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Old 05-05-2011, 08:10 AM   #1
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Fridge fan cycles on & off(drives us nuts at night!)

Just purchased a brand new 2011 Salem Cruiselite 26BH last weekend.
During the walkthrough with the dealership, we noticed a fan running on and off intermittantly(rv was plugged into 110v) and when asked, the guy basically gave me a vague answer as to what it was.
After signing off and heading to the lake, we noticed the fan wasn't shutting off at all(would cycle on for 10-15 secs, turn off for 20 secs, then back on again).
During the night, the fan noise was driving us nuts in keeping us awake. The battery also died around 2 am(luckily I had a spare).

Back at the dealership the next day, I explained this and was told it was the fridge fan and it was normal operation on the newer units!
Is this normal and also does this fan contribute to battery failure??
Please tell me something is not right for this thing to cycle on & off all day/night.
We had an "89 Tioga motorhome for a few years previously and never heard a peep from the fridge.
Also, my brother in law has a newer trailer and he says he rarely hears any noise from his fridge.
Any input on this would be great!
Thanks for reading.

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Old 05-05-2011, 08:14 AM   #2
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If your power center is directly below your fridge, you might be hearing the cooling fan on that. Depending on your fridge, you might not even have a fan in that. Mine doesn't, but I understand some now do.
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Old 05-05-2011, 08:43 AM   #3
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The power center is below the fridge.
We thought the fan sound was coming from there, but the dealer seems to think it's a fridge fan.
How woulkd I really know this and check it?
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Old 05-05-2011, 08:50 AM   #4
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Try turning off the fridge and see if the sound persists.
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Old 05-05-2011, 08:53 AM   #5
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Put your ear up to the power center to check.

On ours, if there is not much 12 volt pull from the battery, then the fan is off. With a couple of lights cut on, the fan will cut on. Makes me believe that the fan is load operated, and not heat operated.
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Old 05-05-2011, 09:03 AM   #6
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The OP states: the fan ran all night along and the battery being dead. This sounds like the charger was on all night long attempting to charge a dead battery resulting in the fan being on as well.

We had a similar issue (CHENG AC/DC Distribution Panel) and after contacting CHENG (the power center manufacturer) they told us the fan had three speeds: high, med, and low. The speed of the fan depending on the load.

Hope this is of some help.
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Old 05-05-2011, 09:50 AM   #7
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Wow, thanks for the replies!
Does this mean I can eliminate the fan noise coming from the fridge?
Just a note on charging, we fired up the inlaw's generator the next day to charge the dead battery(through the trailer 110v line) and the fan noise came on full speed while the gen was running.
This is why I don't think it's related to the fridge.
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Old 05-05-2011, 11:31 AM   #8
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X2 on what frankm said. Sounds like to me a bad battery, or at least low cells. Check your connections, and your battery water level; you need distilled water, and just enough to cover the plates. Fhen, charge it up and see if the problem goes away. You will hear that converter fan cycle on and off OCCASIONALLY, however, as that is how the battery gets charged normally. Even when plugged into shore power, the 12v side of the converter runs lots of stuff. Randy
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Old 05-05-2011, 11:41 AM   #9
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Definitely sounds like the Power Center - Converter. To verify whether your fridge has a fan, check the Model Number and Manufacturer, most owners manuals have part lists included with a drawing. Just look through the book or post the model number here with manufacturer and someone with the same fridge will know whether it has one or not.
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Old 05-05-2011, 04:30 PM   #10
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Well, looks like it WAS the fridge fan which is used to cool the electronics under load(not a Dometic thing, but a Forest River addon).
I verified that today by listening to it with 110 plugged in.
At FR's suggestion, they are going to move the sensor away from the heat source a bit as the fan thinks it's needed and kicks in all the time.
Stay tuned...
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Old 05-10-2011, 10:20 AM   #11
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So they moved the fan sensor to another location away from the constant heat source(I'm assuming) and the problem seems to have cleared up.
../fingerscrossed.
Thanks for all your replies and help.
Much appreciated..
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Old 05-11-2011, 10:48 AM   #12
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Do you know where they moved it?

I'm dealing with the cycling fan issue myself right now. Dometic C/S is telling me the vent fan sensor needs to be moved to avoid the annoying short cycling. They gave me a local repair shop. I called them and they never heard of it but said it sounds like an easy fix.

