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Old 06-02-2006, 10:56 AM   #1
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New Fridge Not Working w/ AC Power

Just took delivery of my new '05 22ft Safari and am loving it. Have it parked here at my shop and just going thru things to make sure every thing is working as it should.

So yesterday I plugged the trailer into shore power and turned the refrigerator to AC setting and 4 on the "thermostat." After about four hours I felt the fins and they were still room temp. I went to outside the trailer and felt the canister behind the fridge which was quite hot so I assumed the AC power was heating what it was suppose to. I called my dealer (SouthWest Coaches) who told me to start it on gas, let it get cold, then switch it to electric. So I did what he asked. After a couple hours on gas the fridge was quite cold. Before leaving work I switched it to AC. Came back this morning and it was basically room temp again. The back is still very hot.

ANY IDEAS?
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Old 06-02-2006, 11:02 AM   #2
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If it works on propane and is hot but not working on AC, there are only few things that can cause this. All of them have to do with the AC heater not being in proper contact with the boiling tube.

If you can remove the small panel that is next to where the AC wires go into the insulated column that encloses the boiling tube, inspect the location of the heating element--it's possible it was slipped in next to the metal, but outside the insulation. It should be inside the insulation and next to the tube that contains the amonia path (there's only one large tube inside the insulation--this is the right one). There should be a bracket that ensures the heater remains there.

Roger
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Old 06-02-2006, 11:09 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeppelinium
If it works on propane and is hot but not working on AC, there are only few things that can cause this. All of them have to do with the AC heater not being in proper contact with the boiling tube.

If you can remove the small panel that is next to where the AC wires go into the insulated column that encloses the boiling tube, inspect the location of the heating element--it's possible it was slipped in next to the metal, but outside the insulation. It should be inside the insulation and next to the tube that contains the amonia path (there's only one large tube inside the insulation--this is the right one). There should be a bracket that ensures the heater remains there.

Roger
Roger,
I did notice the heating element can move all over the place. I will go check that now.
Thanks
Will let you know.
Alan
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Old 06-02-2006, 01:39 PM   #4
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Dorky Dometic

Ok a little harsh but you'll agree in a second.
Well, thanks to Roger I investigated the loose heating element. Well, apparantly they forgot to put the heating element in the tube where it belongs. (I have a Dometic RM2454) Unfortunately the element would not go in the tube because it had a bunch of baked on insulation residue. So I carefully removed the element and took it to a fine grit 1" belt sander and removed all the "gunk" to bare metal without removing more than a couple thousandths of an inch of metal. Put it back in the tube, assembled everything back together and turned it on.
Fridge seems to work perfectly now.
It's a little unfortunate the dealer didn't catch it but more unfortunate Dometic's quality control is that poor.
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Old 06-02-2006, 01:58 PM   #5
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Killo1: Congrats on your new rig. We purchased the 28 2006 Safari from Southwest, and found them very helpful. Dwayne is their service tech and he has been great. We only had one issue with our purchase, which was not forseeable either by A/S or the dealer, and they took care of it quickly.

Anyway, if you happen to be camping down south (San Clemente, San Elijo) Sherry and I spend a lot of time (once a month) camping in that area if you are around.

Enjoy.

Robert
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Old 06-02-2006, 03:05 PM   #6
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I had a problem with my fridge operating on AC in my 2004 22' CCD. It was a faulty CB4 in my distribution panel. The dealer had to replace it. It works now.
If still under warranty, get the dealer to fix it. Something like that will cost you $$$ if you have to pay for it.
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Old 07-23-2006, 03:24 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Killo1
Just took delivery of my new '05 22ft Safari and am loving it. I called my dealer (SouthWest Coaches) who told me to start it on gas, let it get cold, then switch it to electric. So I did what he asked. After a couple hours on gas the fridge was quite cold. Before leaving work I switched it to AC. Came back this morning and it was basically room temp again. The back is still very hot.
ANY IDEAS?
This is probably too late to help, but we bought an 2006 22ft FROM THE SAME DEALER WITH THE SAME PROBLEM. The A/C cord was not plugged in!! It's located in the external hatch. That lesson cost us a fridge full of food to learn.

Now we have a new problem (same symptoms, another fridge full of food wasted) a year later, but I'll start a new thread for it...

GB
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Old 07-27-2006, 12:27 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rseagle
I had a problem with my fridge operating on AC in my 2004 22' CCD. It was a faulty CB4 in my distribution panel. The dealer had to replace it. It works now.
If still under warranty, get the dealer to fix it. Something like that will cost you $$$ if you have to pay for it.
What's a CB4??

GB
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Old 07-27-2006, 03:56 PM   #9
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Yeah, I was embrassed to ask, what is a CB4? I'm guessing there isn't one in my '78 Argosy what ever it is.

