other considerations when using it?
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Old 05-12-2016, 05:37   #2
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Re: Questions about Ocean Marine 'Away' mode

Would be concerned about running AC that gathers condensate and pumps cooling water throu my boat unattanded.
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Old 05-12-2016, 06:27   #3
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Re: Questions about Ocean Marine 'Away' mode

I leave my AC in dehumidify mode all Summer long when away from the boat. It keeps temps inside within reason and prevents mold too.
In the Winter I run a dehumidifier, cause they add heat and it keeps the temps within reason and prevents mold etc too.
Of course I have shorepower.

Both the AC and the dehumidifier drain to the shower sump that has an automatic bilge pump, should that pump fail, it will overfill the sump and drain into the bilge, should the bilge pump fail, there is a high water alarm/pump, and my bilge is large enough that it would likely hold a months of AC condensate before it became a problem, and I'm not gone a month.
Now if a thru hull failed, or the hose to the AC pump, that could be a problem, so I try to keep them maintained.
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Old 05-12-2016, 06:57   #4
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Re: Questions about Ocean Marine 'Away' mode

Away mode is dehumidify by another name. It will turn on the fan every four hours to check the cabin temperature, then run the compressor long enough to cool the air by 2deg f. Once this has been achieved the unit goes to sleep for another four hours.

The above if from memory, so may not be entirely accurate, but not too far off base.

I for one prefer to run a dehumidifier in place if the AC on dehumidify. Saves a ton of wear and tear and clogged strainer hell.
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Old 05-12-2016, 07:10   #5
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Re: Questions about Ocean Marine 'Away' mode

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. D View Post
My '01 boat has an Ocean Marine AC/heat system. The manual vaguely refers to the 'Away' mode, saying it will come on occasionally to reduce the temp a few degrees and lower humidity, then turn off.

Since Ocean Marine is no longer in business, I can't call them. So:

How well does 'Away' mode work?

How many degrees does it reduce the air temp?

Is it only for hot weather, or will it engage the heat cycle?

Any other considerations when using it?
We have a similar system with the Cool/Heat/Automatic/Away functions. The "Away" mode is largely intended to control humidity. Every few hours the system activates, runs the compressor in cooling mode for a period to cool down the heat exchanger in the air handler and then shuts off the compressor but continues to run the fan for 30 minutes or so to allow moisture to condense out and drip into the condensate pan. In our case condensate is directed to a collector in the bilge where a float switch activates a discharge pump periodically to empty the collector. While the function will reduce the temperature within the boat somewhat during the heat of summer, it greatest effect is to remove humidity which has an adverse effect on the boat vis-a-vis mold, odors etc. We have used the system for 15+ years without difficulty or incident. It is important to ensure the condensate pan and drains are kept clean/clear with routine maintenance. For that we routinely clean the heat exchanger coils and periodically add a cap full of Raritan CP to the condensate pan and the following day suction out the pan and condensate lines with a small shop vac. The "Away" mode makes a major difference in the condition/smell of the boat.

FWIW...
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Old 05-12-2016, 07:46   #6
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Re: Questions about Ocean Marine 'Away' mode

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Originally Posted by Sailmonkey View Post
I for one prefer to run a dehumidifier in place if the AC on dehumidify. Saves a ton of wear and tear and clogged strainer hell.
Only issue is that a dehumidifier puts a little heat into the boat, in Summer that's not good, but when temps drop, I do run a Dehumidifier.
Keeping the boat dry does make a difference, and I believe not letting it get to over 100 degrees in the Summer makes the interior age more slowly as well.
Until we move aboard this Spring, I will keep the Dehumidifier going.
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Old 05-12-2016, 08:39   #7
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Re: Questions about Ocean Marine 'Away' mode

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
Only issue is that a dehumidifier puts a little heat into the boat, in Summer that's not good, but when temps drop, I do run a Dehumidifier.
Keeping the boat dry does make a difference, and I believe not letting it get to over 100 degrees in the Summer makes the interior age more slowly as well.
Until we move aboard this Spring, I will keep the Dehumidifier going.
I can't argue the heat, but we're hot anyway in the summer and dry heat is better for the boat than swamp heat.
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Old 06-12-2016, 07:44   #8
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Re: Questions about Ocean Marine 'Away' mode

Quote:
Originally Posted by svHyLyte View Post
We have a similar system with the Cool/Heat/Automatic/Away functions. The "Away" mode is largely intended to control humidity. Every few hours the system activates, runs the compressor in cooling mode for a period to cool down the heat exchanger in the air handler and then shuts off the compressor but continues to run the fan for 30 minutes or so to allow moisture to condense out and drip into the condensate pan. In our case condensate is directed to a collector in the bilge where a float switch activates a discharge pump periodically to empty the collector. While the function will reduce the temperature within the boat somewhat during the heat of summer, it greatest effect is to remove humidity which has an adverse effect on the boat vis-a-vis mold, odors etc. We have used the system for 15+ years without difficulty or incident. It is important to ensure the condensate pan and drains are kept clean/clear with routine maintenance. For that we routinely clean the heat exchanger coils and periodically add a cap full of Raritan CP to the condensate pan and the following day suction out the pan and condensate lines with a small shop vac. The "Away" mode makes a major difference in the condition/smell of the boat.

FWIW...
Further regarding system maintenance, I should add to the foregoing that we use a standard 12" square HVAC air filter on the inside face of the return air vent on our system to ensure air to the heat exchanger is as free of dust and debris as possible. Because our system is not used as often as one's home system is, I only change the filter at roughly 60-90 day intervals but it is surprising to see how much "stuff" gets trapped in the filter. Keeping the heat exchanger fins clean does make a substantial difference to the efficiency of one's system
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