Originally Posted by randyfloyd
I have an HW258, with a 3 way fridge. I didn't want to start another thread, so I figured I would ask my questions here. My fridge turns on, but it doesn't run. Could this be because I am not plugged into a 30 amp plug (just a normal 15 amp house plug)?
How can you tell it's on, but not running? Most all PUP and A-frame fridges (there are exceptions in some high walls) are continuous run (no cycling). On propane, the gas "temperature control" has nothing to do with fridge temperature. The control is simply a metering valve for the propane that determines the amount of gas feeding the burner. Similarly, if there is a "temperature control" for the AC mode, again it just controls the amount of AC power and therefore heat going into the fridge chimney.
According to the manual for the fridge in my Aframe, the AC coil is 100 watts (less than 1 amp of house power). The DC coil is 70 watts (less than 6 amps at 12V).
These RV fridges take time - 24 hours or more - to stabilize at the cool temperature.
The way I have always checked to see if my PUP or A-frame fridge is running is to feel how hot the chimney is. The hotter the chimney, the more the fridge is cooling. If the chimney is not noticeably hotter than the outside air, it's not cooling.
Inside the fridge, the fuller the fridge is, the better it cools. That's because there is no fan to circulate the cool air - it cools strictly by convective air currents. Objects (packages of food or drink) at different temperatures from the cooling fins increase the convective air flow. Those who need greater efficiency or cooling from their RV fridge will install computer fans inside (increase convective air flow) and/or at the bottom of the chimney (sometimes baffles instead of fans) to increase air flow across the condenser coils.
I plug in the camper 12 or 36 hours before a trip, and start the fridge on AC max cool. I tow with the fridge in DC mode. Food is carried in coolers in the car because unlatching the roof and raising slightly to open the door to crawl to the fridge door is a pain. After setup at camp I load the food and drinks, and I run on propane or AC (depending on hook-ups) with fridge on 7 of 8 scale for the 1st 12-24 hours. Then if (usually when) stuff inside is starting to freeze, I turn the cooling down a couple of numbers.
keeping camping simple
now: 2014 Rockwood A122 Aframe
before: 2000 Coleman Westlake PUP