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Old 06-29-2014, 12:23 AM   #1
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Norcold refrig problem

Dsdp (2005) model 4023. Getting a cold drink before going to bed tonight, I noticed that we did not have lights on the display panel and no lights inside refrig. I tried to switch to gas before realizing that I would have to have 12 v in order for the gas to work. I found a 5 amp fuse in panel in bathroom, it was ok. I seem to have 120 v and 12v throughout the rest of unit. Have not checked anything outside yet (it is midnight and raining). Going to bed now and will log in tomorrow to see if anyone has any input on this. It seems whenever I have a question this is my go to for the best info. Thanks in advance. Roger. Ps I'm pretty sure that previous owner did not have any recall work done on fridge
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Old 06-29-2014, 12:30 AM   #2
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I bet your recall box did its job. Hopefully just a loose wire!
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Old 06-29-2014, 12:31 AM   #3
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If the control panel is down then the 110 isn't going to work either , food could be bad by morning.
Do you have the fridge manual?
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Old 06-29-2014, 07:52 AM   #4
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Norcold refrigerator problem

stink: you stated that you thought the recall box did its job, without sounding really stupid, what and where is this recall box? I will be looking for any loose wires shortly. In the time being, wife is moving food to fridge in the sb house. Thanks for the advice. Roger
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Old 06-29-2014, 08:01 AM   #5
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If the recall has been done, you will see a small electrical box fastened to the refrigerator coil on the back of the fridge. This box is accessible by opening the outside vented door at the fridge location. If the red light is on then the box has tripped. I have found that if this box gets wet it will trip the switch. You mentioned it was raining and I have had this occur under heavy rains. You can reset the switch by holding a strong magnet over the red light for 15-20 seconds and the switch will reset and the light will go out. I found a strong pencil magnet at Napa which works. You will need to place and hold the magnet on the light for what seems like along time. Hope this helps.
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Old 06-29-2014, 08:51 AM   #6
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Norcold refrierator problem

Gmarsha2: found recall box, red light on, used magnet reset method, problem solved. Yes it was raining hard with strong winds. Will have one more thing to add to my learning curve for this rv life style. Thanks again. Roger
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Old 06-30-2014, 09:54 AM   #7
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Need to plan for a RR so you can sleep at night
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Old 06-30-2014, 10:10 AM   #8
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Need to plan for a RR so you can sleep at night
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I have a Norcold 1200 and it works great ! I had the recall done and I sleep like a baby knowing my frige is keeping my food nice and cold and is safe !
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Old 06-30-2014, 10:19 AM   #9
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Need to plan for a RR so you can sleep at night
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I could not agree more.

Please be careful at this juncture. The Recall installed by Norcold does not shut off the fridge until the boiler has reached a temperature high enough to severely damage the refrigerator, both breaking down the coolant mixture and weakening the boiler tubes. In addition the high temperatures reached weaken the boiler tube further with each additional cycle. The thermal cycles that happen when the fridge is undergoing these stresses, combined with a badly designed boiler tube (thin walls) is what causes the unit to become a blowtorch and burn down RVs. When the stresses become too much the boiler tube fails and the coolant, which has hydrogen gas in it, sprays on the red-hot electric heating element forming a blowtorch in the back of the fridge. Over 8000 RVs have burned, and people and pets have died, or been maimed for life by fire. The recall by Norcold is NOT designed to protect your refrigerator or fix it's defective design. It is there to protect Norcold from damages when the units fail. If you've reset the device you effectively eliminate any claim you have that their faulty design caused you damages. The information I have is that Norcold did not beef up the cooling unit tubing for new units until last year, and continued selling the thin tube cooling units long after the problem was known. The units usually fail at around 5-7 years old, perhaps longer depending on how they are used. (occasionally vs Full time)

You should limit the number of times you try to reset the recall device with a magnet. You should also inspect the unit in the rear for any signs of ammonia or yellow residue. Unless you know for a fact the unit tripped due to water sprayed or some other reason NOT related to high boiler temperature I'd start planning for a new cooling unit or residential fridge replacement now. We got extremely lucky and ours did not catch on fire when the boiler failed. We replaced ours with the Samsung RF197, and have been very happy with the results.

