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Old 03-13-2022, 09:06 AM   #1
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Replace Refridgerator or just cooling unit.

Trying to get some current, real world.information about the cost of replacing a refrigerator vs. Just getting a new cooling unit. I DO NOT have the muscle to do this work by myself. Ten years ago, sure. Now, they'd trace the smell to my trayla' and find me crushed under the old fridge. I am wondering if the labor charges to do just the cooling unit might be so high that a new fridge would not be significantly more.

Help please.
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Old 03-13-2022, 09:29 AM   #2
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Well in my experience there is maybe only an hour or two of additional labor in replacing the cooling unit vs swapping out the entire fridge.
I would at least run the numbers with that variable in the formula.

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Old 03-13-2022, 09:40 AM   #3
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Don’t know about the difference in time, but I recently replaced my 3 cu ft fridge and it only took me about an hour. The hookups were quick and easy, but I did need help with getting the units in and out of the trailer.

A relative negative with replacing the entire fridge is that you have to dispose of the old one, which is not always easy and maybe not free.
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Old 03-13-2022, 09:40 AM   #4
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If you can get to a place that specializes in this, like JC Refrigeration, you'll do much better cost wise just replacing the cooling unit.

Someone like them can swap out the cooling unit in only a little longer than it takes to get the fridge swapped out for a new one, and the cost of the cooling unit will be about half the price of a new fridge.
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Old 03-14-2022, 10:21 AM   #5
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I was able to replace the cooling unit on my '96 with a rebuilt for about $800 CAN
The RV repair shop takes my old unit, refurbishes it and sells it to the next guy.
Completely happy with the result.
Units just develop a leak which is an easy repair. but the internals do need to be flushed and cleaned.
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Old 03-14-2022, 02:13 PM   #6
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Email or call Wick @ rvcool.com, 1-800-515-6823.
He sells update Dometic cooling units and installs them or will ship them to you. He is very reasonable. I would say about 1/3 the price of a new refer for and R&R.
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Old 03-14-2022, 05:46 PM   #7
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If you contact National Refrigeration in Shipsheewana, Indiana he will fix yours or replace the cooling unite in short order. His website is: https://fixyourfridge.com/
Fixed mine and put baffles in now I have to run it on 3-4 to keep things from freezing in the frig part. Give Leon a call.
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Old 03-15-2022, 09:08 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Torpedo Family View Post
If you contact National Refrigeration in Shipsheewana, Indiana he will fix yours or replace the cooling unite in short order. His website is: https://fixyourfridge.com/
Fixed mine and put baffles in now I have to run it on 3-4 to keep things from freezing in the frig part. Give Leon a call.

Great tip, thanks.
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Old 03-15-2022, 09:13 AM   #9
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Email or call Wick @ rvcool.com, 1-800-515-6823.
He sells update Dometic cooling units and installs them or will ship them to you. He is very reasonable. I would say about 1/3 the price of a new refer for and R&R.
guskmg

FWIW, I think wick has retired. I tried the # and VM has not been set up was the message. rvcool.com in my browser flips over to https://rvpartsusa.com/. I had previously talked to David (?) https://rvcoolingunit.com/ who said he had heard the business was no longer operational. I emailed Karla at rvpartsusa and they are in business in AZ but only sell parts no installs or rehabs.
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Old 03-15-2022, 10:40 AM   #10
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Paula

Did the cooling unit leak the "stuff"?

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Old 03-15-2022, 09:50 PM   #11
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Replace Refridgerator or just cooling unit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CruizinDux View Post
FWIW, I think wick has retired. I tried the # and VM has not been set up was the message. rvcool.com in my browser flips over to https://rvpartsusa.com/. I had previously talked to David (?) https://rvcoolingunit.com/ who said he had heard the business was no longer operational. I emailed Karla at rvpartsusa and they are in business in AZ but only sell parts no installs or rehabs.

