Refrigerator NOT being level questions.

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DonTom

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They don’t use much power but you should count on adding a 300 or 400 watts of solar to compensate as well as double your current battery bank.
I consider 8 amps to be "much" (more than 100 W perhaps almost continuous on a warmer day). But one of the major dislikes of the Thor Axis was it looked rather difficult to make any changes, unlike the RV I did buy which was quite the opposite. Even adding to the battery in the Axis would be difficult and could not be done in the area of the stock house battery location. The RV I did buy has a ton of room in the house battery area, in case I want to add to it. But I should not ever have that need with the new system I added shown in message number 59 here. But if those stock 6V L-A batteries crap out before I do, I will probably replace the two stock 6 volt L-A batts in there now with a new 12V lith battery.

-Don- Reno, NV
 

Viajeros

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I consider 8 amps to be "much" (more than 100 W perhaps almost continuous on a warmer day). But one of the major dislikes of the Thor Axis was it looked rather difficult to make any changes, unlike the RV I did buy which was quite the opposite. Even adding to the battery in the Axis would be difficult and could not be done in the area of the stock house battery location. The RV I did buy has a ton of room in the house battery area, in case I want to add to it. But I should not ever have that need with the new system I added shown in message number 59 here. But if those stock 6V L-A batteries crap out before I do, I will probably replace the two stock 6 volt L-A batts in there now with a new 12V lith battery.

-Don- Reno, NV

Yah. We sold our pusher and are going small as we need to be able to get on and off the channel ferries easy (and cheap). We had a choice between the 12 volt DC fridge and a 3 way (yep 3 way) 3.3 cubic foot fridge. A little step down from the 21 foot whirlpool in the pusher. LOL. We actually wanted the DC compressor fridge but it actually changed the floor plan and ours it in an awkward spot. So we went with the 3 way which opens at eye level. Meh. If we hate it I’ll swap it out for a DC compressor type. Trailer arrives April ish, Tesla model Y to pull it arrives March according to our SA. Woohoo. Already have a 7 week 2144 kilometre adventure planned, including 6 ferry rides. Yee haw.

Cheers.
 

CharlesinGA

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50 miles south of Atlanta, GA
There is no easy fix. The crystals cannot be made to go away, they just plug up the system.

Norcold says their limit is 3 degrees left or right (looking at the front or rear of the fridge, and 6 degrees front to back, (again, looking at it toward the front or rear). Dometic says the RV needs to be level enough for you to be in it comfortably. If you cannot sleep in it comfortably then its not level.

Its not just operating on propane, its operating at all, not matter if propane, 120v AC or 12v DC, the problem is still the same.

Charles
 

JudyJB

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My motorhome is a 2012 model, but I was told it could be so unlevel as to feel very uncomfortable walking around and still not damage my Dometic refrigerator as the newer refrigerators are much more forgiving than the old ones. And, indeed, I have parked in some VERY unlevel situations, and even after 9 years on the road, my refrigerator is chugging along just fine.

I would suggest that you contact the manufacturer to find out just how out of level yours can be without damaging your unit. Make sure you have the model number and serial number to give them.

Also, FYI, i have left my refrigerator full of food and operating on propane for as long as 9 days in an airport oversize vehicle lot in 75-80 degree days, and when i got back, my food was still cold or frozen, depending on the particular compartment! I also have left it for 5 days in over 90 degrees and it did just fine then also. Battery was still mostly charged, as well. No need to completely empty your refrigerator while you have to fly out to somewhere. I'll be leaving it for 8 nights after Christmas this year to fly back to see my kids from Florida.
 

DonTom

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And, indeed, I have parked in some VERY unlevel situations, and even after 9 years on the road, my refrigerator is chugging along just fine.
I can say the same for my Y2k Dometic RM 2652. Kinda why I started the thread. I figured it should have been ruined by now, but it still works perfectly after all these years of being mistreated, as far as levelling when stationary is concerned.

Especially when parked here overnight to get it cold enough for a trip in the morning, such as the night before my recent trip to Oregon.

But perhaps I should at least put some wooden thingies under the wheels to help make it a bit more level, instead of pressing my luck.

-Don- Auburn, CA
 

John From Detroit

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Davison Michigan
I did the math.. Unlevel enough to do damage is about 5" over 8 feet, That's 5" side to side on most RV's. You would not be comfortable at that much slope.. The calc is linier that is 5" over 8' 10 over 16, 20 over 32 .
 

Ray-IN

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Most recreational refrigerators will work properly as long as they are within 2 degrees of level side to side and 4 degrees of level front to back. More modern models of RV fridges are more forgiving, allowing for proper operation within 3 degrees of level side to side and 6 degrees of level front to back. That is what the manufacturers recommend. In general, if the RV is level enough to walk about without much notice, it will be fine for the refrigerator. If you feel that you are walking up a hill, probably not OK.
Exactly!
Quote:
Leveling:
The refrigerator is made to operate within 3° off level side-to-side and 6° off level front-to-back (as looking at
the front of the refrigerator). Operating it at more than these limits can cause damage to the cooling system
and create a risk of personal injury or property damage. Make sure the vehicle is level before you operate
the refrigerator.
Operation during travel:
While the refrigerator should be level when the vehicle is stopped, performance during travel is not usually effected.
reference: https://norcold.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/norcold-323-refrigerator-owners-manual.pdf

The solution for parking when the slope exceeds that is the ARPrv /Fridge Defend unit.
 

