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Old 10-08-2011, 06:31 PM   #1
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1981 31' Excella II
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Fridge Sorta Kinda Works

I am finally getting time to check out all the secondary systems on the trailer. The fridge works on AC but I can't light the thing because the little plunger thing that operates the ignitor is broken. The thing just came right out and was loose to start with. Am I going to have to remove the fridge to get to the part that needs fixing?

How much of a pain is it to remove the fridge? Am I going to have to take the whole trailer apart to do it? The fridge does have a 12V mode which surprised me. My experiece with the 12V mode on other RV's is that is does not work well and sucks a ton of power. I need to remove the fridge anyway. It would make painting the door area much easier.

Perry
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Old 10-08-2011, 06:47 PM   #2
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There's some pictures of the removal of mine on my blog. It came out with no problems. It was, what I call resin welded to the wood floor. After I removed all the screws I just removed the doors, gave it a power pull, and it came right loose. I took it out of the trailer by myself as I recall.
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Click on the link to see a picture of the Sioux River falls near my home.
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Old 10-08-2011, 06:47 PM   #3
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Perry there are brackets attached to the side and top of the fridge that hold it to the inside skin of the trailer. You will need to remove the bulkhead wall adjacent to the fridge to get access to them.
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Old 10-08-2011, 08:52 PM   #4
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That is what I was afraid of. The wall is just held in with pop rivets. I will have to take the entertainment center out before the wall comes out. The wall is holding a bunch of other stuff up like cabinets is it not?

Here is a pick of how mine is laid out.

Is there any other maintenance I should do if I end up pulling it out of there? What usually kills these fridges? I would assume them rusting out and loosing all the gas is the final blow? Any way to prevent this? Looks like the tubes are pretty rusty. Can they be coated with POR 15 or anything like that?

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Old 10-08-2011, 09:17 PM   #5
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I had a different set up. Mine had a tambour airplane overhead type storage cabinet attached to the ceiling with two wood panels and a removable gasketed shelf above the refrigerator. The surrounding cabinets had to come out to provide access to the screws and anchor strips.

I'd think it's maybe time to replace a 30 year old refrigerator. Mine was older. Once I had the old refrigerator removed, no way was I going to reinstall the old one. It's exactly the same amount of work to install a new one as it is to put the old one back in.
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Old 10-08-2011, 10:18 PM   #6
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Anyone had the problem with the ignitor knob coming off?

Perry
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Old 10-09-2011, 07:36 AM   #7
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Well I guess the cooling unit is working fine since the temp in the fridge part was about 30 F. One thing I won't have to fix. Not working on gas is a minor problem. I may be able to light the pilot while the wife holds down the pilot putton and see if that works. Come to think of it, I could get an aftermarket ignitor and rig a button to replace the internal one.

Perry
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Old 10-09-2011, 09:48 AM   #8
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Try rvmobile.com for parts and lots of advice posted on the 'net.
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:42 AM   #9
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You might be able to light the burner through the compartment door. I had to make a little access hole in the bulkhead next to the fridge to manually light the burner.
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Old 10-09-2011, 12:06 PM   #10
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If you ever give up on this one, don't forget to take off the panel that each door has. You might get lucky and find a new one on which they will fit!

If not, I guess there's always black...
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Old 10-09-2011, 08:33 PM   #11
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I got to messing around back there and it seems like Lumatic has said I can light it from the back. I should be able to install a grill lighter thing to replace the one that is broke. I will just put the push button at the back. The pilot lighting valve can be accessed from the rear as well. So all I have to do it hold the pilot valve open hit the button let the thermocouple heat up for a min and I am good to go.

Perry
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Old 10-09-2011, 09:12 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by perryg114 View Post
it seems like Lumatic has said I can light it from the back. I should be able to install a grill lighter thing to replace the one that is broke.

Perry
That depends on the model. I was able to light from the compartment door on my 73. On my 71 I had to cut a small window in the interior bulkhead. I use a hand held grill lighter thing.
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:09 PM   #13
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The spark thingy is accessible from the rear. I can just replace it with a grill igniter. It is right at the end of the burner. I need to clean the main jet before adding the ignitor. Like most RV's this thing has sat more than anything else.

Perry
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Old 10-14-2011, 10:04 PM   #14
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I was cleaning the fridge tonight and was able to reconnect the ignitor plunger and now I can run on gas. I had to shine a flash light up the tiny hole to see where the coupler was. Actually, I found out you can put a flashligh on the little pilot viewer and it gives you enough light up in there to see where to put the ignitor rod back in place. It is really hard to tell when the flame is lit through the viewer.

I really need some new shelves for this fridge. One of the PO's really neglected it. All the shelves are rusted really bad. I guess they cut it off and left it wet for years.

Perry
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