Here's my experience:
refuses to cool when on propane
. This is new. Just returned from trip and it was working great, on shore power. Once home I decided to test it but using propane
. Trailer level, plenty of gas, Piezo flame is present, all Dometic RM8551 front display lights
are working. July 21, 2016. On, 5 dots, overnight. No joy in the morning.
Drove to Tom’s RV in ABQ in search of answers or at least, to gain perspective, on how to deal with this (sic) no-go-pro-paine problem. I don’t want to pull the fridge
out, nor do I want to hitch up and drive 28 miles, drop off the trailer and then wait 48 to 72+ hours, for maybe a seven minute fix.
guy in ABQ was happy to help. It’s a very busy shop. He suggested first cleaning out the flue. Things get in there. Then, he said use a manometer to check the pressure in the system. Maybe the pilot light
isn’t right. A manometer measures pressure in units of water column inches. He said, propane
appliances in the RV are designed to operate at 10.5 to 11” of water column. My eyes began to water.
Clean the um, flue, you say? He took me to the shop floor. A Dometic fridge
pulled from some big rig was sitting there. The flue is a ¾” pipe in back running vertically up from the Piezo ignition. I got it. I could do that. I’ll try cleaning the flue.
Back at home. Access to the flue for cleaning becomes less simple then I thought. One screw removed the plate shielding the Piezo ignition but how do I get a brush up past the Piezo and up the flue pipe? I feared mis-aligning these parts. But then, another screw removed and the Piezo dropped down clearing a way to shove a hose up the flue. Hose was attached to my little airbrush compressor. I worked the hose all the way up and down, then for good measure did it again but attached to a shop vac. Biggest disappointment was no bug bodies mouse eggs or web nets came out. Have no clue what blocked the flue.
Flue job done by 2 PM. Fridge now turned on, to 5 dots on propane, and it is 76°F in there. Bob also showed me what they used in the shop to monitor fridge temperature. Real high tech. They get a $6 A/CPRO test thermometer at AutoZone, used for auto air conditioning
, drill a 5/16th hole for its stem in a small water bottle cap, fill it with water and seal the thermometer in the plastic bottle. I used a 12 oz. Aquafina because the plastic seemed extra sturdy. Lay it on a shelf. It works, no batteries needed.
Just checked fridge temperature. At 4 PM fridge is 60°F and trailer is 88°F. At 6 PM fridge is 54°F and trailer is 90°F. At 9 AM next day fridge is 33°F and trailer is 75°. All seems good. (?)