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Old 09-09-2018, 03:16 PM   #1
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Refrigerator fan modification...Plan B

Tried a different approach - two fans in series: Goals - A. Move air out of condenser plenum thru screen. B. Replace existing fan with quieter designs. C. Reduce amps from .8A original fan with (2 x .08A = .16A). D. Keep some open area for natural circulation when fans arenít running. Now - will see if it works?...better refrigeration in warm weather on propane?Click image for larger version

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Old 09-09-2018, 03:53 PM   #2
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Fridge fan

I have a very similar fan setup on my 2017 Int. Serenity 23D. I also took 1/2" pipe insulation (the black foamy stuff, about $2.00 for a 4' tube at Lowe's) and ran it up both sides of the fridge. You have to kind of squeeze it into the space where the worthless rubber strip is on both sides of fridge. use a plastic putty knife to force it into position. Then I Cut a pool floaty (the kind you buy at wally world, about 3" in diameter) the width of the fridge closet and threaded it across the top of the fridge sealing off any of the hot air from circulating around fridge and heat soaking the cabinet. This keeps the closet next to fridge cabinet (they share a wall) from getting warm. I put a length of rope thru the floaty and threaded it into the space on top of fridge from the right side to the left side. Once it was positioned I pulled the rope out. Works perfect. Cold fridge, cool wardrobe, no more noisy original fan. I also have my fans wired thru a variable speed DC controller (about $10.00 on Amazon). What a difference!!!! Are you reading this forum AIRSTREAM????!!!!!!!
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Old 09-09-2018, 04:12 PM   #3
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Good idea to seal... and for that price on variable speed drive why not? Seeing that condenser tucked up inside a dead space ... knowing that heat wants to go up... always bothered me - my engineering mind to question? Although the computer fans are kind of a Band-Aid to A Einsteinís patent of ammonia refridgeration without moving parts... The new quiet fans from what Iíve read work very well..hopefully enough mass flow... and just a 2-3 Ah/day continuously.
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Old 09-09-2018, 04:52 PM   #4
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I have a question:

With the variable speed DC controller hooked up, does the controller pull "x" amount of amps regardless of the speed setting of the fan. I guess I am trying to decide if the efficiency of the low power fans is negated by the DC controller running on power and when on a low fan speed, just burning up the rest of the voltage as heat.

Am I making sense?
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Old 09-09-2018, 05:03 PM   #5
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Mine works for a cost of about $45. I measure the amps but can't find it in my head... but it seems like it was about 0.3 amps. It would be about $10 more if I had to buy aluminum and paint. The 200 mm holes allow quite a bit of airflow without fans, but when fridge on, I don't turn them off. I am sure I could turn off at night. Also, they are very quiet.
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Old 09-09-2018, 05:06 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by turk123 View Post
I have a question:



With the variable speed DC controller hooked up, does the controller pull "x" amount of amps regardless of the speed setting of the fan. I guess I am trying to decide if the efficiency of the low power fans is negated by the DC controller running on power and when on a low fan speed, just burning up the rest of the voltage as heat.



Am I making sense?


Good question.... I am thinking that the 3-4 Ah draw (worst case 24 hrs/day) on these fans is so low....that the thermal switch On/Off may best solution....we use about 35 Ah/day for makeup with solar.
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Old 09-09-2018, 05:40 PM   #7
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Refrigerator fan modification...Plan B

Good solution for the 23 guys, what about those with 27ís when on propane?

The back of my fridge when viewed from the outside looks very different. My plan is a single 140mm 12v fan directed to blow the hot air out the roof vent, not out the side door (thinking heat rises, just give it a bit of a push).

I tested this setup in my garage when it was close to 95 inside and over 100 outside here in AZ and the freezer got close to zero and fridge box close to 35, which seems pretty good!

Curious as to why AS didnít include any cooling fan in the 2018 27FBQ TB!
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Old 09-09-2018, 05:56 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UncleBad View Post
Good solution for the 23 guys, what about those with 27ís when on propane?

