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Old 06-24-2022, 05:50 PM   #1
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Norcold fridge question

My son has a 3 year old 5'ver with a Norcold model 2118 in it. He's frustrated with it's cooling performance and getting ready to replace it with a residential.

But before he replaces it, I suggested he try a few things including adding fans and verifying baffle is installed correctly.

But he did a 24 hour temp run with these temperature results. Outside temp was in 90's.
Click image for larger version

Name:	norcold graph.jpeg
Views:	8
Size:	127.2 KB
ID:	369245

If I'm not mistaken, on this particular test he had the thermistor just hanging and not attached to any fin. Normally it's on the 3-4 fin but similar results. The fridge thermostat was set at max (9)

Looking for any advice?
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Old 06-24-2022, 06:33 PM   #2
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Thermistor should be on 2nd FIN from right

To cause fridge to go into BOS (backup operating system) you should Unplug thermistor

2118 has a 'defrost' cycle.....not true defrost just allows food compartment temps to rise and melt any frost on the FINs
Typically a 2 hr cycle every 48-49 hrs

Temps are going WAY to high for TOO Long.
Does this fluctuation happen on electric and/or gas...just gas...just electric????
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Old 06-24-2022, 06:43 PM   #3
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just on electric.
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Old 06-24-2022, 07:05 PM   #4
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2118 uses TWO 300W heater elements
BOTH have to work for correct heat input

Appears only ONE is working

Resistance....roughly 48ohms when cool
**4 leads on circuit board
POS... AC_HT_HI and AC_HT_HI_2
Neutral... AC_HT_LO and AC_HT_LO_2
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Old 06-24-2022, 07:06 PM   #5
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Have you tested the door seals for good contact? Place a dollar bill in the door then attempt to pull it out(do this all around the door), if it comes out easily, seals are not functioning properly
Then there is the fanning door issue. These are very slow to recover after opening the door, cool air spills out, to be replaced with warm humid air.
Teach everyone to decide what they want to remove BEFORE opening the door, grab it, close door quickly.


When you return home and have the frig shut off; wash the folds of the seals with warm water, dry gently, then slowly and gently pull the folds apart and place cotton balls in the folds to hole them apart.

I have used an old hair dryer set on low heat to soften the seals before expanding them and holding them apart with cotton balls.
While seals are cooling, wash the metal sealing surface well to help the magnet strip hold better.
If that fails, it's time to spend money on new seals.
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Old 06-24-2022, 07:19 PM   #6
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On my Norcold 1200 (which I replaced with a Amish unit) I add 2 extra fans at the bottom and one extra large CFM fan at the top. Tied them into the fans already about half way up and added switches so if the day is warmer I can turn more fans on. Normally the 2 on the bottom run all the time and the one on top I turn on only on the hottest days. I also tilted up (prob 1/2 inch) my cover on top by adding spacers at the back— thus allowing more air to pass through. I had to do all these modifications after I installed the Amish unit to make it cool correctly. If I’d know about these tricks prior to installing the Amish unit I would of had better performance on the old unit. Been working great for 5 years. I’m sure doing something similar on the 2118 would make it perform better during the heat of the day.
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Old 06-24-2022, 07:21 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old-Biscuit View Post
2118 uses TWO 300W heater elements
BOTH have to work for correct heat input

Appears only ONE is working

Resistance....roughly 48ohms when cool
**4 leads on circuit board
POS... AC_HT_HI and AC_HT_HI_2
Neutral... AC_HT_LO and AC_HT_LO_2
I don't believe he's run a test in propane mode.

Are those 2 300w heaters used when fridge is in propane mode?
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Old 06-24-2022, 09:05 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by windsorbill View Post
I don't believe he's run a test in propane mode.

Are those 2 300w heaters used when fridge is in propane mode?
NO propane uses a FLAME to generate heat
AC uses the 300W elements to generate the heat
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Old 06-24-2022, 10:28 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray,IN View Post
Have you tested the door seals for good contact? Place a dollar bill in the door then attempt to pull it out(do this all around the door), if it comes out easily, seals are not functioning properly
Then there is the fanning door issue. These are very slow to recover after opening the door, cool air spills out, to be replaced with warm humid air.
Teach everyone to decide what they want to remove BEFORE opening the door, grab it, close door quickly.


When you return home and have the frig shut off; wash the folds of the seals with warm water, dry gently, then slowly and gently pull the folds apart and place cotton balls in the folds to hole them apart.

I have used an old hair dryer set on low heat to soften the seals before expanding them and holding them apart with cotton balls.
While seals are cooling, wash the metal sealing surface well to help the magnet strip hold better.
If that fails, it's time to spend money on new seals.
Hi Ray,

I appreciate the suggestions/ideas.

It's my son's fridge and it's in his side yard, plugged in. During these tests, no body is in rv so the fridge/freezer door is always closed.

The dollar bill trick I suggested when he told me about this a week ago. I didn't follow up on what he found out, but a fridge that is only 3 years old, I'd hope the seal is still good.

I replaced our norcold with a residential about 4 years ago. He sees the -2 freezer temperature in ours and gets discouraged with the norcold output.
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Old 06-24-2022, 10:31 PM   #10
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Old Biscuit,

Thanks for the great information. He's testing it tonight on propane and tomorrow we will see the graph and check out the heater elements.
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Old 06-24-2022, 11:04 PM   #11
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We have a 2022 Newmar Bay Star took one trip Norcold Dometic 10cu worked ok but typical absorption unit. Month later heading to Utah (1,000 mi away), planned for weeks, never made it out of the driveway when we noticed it was warm, cooling down day before while on elec but stopped all together. Called Newmar, they connected us to Norcold (2 hour wait). Norcold said disconnect thermistor and run on propane, give it about 6 hours. It did cool but propane doesn't work as well as electric. Home two weeks later, installed new thermistor but only had 12 hours with it before I had to take it to Ford service appt. Did not feel much cooling at that time. Coach returns in 2 days and will give it 48 hours. I'm thinking about switching to a residential, our last absorption made it 7 years no issues other than how cold it didn't get, same unit as our current. THE INSTRUCTIONS SAID: Place Thermistor on 10th fin from the right. I even order another one as a spare but may have to install it just to make sure it's the frig and not the Thermistor. Good Luck
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Old 06-24-2022, 11:33 PM   #12
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Thermistor location is Brand/Model specific......different spots for different fridges

Norcold is one Brand
Dometic is another Brand
Each with numerous Models
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Old 06-25-2022, 11:26 AM   #13
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Thermistor Locations

Quote:
Originally Posted by Old-Biscuit View Post
Thermistor location is Brand/Model specific......different spots for different fridges

Norcold is one Brand
Dometic is another Brand
Each with numerous Models
Click the following for;

Dometic Thermistor Locations

Norcold Thermistor Locations

Please be respectful, if taking information from our website, just give us credit
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Old 06-25-2022, 11:28 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by windsorbill View Post
My son has a 3 year old 5'ver with a Norcold model 2118 in it. He's frustrated with it's cooling performance and getting ready to replace it with a residential.

But before he replaces it, I suggested he try a few things including adding fans and verifying baffle is installed correctly.

But he did a 24 hour temp run with these temperature results. Outside temp was in 90's.
Attachment 369245

If I'm not mistaken, on this particular test he had the thermistor just hanging and not attached to any fin. Normally it's on the 3-4 fin but similar results. The fridge thermostat was set at max (9)

Looking for any advice?
Nice test data, you are welcome to contact us, we are instrumentation engineers, we know the facts regarding your fridge combined with your data collection. NICE WORK
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