I'd like to fix it myself if possible, so I don't have to drag the camper out for this trivial (but annoying) item.

You wouldn't know what they did with the sensor? I'm thinking the sensor is right inline with the fan's airflow right now. Cool air blows on it and it shuts off only to get hot again a few seconds later.

Edit: As a side note my dealer is telling me it's the way it is and designed that way... Argh...
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Old 05-11-2011, 11:25 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtnguy View Post
Depending on your fridge, you might not even have a fan in that. Mine doesn't, but I understand some now do.

Here I go, quoting myself again.

I stand corrected, my DM 2652 does have a cooling fan. I got curious and checked out the schematics, and that puppy was listed right there in black and white. For them life of me, I can't find it.....I think it is above the outside access hole.
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Old 05-11-2011, 01:02 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhime View Post
So they moved the fan sensor to another location away from the constant heat source(I'm assuming) and the problem seems to have cleared up.
../fingerscrossed.
Thanks for all your replies and help.
Much appreciated..
To what constant heat source are you referring?
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Old 05-11-2011, 01:44 PM   #15
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Fridge Fan Cycle

Im having the same problem with my Rockwood refrig fan coming on and then turning in short cycles. Like mentioned above it was driving me nuts. To the point where I had to turn the refrig off at night to be able to sleep. Im also interrested in where the sensor is located and how to relocate it so this problem is resolved.

Dave
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Old 05-11-2011, 03:34 PM   #16
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Ok, I called my rv dealership and the service lady explained what they did.
She first mentioned that Dometic will pay for the work done at the service center under the warranty.
The thermal disc(on the exhaust of the fridge) needs to be moved further away from the fan sensor. The sensor was reading too much heat being too close to the fridge exhaust(the heat source I referred to).
The fridge needs to be pulled(and gas lines shut off and disconnected) to do this hence the service center should do it.
I hope this helps you guys out...
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Old 05-11-2011, 04:52 PM   #17
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Fan Noise

The one problem I see with just moving the heat sensor is that it should keep the fan from coming on so much but the noise will still be there when it does cycle on and that is still a problem for me. What really needs to be done is the sensor needs to be relocated and a new low noise fan needs to be installed. I think from other older posts this is how the problem can be resolved. Any comments on this. PS.....If one thinks the inside noise from the fan is loud just go outside when the fan comes on and hear the sound there. Even higher to the point I will not sit outside near the vent. Thats how bad it is.

Dave
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Old 05-11-2011, 06:22 PM   #18
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Our double door Dometic fridg has a fan and it runs on and off . During the day you dont hear it much but at night when you sleep you really can hear this fan and it is not coming from the converter. Sometimes you can hear a lot of sessions start and stop and after it can get quiet for a while and after the whole process is starting again. I gess we have to live with it. If it gets over your head a small fan in the background will blend the 2 noises together.
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Old 05-11-2011, 07:56 PM   #19
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Thanks for the info Rhime. I think I might just live with it for a while... But down the road I might look at an alternative solution. I'm thinking I'll install an always on ultra-quiet PC fan. I've read other forums of people using quiet 12 volt PC fans with success. Always on cause I think a constant quiet hum is better then on and off pattern. I could even install a concealed switch in a cabinet. I've called a local service center, guy was nice but never heard of any such repair from dometic under warranty. So I'm either fighting with them or doing my own thing.
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Old 05-11-2011, 08:00 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigdmc View Post
The one problem I see with just moving the heat sensor is that it should keep the fan from coming on so much but the noise will still be there when it does cycle on and that is still a problem for me. What really needs to be done is the sensor needs to be relocated and a new low noise fan needs to be installed. I think from other older posts this is how the problem can be resolved. Any comments on this. PS.....If one thinks the inside noise from the fan is loud just go outside when the fan comes on and hear the sound there. Even higher to the point I will not sit outside near the vent. Thats how bad it is.

Dave
I'm hoping the fan will only cycle on every few hrs at which point, I'll be fast asleep..
It could be possible to swap a quiet fan similiar to a computer fan.
*For those of you who might be willing to live with it, I would look into a fix because the cycling on & off will help with draining your battery.
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