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Author Topic: refrigerator not working  (Read 22041 times)

wolfchad

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refrigerator not working
« on: July 06, 2011, 02:26:45 PM »
hello all i am new to the rv world and have no idea how to use half the stuff in my rv i just recently bought a 1986 winnebago chieftain 27 and i can not figure out hoe to get the fridge working i turned it on the ac option and the check light came on so i switched it to gas and the check light came on so i tried auto option the check light came on now it will not even let me try the ac option only gas but check light still comes on is there some thing i have to turn on or do for this to work or am i going to need a new fridge.

John Canfield

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Re: refrigerator not working
« Reply #1 on: July 06, 2011, 03:11:24 PM »
Welcome aboard and congratulations on your Chieftain!  I'm going to nominate your post for one of the longest sentences I have ever read on this forum  :D.

Here's the manuals on most RV fridges - I would look yours up and follow the troubleshooting directions.  Most problems like yours I have heard about usually are related to low 12 volt voltage.
--John
2005 Horizon 40AD, 2006 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited
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Alfa38User

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Re: refrigerator not working
« Reply #2 on: July 06, 2011, 03:16:49 PM »
The make and model of the fridge would help a lot!!

The check light simply indicates a failure of the propane to light.

Had you plugged it in to 120V ? If not, then the problem is that if no 120V is detected, the fridge  will default to propane and it is not lighting for one reason or another.

Are your coach batteries fully charged??  12 Volts for the control circuits is required  to run on either propane or 120 Volts.

If you plugged in to 120V and the auto button is in auto position (if there is an auto button, some have one, some don't but all will default to propane if 120V is not detected), the electric heater should come on and the check light should remain off. It will take at least 8 hours before any notable cooling will take place. The fridges are silent so you will not likely detect the start up on electric as you do on a home unit. You could check the boiler for heat from the outside access panel but BE CAREFULL, it can burn you.

Try this for starters and if the propane still does not light we can examine some more reasons why not.

 If you have no documentation for your appliances, try here. You should also note the make and model of the furnace and the water heater and get those too.

http://bryantrv.com/

Let us know!!
Stu
Montréal, Canada 🍁
Snowbird, Naples Florida
Alfa Gold 38 (2000) 5ver (parked!)

"Of course I talk to myself, sometimes I need expert advise!!!"

wolfchad

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Re: refrigerator not working
« Reply #3 on: July 06, 2011, 07:49:39 PM »
thank you for the information i think it has to do with batteries i am not running very good batteries.when i use the gas option i can hear the flame burning and there is black box that clicks and shuts off the flame that is when the check light comes on. i believe the 12 volt system is not running right through the batteries because the ac option wont even light up know frfom what i gathered from the information you knowledgeable people gave is that with  2 good deep cycle batteries the fridge should operate correctly .I do have it plugged into 120v everything else works great the fridge was the only thing wrong but i think i should be able to figure it out thanks to everyone.Also thanks for the nomination.

John Canfield

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Re: refrigerator not working
« Reply #4 on: July 06, 2011, 09:24:38 PM »
....Also thanks for the nomination.

Next we need to get you to use the ShIfT key  :D.
--John
2005 Horizon 40AD, 2006 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited
Our Horizon projects
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Alfa38User

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Re: refrigerator not working
« Reply #5 on: July 06, 2011, 11:19:51 PM »
New batteries are a very good idea but, if what you say so far is accurate, then the battery is likely adequate for now. It has little to do with the fridge working on electric as the heater is 120V. not 12V and the 12V (battery) seems to be operating the circuit board as it should for now.

Gas operation:

Ahh... Now we get more interesting story. You stated that you heard the flame light... Perhaps so, if you observed it as it is normally very small and quiet. The little black box you saw contains the control board which likely has a relay on it. The first clicking heard is usually the igniter trying to light the flame. Usually, either the flame will light, or the igniter will try 3 times before giving up  and cause the Check light to come on.

 If the flame actually lights and then goes out, that is because the control board does not recognize that the flame has really lit. This is done by using a flame detector that sits in the flame and it is the same physical piece as the igniter. The detector works by generating a VERY small voltage back to the control board when it is heated by the flame and thus a poor connection will undoubtedly cause a failure and the Check light will come on.

Verify that the igniter/detector is sitting directly in the flame and then check the other end of the connecting wire making sure the connection at the board end is clean, not corroded and is tight. Remove, clean and reconnect as necessary.

