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Old 02-24-2014, 06:51 PM   #15
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I have found a custom RV outfit who tells me they do many of these res. refer installs. They say the only good size unit which will fit in my situation is the Samsung RF 197 AC. It's a counter depth, french door with bottom freezer. It looks like this unit will just fit though I will lost 2-3" in hall space and will need to stand to the side of the freezer drawer when it rolls out. It seems like a nice, efficient unit. Any comments?
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Old 02-24-2014, 07:00 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rvjimzhr View Post
I have found a custom RV outfit who tells me they do many of these res. refer installs. They say the only good size unit which will fit in my situation is the Samsung RF 197 AC. It's a counter depth, french door with bottom freezer. It looks like this unit will just fit though I will lost 2-3" in hall space and will need to stand to the side of the freezer drawer when it rolls out. It seems like a nice, efficient unit. Any comments?
See my reply in the previous post...
John
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Old 02-25-2014, 08:41 AM   #17
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Thanks John for that link! I'm reading it now but have one last concern I want to put to rest. I really know nothing about the systems I have in my coach....I just use them and rely on others for advice.

I dry camp a lot. Usually I'll spend a day or two at a time boondocking and each morning I run my generator for an hour or so while I make coffee, ,maybe use the microwave and charge my 4 6v house batts. The longest I've gone without shore power was 15 nights at a Forest Service campground and I had no problems. When I dry camp I use the tv sparingly and the micro almost not at all.

So with my Dometic refer running on propane my batts have been fine for dry camping. I would also like to run the refer while driving. That said, I'm looking for assurance that adding this Samsung 197 will not add a power draw which the batts can't handle or which might damage the batts.

I see posts from lots of people using this Samsung. I'd like to think that many of you dry camp as I do and with a good 2000W, or better, inverter and 4 good house batts that I have plenty of power without being plugged in.

Am I correct?

Thanks again! This forum had been a tremendous help once again!

Jim
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Old 02-25-2014, 08:56 AM   #18
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So with my Dometic refer running on propane my batts have been fine for dry camping. I would also like to run the refer while driving. That said, I'm looking for assurance that adding this Samsung 197 will not add a power draw which the batts can't handle or which might damage the batts.

I see posts from lots of people using this Samsung. I'd like to think that many of you dry camp as I do and with a good 2000W, or better, inverter and 4 good house batts that I have plenty of power without being plugged in.

Am I correct?

Thanks again! This forum had been a tremendous help once again!

Jim
I had our Samsung installed in April 2012 while on our way to Alaska. On the trip north we dry-camped over night many times. The Samsung draws 1.81-1.83 KwH per day as measured with y Kill-O-Watt over a 3 month period.

I have my AGS programmed to start when the House Battery Bank gets to 50% SOD(ischarge). Then it will come on and charge them until Float SOC.

I never have to worry about what state the batteries are in as the AGS takes care of it for me. I also run the generator in the morning for coffee and microwave use unless it's on already from overnight use. Then again at night for dinner.

My batteries are still like new and they have been in since the summer of 2012 when I purchased them from Sam's Club in Fairbanks.

4 - 6VDC GC-2 Batteries with a 2000 watt RV2012 Xantrex/Trace MSW Inverter is what I am using. Then when running the roads my 160 amp Leece-Neville Alternator handles the batteries adequately.

Dr4Film ----- Richard
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Old 02-25-2014, 09:22 AM   #19
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I am in the process of reading another interesting link on this subject while I continue to try and make up my mind here. Richard, I don't have the AGS option and have a concern about need to monitor the batts constantly. Also an interesting comment from another person who broke down, was towed and in a repair facility for some time and was quite glad that he still had the propane capability. I guess if that happens and I'm able to keep the inverter on during transit and the repair facility allows me shore power then I'd be fine. Otherwise?? And I realize that given a MAJOR disability, food in the refer would probably be least of my worries.

