Problems with Refrigerator on 120 volts - Fiberglass RV


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 04-10-2007, 12:58 AM   #1
Member
 
John Blair's Avatar
 
Trailer: 2003 16 ft Scamp Custom Deluxe Side Dinette
Posts: 33
Hi,

I have a 2003 16' Scamp Side Dinette with the larger refrigerator that I bought recently. I am trying to test out things so I turned on the refrigerator. It appears to work okay on propane (the pilot lights etc), but when I hooked it up to 120 volts, nothing seemed to happen. I plugged the refrigerator into my watt meter, but it read 0. I turned the refrigerator to Electrical, then turned the temperature control to various settings, but no change. Since the meter shows 0, I know I have power there. Any suggestions on where to start troubleshooting? I read the manual, but didn't see any suggestions there unless I missed them.

Thanks,

John
__________________

__________________
John Blair is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-10-2007, 05:19 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
Trailer: 2000 19 ft (formerly 17 ft) Casita Freedom Deluxe ('Nuestra Casita') / 2000 4WD V8 Tundra
Posts: 760
Send a message via Yahoo to Kurt & Ann K.
John,
We pray for the LORD's help first, then tackle the problem!
1. Try a different extension cord or check to make sure the outlet is live.
2. Does it run on 12V.? Fuse blown, or circuit breaker "popped"
3. Contact Scamp or a local RV service place for more hints.
4. Sit down, open a pop-top, relax and ponder your next move.
5. Sleep on the problem.
6. Check back here tomorrow for more input from the forum.
7. If none of the above are successful...buy a Casita.
8. Take all these ideas "with a grain of salt"
9. We wish you success.

Kurt & Ann K.
__________________

__________________
Kurt & Ann K. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-10-2007, 06:24 AM   #3
Senior Member
 
Roger H's Avatar
 
Name: Roger
Trailer: Y2K6 Born Free 32RQ on the Kodiak chassis, 1995 Coachmen 19' B-van and 1996 Precision 21' Sailboat
Iowa
Posts: 5,000
John,

First, a few things about ammonia absorption refrigerators... if you already know this stuff, then just bypass it...

They take several hours to cool on both electric and propane. There is no compressor to "kick on" so the refrigerator is silent, except for the propane burner. The heating element takes the place of the propane burner, but doesn't heat as hot and so takes longer to cool the inside of the fridge.

That said, I presume you've left it on for several hours and get no cooling on electric?

If that's the case then there are several things to troubleshoot including the cord, switch and heating element itself. The heating element is the most likely to fail, however.

I'm not familiar with watt meters... why would a "0" reading on the watt meter mean that you have electricity?

Roger
__________________
Roger H is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-10-2007, 11:52 AM   #4
Member
 
John Blair's Avatar
 
Trailer: 2003 16 ft Scamp Custom Deluxe Side Dinette
Posts: 33
Quote:
That said, I presume you've left it on for several hours and get no cooling on electric?

I'm not familiar with watt meters... why would a "0" reading on the watt meter mean that you have electricity?

Roger
Hi Roger,

I am using the Kill-a-Watt meter. It is electrically (not battery) powered. If there is no electricity then the display is blank. When you plug it in, it shows zero. When you plug something into it, it shows the watt draw (it's pretty cool to a numbers guy like me). So I did not leave the refrigerator plugged in for several hours to see if it was cooling. I left it plugged in for about 15 minutes and it never drew any electricity, so that is what I was basing my conclusion that the 120 side wasn't working.

Thanks for your suggestions.

John
__________________
John Blair is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-10-2007, 11:58 AM   #5
Member
 
John Blair's Avatar
 
Trailer: 2003 16 ft Scamp Custom Deluxe Side Dinette
Posts: 33
Hi Kurt and Ann,

Thanks for your suggestions. I thought I would work this one out myself as I am sure He is busy on more important issues.

