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Old 09-06-2021, 10:27 AM   #1
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Refrigerator fan

We have been having trouble keeping the Dometic 3 way fridge (RMD 10.5XT) in our RV cool when traveling and when camping. I suspect that the propane flame is being blown out when we are on the road but even when we dry camp or boondock the fridge just does not stay very cool, often never dropping below 45-48 F during the day and even staying above 40 at night. I have seen suggestions that using a refrigerator fan might help so I bought one (this one) from Amazon but it blows so little air that I can just barely feel it if I hold the fan next to my face.

Since people do say that these fans help I was wondering if people could tell me what fans actually work so I can buy one that will help keep our fridge cool.
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Old 09-06-2021, 10:52 AM   #2
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There are two things. I use that same fan inside my fridge to help circulate the cool air inside. It does help in the 8ish cubic foot fridges.

Then there are external fans to help the back of the fridge stay cool enough for the absorption process to work and actually provide cooling for the unit. If the back of the fridge is in the sun all day it can't exchange heat well and especially if the fridge is in a slide or does not have a roof vent but rather an upper vent in the side wall then the chimney effect is limited and again the heat exchange is limited. In those cases a fan modification to the chimney space can help move air and let the fridge cool
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Old 09-06-2021, 11:01 AM   #3
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Also do the dollar bill test on the door gasket to verify integrity.
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Old 09-06-2021, 11:06 AM   #4
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Also do the dollar bill test on the door gasket to verify integrity.
Dollar bill test? What is that? Waving a bill around the closed refrigerator door to see if there is air movement in or out? Or something else?

I guess I don't see why air would be moving in or out of the a closed refrigerator door since there is no air movement inside the fridge. Or am I missing something (again)?
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Old 09-06-2021, 11:15 AM   #5
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My fridge works much better since I added inside and outside fans. The outside ones pull hot air up and out the top vent and the inside ones keep the air in the fridge circulating so the temperature is consistent throughout. This thread https://www.irv2.com/forums/f54/addi...dge-86697.html
discusses both options.
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Old 09-06-2021, 11:19 AM   #6
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Did your fridge come with the OPTIONAL external Fans
2 external fans are available
They would greatly improve the necessary draft to COOL your fridge down properly
*internal fan is good for circulating the cool around inside the food compartment BUT external fans are what helps Fridge Cooling process

Dollar Bill test is used to check if door seals are tight....warm air bieng pulled un thru the seals
Place dollar (5,10,20, 50, 100) door seals/close door and pull bill out...S/B strong resistance.
Try in several spots around the door

If bill slips out easily....doors are not fully closing
*alignment, bad seals, warped etc
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Old 09-06-2021, 11:19 AM   #7
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Last time I was out for half the day the sun was beating down on the refrigerator side of the motorhome, and it was getting above 40. When I put the awning out that solved it. The dollar bill test is just to put a dollar bill between your gasket and the refrigerator when you close the door, and see if there is any resistance when you pull it out. If it comes out very freely your seal isn't making good contact.
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Old 09-06-2021, 11:39 AM   #8
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Last time I was out for half the day the sun was beating down on the refrigerator side of the motorhome, and it was getting above 40. When I put the awning out that solved it. The dollar bill test is just to put a dollar bill between your gasket and the refrigerator when you close the door, and see if there is any resistance when you pull it out. If it comes out very freely your seal isn't making good contact.
One of the things we do regularly is put out the awning if the sun is on the refrigerator side of the RV in an effort to keep the outside RV skin as cool as possible. If we don't do that the inside temperature is very high, but even with the awning out the inside temperature is still well over 40 F.

In general I miss the compressor fridge in our old RV and if it were not so expensive I might replace the 3 way with a new compressor model (if I could find one that fit).

I will try the dollar test the next time we camp. I know there is a seal problem because we have to push in the bottom of the fridge door when we close it so that it clicks.
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Old 09-06-2021, 11:44 AM   #9
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Did your fridge come with the OPTIONAL external Fans
2 external fans are available
They would greatly improve the necessary draft to COOL your fridge down properly
No. It did not come with any additional fans. I guess I should look into that.

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Dollar Bill test is used to check if door seals are tight....warm air bieng pulled un thru the seals
Place dollar (5,10,20, 50, 100) door seals/close door and pull bill out...S/B strong resistance.
Try in several spots around the door

If bill slips out easily....doors are not fully closing
*alignment, bad seals, warped etc
I will test that the next time we are at the storage unit where the RV is stored. I don't think the fridge needs to be operating to test the door seals.

Being a bit cheap I will use a 1 dollar bill rather than a 20. You mean they actually make bills larger than a 20?
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Old 09-06-2021, 12:12 PM   #10
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No. It did not come with any additional fans. I guess I should look into that.



I will test that the next time we are at the storage unit where the RV is stored. I don't think the fridge needs to be operating to test the door seals.

Being a bit cheap I will use a 1 dollar bill rather than a 20. You mean they actually make bills larger than a 20?
That fridge door has dually locking devices top/bottom....great idea provided the door fully closes

Dollar bill.......
I heard tell of 20s and other higher denominations but it could have just been a tale
I only have seen 1's 5's and 10's ....mostly 1's
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Old 09-06-2021, 12:35 PM   #11
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I tried the dollar bill test...
$20 disappeared into the fridge.
$50 disappeared into the fridge.
I don't have access to a $100 note.
Could somebody please post one to this thread? Thanks
P.S. since I am in canada, U$73 will work
P.P.S. Because the fridge has, for six months, successfuly resisted my attempts to clean out, I am afraid to open the door alone.
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Old 09-06-2021, 12:42 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AJMike View Post
One of the things we do regularly is put out the awning if the sun is on the refrigerator side of the RV in an effort to keep the outside RV skin as cool as possible. If we don't do that the inside temperature is very high, but even with the awning out the inside temperature is still well over 40 F.

In general I miss the compressor fridge in our old RV and if it were not so expensive I might replace the 3 way with a new compressor model (if I could find one that fit).

I will try the dollar test the next time we camp. I know there is a seal problem because we have to push in the bottom of the fridge door when we close it so that it clicks.
You just have to have a different mindset when using the absorption refrigerator. You can't just open it and stand there and decide what you want to take out, you want to open it and close it very quickly, and limit the times that you open it. Also a good idea to have a separate cooler outside with ice for your drinks.

A residential fridge would be nice, but I wouldn't want to have to deal with the extra energy requirements. Plus I often don't have 110 hookups. However I've been thinking about getting a small mini fridge, then when I do have electrical hookups I can put cold drinks in there.
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Old 09-06-2021, 03:39 PM   #13
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I've been using a separate 12 volt refrigerator/freezer for drinks - they are sold for vehicle use, some have 2 separate zones for fridge and freezer, the one I have is only a single compartment that can be set to freeze or cool. This one has a compressor, not a thermoelectric chip. It uses very little power but is not meant for cooling warm drinks. It does a nice job of keeping them cold. They are much cheaper than they used to be - under $200 for some models.
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Old 09-06-2021, 03:55 PM   #14
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OK when you guys 20s got sucked up by the refrigerator was you wife hiding inside? But seriously, if you want to go the route of putting the fans on the outside, and you probably should, a good source of cheap fans are old computer fans. Just make sure they are 12 volts and 80mm. Last I knew even the ball bearing ones could be had for less than $20 and the non-ball bearing ones less than $10. Compared to the $70 to $80 the commercial ones cost I'm pretty sure I could come up with a workman like way to mount them. Good luck.




https://www.amazon.com/s?k=rv+refrig..._sb_ss_sc_3_15
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