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Old 07-30-2011, 01:34 PM   #1
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Dry camping, fridge level?

Going to be parking for a day or so and I'm planning on turning on the fridge early so it has time to cool down..... Don't want to totally level and set it up to just park it for the night and then head out in the morning.......

Exactly HOW LEVEL does one of these RV Fridges need to be? I'm not talking about a huge hill,..... Just a couple degree slope...... Is it that big of a deal?
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Old 07-30-2011, 03:33 PM   #2
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The older frigs are more sensitive to being level than the newer ones. The owners manual for the frig gives the limits on how many degrees you can be off level side to side and front to rear. Pretty simple trig gets you how many inches off leve you can be.

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Old 07-30-2011, 03:43 PM   #3
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generally, if you can sit without feeling odd and walk around without feeling like you're on a ship, then you are probably OK.

"In order to assure proper operation of the RV refrigerator the rig should be no more than a half bubble on the level off. This is about two degrees or an inch off level per three feet or about a 3% grade. For a 25' trailer that is 7' wide, this means the hitch jack can be up to 4 inches too far up or down and one side can be a bit more than two inches higher than the other. If you are so far off level as to be in this borderline state, the odds are that you won't be very comfortable inside the rig, either."

see Leveling
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Old 07-30-2011, 04:12 PM   #4
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Recently attended a seminar regarding RV appliances and the tech told the audience that RV fridges really did not have to be all that level. His reasoning made sense in that they are supposed to work on propane as the coach is traveling down the road and roads are not necessarily plumb level...???

He said that the admonition from manufacturers to have the coach level is mostly to protect themselves from repair claims.

I do all that I can to make mine relatively level, but have never gone to extremes if it is parked in my driveway and I am just trying to get it cold for an upcoming trip.

Hope this helps...

Faith
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Old 07-30-2011, 04:23 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fansill View Post
Recently attended a seminar regarding RV appliances and the tech told the audience that RV fridges really did not have to be all that level. His reasoning made sense in that they are supposed to work on propane as the coach is traveling down the road and roads are not necessarily plumb level...???

He said that the admonition from manufacturers to have the coach level is mostly to protect themselves from repair claims.

I do all that I can to make mine relatively level, but have never gone to extremes if it is parked in my driveway and I am just trying to get it cold for an upcoming trip.

Hope this helps...

Faith
The tech may be somewhat correct, but his reasoning is poor; the fridge in a moving vehicle is not static, but constantly moving, bouncing and swaying.
My understanding is that the constant movement keeps the ammonia moving, and avoids the low point pooling that eventually slays the off-level absorption fridge.

The advice given previously that if you are physically comfortable in your parked rig, the refrigerator will be level enough is good advice; with the proviso that vintage fridges are still very sensitive to an off-level condition.
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Old 07-30-2011, 04:55 PM   #6
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The tech may be somewhat correct, but his reasoning is poor; the fridge in a moving vehicle is not static, but constantly moving, bouncing and swaying.
My understanding is that the constant movement keeps the ammonia moving, and avoids the low point pooling that eventually slays the off-level absorption fridge.

The advice given previously that if you are physically comfortable in your parked rig, the refrigerator will be level enough is good advice; with the proviso that vintage fridges are still very sensitive to an off-level condition.
I went to Norcold and Dometic schools. Senior Chief is correct. Because of the movement Level doesn't matter
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Old 07-30-2011, 08:05 PM   #7
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If stationary, in my 2008 or so model (don't know exactly what year the refrigerator was made, but the coach is 2008 - Norcold 2810) the manual states 3 degrees side to side, and 6 degrees front to rear as you are standing looking at the refrigerator. I have a driveway that slopes pretty good so I rune it up on wood planks to the tune of about 8 inches and that gives me the warm, comfortable, fuzzy feeling when walking in it that it is okay.
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Old 08-01-2011, 12:57 AM   #8
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This slopemeter.com XLS (page bottom) file will eliminate any calculations/conversions. Wayne, you won the grand prize!
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Old 08-02-2011, 08:24 AM   #9
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This slopemeter.com XLS (page bottom) file will eliminate any calculations/conversions. Wayne, you won the grand prize!
Or this, for a paltry $13. Tells you how many inches to raise or lower...
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Old 08-02-2011, 10:09 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by fansill View Post
Recently attended a seminar regarding RV appliances and the tech told the audience that RV fridges really did not have to be all that level. His reasoning made sense in that they are supposed to work on propane as the coach is traveling down the road and roads are not necessarily plumb level...???

