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Old 07-16-2012, 12:22 AM   #1
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Refer not working - Dry Ice?

Title says it all -

My refer isn't working and I haven't had the time/money to repair/replace it. I tried a big tub of salted ice with a fan, and that got the refer down to around 50 over the last weekend I took it out, but that's not really good enough. Would dry-ice work, or is there going to be a pressure issue from the evaporation of the dry-ice?

I am just looking for an alternative to get me through this season, without having to resort to coolers.
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Old 07-16-2012, 08:28 AM   #2
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You could buy a small refrig from Lowes for what you will spend on dry ice.You could either take your unit out and replace with the small or just set it in the floor and have it for a spare when you get the original to the RV fixed
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Old 07-16-2012, 08:31 AM   #3
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If power is not a issue why not replace it with a small compact refer there about 299 or so at lowes and will fit most openings it will have to be trimed out after but it cools fast and I've replaced a lot of them over the years and itlooks good when done.
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Old 07-16-2012, 08:32 AM   #4
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We both posted the same idea at the same time
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Old 07-16-2012, 10:44 AM   #5
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In round figures Dry Ice is 100 below (F) so it will work.. entierly too well, Wrap it in several layers of newspaper and do not forget to wear gloves.

It is also CO2, so venting is important.

My recommendation would be to get a residential fridge to "install" (Set in the RV) till you can either fix or replace the RV fridge. Back in my trailer days I got a small "office/Dorm" job at Sears, Think I paid a hundred bucks for it, First summer it paid for itself cause before that I was buying ice as you are now.. Suddenly I no longer bought ice.

I bolted a packing strap to it (The strap wrapped around the bottom but was held by the feet bolts) so I could do a one-hand lift and carry. That thing was great.. When I went to a Class A, Sold it to some friends, and they are still friends so you know it's stilll working great .
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Old 07-16-2012, 03:06 PM   #6
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The dry ice will work to get you by for now, but wa8yxm is correct about wrapping it. Anything placed right next o it will freeze. Occasional venting is strictly to allow some of the CO2 gas out. It won't build up pressure, but any opened containers of food and drink will become "carbonated" from being exposed to the concentrations of CO2. Makes milk taste funny. Don't ask how I know!
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Old 07-16-2012, 03:39 PM   #7
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Experts? Would putting the dry ice in the freezer, cool the refrigerator section as good or better than when it is working properly?

When my S&B fridge quit, I used dry ice until the new one could be delivered and it froze anything within about a foot from it.
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Old 07-16-2012, 09:42 PM   #8
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Thanks for the response, looks like I have a good temporary solution.

Any clue on how much to get? I have a 2803 - so about 8 ft3 of refer space.

Using a compressor-driven refrigerator is out of the question, as at least half of my travels are boon-docking in national parks.
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Old 07-17-2012, 09:43 AM   #9
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Don't know where you're located but I've several ads in different places I've traveled to, as well as here at home, for HVAC companies who say they repair RV refrigerators.
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Old 07-17-2012, 11:25 AM   #10
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We have used dry ice to cool the refrig when they die. I put 2-3 pounds in the freezer and it will last 2-3 days, in a 8ft^3 refrig. Beware that using dry ice will freeze EVERYTHING in the freezer & refrig! Wrapping it in a paper bag is all we did. We used a small dorm refrig for non-freezables. This was a good workaround to get us thru a vacation week. Upon our return we replaced the entire refrig instead of replacing the cooling unit due to its age & currently available options and needs.
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Old 07-18-2012, 12:12 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rsflight View Post
We have used dry ice to cool the refrig when they die. I put 2-3 pounds in the freezer and it will last 2-3 days, in a 8ft^3 refrig. Beware that using dry ice will freeze EVERYTHING in the freezer & refrig! Wrapping it in a paper bag is all we did. We used a small dorm refrig for non-freezables. This was a good workaround to get us thru a vacation week. Upon our return we replaced the entire refrig instead of replacing the cooling unit due to its age & currently available options and needs.
Stupid question: Are you saying that putting the ice in the freezer will convect through the coils to the fridge?

If that much freezes everything, I might half that and experiment around, because I am trying to eliminate having to use a cooler, and since I boondock the compressor fridge isn't possible.

@trackman - Unfortunately from everything I read it is irreparable - It had the leak of doom...
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Old 07-18-2012, 12:28 PM   #12
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Your better off icing up a cooler if it's just on the weekends.
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Old 07-18-2012, 01:18 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sticcino View Post
Stupid question: Are you saying that putting the ice in the freezer will convect through the coils to the fridge?

If that much freezes everything, I might half that and experiment around, because I am trying to eliminate having to use a cooler, and since I boondock the compressor fridge isn't possible.

@trackman - Unfortunately from everything I read it is irreparable - It had the leak of doom...
I asked that in post #7.
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Old 07-18-2012, 06:55 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Dunner View Post
I asked that in post #7.
Ahh, I didn't realize that, sorry...

Hopefully someone will have an answer - if not, I will have an answer after this weekend.
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