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Old 04-19-2016, 09:07 PM   #1
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Dometic fridge won't light

I have a Dometic RM3800 fridge. Works great on 110v but won't light on gas. I unplugged the 110v cord so it would switch over to gas. I pulled the tin off the burner to expose the igniter, its working (sparking). I tried to light it with a BBQ lighter, no luck. I have propane, the stove and water heater light up. Any possible solutions.
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Old 04-20-2016, 01:36 AM   #2
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There is a 12 volt solenoid on the propane control valve that you need to have good power and ground to, before the fridge will light.
There may even be two solenoids, in that case both need to be operating.
You should have a wiring diagram on the back of the fridge and I think the power wire is brown. When the sparking starts the solenoid should click too; you'll need someone inside to switch the fridge on while you hold the solenoid with your fingers. If there are two solenoids , remove the power wire from one and test, then remove the other solenoids wire and install the first and re-test.

This file has info on propane solenoids , BUT , it may not be the same as your fridge, I'm including it so you know what to look for.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Solenoid part numbers.pdf (415.9 KB, 38 views)
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Old 04-20-2016, 02:42 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skip426 View Post
There is a 12 volt solenoid on the propane control valve that you need to have good power and ground to, before the fridge will light.
There may even be two solenoids, in that case both need to be operating.
You should have a wiring diagram on the back of the fridge and I think the power wire is brown. When the sparking starts the solenoid should click too; you'll need someone inside to switch the fridge on while you hold the solenoid with your fingers. If there are two solenoids , remove the power wire from one and test, then remove the other solenoids wire and install the first and re-test.

This file has info on propane solenoids , BUT , it may not be the same as your fridge, I'm including it so you know what to look for.

Does your stove light? I use it to purge air out of the system.
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Old 04-20-2016, 03:57 AM   #4
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Is this a first time start up for the season?. Did it work fine prior when put up for the winter storage?. If yes then in most cases it has air in the lines and needs to be purged, air in the lines is caused by turning gas on and off [changing tanks, refilling, storage]. Sometimes even cycling perhaps as many as three to for times before the pilot lights. If this fails follow Skip426 advice and check further. Good luck.
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Old 04-20-2016, 10:48 AM   #5
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Thanks for the replies. I have purge the gas on the water heater and the stove let both run for several minutes.
What I tried was running the fridge on 110 power and by standing at the access to the back of the fridge then I could unplug the fridge from the 110 power and listen for the fridge to cycle over to gas. I think it cycles three time before its a no go (not sure though). I can listen at a range where I can here the igniter but not the solenoid click. I can't say if this is the original fridge or not. I bought the coach with 86000+ miles. Its a Dometic Royale RM3800.
I still need to run the test on the solenoid(s). I should be able to here the solenoid cycle right?
Thanks again:)
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Old 04-20-2016, 03:02 PM   #6
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I have the same fridge and I was having a similar problem. Like yours it worked well on 110v, but in my case it would light for a minute or so on gas but then go back off. I originally thought it was the thermocouple. I cleaned the thermocouple but there was no change. Online research suggested it was likely either the thermocouple or the circuit board. I still had the original "black box" board. Although a new thermocouple would have been cheaper I decided to replace the circuit board since access was much easier in my particular installation.

I'm not a fan of just throwing parts at a problem but the problem persisted no matter what else I tried. I replaced the board with an upgraded one from Dinosaur Electronics, http://www.dinosaurelectronics.com/Dom_Chart.htm and it has worked perfectly ever since. The part was around $120. Now it also does a great job in the "Auto" mode and switches reliably between AC and LPG. The temperature control also seems to work better.

Again, maybe your circuit board isn't the problem, but in my opinion the increased operational reliability alone would have been worth the cost even if it hadn't solved my problem. In any case, the problem with your unit is almost certainly a simple one. Troubleshooting is the difficult part of the process. Best of luck!

Russ
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Old 04-20-2016, 04:47 PM   #7
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Open the burner access and blow it out with some compressed air. All it takes is a small amount of dirt on the burner to keep it from lighting. This should be done yearly. Had the same issue with my system..
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Old 04-21-2016, 03:52 AM   #8
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All good replies, keep us posted, and let us know your solution.
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Old 04-21-2016, 01:14 PM   #9
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I think I narrowed the problem to the circuit board. I bypassed the wiring to the solenoid with a jumper wire and energized the solenoid and presto fire. Good blue flame, works great. Thanks to everyone for there input.
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Old 04-21-2016, 01:37 PM   #10
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Good to hear. Please post again when completely resolved for everyone's benefit!


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Old 04-22-2016, 10:07 AM   #11
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I'm in the process of ordering the replacement board.
Will follow up with progress.
Thanks again everyone!
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Old 04-22-2016, 10:31 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickreece67 View Post
I have a Dometic RM3800 fridge. Works great on 110v but won't light on gas. I unplugged the 110v cord so it would switch over to gas. I pulled the tin off the burner to expose the igniter, its working (sparking). I tried to light it with a BBQ lighter, no luck. I have propane, the stove and water heater light up. Any possible solutions.
rickreece67
I suspect the "Spark Sense Electrode" needs to be cleaned or has failed.
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