13' scamp replacing Ice box with AC Fridge - Fiberglass RV

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Old 03-07-2010, 05:59 PM   #1
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Trailer: 1989 13 ft Scamp
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I would like to replace my Ice Box will a dorm style refridgerator in my 13' scamp. Do I need to vent the back of it? If so I would need to cut and install a vent on that side of the trailer correct?

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Old 03-07-2010, 06:06 PM   #2
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I would like to replace my Ice Box will a dorm style refridgerator in my 13' scamp. [b]Do I need to vent the back of it?
If you are replacing it with a 110 volt, alternating current, electric only, [b]compressor type fridge, then no, you do not need to cut a vent in the side of your trailer for the back of the fridge.

You do have to vent a 2-way or 3-way gas/electric [b]absorption type fridge.

Frederick - The Scaleman
1978 Fiber Stream 16 named "Eggstasy" & 1971 Compact Jr. named "Boomerang"
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Old 03-09-2010, 05:18 AM   #3
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A bit more, Fred is correct from the point of view of an outside vent...but...
The answer being already no you do not need to vent it outside I would like to add...
This does not mean you do not need to vent it.
The rule is you cannot throw heat in to small a space and expect the refrigeration unit not to get constipation of effort.

When asked to do this by an owner I create a space above the refrigerator so the heat removed from inside the box to outside the box can rise inside the cabinet and thru the natural process of convection gently exhaust over the space near the top of the refrigerator...

Exhaust is not the only trap remember a path for cooler air needs to be established so as the rear coils heat up the cooler air enters the rear of the refrigerator heat transfer coils and gently exhausts, a 3/4 gap beneath the refrigerator will suffice as an cool air supply with a 1" gap on top of it being adequate too as a warm air exhaust. Remember breath in and out for refrigerators too. The heat can be useful inside a small trailer and will not amount to much camping. But throw that heat into a closed tightly sealed cabinet space and the marshmallows will go bad and the chocolates melt before the refrigerator compressor current overload shuts it down to protect the compressor rather than the thermostat inside the box shutting it off when cold enough.

The literature sold with the refrigerator gives a warning to this effect.

Hope this helps deepens the discussion a little, the afore mentioned advice is correct, unless the trailer interior is ungodly hot (like parked in Phoenix Arizona all day closed up tight) the issue will not require outside venting.

Happy Camping, Safe Trails.

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Old 03-09-2010, 07:27 AM   #4
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Trailer: 1974 Boler 13 ft (Neonex/Winnipeg)
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Another thing to check or think about is that not all of the dorm fridges have the good-old coils in the back anymore. I have one (not in my camper) that has them somehow buried inside the top of the 'fridge. I say "buried" because you do not see coils anywhere. I believe there are specified numbers of inches of air space recommended (mine is just out on the open, so the main thing I need to remember is not to set anything on top).

So, depending on how/where you can provide air flow, you might look for one style or another of 'fridge (I don't know if they are all this way now, or if you can still also get the rear/coil type).

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Old 03-09-2010, 06:19 PM   #5
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Thanks for the information folks, I'll put some pictures of the install when I find a mini fridge that is close to the measurments.
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Old 03-09-2010, 08:10 PM   #6
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Tim, I bookmarked this site... because there seems to be a number of members looking to change out iceboxes for dorm-style refers... rather than 2- or 3-way. I hope this has value for you:

Mini-Frigs... What Size is Right for You

Also, if you're looking to change out to a Dometic, see this page:
Dometic Replacement Chart - Sizes

Donna D.
Ten Forward - 2014 Escape 5.0 TA
Double Yolk - 1988 16' Scamp Deluxe
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Old 06-17-2013, 08:32 PM   #7
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Name: horacio
Trailer: scamp 13'
valdivia, Chile
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exhaust pipes in 3way fridges

Hi! I have a question related to the installation of a 3way fridge in my 13 Scamp.

I understand the need to install the fridge in an adequeate space for ventilation. However, I bought a small norcold 3163 1.8cuft... off course no instructions! I arranged a space in my scamp, but are confused regarding the need to install an exhaust pipe (and inlet for that matter!).

I see that 2 pipes come out in the rear of the fridge... do I need to place a pipe to the outside? I imagine that I do, because I do not want to breath the combustion gas of the fridge, right! but what´s the best plan for such mods...? I haven´t seen much discussion regarding this.
Any help is appreciated!
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Old 06-17-2013, 10:33 PM   #8
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Correct ventilation is necessary just to get it to work right, much less not be a hazard. To much or to little ventilation will create problems. Because it is so critical, I suggest that you get a set of detailed instructions rather than suggestions.

Google the make and model number + the word "installation" and I'll bet you get what you need.

If not, post that information here and someone may have the set you need.
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Old 06-17-2013, 11:01 PM   #9
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Name: horacio
Trailer: scamp 13'
valdivia, Chile
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It really feels great to be supported in these endeavours through this forum!

I found the installation manuals, and yeap! the vent description for the assembly for this norcold 3163 1.8cuft is available here:
Refrigerator, 3163, Vent Assembly

you do need to install an inlet and exhaust pipes to the outside. Instruction manuals for it here:

Now, I´m crossing my fingers to see if I can really find this, as it is marked as discontinued... no longer made! So, any hint on where to find this vent assembly will be appreciated.

thanks Bob Miller, and all the crowd around here!


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fridge, scamp

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