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Old 03-24-2016, 02:26 PM   #1
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1991 35' Airstream 350
Austin , Texas
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Dometic cooling unit replacement advice needed

My Dometic RM3804 seems to be slowly dying!
Although the ice box (top) freezes, even on MAX, the rest of the unit (lower) remains sort of cold. So, I'm looking at replacing the cooling unit. Seems that pricing including shipping to Texas is between $520 and $600. Has anyone dealt with a specific supplier (there seems to be 4 or 5) and equally as important, has anyone attempted a RM3804 cooling unit replacement in a circa 1991 350 or 345 etc as in..are you crazy?
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Old 03-24-2016, 04:39 PM   #2
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I used these guys about 5 years ago. Seems to be a good remanufactured unit. Cools the best of any fridge I've ever had in my RVs.

http://rvcoolingunit.com/RM3804-Dome...it-P10996.aspx
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Old 03-24-2016, 06:08 PM   #3
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Derek right ? On your 3604 if your freezer is freezing I would say your cooling unit is working fine....have you throughly cleaned out the backside of the unit all the way up to the roof vent??? I had the same problem on my 325LE. I ended up having to remove the tin wall in the cabinet above the refrigerator to do a through job. When I was done everything works as well as it should.
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Old 03-24-2016, 06:09 PM   #4
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Correction RM3804 not 3604.
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Old 03-24-2016, 09:15 PM   #5
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Austin , Texas
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Bob/Rich..thanks for replies
Bob, can you be more "explicit" and expand on your remark, ".have you throughly cleaned out the backside of the unit all the way up to the roof vent??? I had the same problem on my 325LE. I ended up having to remove the tin wall in the cabinet above the refrigerator to do a through job..."
by backside do you mean what is visible behind the outside cover (looks fine to me) so maybe the problem will require removing the tin wall...not sure how i can get to it/
any cleaning tips would be gratefully appreciated as it might be the answer.
Rich..I know of the outfit you provided the link to..got a better quote from
http://www.rvfridgehouse.com/
at $450 plus $70 shipping from AR to TX (vs $535 plus $70)
Thanks again chaps!
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Old 03-25-2016, 07:24 AM   #6
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Sorry, Rich...yes from the outside of the motorhome, if you look up with a flashlite from the exterior refrigerator access door to the roof, mine was all filled with 30 years of debris, IE dust, dirt, cobwebs etc, I used a 30 inch blow gun, still not satisfied I removed the tin angled wall located in the storage cabinet above the refrigerator,,,about 8 screws, from there you can see the vent that goes through the roof and do a really good job of cleaning everything out
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Old 03-25-2016, 03:16 PM   #7
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The fridge part of the cooling is fins that are coupled to the cooling unit with heat conductive putty or caulking. If it becomes brittle or dried out your fridge cooling will suffer. The fins have to carry the heat through the putty to the cold coil in behind. The freezer compartment has cooling pipes right inside the compartment. Try bob's approach first though, since the freezer will almost always freeze even if the cooling system is weak for any reason, so it may just be dirty.

If you can do the work yourself the price quoted looks good. I paid $800 CAN about 4 years ago to have a rebuilt cooling unit installed by the local guy here in SW Ontario.
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Old 03-25-2016, 03:17 PM   #8
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If you are sure you need a cooling unit overhaul, I use the following shop. They do shipping and receiving. Wick has been in business 19 years and says he has never had a comeback. That is because he uses all new tubing much superior designed than Domestics for swirling. They R&Red my unit for about $650 in 4 hours. He did mine two years ago and it really cool good even in hot Texas weather.

RV Cool-Refrigerator Repair
60 Hwy 287
Greenbriar, AR
800 515 6823
wick /stacey@rvcool.com

guskmg
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Old 03-26-2016, 06:59 AM   #9
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FYI I was having a similar problem last week in big bend, and moving the thermocouple sensor to the second fin from the wall solved the issue. I researched a new cooling unit and found a company out of Houston that sells new units made to the specs of the fridge in the 400-500 dollar range. Try the sensor first....


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Old 03-26-2016, 07:37 AM   #10
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Our big beast norcold 4 door gave me fits for months and lower box would get warm on the road. 1100.00 cooling unit and it still did it! New door seals and now its perfect! (all under warranty) Try the dollar bill test on the seals.
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