dometic fridge problem - Fiberglass RV


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Old 05-27-2014, 10:16 AM   #1
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dometic fridge problem

My guess is the 3-way fridge in our '85 is original... everything works with the new electrical i installed...but no fridge on 12 or 120v. (have not tried propane yet.) When i flip the switch there is nothing - no sound, no electrical hum, no compressor. There is power at the receptacle, and power going into the switches, but nothing coming out.

is it worth diagnosing and replacing parts on a fridge this old or just replacing it? is there something im missing as far as a reset switch or anything?

how many have successfully used an old non-working fridge as an icebox?

i can get pics when i get home today if needed
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Old 05-27-2014, 10:18 AM   #2
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....oops meant to put this in problems...how can i move it without reposting?
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Old 05-27-2014, 10:27 AM   #3
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On a 3 way fridge there are no moving parts. The fridge will take time to cool. Hours. Both 120v and 12v are heating elements so if there is power, they will get warm. The heat is what causes the refridgerant to circulate. Be patient. Raz
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Old 05-27-2014, 10:40 AM   #4
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You will not hear a sound from the fridge and it will take it several hours to cool down so its hard to know if it is running. And indoor outdoor weather station comes in handy.

Is there a fuse in the converter for your fridge that may be tripped?
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Old 05-27-2014, 10:49 AM   #5
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Remove the outside refrigerator access door and see if the refrigerant lines are warm . NO heat , not working
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Old 05-27-2014, 11:08 AM   #6
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No kidding?!?! No sounds huh... I will check it out again tonight.... If it take hours to get cold.... How long does it stay cold after unplugging?
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Old 05-27-2014, 11:24 AM   #7
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We usually start our refrigerator 24 hours in advance of loading it up for a trip
Your refrigerator is an absorption type refrigerator and needs to be "Level" to operate properly
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Old 05-27-2014, 11:47 AM   #8
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It's almost a case of if it's making noise it's broke. Not really of course because the normal Dometic type fridge won't make noise either way. I usually check the flue as it should get warm to the touch after an hour or so on 12V or 120V.
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Old 05-27-2014, 11:50 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by summer scamp View Post
No kidding?!?! No sounds huh... I will check it out again tonight.... If it take hours to get cold.... How long does it stay cold after unplugging?
The slow cooling is a product of the method used to cool, it is slow and steady. Put a bowl of water inside with a thermometer in it and try leaving it on overnight.

The good news: If it cools on Gas or Electric, it's usually worth fixing. If none of them work there is usually a leak in the system and it's food for the scrap pile monster. If you smell any ammonia, it's time for a new one.

BTW: That refrigerator runs on Ammonia and Hydrogen Gas, not Freon.

It doesn't stay cold all that long when turned off, but the flame or heating element stays on most of the time when running.
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Old 05-27-2014, 12:51 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by summer scamp View Post
No kidding?!?! No sounds huh... I will check it out again tonight.... If it take hours to get cold.... How long does it stay cold after unplugging?
Depends ..... how cold the food within in it is (only put pre cooled items into it) and if you put a few freezer packs in it to keep it cold like you would a cooler. Oh and don't open it if wanting to keep it cool while shut down.
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Old 05-27-2014, 01:21 PM   #11
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Ah the dark art of absorption refrigeration. The movie Mosquito Coast has a huge one that he uses to make ice for the south american tribes. It all goes bad though.

Ironic that heat can be used to make cold eh? I don't claim to have a firm understanding of all the physics, but partial pressure has a lot to do with it.

The big advantage is that a 20# bottle of propane is all you need for a couple weeks of cold beer.
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Old 05-27-2014, 03:38 PM   #12
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HOLY CRAP IT WORKS!

Turns out I was just shutting it off too soon before it would get cold assuming I should hear some sort of noise...

Down 77 to 37 degrees in 3 hours on the coldest setting.

Thanks for the help!!
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Old 05-27-2014, 03:54 PM   #13
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I take it you were measuring the temp in the freezer compartment?

Was that on Gas or Electric.
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Old 05-27-2014, 04:32 PM   #14
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I just clipped my meat smokin thermometer on the middle shelf.... I don't see how a there would be a freezer section? It's all one compartment??

This was on 120 to start the I switched over to 12v to make sure it maintains temp. Both seem to work. Haven't tried gas yet.
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