1) The Kill-a-Watt meter tells me the power is live and that the extension cord is working.
2) It is a two way (gas/120 volts) so no 12 volt to check. No circuit breakers to worry about since I used an extension cord and had power at the refrigerator end.
3) May need to after I gather info here
4) I prefer screw-top, 2-liter size (hmmmm, still doesn't work)
5) Sleep over, posting began
6) Good idea, will do
7) Considered Casita, but the higher weight was an issue. Scamp popped into my lap when I went to look at one, so now I am a Scamper.
8) I rarely add salt, preferring things "natural"
9) Thanks. I know it will all work out.

John
__________________
John Blair is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-10-2007, 12:16 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Roger H's Avatar
 
Name: Roger
Trailer: Y2K6 Born Free 32RQ on the Kodiak chassis, 1995 Coachmen 19' B-van and 1996 Precision 21' Sailboat
Iowa
Posts: 5,000
John, what model refrigerator is it? In my '02 Scamp, I had a 4 cu.ft. Dometic. It had a "gas" "off" "electric" rotating knob-switch, and then a rotating thermostat switch. I don't remember in that one whether or not the gas had a shut-off with a kill switch, but that may be the case on yours as well; the electric may need to be switched off at the gas valve to run on gas, and needs to be switched back on when the gas valve is off and the switch can be turned back on...

I couldn't figure out Ohm's law today if it killed me... but I do have an old-fashioned VOM. But if you've determined that there's juice to the fridge, turn it on and let it do it's thing for a few hours on AC. If it cools, you'll know your meter doesn't work...

If it doesn't cool, and you've determined that the switches are working, and all of the wires are connected where and how they're supposed to be, then it's just a matter of replacing the heating element.

Roger
__________________
Roger H is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-10-2007, 05:45 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
Pete Dumbleton's Avatar
 
Trailer: Scamp
Posts: 3,072
Send a message via Yahoo to Pete Dumbleton
Since it works on LP and you have 120VAC, the problem is either in the controls or in the element itself.

There are some appliance links under both Document Center and Helpful Links and you might be able to find the troubleshooter for your particular reefer model there (some have controls for the 120VAC mode and some just turn it on) -- Since the element is a likely culprit anyway, it might be easier to just order a new one, install it and see if it works -- If not, it's the controls. You should be able to disconnect the element and measure it's resistance with a VOM -- If resistance is infinite, then the element is open and NFG (Not Fine Goods ).

BTW, the Bryant site under Helpful Links has some good general info as well as specifics.
__________________
Pete Dumbleton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-10-2007, 11:10 PM   #8
Moderator
 
Gina D.'s Avatar
 
Name: Gina D.
Trailer: '77 Leocraft 17 & Former Burro owner and fan!
West Coast USA
Posts: 9,016
Registry
John, do like the doctor says..

Leave it plugged in overnite and call it in the morning.

If it isn't drawing any current, nothing will happen, good or bad. No harm no foul.

Give it another chance.. its an easy gig.. you hardly have to do anything, and time will do the work.
__________________
Gina D. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2007, 01:35 AM   #9
Junior Member
 
Trailer: Trillium 4500
Posts: 22

Click image for larger version

Name:	Dometic_WD.jpg
Views:	34
Size:	7.5 KB
ID:	7254

If there's 120 volts at the terminal block, and the refer doesn't draw any current, it must be the heater element or the thermostat.
WITH THE POWER DISCONNECTED, check the resistance of the heater. It should be around 150 ohms. if the element is bad it must need replacing. The thermostat should be closed if the refer is not cold inside. The contacts may be dirty. Try running the knob back and forth a few times. It may break down any dust preventing contunity.

Be careful around line voltages, they can be lethal

Here's a schematic scanned from the dometic manual.

Don't let this video happen again.
http://www.bestofgooglevideo.com/ful...n.php?video=14

Good luck.
__________________
Dan M. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2007, 09:02 AM   #10
Senior Member
 
Patrick M.'s Avatar
 
Name: Patrick
Trailer: 2007 Casita Liberty (Sold 2011)/ Honda Odyssey
Arizona
Posts: 705
My 120V stopped working on my Scamp refrigerator. I posted the problem and got many good replies like those above. However it turned out to be much simplier - the 120V switch had failed, which can be confirmed by checking it with an ohm meter.

