Originally Posted by KeithA
For reference, is there a link to the replacement chart you speak of?
On a side note, do newer, replacement reefers have better cooling abilities and temperature control? Ours still works fine, but since it only cools a finite amount below ambient, everything warms up during the day and can freeze at night.
Link to the Dometic replacement chart
The basic principals of the Gas Absorption Refrigerator
has not changed for 80+ years. Older units usually suffer from corrosion buildup and other age related problems that effect the overall performance. I find that I have the same wide temperature swings even with a new fridge
. Because GAR's rely on the ambient temperature of outside air to control the temperature of the inside compartment, often times you can get much better reliability by some simple changes. One of the often easiest things you can do is park with the fridge side away from the sun. Some folks add some DC fans to the vent compartment, and things like that. In the end you can only achieve a certain amount of temperature differential from the ambient air. So the more stable that is, the more stable your ice box will be. A newer unit will be more efficient and if it is installed & used properly will give the best differential. But usually an old box will work fine too with a little tweaking.
One thing I have seen work on the old units is to pull them out and roll them around on the lawn for 20 mins. Sounds crazy, but it breaks up the corrosion and gets all the chemicals mixed up again. It really does work. Let it sit upright for a few hours before lighting
it up though. Clean the Flue and make sure you have a nice BLUE flame on the burner. If the flame is yellow/orange or flickers the burner needs to be serviced. Make sure that the compartment is clean and open for good air flow. You want to make sure that the hot exhaust is exiting that compartment quickly and not lingering around. A good pack of insulation around the sides of the box will help as well! There are a lot of threads and posts on this subject so a quick search should give you plenty of ideas to try.