The back of my fridge when viewed from the outside looks very different. My plan is a single 140mm 12v fan directed to blow the hot air out the roof vent, not out the side door (thinking heat rises, just give it a bit of a push).

I tested this setup in my garage when it was close to 95 inside and over 100 outside here in AZ and the freezer got close to zero and fridge box close to 35, which seems pretty good!

Curious as to why AS didnít include any cooling fan in the 2018 27FBQ TB!


I think the only question is when the fan is not running.....an in-line duct fan (not running) would create a pressure drop that would reduce convection flow.
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Old 09-09-2018, 06:44 PM   #9
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Fridge fan

My first attempt to create better airflow in fridge compartment in my 2017 Int. Serenity 23D was to mount an upward blowing fan mounted on a standoff sitting on the floor of the fridge compartment. Worked OK. Then I sealed off the fridge compartment with the pipe foam/pool floaty treatment. In the end I wound up keeping the upflow fan and installing 2 exhaust fans across the top of upper vent opening. I almost never have to run the fans at more than half speed (variable speed DC controller) to achieve adequate airflow. Totally quiet. Never measured amp draw and really do not care. It just works. I powered the whole works by tapping directly into the 12v supply at bottom of fridge compartment. I ran a 2 amp fuse inline and it has never blown so draw can not be much. I got my fans for free from a local computer repair place. He brought out a whole box and said "Here, take all of these. I have a bunch more in the back" Hope this helps or gives everybody dealing with poor heat exhausting from fridge compartment an idea of how to fix there situation. Have at it.
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Old 09-09-2018, 06:50 PM   #10
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One more thing

I always run my fridge on propane when on the road. (yes, this may start a firestorm, but that is just how I do it). I do run the fans at half speed. No problems so far and fridge is good and cold. I do take precaution when fueling and turn off fridge before pulling to pump. Van has 36 gallon tank so I have pretty good range and usually fuel up night before hooking up.
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Old 09-10-2018, 11:17 AM   #11
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Noise Solution Plus better cooling

My fix using orig fan.
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Old 09-10-2018, 11:50 AM   #12
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Here another option for you. Although I can not take full credit. I saw someone else do this and did it slightly different. I also added an ON/OFF switch because whenever the AS is in USE and not have the fridge ON, the fans still turns ON. This allows me to turn ON/OFF the fans when I need it. I stay in the AS just for fun in my carport and hangout. I do not need the fridge ON.

Here is the link for the Fans.

Here is the link for the Switch.
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Old 09-10-2018, 12:13 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UncleBad View Post
Good solution for the 23 guys, what about those with 27ís when on propane?

Curious as to why AS didnít include any cooling fan in the 2018 27FBQ TB!
You really have to ask that question.... easy answer .... add $10,000 to the existing cost of the trailer and you have your soluition... grin...

Heck.. when I asked dometic about the cooling....and told 'em that it was in a airstream... they laughed.. and said that the engineers never followed any suggestions they made for installations... He kept saying.. your lucky it even works... which was a clue to how they put it in.

Acutally they left a lot of room... for improvements ...

I put a blanket of fiberglass insulation around and over mine... it made a big improvement... as the refrig now runs about 30% less time...and keeps things cooler to boot... (I think somewhere back a ways on the blog you can see pix of the refrig mod to my airstream. )

I also took the manufactures suggestion for putting the fan in... while I had the refrig out... that too... is on a thermal switch.. so the fans only run when its really over 95 deg outside... otherwise its pretty much normal operation.

A lot of people think you want to cool the whole compartment.. when in fact the manufacture says you only need to cool the top condenser radiator...

the rest is insulated and the pipeing doesn't care... so you might want to keep that in mind thinking your helping by blowing air through the whole compartment instead of where the manufacture says works best. Cooling the condenser at the top will cause the rest of the refrig to run cooler overall as well...

