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Old 05-30-2013, 09:47 PM   #1
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Question Fridge was working now its not

Hey everyone!! We opened up our camper early May and the fridge started up first try (YEAH). After using if for only a few days i noticed the fridge went out over night. No problem started it back up again figuring the wind over night knocked it out. Ran all day fine and noticed over night it went out again. Checked propane tanks (both full), battery was reading 2/3 full. Tried to start it again, only got one click then nothing. No "poof" of propane being lit and check light keeps coming on. Have now gotten a new battery (was told ours was only putting out 9 volts instead of 12) and tried it again a week later, still only getting one click and nothing else? fridge is only 3 years old as the person we bought it off of had it quit just before we bought it. Have had no problems with the fridge these last 2 years. Any one have this happen??
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Old 05-30-2013, 09:53 PM   #2
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first, it helps to know the year, make and model of RV you have.
second, the brand and model # of the fridge also helps.
it's either a Norcold or Dometic brand.
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Old 05-30-2013, 09:57 PM   #3
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Sorry bout that. Camper is a 2006 26 foot Flagstaff by Forest river. The fridge is a dometic. unsure of model number
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Old 05-30-2013, 10:00 PM   #4
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Does the fridge work on shore power; just not on propane?
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Old 05-30-2013, 10:05 PM   #5
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Camper is located at a permanent site with no electric hook ups. I run everything in solar power. we have tried to run fridge with a 1000w inverter attached to battery but all it did was squeal. (everything that could potentially draw power was switched off at breaker panel) Camper is level as we just re-leveled everything after the winter.
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Old 05-30-2013, 10:17 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by takethemickey View Post
Camper is located at a permanent site with no electric hook ups. I run everything in solar power. we have tried to run fridge with a 1000w inverter attached to battery but all it did was squeal. (everything that could potentially draw power was switched off at breaker panel) Camper is level as we just re-leveled everything after the winter.
We had a similar problem and suspect (reading the forum) that the battery was too low. We were able to connect a generator and the fridge would run okay for a period. The battery has to be providing 12v or there about. Since that experience we keep the battery charged, and careful with the power if using the battery by itself. There is condenser switch inside our freezer that draws voltage which we've turned off as well.
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Old 05-30-2013, 10:20 PM   #7
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I took a new fully charged battery over to camper this evening and can still only get the one click sound and nothing else. Battery is hooked up to solar panels 24/7 so constantly charges (deep cell marine battery) Fridge used to do 3 or 4 clicks then fire right up. Now only getting one
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Old 05-30-2013, 10:25 PM   #8
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Too true. Here is a photo of the switch Mike was talking about.
It is on the freezer door frame.

Also there is a high limit cut out sensor on the flue pipe. Makes sure to press that in to make sure it is set.

You may have a low battery (or the wrong type of battery). Solar may not have put enough into the new battery yet to maintain the voltage.

As to the battery monitor, remember that the monitor monitors the SYSTEM voltage and not the battery voltage. The battery could be dead (as yours was) and if the sun is making juice, the monitor would be reading "good" until you put a demand on the system. Remember "good" is 50% of capacity. When that light goes out it is time to start the generator.
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Old 05-31-2013, 09:37 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by takethemickey View Post
I took a new fully charged battery over to camper this evening and can still only get the one click sound and nothing else. Battery is hooked up to solar panels 24/7 so constantly charges (deep cell marine battery) Fridge used to do 3 or 4 clicks then fire right up. Now only getting one
I've had something similar on gas. If you open the access panel on the back side of fridge, find the wire that connects to the white igniter and trace it to the white box (if memory serves me, I think mine was white) and unplug it from that. Have someone reset the fridge, power on for "gas" mode and see if it clicks more than once. If it does, then the white igniter has a crack and needs to be replaced. That's what happened to my old rv.
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Old 05-31-2013, 10:31 PM   #10
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First off, take the access panel off and look round the bottom of the flue. If there are any traces of sulphur (a yellow substance that looks like flour), the cooling unit has died or is in its death throes. As I understand the chemistry, there's a reaction between ammonia leaking from a failed cooling unit and the exhaust gases going up the flue that produced powdered sulphur. My MH fridge died a couple of weeks ago with those symptoms. $1800 later, we have a new fridge installed.

At least the new one (US made) has adjustable temperature. The old one (a Swedish-built Dometic) didn't. I think it's downright bloody arrogant for a fridge manufacturer to say "we know best what temperature you need, so bugger off." The fixit shop was able to use the decorative door panels from the old unit on the new one, which saved a couple of hundred dollars.

I hope your problem isn't as bad as mine was. We'd fired up the fridge after the winter lay-over in preparation for a trip, only to find, the day before we were to leave, that it was dead. Boy, is the old-fashioned way (picnic coolers and bags of ice) a PITA!

The repair shop reckoned (and as an engineer I kind-of agreed) that an 11-year old fridge was probably all on its last legs (PC boards, sensors, etc), so a simple appliance replacement with a new one ($1450) and only 2 hours labor was probably a better investment than a new cooling unit ($900) with about 6 hours labor. It still brought tears to my eyes when I signed the charge slip!
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