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Old 03-19-2013, 12:10 PM   #1
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Wiring through the Fridge vent. HELP!

We have a 2010 31' and we have a solar prewire running from under the sofa to the fridge box outside.
HOW do we run the wire from the panel through the fridge vent? The top of the vent has a screen, we drilled a small hole on the side and threaded a wire with a weight and it's hitting something on the way down.
What can we do? Any suggestions or photos would be helpful.
Airstream's tech support is nothing but an answering machine. Didn't help me much.
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Old 03-19-2013, 12:19 PM   #2
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You can try to continue to "fish" the wire down. The area behind the refer is more or less open, but the piping and cooling system of the refer is there.

One can reach a quite a ways back up from the bottom.

Your other options are to drill the rivets and remove roof vent completely, which is not as bad as it sounds.

Or, slide the refer out of the cabinet.

I added an antenna to my roof, and chose to remove the roof vent. I had olympic rivets and termpro 635 sealer on hand, so just drill the heads off the rivets, remove the vent and complete your wiring and then era-attach the vent and seal.
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Old 03-19-2013, 08:51 PM   #3
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Yes, there's a lot of tubes and screens on the back of the refr to capture the fishtape on the way down. I drilled out the rivets to remove the vent, and a couple more which secure the screen. Peeled the screen back a couple inches, and it was easy to drop the wire down close to the interior wall of the unit. An inexpensive pop rivet gun, aluminum rivets, and some butyl rubber tape and sealer from the hardware store is all you need to reinstall the vent.
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Old 03-19-2013, 10:16 PM   #4
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Libo,

take a trip to the hardware store, and buy a two or three feet of #3 or #6 size ball chain with couplings to tie a string to.

fish it down from the vent opening - the slipperiness of the chain and the flexibility of the string should get you past things.... gravity will be your friend!

a flashlight and a small mirror will also help you see "up" the flue.

best,
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Old 03-26-2013, 01:53 AM   #5
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If this worked for you, fine. But if it didn't you may want to use a real fishtape and not some chain or string. The tape has a bit of rigidity to it that will allow you to 'steer it' some in the direction that you want. This should allow you to work the wire behind the plaumbing on your fringe. Good luck
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Old 03-26-2013, 02:21 AM   #6
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I found that reaching up behind the fridge helped.... and I used some pretty stiff wire which found it's way down w/o too many problems.

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Old 03-26-2013, 10:31 PM   #7
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If you decide to remove the vent cover, I found the easiest and neatest way to remove the rivets is to use a sharp wood chisel to cut the heads off the rivets. Hold it firmly against the head of the rivet flush with the vent and strike gently with a hammer. With a drill you can slip off the rounded head of the rivet and do damage.
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Old 03-27-2013, 12:18 AM   #8
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When drilling out bucked rivets, center punch the rivet to start the hole accurately. Replacement rivets are typically 5/32 diameter to compensate for hole "growth".

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Old 03-27-2013, 08:07 AM   #9
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Remove upper cabinet

Quote:
Originally Posted by Libo View Post
We have a 2010 31' and we have a solar prewire running from under the sofa to the fridge box outside.
HOW do we run the wire from the panel through the fridge vent? The top of the vent has a screen, we drilled a small hole on the side and threaded a wire with a weight and it's hitting something on the way down.
What can we do? Any suggestions or photos would be helpful.
Airstream's tech support is nothing but an answering machine. Didn't help me much.

In my 85 Sovereign I found it easier to remove the upper cabinet (4screws). This allowed me to snake the wire down through the vent to the top of the frig which was now exposed.
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