Can a standard "home" refrigerator be used in an RV?
Our RV refrigerator is most likely dead. The boiler is working, but it is not cooling AND we are getting yellow powder which is suppose to be a sure sign of a chemical leak. We want to know if it is OK to replace it with a regular refrigerator. We found one at Home Depot which fits perfectly which we listed as the "product".
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Contact the manufacturer, Absorption refrigeration is an infrequently used alternative to compression refrigeration. Absorption refrigerators use a solution of ammonia and water as refrigerant fluid. A gas flame heats the ammonia and provides the energy that drives the cooling process. These models are generally very simple and have few moving parts. This is a very straightforward process. There are three main principles behind proper operation of an absorption refrigerator. Place the refrigerator on a level surface. Make sure that it is adequately ventilated. Check that the correct heat is being applied in the boiler. As long as there are no leaks, this should be enough for the refrigerator to work properly.
You will first want to ensure the RV is level.
If the RV is level, then open the rear access vent door on the side of the RV to access the rear of the refrigerator. Feel the coils just above the tank on the cooling system. These coils should be warm to the touch. If they are warm and the refrigerator is not cooling then you will require a replacement cooling unit. Also, the most common area for the Dometic 2652 to leak is just above the propane burner area. If it has leaked, you should see a yellow residue in that area. The cooling unit can be changed in approximately 2-3 hours with no specialized tools needed (Arcticold offers 7 day a week free tech support). The old cooling unit will simply unbolt and the new one bolts in. Check out ArctiCold Refrigeration We keep it cold (the highest quality product available) Arcticold New Cooling units come standard with a Lifetime Warranty. Install instructions are also provided with the cooling unit. Arcticold has locations across North America to provide fast delivery. Arcticold cooling units may be purchased over the phone (1-888-782-6665) or through Ebay- Dometic RM2652 Brand New Manufactured Cooling Units LIFETIME WARRANTY
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#2 Install a Arcticold RM2652 Cooling Unit Video
We are Arcticold refrigeration, we manufacture brand new replacement cooling units for Dometic & Norcold RV fridges. Our cooling units all come standard with install instruction, installation hardware, and a lifetime warranty. Feel free to give us a call to free 1-888-782-6665 I can send you the install instructions by email if you would like to take a look at them. In most cases it takes approximately 2 hours to change the cooling unit. I will also need the model number of Refrigerator you have. Visit ArctiCold Refrigeration We keep it cold for some info. Below is a example of one model of cooling unit we build. It is a Dometic RM2852 shown in the picture.
Make sure your roof vent is not clogged immediately. If you are in a full service park, you should be running on electricity not propane. You don't describe the gasses you are smelling, if it is ammonia, your frig is probably done for.
Ammonia is the primary ingredient in the cooling process. What happens is the ammonia is boiled and then sprayed throug an orfice. The spraying creates the cooling (heat removing) effect. If you are smelling ammonia, your boiler has developed a leak.
You can purchase replacement units to install in your present frig. Some people have success with this. My experience was not so good. I spent about $225.00 plus shipping for a rebuilt unit (with a 'core' charge). I did the work myself. I got about a year out of the rebuilt unit before I simply replaced the frig with a new replacement 3 way Norcold. My new Norcold was much improved over the earlier model and included a ice maker! It was expensive, however, at more than $1300.00. Find sources for replacement cooling units for your "Thetford" refrig at FixYa.com advertisers or through your RV dealer or in the back of travel trailer magazines.
I hope this is NOT your trouble and I hope you find resolution. Thank you for your interest in FixYa.com and please come again.
If your refrigerator has had a recall done on it I would check the L shaped bracket that was added as part of the recall, as it may have pinched thermal flame sensor and driving may slightly reposition it to cause an intermittent short blowing your 15 a fuse in rv panel. Remove it from the retaining fingers and slightly reposition fingers loosely around black insulation sleeve and reattach it to the previous location with the 2 sheet metal screws. Now if the refrigerator won't come on at all check the resetable hi limit switch that is riveted to your units boiler area a few inches above your gas flame area. It has a button you can press located in between the 2 connectors. Check for 12 VDC at the nylon terminal block in front of your main board AND on terminal J4. If power is there follow to the resetable hi limit switch on boiler. If you don't have power at all you may very well have a control board failure. You should check all 3 fuses on the control board also. So check all 4 Fuses (ONE) 15A on the RV Panel and the (THREE) fuses on the main board. If any of them are blown you can replace them ONCE only. If it blows the 15A Fuse on the RV panel again your going to have to locate the short most often from the RV panel to the main board on the refrigerator. If the fuses on the mainboard blow your going to have to troubleshoot the refrigerator wiring.
are you running gas to oper the frig in the rv or electricty if only using the heating element for the frig RV STYLE ONLY maybe starting to make and break causing intermittent cooling or not enough cooling in frig but at all thing concerned try to increase you temp setting higher if you have that option