So I was all set to spend big bucks to replace the switch when I decided to pry it apart and I found that the metal part inside had just gotten loose. So I reset it, put the switch back together, and all was well again in 120v operating mode.

Solving problems: start simple, then go complex, then abandon it by the side of the road and buy a new one.
__________________
Patrick M. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2007, 10:20 AM   #11
Senior Member
 
Roger H's Avatar
 
Name: Roger
Trailer: Y2K6 Born Free 32RQ on the Kodiak chassis, 1995 Coachmen 19' B-van and 1996 Precision 21' Sailboat
Iowa
Posts: 5,000
Quote:
Solving problems: start simple, then go complex, then abandon it by the side of the road and buy a new one.
The best advice for troubleshooting! Well said!

My wife is an OB/GYN nurse practitioner. There is a saying in medical diagnoses that goes:
"When you hear hoof beats, look for a horse before you look for a zebra".

That's true for just about any diagnostic procedure.

Roger
__________________
Roger H is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2007, 06:48 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
Pete Dumbleton's Avatar
 
Trailer: Scamp
Posts: 3,072
Send a message via Yahoo to Pete Dumbleton
Quote:
My 120V stopped working on my Scamp refrigerator. I posted the problem and got many good replies like those above. However it turned out to be much simplier - the 120V switch had failed, which can be confirmed by checking it with an ohm meter.
One thing that a friend taught me about 120VAC switches (we were looking at vacuum cleaner switches, but the basics are still there) is that sometimes they look and test great with a VOM but are actually no good under load, so if one tests bad, it IS bad, but testing good doesn't always mean IS good... Wire around the switch if all else seems to be OK.
__________________
Pete Dumbleton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2007, 06:16 PM   #13
Senior Member
 
Dan Meyer's Avatar
 
Name: Dan
Trailer: Scamp
Minnesota
Posts: 559
I looked at the nameplate on my Scamp's fridge this afternoon, and noticed it is rated at 120 volts at 1.3 amps. This means it uses about 150 watts. Will your meter properly register a 150 watt load?

-- Dan Meyer
__________________
Dan Meyer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-24-2007, 10:12 AM   #14
Member
 
John Blair's Avatar
 
Trailer: 2003 16 ft Scamp Custom Deluxe Side Dinette
Posts: 33
Quote:
Will your meter properly register a 150 watt load?

-- Dan Meyer

Hi Dan,

I use the "Kill-a-Watt" meter. I have used it to measure very low loads (in the single digits) and it works great. Just to be sure, I left the refrigerator on overnight and still no cooling. I checked further and found a broken wire and jumpered it, but the refrigerator still would not work. I am tied up at the moment with work and trying to get the Scamp ready for a trip in May. Since the previous owner gave me a 90-day warranty on the unit and agreed to pay for repairs, I made an appointment at a local RV dealer to have it and a couple of other minor things fixed.

I appreciate everyone's input on trying to help me solve this problem.

John
__________________

__________________
John Blair is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
refrigerator


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Refrigerator Problems thomas kaz Problem Solving | Owners Helping Owners 7 09-17-2009 07:47 PM
Managing 12 VOLTS D Tharp Care and Feeding of Molded Fiberglass Trailers 1 09-14-2009 10:49 AM
Installing a digital Amps/Volts Meter peterh Modifications, Alterations and Updates 21 09-10-2009 04:37 PM
converting 12 Volts to AC with a Used UPS ? Marty Smiltneek Modifications, Alterations and Updates 3 07-17-2009 03:38 PM
12 Volts provider for testing Legacy Posts Modifications, Alterations and Updates 2 06-05-2003 10:52 PM

» Upcoming Events
No events scheduled in
the next 465 days.
» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:39 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.