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Old 08-09-2017, 03:04 PM   #1
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Fridge not cooling when on propane

I have a Real-Lite 1604 and love it! The only problem I am having is when running the fridge on propane, it only cools to about 55 degrees. When plugged into AC it cools to about 42 degrees. This becomes a problem when traveling long distances. I have two friends with Backpack editions having the same issue. Is this a known issue and is there a fix? Thanks!
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Old 08-10-2017, 12:00 PM   #2
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How old is the unit?
What fridge do you have?

Have you checked the propane line pressure? It should be 11" WC.
Have you checked the flue for soot deposits?
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Old 08-10-2017, 01:15 PM   #3
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New

My unit is a 2016 and my friends is a 2017. They are brand new and haven't been used that much. All other propane appliance work fine. The fridge works but it doesn't get as cold as when it's on AC.
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Old 08-10-2017, 01:26 PM   #4
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What's the make and model of the fridge?

I'd check the propane line pressure first.

Even though it isn't very old, the flue could still be sooted up. There should be a section detailing how to clean the flue baffle in the fridges service manual.
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Old 08-10-2017, 01:28 PM   #5
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I think it is a Domestic but will check tonight. It's a 3 way fridge. I will get make and model tonight. Thanks!
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Old 08-11-2017, 06:19 PM   #6
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I had pretty much the same issue as you on my Clipper. I thought all the other propane stuff was working fine but the fridge just wasn't cooling on propane like it would on electric. Once I checked the propane pressure at the fridge and found it to be only 5 WC and replaced the regulator, I was amazed at how the other things I thought were ok were working much better. Everything lights much quicker now. The water heater doesnt cycle as long or nearly as often. Check your pressure. Dad always told me, don't think. Know. Thinking I know usually winds up biting me in the butt.
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Old 08-11-2017, 06:25 PM   #7
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What should the pressure be? Thanks!
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Old 08-11-2017, 08:27 PM   #8
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Propane should be 11" of water column like I stated in post #2. Most real propane or RV dealers can check it for you if you're not familiar with how to do it.
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Old 08-11-2017, 08:49 PM   #9
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My Dometic had the same problem. I found that my pilot light housing was dirty and had cobwebs. After cleaning my fridge now stays at 38-40F and the freezer at 1-8F. I use an indoor/outdoor thermometer to monitor the fridge especially when traveling. I keep it the sensor in the freezer since I know if it is in range then so the fridge.
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Old 08-11-2017, 09:53 PM   #10
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I had a problem with my Dometic not being cold while traveling and called Dometic. They sent me a kit that I installed and on our recent trip to Colorado the fridge stayed around 38°-40°and everything in the freezer stayed frozen for the first time since we bought the camper 3 years ago. Ours is only a two way though not a three way. Might be worth a call to Dometic.
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Old 08-11-2017, 09:56 PM   #11
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What was in the kit
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Old 08-11-2017, 10:18 PM   #12
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Three covers to partially block the outside cover and a formed plate to cover the pilot light. It was a very easy install and worked very well.
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Old 08-11-2017, 10:44 PM   #13
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Check the flame, clean the orifice

First trip out two years ago, fridge quit on propane.
Solution, tear off the flame guard, remove the orifice (10mm?) and inspect and clean said orifice--wasn't plugged, just obstructed. As I recall, lighter fluid on a tooth pick to clean it out. Worked till sold this summer...
Dealer suggested might be dirt in the lines from the install...
Good Luck and happy travels.
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Old 08-11-2017, 11:21 PM   #14
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When using propane make sure you are as level as possible.
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Old 08-12-2017, 06:04 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dea49 View Post
When using propane make sure you are as level as possible.
That is true regardless of the heat source.

The most critical leveling is side to side on the reefer............so if it is mounted on a side wall, the fore/aft level of the camper is critical.

It is the tubing on the rear of the reefer, the cooling unit itself which has a very shallow slope and the fluid in the tubing must be able to travel from top to bottom. If it is off level for any length of time (even just a few hours) the fluid stops flowing and creates a stoppage in the corner bends. If this happens it CANNOT be fixed. The repair is a new cooling unit, they are not serviceable.

Not being level while traveling isnt a problem because the up and down movement over the road keeps the fluid moving.
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Old 08-20-2017, 02:51 PM   #16
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Fridge not cooling

Have 2017 class c built in early 16. The fridge works on gas but with the generator on it seemed to get warm or just not work. Checked the outlet and its fine. Its a domedic 4 door. It was in for service for the icemaker and they said it was the water was off and they tested it. This was mike Thompson rv in fountain valley ca, where we bought it. They suck!!! Could not get the icemaker to work either.
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Old 08-20-2017, 03:41 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Philkaty View Post
Have 2017 class c built in early 16. The fridge works on gas but with the generator on it seemed to get warm or just not work. Checked the outlet and its fine. Its a domedic 4 door. It was in for service for the icemaker and they said it was the water was off and they tested it. This was mike Thompson rv in fountain valley ca, where we bought it. They suck!!! Could not get the icemaker to work either.
The OP has a 3-way fridge in his truck camper.
It is way smaller than traditional RV 2-way fridges.
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Old 08-23-2017, 12:16 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Philkaty View Post
Have 2017 class c built in early 16. The fridge works on gas but with the generator on it seemed to get warm or just not work. Checked the outlet and its fine. Its a domedic 4 door. It was in for service for the icemaker and they said it was the water was off and they tested it. This was mike Thompson rv in fountain valley ca, where we bought it. They suck!!! Could not get the icemaker to work either.
The ammonia mixture is heated by flame (not enough to cool in my failed case) or electricity, measure between 4 and 5 amps on my unit when plugged into shore power, and the same power = volts x amps, should be provided by the generator. Does the unit work on shore power? if not, then there's likely a problem with the heater circuit, I don't really know, but replacing the heater may be factory service only...

I've had no good luck with domestic icemakers over the years, just saying;-)
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Old 08-30-2017, 12:22 PM   #19
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Fixed

It ended up being the pressure. It was at 6.2 from the factory instead of 11. Now the fridge cools like it is supposed. Customer service? You think they would check that at either the factory or dealer before they sell it.
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Old 08-30-2017, 12:37 PM   #20
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Thanks for sharing the fix. Glad it's working now.
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