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Old 09-07-2014, 11:15 AM   #1
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Norcold fridge gas problem

Hi all,
I am relatively new and started right off FT with first RV. Having an issue with the infamous Norcold L1200. My 2000 Allegro Bus with 300 Cat ran great on my maiden voyage from Phoenix to Columbus, Ohio. Only real problem is I can't run fridge on gas when going down the road. Flame blows out within a couple of minutes and coach fills with gas fumes big time. Therefore, I use generator or just leave it off depending on what is in it. Gas works fine sitting still. Everything appears to be intact, flame is blue. I have had three different "certified techs" look at it and none have been able to diagnose. It is the original fridge.

Any thoughts?
Thanks much
Mike
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Old 09-07-2014, 11:51 AM   #2
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Quote:
Flame blows out within a couple of minutes and coach fills with gas fumes big time.
This is an explosion waiting to happen. Until or unless you can avoid this you shouldn't leave your propane tank on. There's a lot of controversy regarding whether refrigerators should even be run while traveling for this reason.

Most refers have a thermocouple that senses flame temperature and if not detected will shut off the gas within a minute or so. I doubt a manufacturer could market a refer without a thermocouple so that means your's is malfunctioning. Fix it and then rig a wind guard of some sort to block the flame.
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Old 09-08-2014, 09:31 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acstokes View Post
This is an explosion waiting to happen. Until or unless you can avoid this you shouldn't leave your propane tank on. There's a lot of controversy regarding whether refrigerators should even be run while traveling for this reason.

Most refers have a thermocouple that senses flame temperature and if not detected will shut off the gas within a minute or so. I doubt a manufacturer could market a refer without a thermocouple so that means your's is malfunctioning. Fix it and then rig a wind guard of some sort to block the flame.
I agree your thermocouple is not working and that is extremely dangerous. Personally I think the correct fix is to put in an AC refrigerator and be done with it. I have one in my 2005 and I would never go back to the no cold unit. The alternator charges the batteries going down the road. If I stop somewhere I start the generator just to be on the safe side if I am going to be away from the coach for a length of time. Although the batteries will keep it up for about 8 hours.
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Old 09-09-2014, 04:54 AM   #4
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The 1200 series does not have a thermocouple.

There should be no problems with running the LP side of the fridge while traveling - they're designed to do so. It is important to make sure the OEM housing is intact around the burner lower unit and check gas pressure at the burner.

Did any of them check the ignitor/flame sensor gap?
Did any of them check pressure/flow at the gas valve on the fridge?
Did they pull the vent and inspect/clean the flue?
Was the internal flue baffle still intact?

I'm in the Columbus area...would be happy to help you TS it once you're here.
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Old 09-16-2014, 09:56 AM   #5
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Thank you for the responses. Wouldn't you know we got a knock on our door last Friday in the early morning with a guy telling us we were on fire??????? Thank God we were parked on the parking lot of a Freightliner service center and half a dozen of their men came out with fire extinguishers. Something started a fire behind the norcold. Looked like the control box to me. The fridge itself was turned off completely all night. It had not yet spread anywhere inside. None of our alarms had gone off yet, although I suspect in a few minutes we would have been toast since the fire was all around the gas line....

we'll see if the L1210 model is any better..............
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Old 09-16-2014, 10:11 AM   #6
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You are one lucky dude!

Norcold 1200 fridges have a Flame Sensor that needs to sense the flame otherwise it turns off the LPG gas valve and you should not have ANY LPG going to the burner at all.

If the Flame Sensor does sense the flame at the burner then LPG will remain flowing.

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Old 09-21-2014, 06:07 PM   #7
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Mike,
Glad you are ok! You may already be aware of Tiffins Service Center and Tiffins customer support via telephone. They treat us folks that bought a used tiffin as well as new coach buyers. You can order just about anything from a parts department. I saved 6000 dollars after a 5 star service center quoted me because my wet bay was sagging. Red Bay is worth the drive. There is also many vendors there that know Tiffins. It's the only place we go now. Call their service dept before paying the price for repair shops to tinker around on your coach. I wonder if your frig was in the recall? Maybe you can check. Good luck.
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Old 09-22-2014, 11:57 AM   #8
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Norcold fridge gas problem

Turn off your gas while driving. Forget your generator if you don't need it for air conditioning. The SIMPLE solution is to plug the Norcold (ref. plug) into the inverter outlet (usually used for the ice maker) reached thru the outside access panel. I don't use the icemaker - make ice the old-fashioned way with trays. Turn the inverter on and this will provide 120 volt electricity to the ref. while driving. The 160 amp coach alternator (not the Onan) will keep the coach and chassis batteries fully charged while driving (has worked well for over 12 hours of continuous driving-had to get back to work ). Then plug coach into shore power when stopped. I always run the fridge on electric - water heater also.
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