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Old 09-05-2017, 09:29 PM   #1
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2017 16' Sport
Cherry Log , Georgia
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Dometic fridge not cooling in hot weather -16' Sport

Recently took my new 2017 16' out west for 3 weeks. Was shocked to find that my Dometic 2way would get as warm as an internal temp of 68° while on propane. I fully understand how to use the thermistor, limited door opening, and actually had used ice to cool it down. If the outside weather got above around 80°, it would not hold temps below 43°. It performed the same way on shore power. We were able to get down to 30° - on cool nights and cooler overcast days. I have read many blogs with same or similar issues, but wanted to get more feedback in one area. Appreciate all info and help!
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Old 09-05-2017, 10:09 PM   #2
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San Diego and Julian , California
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Hello Goingcamping,
We have had good success with our 2017 sixteener's fridge, but I am routinely checking on it. I keep a Taylor thermometer inside the main compartment of the box to check, making sure the milk is staying cold enough for my son's favorite beverage. I have discovered that when we are boondocking, using propane, and if the outside temperatures are busting 90 degrees, then the fridge has a hard time. In those conditions the internal temp may be 43 degrees and I have to tell everyone to stop opening the fridge door.

It seems you are having more troubles. I am wondering if you are plugging into shore power the evening before you leave on a trip and giving your fridge several hours to cool down. This seems to work better than placing ice in the interior. Try turning on the fridge while it is empty for a few hours. Then, stalk your cold food and drinks in the morning just before you depart.
Give it a whirl. If you are continuing to have problems think about contacting your dealer to get a repair or replacement.

Best,
Sandy
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Old 09-06-2017, 05:39 AM   #3
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Miller , Missouri
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My first trip the fridge would cool either. I found that the camper wasn't level. I leveled it and have had no problems since in my 16 sport. I do run the fridge for a day before I go on trips though. It's not the fastest at cooling.
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Old 09-06-2017, 11:07 AM   #4
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Cherry Log , Georgia
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Thanks so much for your reply. Yes, unit has been pre-cooled (30-31°) and is level. But as soon as temps rise, inside temps fall. I have a thermometer that registers inside temp without opening door. I have found that if we are traveling and on propane and it is very hot, it has a very very hard time... with not opening door at all. Does that sound right? Also, if I understand, I should expect the unit to remain at 32° +_ in all temps as long as pre- cooled, loaded with cold items and kept at that temp for reasonable amount of time - unit level and limited opening.... is that correct?
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Old 09-06-2017, 11:28 AM   #5
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Carlisle , Pennsylvania
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Hi

I would second the advice about checking the level of the trailer. Most phones have apps that will let you measure what's going on. Anything beyond a couple of degrees is likely to be an issue for an ammonia based fridge. Exact data on just how far you can go is not easy to come by.

Once you get a "bubble" in the evaporation pipe, it may be a bit hard to eliminate. The stock directions tell you to turn everything off, come up to room temp and start all over again. I've *never* followed those rules when problems have come up, but that's what it says.

Bob
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Old 09-06-2017, 01:18 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goingcamping View Post
Also, if I understand, I should expect the unit to remain at 32° +_ in all temps as long as pre- cooled, loaded with cold items and kept at that temp for reasonable amount of time - unit level and limited opening.... is that correct?
Mine stays at 32-33 overnight, but will warm up to 36-38 in the heat of the day-- 90+. That is if we don't open it. If in use it will rise up to the 40-42 range occasionally, then drop back down after a couple of hours not being opened.
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Old 09-07-2017, 07:47 AM   #7
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Cherry Log , Georgia
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Many thanks to all for your help! It is clear I need to have my unit checked out and double check leveling! In addition, I met with my dealer yesterday and the technician told me that airstream has acknowledged that the ventilation at the rear is not as functional as it needs to be. On the top back of the unit, they are installing a piece of metal below the heat vents so that the heat flows outward through the vents (versus being trapped in the area behind the fridge). I believe that they will also installl a fan as extra push out for the hot air. I am taking my tin can in for the fix in a couple of weeks and will share pics. (Note that if you open the top exterior vent panel, you will see the top backside of the fridge. There are black fins (best description) - this is where the heat is coming from. The metal sheet will be installed at an angle - from just under these fins to a place where the heat coming off will not flow back into the entire area behind the fridge. Hope this makes sense. Again, thanks to all and let's keep this going. We will see how the "fix" works!
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Old 09-07-2017, 07:57 AM   #8
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Bend , Oregon
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It is possible you have a faulty unit, but in case it is not, I can recommend:

1. Make sure the fridge is level, put your level on the inside of the bottom of the fridge or freezer.
2. Do you have a fan at the back of the fridge to draw hot air out of the compartment? Is it working well? if you search "fridge noise" on these forums you will see many have upgraded their fans.
3. Use a small air circulator fan inside your fridge to push air around. You can get them from camping world for about $15.
4. Replace the thermistor. I changed to the "snip the tip" and my fridge has been rock solid since.

Hope this helps.
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