Jim
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Old 02-25-2014, 09:33 AM   #20
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Most places I've had any kind of service done had at least power to plug into. A few people I've talked to who have a res. fridge don't even worry about power to it when traveling. I've been told everything stays cold as long as you don't keep opening the door. I don't know ablout that, I have a 3000 watt PSW inverter, and 480 watts of solar. So I don't worry about it. A lot of RV service places are doing the conversions now a days. A place called Alliance RV in Wildwood, Fl. told me they do about 3 a week.
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Old 02-25-2014, 11:07 AM   #21
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I'm really enjoying reading the other links on this subject but as I do, more questions arise. I'm still looking for more info on dry camping with res. reefers and I wonder about the Samsung 197 installs where the tolerances are so tight. Is there adequate access for repairs down the road? Does the freezer drawer need to be removed and can it? How about access thru the rear panel outside?
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Old 02-25-2014, 11:24 AM   #22
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Your concerns were the same as others and they have all been answered in the many threads that are available for reading on this forum.

Do a search using the term Samsung RF197 and another using Samsung RF197 Install.

You should have PLENTY of reading with many answers to your questions and concerns.

There are many more threads than what the search brings up. These two search terms go back to 2013 but there are threads that go way back to 2010 or more so use some different search terms to get more threads.

Bottom-line is that you aren't the first to have the same questions but most of them are not worrisome as the fridge works well in a RV and it comes highly recommended.

BTW, it is the ONLY fridge where the manufacturer has approved use in a RV with a MSW inverter and will honor their warranty.

Dr4Film ----- Richard
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Old 02-25-2014, 05:43 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rvjimzhr View Post
Thanks John for that link! I'm reading it now but have one last concern I want to put to rest. I really know nothing about the systems I have in my coach....I just use them and rely on others for advice.

I dry camp a lot. Usually I'll spend a day or two at a time boondocking and each morning I run my generator for an hour or so while I make coffee, ,maybe use the microwave and charge my 4 6v house batts. The longest I've gone without shore power was 15 nights at a Forest Service campground and I had no problems. When I dry camp I use the tv sparingly and the micro almost not at all.

So with my Dometic refer running on propane my batts have been fine for dry camping. I would also like to run the refer while driving. That said, I'm looking for assurance that adding this Samsung 197 will not add a power draw which the batts can't handle or which might damage the batts.

I see posts from lots of people using this Samsung. I'd like to think that many of you dry camp as I do and with a good 2000W, or better, inverter and 4 good house batts that I have plenty of power without being plugged in.

Am I correct?

Thanks again! This forum had been a tremendous help once again!

Jim
Jim,

Solar panels and as full a tank of fuel as possible when you set up camp is always a good start to a dry camping adventure. Given enough time and really cold weather, even propane will get low (furnace, hot water, etc.).

Keep researching until you feel comfortable with a decision. I would get solar panels and maybe extra batteries (Have 4 house batts now) if it were me. Won't ever go back to absorption units as they almost always are having problems and are always fire hazards. JMTW. Good luck.

John
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Old 02-26-2014, 08:04 AM   #24
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More info..

Quote:
Originally Posted by rvjimzhr View Post
I'm really enjoying reading the other links on this subject but as I do, more questions arise. I'm still looking for more info on dry camping with res. reefers and I wonder about the Samsung 197 installs where the tolerances are so tight. Is there adequate access for repairs down the road? Does the freezer drawer need to be removed and can it? How about access thru the rear panel outside?
Just a follow up on this. As others have noted, a lot depends on how often you open the fridge doors and how hot it is inside or outside as to how much energy it will consume. The Samsung does not use a lot of amps (see Richard's comments) and if conserved, it might work just fine with the genset running in the AM and/or PM for a while. You could always try it that way and add solar later if really needed.

As in any custom installation, it will be more difficult to pull a unit out for inspection and/or repair. Tolerances are totally dependent on your specific situation and the installer would have to judge whether they could get it in based on Samsung specs. Choose an experienced RV installer and they should be able to tell you what will work and what won't. Show them my thread to see how I did it. That might help.

