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Old 07-07-2003, 04:30 PM   #1
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Dead Fridge? What to do?

Have Dometic RM3506 with strong amonia smell...no work.

What is answer, replace cooling unit or fridge??? Source??

Thanks in advance.
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Old 07-07-2003, 04:34 PM   #2
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Here is a link

They can be repaired at a lower cost than new, it is just finding a place that has the jig and cooling unit for your model.

If you do a search on www.google.com you will find some places that sell reconditioned units complete and other that sell cooling units.
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Old 07-07-2003, 04:35 PM   #3
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DITTO!!

I was just going to post that very question. We just got back from a week long trip and my dad's SOB has a 20 year old Dometic. Worked great all week, got home and within minutes of parking and taking the food out, a strong ammonia smell filled the inside of the unit.

Is it fixable or is it just less exp to replace.

Eric
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Old 07-07-2003, 04:38 PM   #4
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Thanks Brett. That is the million dollar question. Where and who...

The unit my dad has is a single door and ironically, the replacement unit that Dometic suggests is the same unit found in my '03 Bambi...really.

The cost is about $800 new, but the spec sizes seem a bit different than the old 20 year old unit.

Anyway, I'll do a search and see what I find.

Eric
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Old 07-07-2003, 04:47 PM   #5
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It is sad that most of the older units are not repairable. I had a M52 that was in the 65 Safari that was dead and I could not find any place to repair it.

We have a rm-100 in one of the motorhomes and stopped at CW to get parts. The guy behind the counter was shocked that a 25 year old unit was still operational. Needless to say they had no parts.

Good luck!
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Old 07-07-2003, 04:49 PM   #6
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BTW, I just took a look at the link and they make no mention of a repair or replace of the inside cooling parts. Most seems to talk about the outside coils. Are the outside and inside coils sold as one unit?

Are these things NASTY when they go south!

Eric
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Old 07-07-2003, 04:52 PM   #7
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Exclamation NASTY in CAPITAL LETTERS!!!!

Quote:
Originally posted by Silvertwinkie
BTW, I just took a look at the link and they make no mention of a repair or replace of the inside cooling parts. Most seems to talk about the outside coils. Are the outside and inside coils sold as one unit?

Are these things NASTY when they go south!

Eric
Yes, Eric. They are NASTY. Get a MSDS on ammonia. DON'T breath it. DON'T let it get on your skin.

Roger
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Old 07-07-2003, 05:01 PM   #8
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The things you learn when trying to figure this out.........


The inner and outer unit is one peice. The whole back of the freezer compartment, or the freezer box comes out. There is a thermal mastic that conducts the cold /heat and this is attached to a plate of some type depending on the model.

The refer must be completly removed, dissassembled, and then the new unit can be installed. Messy job, but if you can cut your repair costs by half............

No savings of time, just $$$
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Old 07-07-2003, 05:12 PM   #9
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There are also RV salvage yards. They frequently have units less than a year old - sometimes new in the box. In addition to regular salvage, many also purchase inventory overstocks and that sort of thing.

Mind you, it is strictly buyer beware, and I don't endorse this option myself, but it is an alternative.

Mark
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Old 07-07-2003, 05:21 PM   #10
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Here's a couple of repair links...

http://www.gasrefrigeration.net/

http://www.rvrefrig.com/home.htm

But I'm liking the "good used one" plan myself. I've considered buying some junked out cab-over truck camper with a good fridge, myself.
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Old 07-07-2003, 05:39 PM   #11
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Re: DITTO!!

Quote:
Originally posted by Silvertwinkie
We just got back from a week long trip and my dad's SOB has a 20 year old Dometic.
Is it fixable or is it just less exp to replace.

Eric
One of the biggest issues Eric is what modifications will be needed if you buy a complete brand new unit. I know that when my 14 year old unit in my Hi-Lo sprung a leak there was no exact replacement available. Replacement would mean possibly rebuilding the enclosure that surrounded the existing unit. In that situation replacing the engine of the fridge was a preferable option.

Jack
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Old 07-07-2003, 07:43 PM   #12
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Jack,

You are very right. I looked at the specs and we did a crude mesurement of the old unit and there are some differences in the new units and the older ones...whoda thought they'd have changed the specs in 20 years!

Anyway, thanks to all for the info and the links. It is very helpful and will help dad figure out the best course of action. Still trying to get him into an Airstream and get him away from the dark side of the force!

Eric
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Old 07-07-2003, 07:59 PM   #13
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If I decide to repair, what size task to remove the two door from the 34 footer??
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Old 07-07-2003, 08:52 PM   #14
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rebuilding ammonia reefers

Hey folks,

Here is a link to a place that re-builds ammonia reefers. As I read it, about any of teh older RV units can be re-built. The cost appears to be 1/2 what a new unit would run, so it is something to consider. For teh mechanically inclined, I believe the parts can be bought and you can save even more.

Something else to think about....

http://www.rvmobile.com/

Enjoy,

M Denis
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