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Old 06-17-2009, 04:08 PM   #1
1 Rivet Member
Columbus , Indiana
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 12
Oldest Domestic Refrigrator

I really want to know when I can expect my '87 Refer to go bad. What's the record? When did yours go bad? If you had an '80's, when did it go bad? Mines still running and the temps are excellent, but 22 years old?, I worry on those dark, lonely nights, that soon, sooner than I'd like, it, too,will die. Yet, being a frugal, US citizen, I wish not to waste by throwing away a perfectly good refrigerator. Especially when I see so many recalls for recent models.. OK, what's your answer?

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Old 06-17-2009, 04:15 PM   #2
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1967 24' Tradewind
Wickenburg , Arizona
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The dometic fridge in my 1967 has a build date of 1966.I have replaced the door seal cleaned and ajusted the propane orifice,cleaned the chimney flue.Mine work good,will mantain below 38 degree'ss running down the road. I hope to never replace mine, lots of horror story's about the newer one's. Adios, John

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Old 06-17-2009, 04:37 PM   #3
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1955 22' Flying Cloud
Boulder Creek , California
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45 years old and still making ice cubes and syrupy gin
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Old 06-17-2009, 05:16 PM   #4
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1960 28' Ambassador
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1998 25' Safari
Avonton , Ontario
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The Dometic in my 60 makes ice in a few hours. It's a gas only but but works so good I'll never change it.
Doug & Terry
60 Ambassador Int.
98 Safari
56 Flying Cloud
68 Tradewind
1950 Spartan
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Old 06-17-2009, 07:58 PM   #5
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1977 31' Excella 500
Berkeley Springs , West Virginia
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My 34 footer is a 1987, same as your's. My Dometic RM3800 just gave up the ghost in April. Fortunately, I had ordered a new DM-2852 in March and installed it in May

Mine made a slight ammonia smell for the past year (probably poison gas that has knocked a year off my life) and it got really stinky in April. It was almost prophetic that it died right as I ordered the new one.

But the new one really rocks. Freezer gets down to -23 F. Now that's COLD!
- Jim
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Old 06-17-2009, 08:00 PM   #6
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Never say never

My 1973 Dometic fridge worked very well. I had to be careful not
to freeze milk and eggs. BUT... it started oozing dangerous ammonia gas,
in 2005. So, mine lasted 32 years.
The ammonia goo was a gold/greenish color. The cost of repair was high
so I opted on a new fridge rather than spending money and ending up with a rusty antique. Dave
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Old 06-17-2009, 08:34 PM   #7
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1955 22' Flying Cloud
Boulder Creek , California
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From what I have heard it seems that the new ones have more issues with electrical problems and controller cards. The old ones seem to give up their ammonia.
I had significant corrosion on the coils of mine so I sprayed them down really well with a rust converter and they look pretty good now.
I will use it till it stops working, then go looking for another old one. These come up on craigslist for free sometimes because a lot of people don't know how to fix them or would rather have a new one. If there's still coolant in them they can usually be fixed.


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