He said that the admonition from manufacturers to have the coach level is mostly to protect themselves from repair claims.

I do all that I can to make mine relatively level, but have never gone to extremes if it is parked in my driveway and I am just trying to get it cold for an upcoming trip.

Hope this helps...

Faith
I gather he never researched how RV fridges work.

The problem with being un-level is that there are different fluids in the plumbing, they are supposed to seperate out and re-combine under the influence of heat and gravity But if the unit is too far off level it won't flow properly in the pipes and bad things happen.

now bouncing down the road,, The flow will happen even if it's only due to "Splash"

So parked and moving, two different situtations completly when it comes to level. That said.

I like to be withing a half bubble,, Just now my jacks are not that user friendly but I like to be within a half bubble.
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Old 08-02-2011, 10:26 AM   #11
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I gather he never researched how RV fridges work...........
For the record, I have 11 years of residential and commercial A/C and refrigeration experience, I am new to the ammonia gas systems used in RVs like mine and wanted to hear from a technician or engineer who works on these units daily, not some guy who read the same useless manual I did which was written for someone without technical experience to tell them it just has to be perfectly level,...... NO RV IS EVER PERFECTLY LEVEL even when sitting still, there's too much weight, flex and forces at work,.... Even with a solid frame, since my fridge is in a slide, it'll never be dead on...... I know this after taking measurements. I DO work in metal fabricating now so I do have some authority in that respect.

With all due respect, I don't appreciate the unwarranted attack on my intelligence.
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Old 08-02-2011, 10:39 AM   #12
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For the record, I have 11 years of residential and commercial A/C and refrigeration experience, I am new to the ammonia gas systems used in RVs like mine and wanted to hear from a technician or engineer who works on these units daily, not some guy who read the same useless manual I did which was written for someone without technical experience to tell them it just has to be perfectly level,...... NO RV IS EVER PERFECTLY LEVEL even when sitting still, there's too much weight, flex and forces at work,.... Even with a solid frame, since my fridge is in a slide, it'll never be dead on...... I know this after taking measurements. I DO work in metal fabricating now so I do have some authority in that respect.

With all due respect, I don't appreciate the unwarranted attack on my intelligence.
Please don't take things so personally. No one was attacking you; the remark was directed at the technician who told another poster that leveling was no big deal and something the manufacturers made up, and that moving down the road was exactly the same as sitting still.

If you don't want to believe the information here to be true, the refrigerator police will not stop you from running your fridge off-level. Good luck with that, by the way.
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Old 08-02-2011, 10:44 AM   #13
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Well it is true that when you drive the condensed liquid is able to break up easier into a gas from the motion of being on the highway,....... If anything that helps with how efficient it operates, that, and the air from traveling down the highway blowing by to take away the heat it generates on the coil. I don't want to take it personally but I guess I'm just having a bad day, lol
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Old 08-02-2011, 10:46 AM   #14
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By the by, does your fridge manual actually state "perfectly level" or it this hyperbole?

Most I've heard of say > 3 degrees and 6 degrees, fore and aft, side to side. We use the half-bubble method, and that means in the freezer, not some arbitrary random point.

BTW, ga traveler is an RV tech who's worked on exactly the systems we're talking about- I might listen when he talks.
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