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Old 08-08-2016, 09:18 AM   #1
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Dometic Fridge Concerns

I bought a new Rockwood 8299BS 5th wheel in February with apposing slides with a side-by-side fridge (Dometic RM1350) in one of the slides. When I first bought it, the fridge seemed to work good but seemed to run often...or at least the fan(s) seemed to run a lot. I set my fridge at the #4 setting which dialed in at around 34 to 35 degrees F. This past week I went to Challis Hot Springs, Idaho and had a camp spot with an easterly view. That meant the side of the camper with the fridge faced west and was exposed to the hot afternoon sun where temps got to around the mid 80s. The inside temperature of the camper was kept around 70 degrees by using the air conditioner. The fridge was struggling to get below 40 degrees. It ran constantly and was holding 40 until later in the evening when it finally got to 35 degrees. Still 1 degree higher than it normally would get down to. The fridge had been running for about 4 days so the food had reached the temperature of the fridge. The next day, the fridge temp drifted up to about 38 degrees during the day and later returned to 35 degrees later in the evening around midnight. I noticed when it got to within a couple degrees of the target temperature, the fan (I think it was the fan) cycled ON for 45 seconds, then OFF for 45 seconds. It repeated that cycle for about 4 hours until it finally reached the target temperature.

I was plugged into a 50 amp service at the RV park and I also tried to run off propane to see if that made a difference....it didn't.

I posted this same message on rv.net and was advised to buy an ARP and external fan system along with adding a baffle at the top of the fridge to help efficiently exhaust the hot air. In looking at drawings from various posts, it's not clear to me how to install the baffle.

What are the thoughts from this forum? Am I expecting too much from a camper fridge or is there something wrong? Should I be looking at a modification to the vents/fans for the fridge?

Thanks in advance!
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Old 08-08-2016, 11:25 AM   #2
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Since your fridge is in a slide, you need the fans and possibly the baffle. Have you checked to see if there is a baffle in the vent stack?

Are there two fans in the stack?

You can find instructions on the fans and baffle in the Service Manual starting on page 33.
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Old 08-08-2016, 11:44 AM   #3
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I was having the same issue with my 1350. I added a "fan set" atraching it to the fins on the inside of the fridge to help circulate the air. I also added 2 of the Valterra A10-2606 ( battery powered) fans in different shelves inside the fridge to help circulate air. AND I purchased a Dometic fan kit, (it's an option and I don't know why they don't install them), that is placed behind the fridge, between the outside wall. It pushes the hot air out the upper vent. This I had to have the dealer install as you really need to pull the fridge out. These "mods" have worked well, and the temp is a steady 31 degrees all day long!!!
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Old 08-08-2016, 05:46 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bama Rambler View Post
Since your fridge is in a slide, you need the fans and possibly the baffle. Have you checked to see if there is a baffle in the vent stack?

Are there two fans in the stack?

You can find instructions on the fans and baffle in the Service Manual starting on page 33.
It looks like two fans are installed. I took a picture looking down the upper vent. They look like those cheap, loud 80 mm fans that older computers used. See attached. The second photo shows the upper vent, straight on. It doesn't look like there's a baffle installed and I'm not sure what the two pieces of wood do except cut down the size of the upper vent by 50%.
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Old 08-08-2016, 07:40 PM   #5
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This helps too
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Old 08-08-2016, 08:06 PM   #6
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I love it!! Did you add hinges??
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Old 08-08-2016, 09:31 PM   #7
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We have the sister Flagstaff 8529IKBS but it has the same 1350 refrigerator.
We too struggled to get the refrigerator to acceptable temps.
Ours has the same factory fans as in your photo. I added a 80 cfm ball bearing fan at the bottom blowing up and cut a hole in the two pieces of wood (second photo) and installed a 120 cfm ball bearing fan blowing out, at the top vent.

These fans work way better than the factory fans and are so quiet you can't hear them.
I wired them so they run anytime the fridge is on. Easy to do from the existing relay mounted to the rear of the fridge. The noisy factory fans never even come on now.
Temps were consistently at 0 for the freezer and 32-35 for the fridge.

About three trips out after adding the fans, we experienced higher temps in the fridge but not the freezer.
After rechecking the fans I didn't see anything that seemed amiss.
Continued diagnosis revealed the plastic divider between the bottom doors was not completely rotating closed when shutting the left door and it was actually gapped open about 1/8". You couldn't see it but you could feel the cold air pouring out when you got close enough.

Pulling the divider completely towards the front of the fridge solved the temp problem.
I've not examined the divider yet to determine why it isn't closing completely and for now, anytime we have opened the left door, we just give it a pull forward on the divider before we close the right door. Great temps again!
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Old 08-08-2016, 10:32 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 5picker View Post
We have the sister Flagstaff 8529IKBS but it has the same 1350 refrigerator.
We too struggled to get the refrigerator to acceptable temps.
Ours has the same factory fans as in your photo. I added a 80 cfm ball bearing fan at the bottom blowing up and cut a hole in the two pieces of wood (second photo) and installed a 120 cfm ball bearing fan blowing out, at the top vent.

These fans work way better than the factory fans and are so quiet you can't hear them.
I wired them so they run anytime the fridge is on. Easy to do from the existing relay mounted to the rear of the fridge. The noisy factory fans never even come on now.
Temps were consistently at 0 for the freezer and 32-35 for the fridge.

About three trips out after adding the fans, we experienced higher temps in the fridge but not the freezer.
After rechecking the fans I didn't see anything that seemed amiss.
Continued diagnosis revealed the plastic divider between the bottom doors was not completely rotating closed when shutting the left door and it was actually gapped open about 1/8". You couldn't see it but you could feel the cold air pouring out when you got close enough.

Pulling the divider completely towards the front of the fridge solved the temp problem.
I've not examined the divider yet to determine why it isn't closing completely and for now, anytime we have opened the left door, we just give it a pull forward on the divider before we close the right door. Great temps again!
What are the boards for in the upper vent? They must have some function. I was thinking of removing them but didn't want to ruin the original installation. Is the relay you wired the fans to in the lower vent area? Do you have the model numbers or pictures of the fans you installed?
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Old 08-09-2016, 04:29 AM   #9
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Yes hinges..
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Old 08-09-2016, 07:31 AM   #10
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RV Cooling Units

I would highly recommend the interior fridge fans and the exterior fan kits from rvcoolingunit.com

Internal fan:
http://rvcoolingunit.com/Dometic-Eva...-P2428153.aspx

External fan kit:
http://rvcoolingunit.com/Dometic-add...-P3261872.aspx
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