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Old 02-28-2015, 10:02 PM   #1
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Is it possible to bypass fridge power board?

I'm having some problems with my fridge (Norcold N611) and my hunch is that I've chased that problem to the power board. I've troubleshooted the unit and even replaced the thermistor. All fuses are intact, AC element is working fine and LP gas works fine. The unit simply won't stay on more than a few hours. It's as if the power board senses it's been on too long and gives up. With no need to run it on LP I would rather bypass the power board and run it on AC if possible. My question is would it be possible to wire the fridge to safely run strictly on AC and bypass the electronics all together? We full time and do not have a need for LP operation of the fridge. If I have to shell out $150 on a power board I would rather replace this thing with a residential unit for a $150 more and not worry about it. The energy savings will almost pay the difference in the first year. I'm a pretty handy guy but cooling systems are not my specialty. Any ideas?
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Old 02-28-2015, 10:15 PM   #2
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Short answer, NO!
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Old 02-28-2015, 10:21 PM   #3
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does the unit begin to cool during the few hours that its on?
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Old 02-28-2015, 10:23 PM   #4
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It cools down fine when I reset it. But it's usually only good for one cooling cycle. Won't cool again on it's own.
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Old 02-28-2015, 10:25 PM   #5
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What if it's going off on high temp? You by-pass the controls and burn down the house? Just sayin'
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Old 02-28-2015, 10:31 PM   #6
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That is precisely my question. Is it possible to do this safely. Refrigerators didn't always need a circuit board to run. I'm sure there is a way to design something that gets these fridges safely back to basics and have thermostat control. I hate the stranglehold companies like Norcold have on us. I called them the other day and they will not talk to a customer (unless of course to buy a new unit), only certified repairmen and told me to call a service center. What kind of company is that. I don't want to take the trailer in and sped three weeks listening to the shop try to talk me into spending a grand. I have better things to do.
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Old 02-28-2015, 10:46 PM   #7
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The board controls both side of the reefer (electric and propane) so the answer is no. It would be more economical to replace with a residential fridge then to replace with a gas/electric. You could also get a mobile repair person to look at the fridge on your site. No need to take to dealer. The repair person should be qualified to work on your style reefer. Is the reefer still under warranty? The appliances usually have a longer warranty then the trailer. If it is still under warranty see who the local repair person is for the Norcold fridge and have them do the warranty work.
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Old 02-28-2015, 10:49 PM   #8
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get an old 110 thermostat for a fridge. drill a hole in the back of the unit and clip the sensing bulb to the 5th fin. interrupt the line side of the power to the element and insert thermostat. can you go up a few inches? fridgedaire has a 12 cu ft that is 23 3/4 x 59 3/4...perfect for the larger fridges. 475 at home depot i think
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Old 02-28-2015, 10:57 PM   #9
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Not sure where your at but I have a perfectly good one we pulled from our 2011 sierra to install the residential..... I'm looking to sell it I'm in Oregon
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Old 02-28-2015, 11:05 PM   #10
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Exactly the conversation I was trying to get into. How do you connect the AC element to the outlet since it is no longer going through the power board? Simply hard wire them together? I read a question and answer post about a guy who did that to troubleshoot his unit but it wasn't for long term. How do you keep it from overheating or even would it? I've heard from RV techs the element itself gets to over 1000 degrees in normal operation.

Yes I do have room to go up, about 8 inches. I've looked at the Frigidaire's but I found an off brand at Home Depot for $318 that would probably work just fine. Only a few hundred or so more than a power board.
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