Refrigerator will not operate on propane.

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JD Sharp

Well-known member
Jun 20, 2009
Ferndale, WA
Just replaced propane detector as stove would not lite, Found out that detector controls propane flow with solenoid. But now refrigerator in LP mode gives FL error and will not start. It works fine an AC mode and brand is Norcold.


Well-known member
Oct 4, 2007
The recommendation to use LP detectors with solenoids to control propane flow was discontinued quite a few years ago (perhaps mid 90's) so propane detectors with that feature are harder to come by. There is at least one make and model available, but I do not recall which one that was reported here recently. These detectors have a 4 wire connection as opposed to the non-solenoid versions with 2 wires.

It has often been recommended here that the solenoid, usually located nearby the propane tank output, be simply bypassed to solve the problem. Either that or install a detector that can handle the solenoid "feature". Since the solenoid did not simply use a 12V signal, but some other voltage as generated by the detector, finding a proper solenoid/detector combination might be problematic (and expensive) without replacing both.

Lots of info available here by using the search function on the menu line and looking for "propane detector solenoid" (without quotes).


Well-known member
Nov 8, 2009
Light the stove top burners.  Let them run for maybe a minute.  Shut off and start the refer.  Might take a few attempts before gas gets to the burner.

John From Detroit

Well-known member
Apr 12, 2005
Davison Michigan
One of the "Knee jerk" reactions to "A propane Appliance does not work" is "Air in the lines"

Now I do not know if you just replaced the detetor or if at some point you disconnected a line or the valve or otherwise opened the Propane lines and let air in (The only way it can happen).. But unlike the Furnace and Water heater (It is NEVER air in the line with those two as thy GUZZLE propane) The Fridge is a Propane Sipper  A line full of air might not be cleared by 3 or 6 attempts to light its fire.

By a dozen attempts however I'd start suspecting other things

Oriface (part clogged by insect actiity)
Bad solenoid
Bad mother board (control board)
bad flame sensor
Bad wire connection the last two
improper ignition point spacing (very common on furnaces not so much on Refers)
and the like.

Oh and all around bad connections. Had to do the unplug-replug on my Dometic one time.

Gary RV_Wizard

Site Team
Feb 2, 2005
West Palm Beach, FL
Just replaced propane detector as stove would not lite, Found out that detector controls propane flow with solenoid.
That would be unusual in a 2012 RV - new RV's have not had their LP detectors equipped with solenoids in nigh 20 years, since the NFP dropped it from the fire code.  It's possible that Tiffin kept on using solenoid-type LP detectors regardless, but that seems doubtful since they are quite expensive. Does the stove light OK now? And only the fridge is the problem? Have you tried the water heater in LP mode and the furnace?  All these items of info would be helpful in isolating the problem.

Some RVs have remote control shut-offs for the LP tank. They are used when the manual shut-off is not easily accessible. The remotes are switch-operated, not via the LP detector.


Well-known member
Aug 15, 2005
Tempe, AZ
Oldgator73 said:
Our fridge has not operated on gas on several occasions. I have used the stove technique on every occasion and it has worked every time.

My experience also.
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