JayArr

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Jun 13, 2020
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Mission British Columbia Canada
I bought a replacement, rebuilt cooling unit from RV Cooling Unit Warehouse this spring for $525US, add $245US to ship it to Canada it was $760US. At .7823 cents on the dollar that would be $971CDN. These guys sell what's commonly referred to as the "Amish" cooling units. They are better than the OEMs.

Since I'm in Canada the seller told me I didn't have to ship the core back to him.

Mine was clogged on the inside with crystals, there was no leakage and no telltale yellow powder but when you lit the burner or applied AC to the heater it would boil and gurgle. It would not get cold. You could run your hand along the pipe and feel where the resriction was, up near the kink at the top. It would be warm to hot on one side and not on the other.

I tried the rotate it 90 degrees each day trick - no luck. I tried tapping and vibrating the area near where the blockage was but couldn't break loose the crystals inside.

It wasn't all that difficult to change the units out in the fridge but I did need a neighbors help to pull the fridge out of the trailer and get it into my garage and then back into the trailer once it was fixed. Once out of the trailer I could easily pick up the fridge myself. They aren't as heavy as compressor fridges.
 

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Kirk

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If it's that important to safety, I am surprised it's not already in every newer RV refrigerator.
Paul Unmack has tried to get interest from both Norcold and Dometic but they do not want to pay for the right to use it. They have both added heat sensors in the burner/boiler area in an attempt to prevent more refrigerator fires by some recalls and such but only cheap changes that help a little. There are a couple of after-market cooling unit suppliers that do put one on all of the units that they sell.

I have been using Fridge Defend now for almost 10 years as has Escapees Magazine technical writer, Mark Nemeth. In recent years the most common cause of fires in RVs has been the absorption refrigerator. I can't say with certainty that my refrigerator would have caught fire without it, but I can tell you that I sleep much better with it installed.

To me, adding the Fridge Defend to an RV refrigerator is much like choosing to use the seat belts in an automobile. Only a relatively small share of users ever actually need it, but we wear them just in case! It could also be considered an insurance policy.
 

DonTom

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Only a relatively small share of users ever actually need it,
IMO, all safety stuff is like that. Hard hats, motorcycle helmets, air bags, tower safety straps. Any of it is rarely needed, but it only takes the one exception in a lifetime to be killed by not using such stuff.

Last year, when I was in an RV Park in Yuma, AZ there was an old (at least looked old) RV that had major fire damage, that they were trying to figure out how to tow away while I was there. At the time, I was wondering how it caught fire. Now I wonder if it was from the refrigerator.

It looks like I will be ordering a couple of the fridge defend units, as now, because of you, I won't be able to :sleep: in my RVs as well as I have in the past until I have them installed.:)

-Don- Auburn, CA
 

DonTom

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I just ordered one for my old RV (roof vent) with the fans. I need to look at my new RV first, but I think it has side vents.

My new RV is 100 miles from me right now. But it will soon be here for the winter. And then I will order one for it as well.

I will leave for my Florida trip from here, perhaps on or around Nov 1.

-Don- Edit: Auburn, CA (said Reno from habit!)
 
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Laura & Charles

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Could be anywhere. Originally from Ohio. Go Bucks!
We installed one on our last coach. As Kirk said, I have no idea if it prevented any fires, but sure slept better with it installed. The extra cooling fans made a noticeable difference in how cold it got. A fan inside eliminated spots that froze milk. 😋 Fridge will be a side vent if installed in a slide.
 

Old_Crow

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Mt Laguna, California
I just ordered one for my old RV (roof vent) with the fans. I need to look at my new RV first, but I think it has side vents.

My new RV is 100 miles from me right now. But it will soon be here for the winter. And then I will order one for it as well.

I will leave for my Florida trip from here, perhaps on or around Nov 1.

-Don- Reno, NV
Is your fridge in the slide? Usually the only ones that don't have the roof vent are in the slide.
 

Kirk

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Usually the only ones that don't have the roof vent are in the slide.
Many of the smaller RV refrigerators are short and have storage above them and use a side vent. That is the case with our downsized travel trailer that we use now. Like Charles above, our refrigerator works significantly better with the addition of the fan which came with our Fridge Defend.
because of you, I won't be able to :sleep: in my RVs as well as I have in the past until I have them installed.
And I am pleased to know that you will now be more safe because of my post! That makes my day.
 

Ray-IN

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North America-somewhere
When forced to park out of level limits, the Fridge Defend will turn off and back on as determined by the boiler temperature upper limit in the Fridge Defend. Thus regulating operating temperature while keeping the unit cool inside while keeping it safe from damage..
The Fridge Defend is working all the time your RV refrigerator is operating whether on electric or propane.
 

decaturbob

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Oct 31, 2015
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central Illinois
most people do not know what 2-6 degrees equates in inches over the width or length of their rig. Its alot. The rig doe not need to be perfectly level at all.
 

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