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 8/1/2010 11:48 AM
 

We bought our motor home new in 2003. 6 weeks ago our refer quit. The cooling unit quit. We called an RV service and they called our extended warranty and they will pay the $1500.00 cost of the parts and the labor to fix it. At first Dometic said it would be 4 to 10 days until we could get the parts. Then it was 4 to 8 weeks to get the cooling unit. I called Dometic and they told me it would be 6 months before we could get the parts. We are full time and it's not easy to live with out a refer. It seems once you pay for a Dometic product they no longer have customer care. I would say that if you buy Dometic junk you are just stuck with junk. No wonder the RV industry is in the toilet. There is no recourse, it is totally buyer beware. Of course they were willing to sell me a $5000.00 replacement refer that wouldn't fit the opening where the refer goes.


We're always near home.
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 8/1/2010 1:27 PM
 

dawnguy - Unfortunately, there are only two major manufacturers of RV refrigs, and we hear good and bad things about both. It sounds like your problem has been diagnosed as a bad cooling unit, and getting a new replacement unit on a 7 year old refrig could be problem. Some of our members have had success replacing their cooling units with re-built units. Sometimes the re-builders have them in stock and sometimes they furnish you a shipping carton, so you can send yours in for re-building. The turnaround times I've heard are usually days, not weeks or months. You might want to contact one of these companies to see if they can handle yours and if they can recommend a mechanic in your area who could do the work. I just did a Google search and found one HERE. Good luck. - Dave

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 8/1/2010 2:26 PM
 

We have a 1999 Norcold 1200LRIM that went out - heating unit blew and lost ammonia. Luckly we were on electric and not propane for ammonia is fammable. We took motorhome to a place in Arkansas and they put in a rebuilt cooling unit for $600 (2007). You might be able to find a place like that close to where you live.

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 8/1/2010 3:21 PM
 

Our Dometic is fifteen years old. Aside from the fact that I had to do a repair job on the lower right hinge (my fault) right after we bought it, the unit has run flawlessly.

Wish the same could be said of its owner.


Frank FitzGerald Middleton MA RexAir 37' with Saturn L300 Toad Oh Yes I almost forgot, Pat-my copilot
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 8/1/2010 9:25 PM
 

Some members of my local Tiffin club have been ordering a residential refrigerator when buying a new rig. Yes people, some folks are still buying motor homes. Some are also replacing their existing refrigerator with a residential unit. 3000 watt inverter and a couple of extra batteries is all you need to dry camp. The generator needs to be run a couple of hours daily when dry camping to keep the batteries charged. Compare the cost of a new residential refrigerator with a RV refrigerator and also compare the efficient cooling capacity. My next rv will have a residential refrigerator unless I decide to down size.

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 8/1/2010 11:37 PM
 

Yes, sorry for your dilemma, dawnguy. Because of all the apparent issues with ammonia-based units, I elected to go all-electric when I ordered my rig. The GE refer runs beautifully and I have ice and water in the door just like we did at home before becoming a gypsy. I have two 2000 watt inverters and 8 batteries, causing the generator to run maybe 3 hrs. a day. But then all those flat panels, computers, and subwoofers really do take a toll on the batts. And the unnecessary LP tank bay down below is great for more storage.

The Tiffin units seem to get by with only 6 batts and, I believe, a 2800 watt inverter.


Bob J. from TX 2014 Newmar Essex 4544 2007 Lexus LX 470 Toad
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 8/1/2010 11:42 PM
 
 Modified By RVA  on 8/2/2010 3:53:49 AM

fishboat1 - If you're a fulltimer with hookups, a home-type refrig (compressor) makes sense. But, if you like to dry camp it could be a problem. I have a large generator, lots of batteries, and a very large charger, but it would be very difficult to supply the necessary amps that a home refrig compressor would require with just 2 hours a day recharging. Remember, a 10 amp 120v AC draw equates to a 100 amp 12v DC draw from your batteries. RVs have absorption refrigs because lots of power isn't always available. Good luck. - Dave

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 8/2/2010 8:53 AM
 

Thanks RVA. I will try to contact them. I tried to find a rebulid before and didn't come up with your information on my own. I'll let you konw what happens. Other site say they don't rebuild the cooling units for my refer. Thanks again. Dawnguy


We're always near home.
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 8/2/2010 9:47 AM
 

Our refer quit three years ago while I was deployed on a flood disaster with FEMA. I bought an apartment refer and put it in the big slide by the table as a temp measure. I did some research and found a number of places that could provide a rebuilt cooling unit (including a number of them in Arkansas) However, one day I took my rubber hammer out and tapped all around the coils on the back fo the refer and evidently dislodged the obstruction that was causing the system to malfunction. It has done just fine for the last three years. I have no illusions that my 10 year old refer will work forever but so far so good! We kept the apartment refer in the rig and use it as a big freezer.

BTW, Alfa motorhomes put household refers in their Founders edition (before they went belly up) when were were selling that product. I was never a fan of that design because when we were fulltimers, we boondocked a lot and boondockers are not excited when a neighbor fires up a genset when the solar panels don't cut it on cloudy days or short sunlight winter days.

Way too many parks have inadequate power for me to be excited about running electric appliances and we simply are not going to pay the freight to stay in resort type rv parks where the power is usually pretty good.


Libby and John and RV the CAT Ford F 150 towing a 2017 Forest River Vibe 277 RLS Click here to see our current location
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 8/3/2010 8:55 AM
 

My 2007 Monaco Norcold cooling unit failed after only 4 years. My story is somewhat of a miracle. I got back to the motor home at 5 pm Saturday evening. Noticed fridge was defrosing. Went outside and saw the dreaded tell tell yellow/green "stuff" on the cooling unit. Called a local (Colorado Springs) mobile RV repair guy I had previously used. He checked and called me back soon and said he had a new cooling unit in stock. Believe it or not, he showed up when he said he would on Sunday at 8:30 am. His helpers were off on Sunday and he said he could do it if I would help him. We finished at 11:30 Sunday AM. I consider this a minor miracle. I paid through the nose but in my situation it was a real emergency being full time and also working out of my rig. I have been doing insurance adjusting in Colorado Springs for past 27 days and may have to move on at any moment. And.............of course.........the wife had just packed the fridge to the gills the day before. Four throw away coolers, several bags of ice and the fast service and we lost very little food.

It is amazing to me that with all the advances in RV's over the years that they still use early 19th century technology for the fridge.

I have found a good source for parts for refrigerators for your future reference. This guy has a large supply of new units he "parts out". Nice guy, and good service and reasonable prices.

National RV Refrigeration

8015 N 600 W

Shipshewana, IN 46565

260-768-7059

If my local guy hadn't had a unit in stock this would have been my first call on Monday morning. I am sure I could have had a unit by Tuesday or Wed from him for a lot less money.

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