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Old 06-30-2013, 02:17 PM   #15
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@ Aage, I tried that method amongst my alternatives. It is less efficient and I had better performance for less dollars. The crafted solution totaled $40 and the 'old' style, which predates the new miniaturized electronics, was almost twice the price for all components.

I left that fan installed (added a second circuit with a pole switch) so I can still use it when 100°+ is encountered, shade is hard to come by, and I am attached to shore power. The trick is to wet a sponge by placing it in plastic pan (Tupperware style) of water set in the lower bay next to the lower inlet. Evaporative cooling is a marvelous way to boost overall cooling in scorching weather. Oh, this only works when parked

The larger fans near the upper vent opening draw air through the entire space, are noisy, and draw considerably more amperage (5 amps) so battery consumption is significant: my design uses the same draw in five hours that the bigger fan uses in one hour. When I mounted the bigger fan, I also built rubber isolator mounts to reduce vibration but it is still noisy enough to be heard throughout the trailer

The fan offering for inside the main cabinet is another older style computer fan and you can accomplish the same thing for less dollars using the same fans I did for the exterior; less noise and less electrical draw again. They do help reduce overall cooling time when you add 'warm' items to the frig but aren't really necessary if the unit is working properly. If you decide to go this route, one is enough.

FYI, both exterior fans are wired to individual pole switches near the hatch opening so I can select whichever I want and when to use them. Neither are necessary under 85° as the refrigerator functions as designed whenever ambient temperatures are below this threshold.
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Old 06-30-2013, 02:22 PM   #16
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@ DryFly,

Follow these instructions to figure out what is not working properly on the refrigerator:

http://gasrefrigeration.net/dom_techdata/AES_SM.PDF
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Old 06-30-2013, 08:16 PM   #17
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Thanks to all - great feedback as always. We agree the issue is inadequate airflow as you all have posited. A new thermostat controlled fan is on the way. Ill post the results.
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Old 07-01-2013, 10:17 AM   #18
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A new thermostat controlled fan is on the way. Ill post the results.
Can you share with us where you got that item, and the details of it? Computer fans (commonly called "muffin" fans) are easily found, but I haven't seen the thermostat control as of yet.
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Old 07-09-2013, 12:26 AM   #19
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The fan my son in law ordered is a Valterra A10-2618VP FridgeCool 12 Volt Exhaust Fan. Here's a listing on Amazon Valterra A10-2618VP FridgeCool 12 Volt Exhaust Fan : Amazon.com : Automotive
I believe it came with 2 thermal switches. Great product
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Old 07-09-2013, 10:02 AM   #20
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Thanks for the link. Any chance you have a photo or two of it installed? The listing doesn't give any idea of exactly where to hang it.
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Old 07-09-2013, 10:59 AM   #21
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We had something like that fan in our B190 - which had no roof vent, only side vents, so it needed every little bit of help it could get. The fan was mounted above the fridge coils somehow, but I don't remember how. I bypassed the thermal switches in favor of just controlling it manually with a switch inside the camper (lighted so I knew when it was on). Between doing that and replacing the door gasket, the fridge worked reasonably well.

Even as much as I struggled with that fridge in hot weather when I first got it, I never saw it get as warm as that did, though. I want to say the warmest I ever saw mine get, on a bad day with a leaking gasket, was around 50 in the fridge compartment. So, I don't think you're dealing with simple overload (unless they had the door open a lot) - I think something is wrong in their setup.
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Old 09-10-2013, 09:10 AM   #22
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Extra Cooling Boost for HOT Days
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Now that is a first class installation, and I agree that this is the best place to mount the fans. I wish that I had seen this thread before I installed the new fridge in my Tradewind. I would have copied your design. However, removing the fridge is such a pia I will mount the fans at the inlet to the fridge vent plenum.

Dan
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Old 09-10-2013, 10:10 PM   #23
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The design of the refrigerator is tasked by high temperature to cool more than 40 degrees from ambient. The freezer may still reach zero while the main cabinet struggles to maintain the forties. A temperature above 50 means something is definitely wrong. The cause can only be revealed by stepping through a diagnostic sequence to pin point the issue they had/have.

We have spent many days in "extreme" heat during our travels and experienced worrisome frig temps which caused me to experiment with various solutions to moving more air. My best solution to date, modifing my Dometic unit by adding four small (2" x 2") computer disk drive fans on a simple aluminum box frame mounted below the the cooling fins at the top of the cabinet back. They draw ~0.2 amps each, are undetectable running, and are wired to a thermocouple switch on the topmost section of the vertical pipe just before the bend downward. They move enough air to maintain 41° or below when the temperature outside reaches 100 depending on the amount and angle of the sun on the trailer.

I use four of this style fan (covering the full length of the fins) mounted approximately 1/2" below the condenser fins for a concentrated, targeted air flow avoiding the need for a shroud or the bigger boost fans so many RV sites promote:

Vantec Stealth 80mm Double Ball Bearing Silent Case Fan - Model SF8025L - Newegg.com
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My compliments on your first class design and fabrication.

Have you tested the improvement in fridge performance that the fans make? Ie. How much of a drop is there in fridge temperature when you turn the fans on?

Thanks, Dan
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