In my case, the freezer door will extend fully but I have an offset in the hall which allows me not to have to stand to one side if I don't want to. I put the freezer drawer in before installing and put handles on last.

It was tight getting the fridge in the space, but as you read my thread, you will see what I encountered and how I overcame the obstacles. Your case may be a little different, so take that into consideration. I can see some of the rear of the fridge from the outside opening, but you can't do much from back there.

The Samsung or any unit can be pulled part way out to get more access to the rear workings if needed. I left the rear cover off for that reason before installing. Samsung has a high reliability rating on this unit and if repair is ever needed, I will deal with that then. There are many other things in the MH that would be difficult to pull if needing repair or replacement, so I'm not worried about it.

As stated before, this is a well-known fridge that is being used in many RVs today (including factory), works on MSW inverters, is safe, so do your research and see if it will work for you. Hope this helps.

You can also see pictures of my install (and other projects) at:

zzjea's photosets on Flickr


John
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Old 02-26-2014, 09:46 AM   #25
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Thanks again to all who have responded to my questions here! I really appreciate this site and and the helpful people. I am most likely going have installed the Samsung RF 197 AC and am speaking with Texas Custom Coach in Pipe Creek, TX about doing the job. They have done lots of these types of installs and seem very confident that this unit will work for me.

It's my nature to analyze "to death" so I still have nagging thoughts about the tight fit and adherence to mfg specs for venting not to mention access in the event of necessary repairs down the road. As to whether my inverter/batts will be adequate for boondocking, I'll deal with that when the time comes with solar or add'l batts.

Many others way smarter and more experienced than I have gone this route and I'll do the same.....crossing my fingers of course.

Jim
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Old 02-26-2014, 11:07 PM   #26
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I do not boondock that often but I can probably put one of your fears to rest. I have a frigidare I believe it is 14 cubic feet but I would have to check. It was in the coach when I purchased it but I did not see any modification to make it fit. My electrical panel is below the refrigerator so they could not have moved much to get it in. I have a 2000 watt MSW inverter and the refrigerator has not had any problems in the 2 years I have owned it. Like another poster said I like having frozen ice cream or cold drinks when I want them. I also like being able to get ready to go somewhere and just turn power on then have the refrigerator up to temp in a couple of hours versus having to turn it on the night before.

One of your worries was running down the road. If your coach will charge your batteries off of the alternator that will run your fridge the whole time you are driving. If your coach does not charge your house batteries that is an easy thing to modify. there are several threads on IRV what to buy to accomplish that. Either way running down the road and keeping your fridge cold is not going to be a big problem.


I would never go back to a propane powered fridge.
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Old 02-27-2014, 08:30 AM   #27
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I'm about ready to "pull the trigger" but the last thing on my mind is access for service. I spoke with a Samsung warranty rep. She said that in the event of a repair requiring removal of the fridge from its cabinet, "some service workers will remove the unit and some might require you to remove it" before they will work on it.

I guess my questions now are:

How common are repairs requiring full access to the rear of the unit or major malfunctions requiring removal from the cabinet?

Has anyone gone through this yet?

What did the repair tech do or not do when faced with the problem?

Are we just "crossing our fingers" and hoping we never have a serious repair issue?

Jim
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Old 02-27-2014, 09:11 AM   #28
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Jim,

I have had service on the inside of my fridge. The original defrost heater clips were not large enough to keep the defrost drains open for the water to drain.

Here's the post that I had made over a year ago when this happened.

The service tech had to get to the rear of the fridge to remove the two drain tubes to make sure they were perfectly clear. He accessed the rear through the outside access door and removing the rear access panel on the Samsung.

When installing the fridge remove the access panel FIRST and then slide the fridge into the opening. The you can attach the panel using only 3 out of the 4 or 5 screw holes available.

I would imagine that the only reason for complete removal would be to replace the compressor if needed.

Almost everything else is accessible from the front.

Remember to keep the bottom and rear areas clean about twice a year.

Dr4Film ----- Richard
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