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Old 08-24-2010, 08:44 AM   #15
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It might be the heating element.

If it works on propane, I would check the heating element. It is probably a 150 watt heater and is located on the right rear side of the refer, behind a metal shield that is just above the burner. There will be 2 wires connected to it. It just slides down inside a metal tube. When in electric mode, (make sure you rotate the knob or flip the switch to electric) then make sure the "electric" thermostat is set to at least 5. The wires are terminated at the rear as well. If you can, check the voltage at the terminating point, it should be 110-120 volts AC. You do have the trailer plugged into shore power, right? If you don't have AC power at the terminals, make sure the refer is plugged in. there should be a 120 volt outlet in the compartment behind the refer, it's probably mounted high and will probably be kind of hard to reach. I think you said you had to light the refer by hand so there is no 12 volt system on this unit. Keep us posted on your progress.
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Old 08-24-2010, 08:58 AM   #16
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Photo of controls

I posted a photo of the controls on my refer. Go to my posts and look for the date 6/07/10. Do your controls look like this?
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Old 08-24-2010, 09:26 AM   #17
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TG Twinkie - Thanks for the help. The fridge seems to be working fine now that I make sure it's *extremely* level. And I checked your pics of the controls and mine look nothing like that.

I also understand that the fridge won't work on 12V power. However, nothing is working on just the 12V power. No lights... nothing. Its supposed to, right?
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Old 08-24-2010, 10:09 AM   #18
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Unplugged, the AS has no power even though there are two new batteries installed. It worked before on battery power... briefly... but now, with the batteries in place exactly as the old ones were, nada. It worked when plugged into the shore power, but nothing when under battery power alone.
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However, nothing is working on just the 12V power. No lights... nothing.
You need to use a voltmeter or a 12V circuit tester (small lamp in handle of something looking like a small ice pick w/ one lead) and ring the circuit out - was there a quick disconnect that did not get 100% seated? Move on to main fuse, fuse box, etc...
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Old 08-24-2010, 10:22 AM   #19
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Your whole trailer runs on 12VDC power with the exception of the air conditioner and 110VAC outlets in the walls. You have a power convertor that changes 110VAC (shore power) to 12VDC when plugged in. When unplugged the battery will provide 12VDC to the lights, water pump, furnace fan etc. If you are towing and you have a charge line installed on your tow vehicle the cars alternator and battery will supply 12VDC to the trailer to recharge the battery. Your old style fridge does not need 12VDC to run a control circuit board because all controls are selected manually. I hope this information clears up the mystery for you.
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Old 08-24-2010, 11:24 AM   #20
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TG Twinkie - Thanks for the help. The fridge seems to be working fine now that I make sure it's *extremely* level. And I checked your pics of the controls and mine look nothing like that.

I also understand that the fridge won't work on 12V power. However, nothing is working on just the 12V power. No lights... nothing. Its supposed to, right?
If nothing is working on 12V then you have a bad ground connection from the battery to the trailer frame. Try putting a wire from the negative battery to the frame.
I just fixed this on another 67 trailer. There are 2 fuses in the battery line, one on each cable. One was broken, replaced and everything worked.
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Old 08-24-2010, 12:04 PM   #21
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Remember low voltage DC can be fickle in old wiring - stop & start working from temperature or humidity changes or vibration even when things look mechanically correct. If you are adding a new ground strap, lift the old one and tape off the controls area end to stay in code compliance. (primary ground in one place)
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Old 08-24-2010, 12:06 PM   #22
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Try putting a wire from the negative battery to the frame.
I bet that's it! I'm going to try that this afternoon when I get a chance. Thanks.
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Old 08-26-2010, 08:52 AM   #23
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I bet that's it! I'm going to try that this afternoon when I get a chance. Thanks.
That ground wire was my problem. There was actually a wire that was tucked away back inside that the PO must've disconnected when it was in storage, which is actually a good idea to keep any vampire items in check. Thanks for the help!
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Old 04-28-2013, 06:43 PM   #24
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Okay, so now we skip forward a couple of years. Last summer we decided to park it at KOA. We used to never camp for more that 2 nights so I never noticed this problem.

What I'm seeing now is that the fridge is either off or it freezes everything. I experimented all last summer and fall trying to see if there was a happy medium somewhere on the dial, but no luck. I assume it's the thermostat. I found a PDF with maintenance for my model - MA52a - but none of the diagrams seemed to match my model exactly, and having contacted Dometic, they don't even recognize the model number. Finding parts is unlikely.

SO! Are there problems with installing what I'd call a "dorm fridge" in it's place? Just a smaller compact fridge that I'd plug into an outlet. While we won't be taking the trailer anywhere, I'd secure it thoroughly. I'm sure there are problems with doing this, but I can't think of what they'd be.

Thanks for any advice.
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Old 04-29-2013, 02:06 PM   #25
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SO! Are there problems with installing what I'd call a "dorm fridge" in it's place? Just a smaller compact fridge that I'd plug into an outlet. While we won't be taking the trailer anywhere, I'd secure it thoroughly. I'm sure there are problems with doing this, but I can't think of what they'd be.
I know some people that have done that, and it works fine as long as you are always going to camp with electricity available.
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Old 04-29-2013, 02:22 PM   #26
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I know some people that have done that, and it works fine as long as you are always going to camp with electricity available.
And as long as the noise of the compressor coming on and off all night long doesn't bother you...
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Old 04-29-2013, 02:56 PM   #27
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On your fridge there are two thermistats. one for the gas valve and one for the elect. The one for the gas when malfunctioning generally will freeze everything. The electric will usually not let the current go to the heating element.
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Old 04-29-2013, 03:41 PM   #28
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One last consideration before you buy a dorm fridge. It will likely hurt your resale. LP fridges are spendy, but the next person you sell to might like to dry camp. I turned down a couple of units when I was shopping because they had pulled the LP fridge out and put in a 110V only fridge.

If you're going to keep it forever and don't care, then do whatever works for your family
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