The manufacture puts a little thermal switch on the condenser fins... to turn the fans on and off... leaving them on all the time... only causes a power waist... Blowing more air does the same... according to the manufacture... who has done engineering on their products... to help improve them.

I have heard that a company in AU has a new refrig for RVs. its a compressor AND absorbtion type... so it can run on propane as well as when it gets really hot normal compressor... but I find that to be a BIG system.

I am sure the day will come when we get new tech and better refrigs that move away from the propane concept.

Till then... we have to take what Airstream gives us... or should I say sells us...
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Old 09-10-2018, 07:24 PM   #14
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Actually they left a lot of room... for improvements ...

Some great points, and yeah, my question was about 60% rhetorical.

Has me thinking I should remove my fridge to see whatís behind it and the best approach for the 27FB models.

How hard to remove a fridge? Disconnect propane and then probably a single screw someplace holding it in place?

Canít wait to see what else was left in the AS during its build...
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Old 09-10-2018, 08:23 PM   #15
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Side note. It is my understanding the factory thermostat is fixed at 130F, which has to be reached before the noisy fan kicks in. IMO, this is too hot. Seems logical the cooler the better in summer. I can tell you that my fridge loves the fans. I had to adjust the interior thermostat lower on the fin because the lower section was approaching 32F. Fired it up yesterday late and first thing today the freezer section -5F and the box 38F. Before adding the fans, in direct sun, the freezer would do okay but the box wouldn't get below 49F. Another mode is adding wireless remote thermostats so you know at a glance all is well (or not)

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

WW
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Old 09-11-2018, 09:06 AM   #16
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Side note. It is my understanding the factory thermostat is fixed at 130F, which has to be reached before the noisy fan kicks in. IMO, this is too hot.

WW
That is interesting, my fan comes on here in the summer when the temperature is over 100 without the fridge being on and have had it run continuously when the outside temperature is 14 degrees with the fridge on. Sounds like I have a detective thermocouple.

Thanks,
Matti
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Old 09-12-2018, 07:03 AM   #17
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That is interesting, my fan comes on here in the summer when the temperature is over 100 without the fridge being on and have had it run continuously when the outside temperature is 14 degrees with the fridge on. Sounds like I have a detective thermocouple.

Thanks,
Matti
Hey Matt hope you’re having a good day. The thermostat is sensing the fin temperature. When the fin it’s clipped to reaches 130F which is considerably hotter than ambient the fan should run. If the fan has 12 volt and the TC switches on it would run. I would consider adding an on/off manual switch and let this seemingly faulty TC stay as is. Maybe yours is valued at around 100 F. This could be a plus.
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Old 09-14-2020, 11:10 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cazual6 View Post
Here another option for you. Although I can not take full credit. I saw someone else do this and did it slightly different. I also added an ON/OFF switch because whenever the AS is in USE and not have the fridge ON, the fans still turns ON. This allows me to turn ON/OFF the fans when I need it. I stay in the AS just for fun in my carport and hangout. I do not need the fridge ON.

Here is the link for the Fans.

Here is the link for the Switch.
I'm going to revive this old thread because we just took delivery of a 2021 Flying Cloud 25RB and Airstream still uses the same old design apparently.

I like your setup. Did you use aluminum L brackets? Did you just drill a hole through the aluminum in the top frame and screw into the top of the bracket?

Thanks,

Jon
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Old 09-15-2020, 12:22 AM   #19
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Get an Emerson 3F05-1 variable temp switch. Install in place of the stock temp switch on positive wire going to the fan. It has a little dial so you can set the on temp between 100-130F. You can then set the temp for the fans to come on as you like it. They do different versions for different temp ranges too.
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Old 10-17-2020, 02:59 PM   #20
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fan


Top vent model. Mounted fan to blow up the open void to top and over the coils. Has on/off switch , no thermostat.
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