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Old 07-03-2014, 07:34 AM   #1
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Refrigerator won't light on gas

2007 Safari 25 - fridge won't light. Igniter clicks, but pilot won't light. Any thoughts?
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Old 07-03-2014, 08:09 AM   #2
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1st checks... Gas supply good? Tank valves open? If you have an auto switchover regulator and the supply tank is empty, the reserve tank valve must also be open for uninterrupted switchover. Easy check is to light stove burner to verify gas is flowing. If gas is good, and as you say you can hear igniter, further investigating is necessary. Knowing what year model you have will help as more vintage models sometimes had separate gas appliance shutoff valves and other differences.


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Old 07-03-2014, 08:26 AM   #3
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Check the screen on the LP regulator (on the bottom). Last summer I worried with my fridge for 2 days trying to get it to work. Short version of the story is I found a mud dobbers nest over the vent screen. Once I removed it everything was fine.
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Old 07-03-2014, 08:35 AM   #4
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This has happened to me a few times. If you are certain you are getting a good gas flow and the igniter is sparking, go out and open the fridge compartment door,take the cover plate off, be sure the fridge is on and wave a hair drier across the area where the igniter is located a few times. This will help remove moisture build up, particularly if your trailer has been sitting outside in the rain a lot. My fridge is 2006 Dometic and this procedure has worked for me several times. This is certainly not in the owners manual and am not vouching for it being 100% safe.
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Old 07-03-2014, 08:41 AM   #5
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Sometimes the burner tube gets filled with rust that falls down the flue. Very common and it quite often won't light when it's dirty. Just went through this with mine a month or so ago. It's actually somewhat of a maintenance item.
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Old 07-03-2014, 11:05 AM   #6
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There is a module that runs the gas side that failed on my Alfa, I restarted it after maybe five tries but it would fail again when it restarts in a couple of hours. About $80 then
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Old 07-03-2014, 10:15 PM   #7
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Control circuit board failure is common.It is easy to manually light to get you running open access door on outside of trailer find oval flue on right remove the two screws on small access panel. Shut down refrigerator for a couple of mins have someone inside turn on and when you hear clicking light with a lighter.Replace panel and two screws and good to go.Replace poorly designed board with Dinosaur brand approx $100


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Old 07-04-2014, 12:15 AM   #8
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Control circuit board failure is common.It is easy to manually light to get you running open access door on outside of trailer find oval flue on right remove the two screws on small access panel. Shut down refrigerator for a couple of mins have someone inside turn on and when you hear clicking light with a lighter.Replace panel and two screws and good to go.Replace poorly designed board with Dinosaur brand approx $100


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That manual lighting will only work on most refrigerators until the thermostat says it is cold enough, then the gas will turn off and it will have to be re lighted when the thermostat calls for cooling again.

A few refrigerators, not many these days, use a two level flame which does not go out but is only turned down when the thermostat is satisfied. That type can be manually lighted and will stay operational.

The circuit board on that second type only provides the spark for the initial lighting, not for each time the thermostat calls for cooling, which is the normal refrigerator design used today.

I have one of each. My '74 Argosy has the two level flame system, my 2014 FC 20 has the total electronic ignition with the flame lighted each time the thermostat calls for cooling.
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Old 07-04-2014, 06:37 AM   #9
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We've experienced frustration with our fridge staying lit on gas. It seems to work had to light then it may or may not stay lit. This was a bit of a problem while on an extended trip last year that included many boon docking stops. While underway, the light seems to go out regularly, but stopped it seems more (but no fully) reliable. We have more or less gotten into the habit of turning the fridge off while underway. During a normal 7-8 hour travel day we have experienced no real problems with any loss of cooling.

One fix that seemed to improve the situation was to remove the cover plate to access and then adjust or remove the "baffle?" behind that. Seems that the increased air access helped a lot. Our dealer "could not find anything wrong". Calls to Dometic were not helpful, but of course they were not crazy about the removal of the baffle.
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Old 07-04-2014, 08:05 AM   #10
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That manual lighting will only work on most refrigerators until the thermostat says it is cold enough, then the gas will turn off and it will have to be re lighted when the thermostat calls for cooling again.

A few refrigerators, not many these days, use a two level flame which does not go out but is only turned down when the thermostat is satisfied. That type can be manually lighted and will stay operational.

The circuit board on that second type only provides the spark for the initial lighting, not for each time the thermostat calls for cooling, which is the normal refrigerator design used today.

I have one of each. My '74 Argosy has the two level flame system, my 2014 FC 20 has the total electronic ignition with the flame lighted each time the thermostat calls for cooling.
In my 2007 28ft International 3662 runs once its lit until you shut it off.It has a circuit board lighting system.Stayed lit for 2 weeks and 1400 miles after manual lighting when the system failed to light on its own.
Have you ever manually lit yours or just guessing???
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Old 07-04-2014, 12:12 PM   #11
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In my 2007 28ft International 3662 runs once its lit until you shut it off.It has a circuit board lighting system.Stayed lit for 2 weeks and 1400 miles after manual lighting when the system failed to light on its own.
Have you ever manually lit yours or just guessing???
I don't know which system your refrigerator has, the hi/low flame or the total flame shut down and re light each time. It sounds like it may be the hi/low flame system. If it is the hi/low flame system, it will remain lighted if done manually. Yes, I have done that on my Argosy when the electronic lighting system got grumpy and I know it works. There is a circuit board on my Argosy Dometic RM 2540 but all it does is spark light the flame initially and re lights it (in theory) if it goes out accidentally. However, it does not have the electronic flame detection, electronic gas valve control thermostat function and some other features that the more common refrigerator systems have today. I call those the total flame shut down and re light systems. Dometic first introduced them in the early 1980's and I had one in my 310 motorhome. My 2014 Airstream FC 20 also has one.

The total flame shut down and re light system must have the spark electrode set up just right to ignite the flame each and every time the refrigerator thermostat calls for cooling. Since that set up is a bit fussy, there is a possibility that an initial manual lighting after the unit has sat for a bit unused can, in effect, clear out the cobwebs and then allow the electronic ignition work after that. However, usually they are erratic from what I have seen, sometimes working and sometimes not.

The use of electronics in many ways is a real boon in control systems. Unfortunately, when they do not work right it is hard to bypass them or even diagnose their issues. As was mentioned earlier, fooling the control system to even allow gas to flow for manual lighting in the newer units requires just the right timing as it will shut down the gas for safety reasons if flame is not detected within a brief window of time.
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