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Old 07-27-2010, 10:13 AM   #1
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Removing Norcold refrigerator

Got this huge Norcold reefer in my TT, been several years now , never used it, and from what I've read , it probably won't work very well for our intense Heat anyway.. Out of warranty now .. Heavy !!! I'd like to replace it with a tiny dorm refrigerator and Igloo which works better for my particular EVAC camping needs ... saves weight and complexity , and the expense of repairs down the road ...
Just thought I'd ask first to avoid blowing anything up ...

PS... I'm NOT worried about the TT re-sale value as it's already worth less than I still owe on it ... The wife is committed to keeping it till it falls apart (which should be fairly soon now)... So have decided to modify it to the trailer I want/like ...save a little weight, and make my life simpler ...
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Old 07-27-2010, 10:42 AM   #2
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I am going to assume your refer has 3 fuels,,,LP gas, 120 volt AC and 12 volt DC. You'll need to disconnect each of these. The LP gas line will typically use a brass 3/8" flare plug in the brass flare fitting at the end of the copper supply line. Turn the propane (LP gas) supply tank(s) off, disconect the line and plug it.
The 120 volt connection most likely just plugs into a receptacle and you can simply unplug it.
The 12 volt DC will be in the form of 2 wires.........one is + and the other is -. Find the fuse that controls the DC circuit in your DC fuse or breaker panel and remove the fuse or disconnect the breaker. After you have disabled the circuit remove, cap and label the wires. Why label? You may need these wires for something in the future and if so you'll know what they are for.
Good luck with your project
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Old 07-27-2010, 10:44 AM   #3
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Wink Get and RTFM !

I think your first order of business (if you haven't done so already) is to find the installation/users/technical manual(s) for the model of Norcold refrigerator that you have. Many of these can be found on the net. There you should find complete instructions on how to go about removing your refrigerator.

I have a Norcold N841 (their 8 cu. ft. model) and I assisted a tech in removing it to replace the cooling unit. I learned that they're large, bulky and difficult to work with due the tight quarters of an RV. However, if your refrigerator is either opposite of or in a slide-out, open the slide. Mine was and it made the job a lot easier.
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Old 07-27-2010, 11:01 AM   #4
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Mine's the N512 3 way .... 86 lbs. Pricy devils too !!!
Thanks for the tips !!!!! Feeling more confident now !!!
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Old 07-27-2010, 11:11 AM   #5
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I think you may be selling the Norcold short - how can you know it won't work if you haven't even tried it? The 22 year old refrigerator in our KIT 5er still works as good as new - yours very well could too!

What will you gain swapping out to a smaller non-RV refrigerator, beside loss of $$$, lotsa sweat - and a final install that is smaller than what you already have - and looks out of place as well?

IF you knew for a FACT the existing fridge was DOA, it would be different - otherwise -
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Old 07-27-2010, 01:38 PM   #6
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Gary, point well taken !!! Being old and stubborn , just don't care for propane or absorption units ... and the newer models aren't getting on too well either , as reported from many RV ers'.... Things aren't made the way they used to be for "economic" reasons .. Just figuring if a small unit goes out , it'd be easily (and Cheaply) replaced , even on the road ... And I like Ice chests too ... just what I've been using for the past 50+ years ...
Figuring I'd sell this one cheap and apply it to what I owe... Ought to be able to get half for an unused unit... hopefully...

Apologies for being so obtuse... my camping is limited to someone else's driveway during hurricane evac... Otherwise , it sits in my driveway , waiting for the call ... After spending 6 weeks away from home after Katrina, we vowed to have something to live in besides our friends houses, with their family ,friends, and pets.... Just too stressful!!! The trailer solves our problem and keeps the wife happy ... that as we know is always GOOD!!!!

Sorry for not being a real RVer...
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Old 07-27-2010, 04:12 PM   #7
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Quote:
and the newer models aren't getting on too well either
That seems true - and I don't really understand why!

As mentioned, the Dometic in our '88 KIT 5er is still going strong after 22 years - the Norcold in our recently obtained '88 Winnie MH was still working, but on it's way out when we bought it - but it looked to be the OEM unit, so not too upset. BUT, seems like quite a few owners are losing their units - mostly Norcold ones from what I have seen - after only a few short years. The materials used and overall engineering sure wouldn't seem to be all that different from 20 years back - so WHY are these later ones so much more failure prone?
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Old 07-27-2010, 04:56 PM   #8
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Because it's good for their economy ... In our disposable society , guess they're betting folks will throw out the old one and just buy another... keeping Thetford and the RV dealers "rolling in the Green"
Everything seems to be made that way today ... Must have been the story about the company that made light bulbs that never burned out ... and then went out of business because they never sold any more after ...
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Old 07-27-2010, 08:22 PM   #9
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try it for a day and see if it cools before you work to replace it with a dorm frig.
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Old 07-28-2010, 08:00 AM   #10
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TX, Thanks , I'm sure it will work ... it's never been turned on ... Plus I'm on this big weight savings kick .... just an aging (2001) 6 cyl Silverado to pull all this ... Road tests on flat land were fine ... on hills , it was another story... Had to use Premium gas , and turn the truck AC off ... not good when it's 95F outside ...
Losing several hundred pounds would allow me to carry more of my stuff (lest it get washed away ), the TT having a very low payload as presented... Removing all the things that are unused would at least reduce the trailer TW by 10% , which I expect will make things proportionately easier ...Plus I don't have the maintenance or replacement cost (RV) factor...
As I mentioned previously , this is Not your usual Camping/RV'ing... We've been practicing the EVAC thing for many years now, just fine tuning the "comfort" level...

As an old retired guy , I'm also used to having things that last (old school) ... things in this trailer seem pretty shoddy/ marginal(read: cheap) .. and my dealer even referred to the whole thing as "disposable "(after the sale) Er, that's not exactly my idea of how things should be ...
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