Check in with David at www.rvcoolingunit.com. The website looks lame but he’s the real deal and sells the cooling units that are refurbished by the Amish. I almost bought one but at the last minute figured out how to get my cooling unit going again. Turns out it was clogged. Thankfully I did not have to remove my fridge, change out the cooling unit, and reinstall the fridge—in January, in the mountains, while living in it, without access to a garage or anywhere to work on it. What a relief.
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Old 03-15-2022, 10:23 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pcskier View Post
Check in with David at www.rvcoolingunit.com. The website looks lame but he’s the real deal and sells the cooling units that are refurbished by the Amish. I almost bought one but at the last minute figured out how to get my cooling unit going again. Turns out it was clogged. Thankfully I did not have to remove my fridge, change out the cooling unit, and reinstall the fridge—in January, in the mountains, while living in it, without access to a garage or anywhere to work on it. What a relief.
That's where I got mine 8 or 9 years ago. Still going strong and cools quite a bit better than OEM.

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Old 03-16-2022, 05:49 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pcskier View Post
Check in with David at www.rvcoolingunit.com. The website looks lame but he’s the real deal and sells the cooling units that are refurbished by the Amish. I almost bought one but at the last minute figured out how to get my cooling unit going again. Turns out it was clogged. Thankfully I did not have to remove my fridge, change out the cooling unit, and reinstall the fridge—in January, in the mountains, while living in it, without access to a garage or anywhere to work on it. What a relief.
Another vote for this outfit - got my cooling unit from them and they were a pleasure to work with. Installed it myself in a few hours and it cools great.
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Old 04-14-2022, 03:31 PM   #14
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RESOLUTION

Dometic refrigerator - backorder time 1 year, over $2500

AMISH cooling unit 4 days - $1067

Installation cost - cooling unit + 1 to 1.5 hrs

Ding. No brainer.
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Old 04-14-2022, 06:54 PM   #15
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Foiled Again, since www.rvcoolingunit.com I believe doesn't do installs, does that mean you're headed to refrigeration National Refrigeration in Shipshewana, https://fixyourfridge.com/ or possibly

https://jc-refrigeration.com/brochure/ also in Shipshewana?




...or somewhere else
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Old 05-24-2022, 04:07 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foiled Again View Post
RESOLUTION

Dometic refrigerator - backorder time 1 year, over $2500

AMISH cooling unit 4 days - $1067

Installation cost - cooling unit + 1 to 1.5 hrs

Ding. No brainer.



Foiled Again, I wanted to follow up in case I missed your Amish install. Was it completed and any comments?


Happy Trails
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Old 06-13-2022, 06:54 AM   #17
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Oh, now that is a sore subject. The instal took place May 4..... and the suckered never worked. We tried everything except.replacing the computer board. After a month of experimenting, the factory sent a replacement which went in Friday.
In a futile exercise of faith, I put a gallon of milk in it. Freezer barely got cool, refrigerator was a mini alligator swamp. Waiting for tech to call me right now. Better show up with a Dino board.
I just ran an extension cord from my cabana to the power cord on the refrigerator.... just to isolate the current from the main cord and the converter circuits. Probably futile but no stone unturned, eh? Dorm fridge is getting ready to come inside.

Oh, I also replaced my old steel steps for.folding aluminum ones. That I am very happy.with.
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Old 06-13-2022, 08:18 AM   #18
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When I replaced my cooling unit I swapped out the old control board for a Dino. Figured it was better to do it while access was easy. Sounds like you may have to go the same route and get a new board.
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Old 06-14-2022, 09:48 AM   #19
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Foiled Again. Your box us full but wanted to say thanks for the PM comments.


As TCWheels's (an AS owner) tag line used to remind me… “don’t let prefect be the enemy of better”. Hard to let go sometimes.


Like you I believe I've been thru the check list, but I’m a bit surprised that so much cfm is needed to give me the temps I used to get with the solo oem Rodale fan a few years ago.

But you’re right, fans are cheaper than new cooling units. I simply need to get otr and see how performance holds once stabilized.

Your board swap sounds like the logical next step as it seems you’ve checked all the other boxes. I wish you success.


Happy trails
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Old 06-14-2022, 10:05 AM   #20
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Paula,

Any chance to check see if the system is getting its required heat to perc the "soup"?

I've checked mine with an IR temp gun or even in this case a careful hand test. The chimney on mine is about 95-100 degrees F when the heating unit or flame is on.

No heat, no cooling.

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