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Old 10-05-2012, 12:58 PM   #1
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 50
ALERT: Ice Maker Solenoid floods coach

FYI- Turn off water to coach when leaving coach for any extended time. Check solenoid regularly to insure it is not leaking. Consider a Plan 'B' to route flooding water to the refrigerator drain which dumps out under coach or take your chances.

We secured a spot in an RV park midway to our destination. We plugged into shore power and ran the air conditioners since we had an onboard pet and it was 106 F in late June. Since we were departing early in the morning we did not level the coach and the coach leaned slightly to the drivers side of the coach. We departed for several hours.

Upon our return we found water cascading down the back of the Dometic NDR-1290 refrigerator from the ice maker and the fresh water tank was less about 30 gallons of water. Water was entering and departing the rear of the coach from numerous locations... A mess was an understatement.

Back at our homebase, this is what I learned as I dug into the details of the ice maker system: Solenoids are not suppose to leak and is electronically called on by the ice maker for 3 seconds to open and deposit 6 oz water in the ice maker mold, then turn completely off. If a solenoid leaks, it can slowly deposit water throught the back of the freezer in the distribution tube to the ice maker. In our case, the tube solidly filled with ice. With this tube filled with ice, the next cycle the solenoid went from leaking to sticking fully open. The water excaped down the back of the refrigerator with this full flow since the tube was frozen shut.

Learning that the soleoid most likely was the problem I purchased the Eaton- part #3108706.270 for $25 from a good Internet source. I went through numerous tests to insure the ice maker timer was not the problem. I connected the new solenoid directly to a city water source for the input side and used another 1/4" line from the output side of the solenoid hanging it out the side of the external refrigerator door opening for some of my tests. I learned the new replacement ice maker costs $200 with shipping & tax from Dometic and was pleased to establish the solenoid was the problem.

As a Plan 'B'.... If or when our new solenoid repeats the same pattern of defective behavior, I used a flexible thin cutting board sheet, metal tape, a funnel, and connections to route any potential future cascades caused by a defective soleniod into the refrigerator condensation / defrosting freezer water drain line that dumps below the coach. SEE ATTACHMENTS- Plan 'B' and solenoid.

I share this learning opportunity because if we experience this ice maker solenoid failure, the odds are all Alpine Coach owners with the Dometic NDR-1290 with ice maker may experience this failure or some version of failure.
FYI- the new replacement ice maker from Dometic is Model 3313470.080.
Safe travels.
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2003 Alpine Coach
2009 Jeep Wrangler 4-Dr Rubicon
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Old 10-05-2012, 01:53 PM   #2
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Thanks for sharing. I experienced a similiar issue when the water inlet area where the hose goes into the ice tray froze closed. The pressure when the solenoid opened blew the hose loose and water came down the back. Lucky it didn't deatroy the circuitry or get inside the rv. The slide was out so the water made it outside. I try to turn the water off any time we leave the rv. Recently had a knock at the door when water came out from our water softener compartment. A hose had blown even though I had a pressure regulator in place. Could have been a real problem if inside as you experienced.

Myron & Deborah
08 HR Endeavor 40 SKQ
2012 Ford Edge Limited FWD 3.5L
Aluminator tow bar, Demco base plate
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Old 10-05-2012, 06:33 PM   #3
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Alpine Owners Club
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Vancouver, WA
Posts: 2,209
FWIW - The biggest failure in RV's in refers aside from the unit failing is the icemaker and fresh filter water system. They have the most service calls, and the most dis-satisfaction. I keep mine turned off, and the water valve closed, since I dont want a flooded coach, frozen pipes, and lots of trouble.
Monty & Janet - 2007 Alpine APEX 40 MDTS
S/N - 75715 - Retired - Master Certified RV Tech
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