Please be careful and don't roll the dice with your family's safety....these fridges are extremely dangerous. I can't tell you how upset I was to learn how close we came to loosing everything.
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Old 06-30-2014, 10:29 AM   #10
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I have a Norcold 1200 and it works great ! I had the recall done and I sleep like a baby knowing my frige is keeping my food nice and cold and is safe !
You should know that RVs continue to burn WITH the recalls installed. Please read what happened to Becky & Larry Becky & Larry – Kentucky – September 20, 2013 | RV-Refrigerator.info before you decide you're perfectly safe. They thought so too. They were sleeping when their refrigerator burst into flames and they were lucky to have awakened and gotten out alive.

I'm not trying to stir up trouble. I genuinely believe that these things are dangerous and I'm trying to get people to read, investigate and decide for themselves before taking the manufacturer's word that everything is fine. I'm an engineer by trade and I'm shocked and appalled by the gross indifference the manufacturer of these refrigerators has demonstrated.

You should also know that the recall is nothing more than a box that turns off power to the refrigerator when the temperature on the boiler reaches an extremely high temperature. The temperatures reached virtually ensure that if the recall trips, the refrigerator is toast. The recall does NOTHING to make your food cooler, or to mitigate the vast number of problems people have had with these expensive boat anchors. It also does not always prevent fires. My refrigerator failed in exactly the same way that causes the fires, but for some reason I got lucky and it did not ignite. My recall box did NOT TRIP, and the unit also failed in the middle of the night while I was sleeping.
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Old 06-30-2014, 10:30 AM   #11
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Me too!

Mine has never failed. I've never seen one fail. Never seen one burn in 45 years of RVing. Any post about Norcold brings out the alarmists.

I've modded mine to make it colder and cool faster. (see Muddypaws Mod) and have been happy with it since. I have the coldest beer in town (34F) and our ice cream is as hard as a rock (-18F). I wish our home refer worked half as well and was half as quiet.
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Old 06-30-2014, 10:40 AM   #12
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Bobby & Darrell Mukaisu Well said Mine when it was 75degs outside the frig would be 50degs and the freezer zero and both fans ran all the time. I think your frig is telling you something, ditch me.
My switch to the Samsung 197 RR cost around $1800 frig and labor but I did have the Magnum 2812 PSW inverter installed also.
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Old 06-30-2014, 10:49 AM   #13
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Mine has never failed. I've never seen one fail. Never seen one burn in 45 years of RVing. Any post about Norcold brings out the alarmists.

I've modded mine to make it colder and cool faster. (see Muddypaws Mod) and have been happy with it since. I have the coldest beer in town (34F) and our ice cream is as hard as a rock (-18F). I wish our home refer worked half as well and was half as quiet.
I apologize if I've offended you with my "alarmism". I have a natural desire having been the victim of a near-disaster to tell people about it and try to prevent them from being hurt. At least when people hear what's going on with these things they can decide for themselves, as you have done, if they feel safe or not rather than not knowing anything about the history of this product. I have done a lot of research on the subject and have been and continue to be appalled by what I've discovered.
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Old 06-30-2014, 11:15 AM   #14
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Muddypaws, You are lucky, there are numerous documented intances of norcold refer fires.

My norcold 1200 caught fire about 3 years ago, I was extremely fortunate in that I was dumping grey water when I looked up into the vents for the refer and saw the flames. I got the fire out with very minor damage to the MH.

Norcold eventually replace the cooling unit at no cost to me, within weeks they issued their second or third recall. I had that recall installed. I was not comfortable with the Norcold unit as it kills power whan the boiler gets to about 700 degrees. As stated earlier that temp causes eventual failure of the cooling unit with the possibility of fire.

This spring I had an Amish cooling unit installed with an ARP unit for protection aginst overheating. The ARP unit kills power at 410 degrees and when the temp cools it will restore power. The refer temps are much better with refer about 35 and the freezer normally about 8 on a setting of 5.

I sleep much better now.

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