Refridgerator doesn't seem that cold - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-31-2003, 02:00 PM   #1
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Refridgerator doesn't seem that cold

I own a 13 foot Boler trailer. My husband and I bought it last July -- very exciting! Anyways, the previous owner had installed a new (3-way) fridge a couple years previous (in 2000). We've had the opportunity to use the fridge on a camping trip and a road trip (we ran it on propane). Both times I felt that the temperature didn't seem all that cold. The drinks I kept in there weren't very cold, and I had worries about keeping lunch meat in there too long.
I know that these little fridges aren't as powerful as the ones we have in our homes, but I thought they'd be better than a cooler. What are your experiences with your fridges? What do you think I should do to isolate the problems (if any) with mine?
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Old 03-31-2003, 02:10 PM   #2
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Not as powerful? Well, define power... True, they take a lot longer to cool down - several hours. But, once going, they should get cold. Real cold. I set my thermostat on 3 (out of 7), and it will freeze the veggies if I'm not careful. If it turn it up to 3.5, the water freezes. Check to see if you are getting a good flame. It should be blue, not yellow. Venting is also critical to these units. If air isn't flowing across the coils enough, it won't get cold. They sell fridge fans for this purpose -- it just helps the air circulate in the back, to improve cooling. If these things don't fix it, there is probably a problem with the cooling unit.
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Old 03-31-2003, 02:17 PM   #3
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Hi, Michele! :wave

Paul's right! Your refrigerator should be capable of very cold temperatures when running on propane. With the Dometic in our Casita, in fact, we have trouble keeping the lettuce from freezing (actually I won't even store lettuce in ours anymore!)

On the Home page for this website (you can click on the blue ''Home'' button at the top of this screen), choose Links from the column of options on the left (or, just click on Links, here). Under ''Troubleshooting'' are listed several good articles/websites about understanding how these refrigerators work and what can be done to make them work better.

Hope this helps...

:sunny
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Old 03-31-2003, 02:50 PM   #4
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Hi All
I make Ice cubes in mine.:wave
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Old 03-31-2003, 07:16 PM   #5
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The fridge we had in our 1980 tent-trailer would make ice-cubes in about 1 hour but the bottom of the fridge was just cool. We felt that in the enclosed area of the tent trailer, much like Boler and Trilliums setup, that much of the cooling of the fridge was offset by the heat build-up created by the flame. The larger trailers usually have vents up higher than the fridge allowing all that hot air to escape more easily. Many people with Bolers and Trilliums have added 12v vans to the back of the fridge to help vent that warm air.

We also discovered after a few years of not worrying about levelling that it is very important to have the fridge level or it will burn out some part of it.

Nancy
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Old 03-31-2003, 09:04 PM   #6
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Temps

Did you turn it on about 24 hours before you put any food in it? Like Paul said, cooling it down is the most important thing. Mine takes a bit of time to get moving, but once it does, I have to turn it to the lowest setting or it will freeze a bottle of water.

I didn't think mine was cooling that well so I tested it right after I got it. Was I shocked to find a bottle of water frozen solid when it wasn't even turned all the way up.

NOTE: This is on propane. I only have a two way, so can't speak to electric cooling.
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Old 04-01-2003, 09:33 AM   #7
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We checked it out last night
its a norcold 323, it has no thermostat, its automatically controlled by a thermocouple. Its possible that there is a calibration problem with that.

When the temps warm up enough that we can test the fridge we are going to put a thermometer in it and see how low the temp really is. Right now its still 32F 0C so its hard to test a fridge...
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Old 04-01-2003, 10:16 AM   #8
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No problems with my 6 cu ft Dometic

After years of shelling out 2.00 for each bag of ice while tenting (I love ice), those days are gone.

One thing we always do is make sure whatever cans of pop, juice or beer we stick in the fridge before heading out is really cold.
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Old 04-01-2003, 10:46 AM   #9
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Quote:
Orginally posted by Nancy D

* * * * * * The fridge we had in our 1980 tent-trailer would make ice-cubes in about 1 hour but the bottom of the fridge was just cool. *We felt that in the enclosed area of the tent trailer, much like Boler and Trilliums setup, that much of the cooling of the fridge was offset by the heat build-up created by the flame. *The larger trailers usually have vents up higher than the fridge allowing all that hot air to escape more easily. *Many people with Bolers and Trilliums have added 12v vans to the back of the fridge to help vent that warm air. *

We also discovered after a few years of not worrying about levelling that it is very important to have the fridge level or it will burn out some part of it. *

Nancy
That's a good point. It sure does get hot in behind the fridge. Extra venting might do the trick.
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Old 04-01-2003, 01:18 PM   #10
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My Dometic (1984 model), still works great. Freezes ice and icecreme keeps well. I repalced the 110 ac heater element last year, and pulled the unit out to clear wasp nests out at the same time.
I always put a few ice cubes in a tupperwear container from the house and put that in the freezer as I leave. if the cubes melt I assume the food has gone bad. This is more reliable than a thermometer, because it tracks the temperature continually. I have had the rig working great,then someone unplugged me, later a kind neighbor replugged me before I had hiked back to to the trailer. If I had relied on reading the thermometer I would have thought every thing was fine, and become one very sick camper.
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