120V operation:

For the 120V electric operation, the fridge usually has a normal plug in the back. Verify that it is  plugged into a live socket. (You can test the socket by plugging in an ordinary household 120V light if necessary).

If the socket is live, the next spot to verify is inside the little black box. Take the cover off and, using a voltmeter, CAREFULLY check the glass fuses. One* of those is for the 120V, and is usually a 5 amp one. If the fuse is blown, replace it with one of the correct value,  usually indicated on a label inside the box lid. The electric heat should then work and the Check light should no longer come on when the RV is plugged into 120V.

*On a Dometic fridge the fuse is labelled F5

AGAIN, the make and model of the fridge (or any other appliance) is important in order to help you with more accurate information. The model number of the fridge is often found on a label on the inside edge when you open the door.
 
« Last Edit: July 06, 2011, 11:50:44 PM by Alfa38User »
Stu
Montréal, Canada 🍁
Snowbird, Naples Florida
Alfa Gold 38 (2000) 5ver (parked!)

"Of course I talk to myself, sometimes I need expert advise!!!"

wolfchad

  • Posts: 3
Re: refrigerator not working
« Reply #6 on: July 07, 2011, 04:50:55 PM »
hey guys its me again my fridge is dometic rm2607 and it is not working i checked all of the possibilties you gave me and everything seems to be fine there fuse is good sensor is on the flame and heats up but only for about a minute and a half then it kicks off.I still have no idea why it will not let me choose the electric option only gas can be selected or auto but the ac part still does not work on auto.When i pulled the cord out of the socket in back the box surge protector thing was black around the holes like it had been fried but i checked the socket and it still has power going to it plugged the cord back in and still the same thing flame light stays on on for a minute and then clicks off and still cant use electric option.all connections are good i was wondedring if there were any other option that it could be again thank you for all of the help.

Water Dog

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Re: refrigerator not working
« Reply #7 on: July 07, 2011, 05:17:30 PM »
It sounds to me like it is most likely the circuit board, but if I were you I would go through the diagnostics in the manual. If you don't have one you can print one out here. If you decide that is what's wrong, you can get a dinosuar board online for, I think, around $100. I think the board is a P-711, but check that against your model #.
Dennis

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Dennis & Vici Bernhard
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Home: Sumner, TX

Alfa38User

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Re: refrigerator not working
« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2011, 11:00:20 AM »
Auto is the best way to operate so that the fridge will switch over on a power failure assuming everything works to start off!!!

To select Electric only, release the Auto button. The Auto light should go off and the AC light should  be on. I suspect if there is no AC 120V detected, the AC light will not come on. Does that light come on at all on yours??  If operating in the GAS mode the Auto light is extinguished. To restart in the gas mode the fridge must be turned off and then back on (This assumes the gas mode functions which it is not yet functioning on yours.)

Did you check the fuses using a voltmeter (VOM, Multimeter etc) for power on both ends or with an ohmmeter after pulling them?? These fuses can look good but still be defective. Remember some are 12V and one is 120V if poking around with a voltmeter.... check the docs  or the diagram found in the cover of the board. For example: you should  measure 120v at the terminal strip between terminals J5 and J6, between the bottom of the fuse using the fuse itself  and terminal 6 and the top of the fuse and terminal J6. 

On the gas side, the problem remains that the board believes that the flame is not being lit
You could have a defective igniter/detector. These are cheap enough to replace  ($20?) first.

I would be a little worried about that plug, sounds like it may have taken a hit at one point. Waterdog could well be right and the fridge circuit board (and possibly others) might be damaged as a result, or, the electric element itself could be defective. His idea of using the diagnostic mode as shown on page 17 on the docs is good, never tried that myself but I will when I am next at the trailer, just for future info. (currently 1800 miles away!!) There is a lot of good troubleshooting info in that section.

With all power disconnected and using the documentation you can find and measure the heater element for continuity. The presence of  120V to the element can be measured at the terminal strip by using the docs to find the correct terminals.

 (There are actually two circuit boards referred to in the docs, the lower (the one down below) and the upper, found behind the eyebrow (display) panel.  I have never had to deal with the upper one)
« Last Edit: July 08, 2011, 11:07:11 AM by Alfa38User »
Stu
Montréal, Canada 🍁
Snowbird, Naples Florida
Alfa Gold 38 (2000) 5ver (parked!)

"Of course I talk to myself, sometimes I need expert advise!!!"

 

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