I'm still trying to sort out my DamnDometic (aka Dorky Dometic). Works great on propane, even made ice cubes in 95 degree weather. However, as soon as you plug it in to shore power it quits cooling. This tells me that it is sensing AC. Unfortunately there is no way to over ride it's "brain" so I can have shorepower AND a working refridgerator.

I haven't yet pulled the access panel to check the AC fuse. I would hope that a blown fuse would be detected as loss of AC but I don't have much confidence in Dometic design at this point. I haven't tried to see if something is still getting hot at the back fo the fridge because I'm not sure where to check. I guess fire it up on gas and feel for what gets hot?

-Bernie
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Old 07-27-2006, 05:42 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grantb4
What's a CB4??

GB
CB is Circuit Breaker. On my panel in my 2004 CCD, there is a master breaker and 4 breakers for the individual AC (alternating current) circuits around my trailer. My refrigerator is on the 4th circuit. the CB4 always tripped when I turned the fridge on and wouldn't reset until the fridge was turned of. There was a short and the breaker had to be replaced by the dealer.

Hope that helps.
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Old 07-27-2006, 06:07 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bhayden
Yeah, I was embrassed to ask, what is a CB4? I'm guessing there isn't one in my '78 Argosy what ever it is.

I'm still trying to sort out my DamnDometic (aka Dorky Dometic). Works great on propane, even made ice cubes in 95 degree weather. However, as soon as you plug it in to shore power it quits cooling. This tells me that it is sensing AC. Unfortunately there is no way to over ride it's "brain" so I can have shorepower AND a working refridgerator.

I haven't yet pulled the access panel to check the AC fuse. I would hope that a blown fuse would be detected as loss of AC but I don't have much confidence in Dometic design at this point. I haven't tried to see if something is still getting hot at the back fo the fridge because I'm not sure where to check. I guess fire it up on gas and feel for what gets hot?

-Bernie
I'm in the same boat exactly and will try and figure it out this weekend. I pulled black control panel plastic cover off to check the 3A and 5A fuses and they looked OK but I didn't buzz them. I have to also check the internal light staying on (if there is one), door sealing when closed (works on gas so both of those seem unlikely), the secret climate control switch (if I have one) and the heating element resistance. I also need to make sure that the freezer is failing under AC too since other threads mention that the freezer might stay cool even though the fridge warms under certain conditions...

:GB
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Old 07-30-2006, 01:05 PM   #12
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Well our problem has gone away but I don't know for sure why and/or for how long. Fridge was working on gas when we arrived since that's how I had left it. Did some visual inspections checked voltage on AC outlet (124VAC) with Fluke 77 meter and toggled breaker (GFI) just in case. Started fridge on AC and opened door long enough for heat to rise. Turned off gas at tanks and ran stove until gas line ran out. Fridge appeared to cool over the few hours I had to test it on AC.

So what happened the previous weekend then? Not sure. Maybe the breaker had tripped. Other folks were reporting 108VAC and it was 110F that weekend. Maybe the fridge couldn't cut it. It's a small dometic (one door) and I couldn't find an adjustment for temp (no setting dial), nor could I find a n interior light, nor a climate control swtich. I guess ours is the bottom line unit. The 12v fan in the outside was working fine and everything seems OK -- except I found this chunk of metal loose at the bottom. Anyone know what it's for and where it should be located??

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Old 07-30-2006, 04:50 PM   #13
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DAMNdorkeyDometic

OK, this thing's REALLY starting to piss me off! I plugged in the trailer a few hours ago so I could start "debugging". Go out just now and the DAMNDOMETIC is COLD! Not kinda'sort'a maybe I'm hoperfully imagining it, I mean COLD! Grrrr.

OK, I take a deep breath. It must have somehow switched to propane, right? Better go turn off the tanks. Pull off the cover (which I only use in storage) and both tanks are shut off at the main fill valve just like they should be when storing the trailer. The thing is working 100% great (again?) on AC.

Man this is starting to get old!

FWIW, the fridge/trailer is not especially level where it's stored and I don't think that's an issue as when it's "switched" from propane to electric in the past it's gotten warm.

I'm starting to think it's the control board but the flakey behavior is really hard to debug and I've no desire to start replacing parts until I can determine they're bad. Dometics basic "interface" leaves much to be desired. Would it have killed them to put a few status LEDs on the DAMN thing?

ARRRGG!

-Bernie
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Old 07-30-2006, 08:53 PM   #14
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Why are you using shore power for Dometic?

I have to ask--why are you using shore power for your Dometic? Mine works so well and so cheaply on propane that I don't bother with AC. Besides, since I'm using a generator, I try to save every ampere I can.
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