Originally Posted by LeeJ
I am replacing the original Dometic in my 85 sovereign
. Any recommendations for frequency of running the refer periodically while it's in storage? I want to avoid the clogging and corrosion for as long as possible, like another 29 years.
Thanks for your recommendations
My opinion is, it makes no difference. The important thing isn't how often you run it, but how clean it is. Especially on the back side where the combustion occurs. Clean the vent when you put it away, and before you use it again. Clean the burner when you put it away. Remove any carbon build-up from the sensor. Once clean, the burner and sensor should stay clean until you use it again, aside from possible nesting spiders and such, so check it again before you fire it up for the next trip, and clean it again if necessary.
Store it with the door propped open so any condensation will evaporate out of it, and clean it thoroughly inside to prevent mold. Every so often (each time you store it) do the "dollar bill" test on the seals; close the door on a dollar bill, then try to pull out the dollar bill without opening the door. If it comes out easily, time to replace the seals.
If it doesn't have a refrigerator exhaust fan, add one. Heat buildup around the coils is a major life-shortener for the fridge since it makes the fridge work harder; ensuring that heat is carried to the outdoors will do more than anything else to extend its useful life.
Also, make sure your Airstream is level when you store it. That way, when you fire up the refrigerator before a trip to pre-cool it, the fridge will be level and will run more efficiently.
Keep the fridge as full as possible when you are using it. Whenever you take food out, replace it with water bottles, canned drinks, or something. The more thermal mass you have inside the fridge, the longer it stays cold, and the less often it has to start a new cooling cycle. This not only saves propane, it saves wear-and-tear on the fridge, too. You still need enough air space to allow circulation of cold air inside the fridge, but otherwise the more stuff and less air you refrigerate, the better.