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Open Roads Forum  >  Truck Campers

 > New Fridge questions

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BurbMan

Islip, Long Island

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Posted: 07/08/20 01:34pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Just went through the same thing on our 2002 Lance 811, see this thread. Rebuilding the camper due to water damage and replacing the fridge also. The original was a Dometic 2554 5.0 cu ft 3-way fridge, and we are replacing it with a Dometic 2551, same exact fridge except it's a 2-way. We always ran the fridge on propane in the trailer, we figured we don't need to go 12v now, especially since we have 2 -20-lb gas tanks and only 1 battery.

Our camper has the same entrance door measurements as you. Unlike some other larger campers, there is no door or window large enough for the fridge to pass through.

The fridge about 24" wide and 25" deep so neither way would allow it to pass thru the door. We disassembled the old fridge by removing the cooling unit and that allowed it to pass thru the door. As a byproduct of the water damage repairs, I have removed the dinette slide out, so that's the way the new fridge is going in! Note to self, remember to install fridge before putting slide back in!

I also had the door out for an unrelated reason, water damage to the floor. It's not hard to remove and replace, just get a roll of butyl tape.

FYI, I got our fridge brand new with full 2-year factory warranty at a scratch and dent RV appliance place in Shipshewanna IN for $550. Had to drive out to get it, but hey, what else is there to do?


2015 Ram 3500 SRW 4x4 Laramie Crew Cab Long Box, Cummins diesel
2002 Lance 811 Slide-In Camper
SOLD: 2008 Terry 34' TT
SOLD: 2001 K2500LT 8.1L Suburban

Lance 811 Renovation Story!
Project Complete!
Maiden Voyage!


edbehnke

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Posted: 07/08/20 01:58pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

There still are 3 ways refrig. out there...wow.

The 3 way, to me, is a waste. If you turn it to 12 volt for any length of time you will kill the battery in the trailer AND maybe the truck....

Unless you want to have multi batteries up front pick whatever one works for you, but avoid the 12 volt if you get the 3 way.


eddie and sandie
3402 Montana 2013
Ford F350 2015

valhalla360

No paticular place.

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Posted: 07/08/20 02:47pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I wouldn't bother with the 12v option just too little opportunity to utilize with a small battery bank and no solar.

If it's an older fixer upper, I would go with the simpler to install unit, so probably live with the smaller unit.

Have you pulled the old unit out to see what you are really dealing with inside the cabinet?


Tammy & Mike
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silverbullet555

Boise

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Posted: 07/08/20 04:04pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

valhalla360 wrote:

I wouldn't bother with the 12v option just too little opportunity to utilize with a small battery bank and no solar.

If it's an older fixer upper, I would go with the simpler to install unit, so probably live with the smaller unit.

Have you pulled the old unit out to see what you are really dealing with inside the cabinet?


Not yet. I asked norcold to see if the valve was going to come back into stock. Probably not a good idea since this fridge is 25 years old.

I really don't want to tackle this until later in the season, but I might as well just bite the bullet and get the old one out before making the decision. Getting in there might give me some additional insight before I place my order.


James
2007 Chevy Silverado 2500HD Classic Crew Cab 4wd 6.5' bed
1995 Northland Grizzly 860 camper
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Kayteg1

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Posted: 07/08/20 05:54pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

First for us, there is no such thing as too big fridge.
At home we often run 2 fridges even there is 2 of us. 5 cu in TC makes us repacking food to smaller dishes.
We just like to have choices when dinner time comes.
Running 2-way fridge off 12V is not a big deal when inverters become so cheap (I spend $1200 for 1 over a decade ago), but is there significant price difference between 2-way and 3-way fridge? Most of things in RV comes with backup mode and 12V is a good backup. Not to mention Lance makes heavier cords just to run fridge on 12V straight from the truck.
Today's truck often have alternators in 200 amp range, so not like we run short on supply.
But start with tape measure and checking the way out/in. On some campers even removing door or window is not enough.





silverbullet555

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Posted: 07/08/20 07:42pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Kayteg1 wrote:

First for us, there is no such thing as too big fridge.
At home we often run 2 fridges even there is 2 of us. 5 cu in TC makes us repacking food to smaller dishes.
We just like to have choices when dinner time comes.
Running 2-way fridge off 12V is not a big deal when inverters become so cheap (I spend $1200 for 1 over a decade ago), but is there significant price difference between 2-way and 3-way fridge? Most of things in RV comes with backup mode and 12V is a good backup. Not to mention Lance makes heavier cords just to run fridge on 12V straight from the truck.
Today's truck often have alternators in 200 amp range, so not like we run short on supply.
But start with tape measure and checking the way out/in. On some campers even removing door or window is not enough.


At home that holds true. We have the inside fridge, outside fridge and 2 freezers. In the camper, not so much. Space is what it is. Perhaps when we buy a newer one we will have more room. My goal is to maximize the room with whatever model we can get in there.

BurbMan

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Posted: 07/09/20 10:58am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

In my Dometic model, the 3-way is about $200 more than the 2-way.

FWIW, the RV refrigeration guy told me that the average lifespan of an absorption fridge in an RV is 15 years. Of course like everything else, so go longer, some go sooner. Ours is 18 yrs old, still got cold on a/c, didn't work on gas, the was rusted to death. Now that I know what I know about getting it in/out, soooo glad we decided to replace it now while the slide is removed!

Kayteg1

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Posted: 07/09/20 11:19am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have 2 Dometic RV fridges turning 19 years old and both work very well.
Did some testing 2 years ago, simulating food loads and even in 100F outside, the freezer kept frozen.
There is nothing that can wear on them, so beside corrosion, or carboned burner they are indestructible.

mbloof

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Posted: 07/09/20 01:49pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Kayteg1 wrote:

I have 2 Dometic RV fridges turning 19 years old and both work very well.
Did some testing 2 years ago, simulating food loads and even in 100F outside, the freezer kept frozen.
There is nothing that can wear on them, so beside corrosion, or carboned burner they are indestructible.


It is said that if you operate them off level to much or for two long the cooling unit will no longer function. Granted the "fix" is to remove the Fridge and rotate/shake it to remix the fluids inside.


- Mark0.

Kayteg1

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Posted: 07/09/20 02:32pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Before TC I had motorhomes without leveling jacks, so we park out of level quite often.
What I notice is that RESTARTING the fridge makes it very sensitive to level as with fridge off - ammonia tends to accumulate in low spot, blocking the flow.
But we camp in high temperatures, so fridge was never off and I remember only 2 times when cold night shut the burner off and we had warm fridge following morning.

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