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Old 06-08-2014, 11:16 AM   #15
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Does the father/son team install the new Amish cooling units?

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We did our install back in November of 2010 and have not looked back. The fridge runs @ 37* on setting 3 most of the time with the freezer running between 0* and 5*. Since we have an ice maker, I do pay attention to ice building up in that half of the freezer every month or 2 in the summer.
I run a 4" muffin fan full time in my Slide-out's outside top vent and when it gets warm, I run 2 of them. If it's over 100* outside I run 3.
We do spend a lot of time in humid areas while traveling so I installed 2 of the eBay fans inside the fridge (see the 6th post on this page) to discourage the fins from icing up.
While moving the RV especially in the summer, we did have the fridge warm up 3-4* on occasion. I cut a car "sunroof air foil" in half and installed it in front of the top fridge vent and it's no longer an issue.
We find the fridge more than satisfactory for our full-timing needs and the ice cream is always hard, the beer is always cold and that's all we need out of a fridge. If you're even near Shipshewana, IN stop by and visit the 2 Amish Farms where the Father, Son & Son-in-law build these "White Wizards". They're wonderful dedicated folks and it solved our No-Cold issue.
Hope to see you out there someday soon,
Mike & Julie Swain
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Old 06-10-2014, 08:22 PM   #16
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To the best of my knowledge, they still do installs if requested. If you look up RV Pines Refrigeration in Shipshewana, IN and contact them, I'm fairly certain that they can sell you the unit, and do your install in about 4 hours, as I've heard it.
After 6 years of full timing, we consigned our 2 Harley's to a shop in Denver and traded the KZ Escalade Toyhauler in on a new Mobile Suites with a Dometic instead of the standard "residential" fridge as we still love to boon-dock in the winter in Quartzsite, AZ. May wind up going back to "ShipShe" for a change to yet another "Amish Cooling Unit" if need be but so far, after only 4 days, it doing great. . . . but it not HOT yet so we'll see.
I did have to manually defrost the Ice Maker/Freezer side unit every 3 - 4 weeks in the more humid climes but it was a small price to pay for hanging in the desert for 2 - 3 months in the winter and traveling the country. . . and we DO use some ice! Ice Cold Beer, the Ice Cream was hard and the DW could keep veggies longer than most of our friends as this thing really cooled the fridge. It's a tank and who better than the Amish, who have used this technology to cool the refrigeration units in their homes without electricity for over 70+ years. They're nice folks and care about what they build and how it works for you.
Hope this helps. . . .maybe we'll see you out there !
Mike
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Old 07-02-2014, 03:36 PM   #17
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I am having a similar Norcold problem - replaced the Norcold guts with an Amish after market cooling unit two or three weeks ago. After several days I was getting acceptable temperatures but there are wild swings in temperature - refrigerator now 33 was 48 withing the past 12 hours. Might the thermistor be bad? I am on a setting of 4-5. Peter
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Old 07-09-2014, 08:52 AM   #18
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Although we had a Dometic that had two 12v computer fans running 24hrs. a day, and I played with the thermistor it wouldn't get cold enough. So I literally threw it out the window and installed a residential. As others have said the best mod we've done. But I will say we have plenty of solar, PSW inverter, and AGM's. Still it's good to finally reach into it and get a really COLD beer whenever I want.
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Old 07-10-2014, 06:20 AM   #19
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The installation of inside fans blowing against the fins takes care of any frosting issues. My wireless thermometers continue to show a 45 degree period when the control board goes into its 48 some hour defrost cycle...typical inside compartment temp is 30-35. As I've read these postings continuously there are wide variants in performance of absorption units. Some of us are fortunate...some of us are cursed.
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Old 07-10-2014, 06:37 AM   #20
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Hi
We are trying to find out what make, model and cubic feet sized residential fridge/freezer has been successfully used to replace the original Norcold in our 03 American Eagle 40W. Any input would be greatly appreciated!
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Old 07-10-2014, 10:16 PM   #21
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Les, I've only owned my RV (2002 TS 40DS) a few months, but the Norcold has already become a thorn in my side. Without going through the whole history, I had a new cold unit (Amish deal) installed and while the refrigerator/freezer are often at acceptable temperatures now ('twasn't always so) sometimes they drift 10-14 degrees as in the refrigerator up to 44 degrees at times. I have no understanding of how it is controlled - at first I thought I was having issues running on propane, but these variations happen on A/C as well. It sounds like you may be onto something with this defrost cycle though ... know if there is anyway to over ride that feature and defrost it when it needs it? Probably not. It's hard to find someone really knowledgeable about these things. Peter
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Old 07-11-2014, 05:30 AM   #22
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Yes you can temporarily turn off the fridge and turn it back on...this will RESET the defrost cycle for another period of time. A couple of us noticed that doing this Power Off/Power On procedure during the nite will result in the defrost cycle occuring during the night.

