Casita fridge issue - Fiberglass RV

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Old 09-10-2013, 08:45 AM   #1
Dianne Dohei's Avatar
Name: Dianne
Trailer: 17 ft Casita
Posts: 65
Casita fridge issue

Hi all. We bought our 2010 Casita (17 foot Spirit Deluxe) in May and have had 3 opportunities to use it this year. We love it. We had an issue with the Dometic fridge this last trip and I am hoping someone out there can help me figure it out. It may be that I just don't understand enough about how RV fridges work, as this is the first one we've owned.

We were running the fridge on AC. On the second night out, I noticed that the lights were all "pulsing" (the temp setting light, the "auto" light and the "AC" light). It stopped when I set it at a different temperature - turned it down. Then later the next day, it started doing it again. There didn't seem to be any issue with the power source as other electrical items weren't affected. I shut the fridge off for a few minutes and when I turned it back on, only the temperature light and Auto light came on. Neither the AC or Gas light came on. I left the fridge like that for a while to see if it would choose one or the other, or if the "check" light would go on. Nothing happened. I tried turning off Auto, which as I understand, should force it to use Gas (is that right?). That didn't happen either. A couple of hours later though when I was pushing buttons, it did run on gas when I turned off Auto. Today we are home and I have plugged into power and the fridge is on Auto and is working fine on AC. So I have the following questions.

1. What caused the "pulsing" of the lights and did that mean it wasn't working?

2. Why didn't it go back to AC when I turned it back on? Or go to Gas when I turned off Auto? One theory is that, because the fridge was cold and didn't need to cool, when I turned it back on to Auto, it didn't look for power or gas since it had to warm up before it needed to cool. Is this correct?

The other thing that I am having difficulty with is running the fridge on DC when driving (I prefer not to run it on gas while driving). Before we leave on a trip, I have plugged in the fridge for a couple of days to ensure it is cold. When we are ready to leave and the trailer is hooked up and plugged into the tow vehicle, I have trouble getting it to connect to DC. I unhook the shore power, off Auto and press the DC button. But it doesn't go to DC. We travel and I check the fridge frequently and we push buttons and finally it seems to go to DC. So my other questions are:

3. Am I doing the right thing to get it to change to DC? (turning off auto then turning on DC?) Or is there a special "sequence" of button pushing?

4. Or is it not using DC when I push the button for the same reason as the theory above - it doesn't need to cool, so it doesn't look for any power source? So if I just left it alone, eventually it would go to DC once the fridge warmed up?. We live in Canada so don't have to deal with hot, hot, hot weather, so it takes a while for the fridge to warm.

Thanks (ahead of time) to anyone that can assist with answering these questions. As I said, it may be because we are novices and don't understand exactly how the fridge works that we need to pose the questions. I am researching online as well for answers.


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Old 09-16-2013, 06:22 AM   #2
Melanie B in NC's Avatar
Name: Melanie
Trailer: Lil Snoozy "Marigold"
Posts: 84
I would be very interested in any one chiming in knowledgeably on this question. Those 3 way fridges are a bit mysterious to me also.

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Old 09-16-2013, 07:19 AM   #3
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Name: jim
Trailer: 2016 2ndGen Escape19 Prairie Schooner pulled by 2014 Dodge Ram Hemi Sport
Posts: 6,239
On my 3 way, if the propane is off and I'm not hooked to 120v, then it switches to 12v while on auto, eventually. Do a test at home, turn off the propane and the circuit that powers the 120v to the refer and watch what it does.
Never in doubt, often wrong
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Old 09-23-2013, 09:50 PM   #4
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Name: Charlie Y
Trailer: Escape 21 - Felicity
Posts: 976
Dianne, what model Dometic fridge? There is a label inside the door. You can download the operating manual here:

Support - Dometic

Charlie Y
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Don't drill holes, try custom storage you design:
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