Water entering frig vents while driving - Fiberglass RV


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Old 05-20-2014, 12:18 PM   #1
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Name: John Michael
Trailer: Scamp 13
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Water entering frig vents while driving

On a recent trip thru some heavy rain I was surprised at how much water entered the frig vents on my Scamp 13. I have considered several ideas to prevent this, including some kinda drain pan, removable inside plastic cover, EZE rain gutters to gather and move water away, etc. Have any of you given this any thought? I would love to hear about your solutions, or is it just a non-problem?

Thanks, john
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Old 05-21-2014, 09:21 AM   #2
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Trailer: 1999 Scamp 13 ft and 2003 Bigfoot 17 ft (15B17CB)
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Good morning John,
This sounds like a goo topic for discussion at our rally. Have never had the problem myself though. Tony
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Old 05-21-2014, 10:19 AM   #3
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It just happened to down pour while I had the refrigerator removed for replacement in my 1988 Scamp 16 and I witnessed it. I sat inside and watched a lot of water drip off the louvers outside and a little come inside. It did not seem to be much of a problem but I can understand how some could get splashed in going down the road in a heavy rain. About all I can say is that is the beauty of a FGRV, a little water doesn't cause big problems, as long as it is not constant and gets dried out.

I should add that I did add screening to the back of the refrigerator vents while I had the refrigerator out of the way. I was a little surprised that they were not "protected" with screening as the back of A/C louvers were on my Scamp. I did not want bugs (dirt daubers mostly) building nests behind the new fridge. I had one Hornet nest in there when I started, they died an untimely (from their standpoint) death. This screening may help with the water splash somewhat.
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Old 05-21-2014, 11:25 AM   #4
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I noticed the same thing in our 13' Scamp when I had the fridge out. I used a white reflective roof coating that I had, on the floor in that area. I probably would have installed a couple of drain holes in that area if I was going to just re-install the 3-way Dometic, but since I was replacing that with a 12 volt only NovaKool, I just used aluminized duct tape on the back side of the louvers to seal all of them off except the very bottom and top rows. Never had noticed any water in there after, however, we do live in very dry Arizona.
Dave & Paula
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Old 05-21-2014, 11:46 AM   #5
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Name: Francesca Knowles
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Never having had this problem with my Trillium, it's hard to advise. It occurs to me that if you think at least some/all of what's getting in is doing so by running down the trailer sides, some sort of gutter affixed above the vent would serve to deflect that water.

Per adding screening or any other barrier to fridge vents:

Fridge vents are sized according to the needs of the unit both for intake and output. Even screening reduces air flow, and should never be permanently affixed to the vents. Nor, obviously, should any solid barrier be so installed except perhaps for in-transit use and then only if the fridge is off.
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Old 05-21-2014, 01:38 PM   #6
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Name: John Michael
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Part of my concern is dust infiltration. Water and dust made for a ugly looking mixture on the bottom of the frig cabinet space. After our 8000 mile maiden voyage it sure looked different from the factory new look at outset. We enjoyed two 500 mile days of constant high winds and downpour along the West coast (Seattle to Sacramento) and weeks of Southwest wind and dust. (Did I say it was a fantastic trip with most nights in stunning national parks.) The lack of sealing around the frig while good for air circulation made for lots of areas where cold air and dust could infiltrate into the living space. I wish I had opted for no 3 way frig and just installed one of the Danfoss 12 volt models that I expect can use much smaller/easier to seal venting or maybe no vent at all. The added heat might be good for our mostly cool weather camping. Certainly the propane frig gives off lots of heat. I wonder if my 100 watt solar panel would be up to the job or I could add to it. Less importantly I wish I had installed the quieter Atwood energy efficient furnace as opposed to Scamp's noisy Suburban only option. These two changes would cost more, but I can do the work myself which would help. Then again the dw likes the idea of a 16' side dinette/front bath Scamp so maybe it all can be real in a couple of years. Don't mean to grumble. I'm a born tinkerer and constantly redesigning things. We love our 13. Its a great choice and a lucky number for us.

Happy camping all, john
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Old 05-21-2014, 02:00 PM   #7
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Per dust getting in:

I'm unfamiliar with the way such things are installed in Scamps, but in the case of my Trillium the fridge sits more or less in its own compartment. Dust and cold air infiltration in trailer interior via fridge vent can be eliminated by sealing seams/openings between the refrigerator and the interior of the trailer.

Periodic vacuuming takes care of dust in the compartment itself.
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Old 05-21-2014, 02:15 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Francesca Knowles View Post
Per adding screening or any other barrier to fridge vents:

Fridge vents are sized according to the needs of the unit both for intake and output. Even screening reduces air flow, and should never be permanently affixed to the vents. Nor, obviously, should any solid barrier be so installed except perhaps for in-transit use and then only if the fridge is off.
I installed a 120v only "dorm" style fridge and even with the screening I am sure the venting is far more than needed. My plan is to someday install a 12v compressor style unit that I understand vents at the front and needs no rear venting. On the other hand, the A/C unit in the Scamp needs and exhausts far more air than the refrigerator yet has even less venting area. I wonder just what formula Scamp was using to determine vent requirements?
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Old 05-21-2014, 02:56 PM   #9
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Name: Francesca Knowles
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Timber Wolf View Post
I installed a 120v only "dorm" style fridge and even with the screening I am sure the venting is far more than needed. My plan is to someday install a 12v compressor style unit that I understand vents at the front and needs no rear venting. On the other hand, the A/C unit in the Scamp needs and exhausts far more air than the refrigerator yet has even less venting area. I wonder just what formula Scamp was using to determine vent requirements?
I should have been more explicit- I was talking about the three-way fridge owned by the O.P.; or for any gas-fired fridge. Vent sizing is critical for gas operation.

As I understand them, there are no "outside venting" requirements for electric fridges, which I think only need air circulation, usually supplied by clearances around the unit or sometimes through a grill in the front.
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Old 05-21-2014, 05:20 PM   #10
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If you go to the Dometic website they did have the specs for size and placement of the vents for proper refrigerator venting . If I remember correctly the venting method Scamp uses was the preferred method (Roof Vent)
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Old 05-21-2014, 06:04 PM   #11
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John , On my scamp a 96, when i had the fridge pulled out I put made a pan out of thin aluminum, the osb the fridge sits on was discolored but not rotten so I dont think to much water comes in or gets dried out pretty quickly
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