As far as residential refer replacements the archives are overflowing with ideas, procedures and manufacturer part numbers. Most of everything I know about RV's is because I browse the archives.
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Old 07-11-2014, 10:38 PM   #23
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I am suffering through the Norcold issues but for now will live with it. Even though a large number of RVers don't go off grid very much, it still should bother you to be using a home appliance on the road. Home refrigerators draw a LOT of current - even the Norcold needs 600 watts (Over 40 12vdc amps). I think the better alternative is to switch to a marine type compressor driven refrigerator that draws maybe 6-8 amps of 12vdc. I have an Engel small freezer that runs on 2.5 amps and will easily get the box down to zero. With a draw under 10 amps you now have a refrigerator that can be easily operated by the alternator under way, solar panels in sunny weather, so only an occasional use of the genset. With that household fridge you will be plugged in or on generator the vast majority of the time although I'm sure the 110vac versions could be supported with the alternator/inverter you have aboard. Propane is not ideal, but it makes it possible for me to keep my RV in storage without utilities and keep the refrigerator up between the solar panels for control power and the 40 gallon propane tank for fuel. I wish my Norcold was 3-way, but I tried running it on my inverter and being older it's probably not a true sine wave output and the Norcold doesn't care for it. I did get the ice maker running on the inverter so I can make ice underway or when camping without an electric hookup (these sites can be much cheaper)
Peter
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Old 07-11-2014, 11:03 PM   #24
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Quote:
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I am suffering through the Norcold issues but for now will live with it. Even though a large number of RVers don't go off grid very much, it still should bother you to be using a home appliance on the road. Home refrigerators draw a LOT of current - even the Norcold needs 600 watts (Over 40 12vdc amps). I think the better alternative is to switch to a marine type compressor driven refrigerator that draws maybe 6-8 amps of 12vdc. I have an Engel small freezer that runs on 2.5 amps and will easily get the box down to zero. With a draw under 10 amps you now have a refrigerator that can be easily operated by the alternator under way, solar panels in sunny weather, so only an occasional use of the genset. With that household fridge you will be plugged in or on generator the vast majority of the time although I'm sure the 110vac versions could be supported with the alternator/inverter you have aboard. Propane is not ideal, but it makes it possible for me to keep my RV in storage without utilities and keep the refrigerator up between the solar panels for control power and the 40 gallon propane tank for fuel. I wish my Norcold was 3-way, but I tried running it on my inverter and being older it's probably not a true sine wave output and the Norcold doesn't care for it. I did get the ice maker running on the inverter so I can make ice underway or when camping without an electric hookup (these sites can be much cheaper)
Peter
My Samsung uses less than 3 ampers or 330 watts with the ice and defrost turned off. While driving my inverter is just barely working to keep frig cold. When stopped I get two days on battery's untell I need to run genny to recharge. I'm a happy camper with ice cold drinks at arrival!!
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Old 07-12-2014, 06:07 AM   #25
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Quote:
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I am suffering through the Norcold issues but for now will live with it. Even though a large number of RVers don't go off grid very much, it still should bother you to be using a home appliance on the road. Home refrigerators draw a LOT of current - even the Norcold needs 600 watts (Over 40 12vdc amps). I think the better alternative is to switch to a marine type compressor driven refrigerator that draws maybe 6-8 amps of 12vdc. I have an Engel small freezer that runs on 2.5 amps and will easily get the box down to zero. With a draw under 10 amps you now have a refrigerator that can be easily operated by the alternator under way, solar panels in sunny weather, so only an occasional use of the genset. With that household fridge you will be plugged in or on generator the vast majority of the time although I'm sure the 110vac versions could be supported with the alternator/inverter you have aboard. Propane is not ideal, but it makes it possible for me to keep my RV in storage without utilities and keep the refrigerator up between the solar panels for control power and the 40 gallon propane tank for fuel. I wish my Norcold was 3-way, but I tried running it on my inverter and being older it's probably not a true sine wave output and the Norcold doesn't care for it. I did get the ice maker running on the inverter so I can make ice underway or when camping without an electric hookup (these sites can be much cheaper)
Peter
Peter,

You are WAY off base and miles away from the truth with your statements regarding power usage for a residential fridge used in an RV.

First off residential's have been used in RV's for many years prior to the Norcold debacle.

Second, it is a FACT that one of the more popular fridges being used in many RV conversions actually uses LESS power than the RV fridge.

I suggest you use the research tool above in the BLUE header and you will find hundreds if not thousands of post in regards to converting to a residential fridge. You then will have many hours of reading which will bring you up to speed with today's technology.

BTW, I performed a three month study on the power consumption of the Samsung RF197 Residential fridge. The result was on average between 1.81 -1.83 KwH per day of power needed to run the fridge.

Your Norcold will use more than that while on 120 VAC.

Plus I can run my RV off-the-grid right along side with the best of them and have the coldest beverages and frozen food all day long. And that is only running the generator for a few hours each day. Can't say that about the average Norcold!

If I had more Solar I could reduce the generator time significantly as stated in some posts that you should find when you do your research.

Dr4Film ----- Richard
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Old 07-17-2014, 10:53 PM   #26
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That is 74 W per hour.
It will kill my 3 RV batteries in about 30 hrs.
While my solar can only produce 200 x 8 = 1600 watts in the best days.
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Old 09-03-2017, 07:26 PM   #27
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Solved my problem with the old "Nocold refrigerator ", replaced with a residential, actually a Whirlpool. Really works great. Highly recommended.
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Old 09-08-2017, 04:01 PM   #28
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9-4 Just finished our Norcold myself. Bought the package from David Force with new CU, 2 new fans, elec heaters and temp switch. Took my time, one day out and one day back in.
Our Safari cabinet would not take a residential and we do sometimes dry camp.
Haven't checked temps yet, but yesterday bought ice cream to put in freezer and some beers and water for frig. New unit has been running on AC now for 2 days. Ice cream rock hard (close) and water and beers hurt your neck to touch even here in California where we just finished around 107 over the weekend. Our coach is in the barn but temps were still horrible...can't wait to see the performance in the normal summer temps..

9-8 UPDATE: Bought a refrigerator thermometer at H-Depot....$5
Freezer is running 0 degrees as low as -5 degrees...Frig compartment at 32 degrees..
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