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Old 01-24-2015, 03:11 AM   #41
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Location: Surrey, British Columbia
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Dometic fridge

I spoke to Reace last week about our build sheet and also asked about the fridge status. He said that the current 2 door Dometic fridge performed okay in the one higher temp situation that it had been subjected to in late summer (I don't know if this was their own fridge or someone else's). I believe he also said the cooling unit had a bit more power.

I hear people wishing for a Tropic rated fridge, but from the specs posted could they be a problem for people camping in cold weather. If the T units have a lower range of 18 deg C, could they freeze everything at their lowest setting if used in cold climates, like the mountains where we fish. (I don't know what the lower limit being 8 deg C higher means. Just guessing at it.) Even in June we can get freezing temperatures and huddle in our sleeping bags after turning off the furnace. I guess if a T rated fridge option were available, those living in the south and not camping in the cold could benefit.

The Norcold fridge we had in our stick trailer was certainly a problem when the temperature dipped to near freezing or got very hot. I'm glad that ETI is looking into it for everyone's sake, but I have doubts that they can change the RV fridge industry on their own. Maybe if other forums pick up the cause and petition the manufacturers they might address the cooling problems better and list EU performance standards in N.A.

Bob K

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Old 01-24-2015, 08:09 AM   #42
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Interesting info, Bob. I know what you mean by setting the fridge at the lowest setting, and hoping things don't freeze. This is where a circulating fan inside helps.

Too bad they don't have one with a higher range, rather than to have to choose between hot and cool climates.Though, our older 5.0 has never had trouble in the few times we have encountered hot climates.

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Old 01-24-2015, 08:19 AM   #43
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Seems to me if a Tropical rated frig freezes at the lowest setting in cold weather the solution would be to put a couple of jugs of frozen water (or bag of ice) in the refrigerator (with a fan) and turn it off. Use it like a cooler. I'm betting most people would only find themselves in that situation once or twice a year... now heat... many, many more times.
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Old 01-24-2015, 10:42 AM   #44
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When we went to the RV show last week, I purposely was checking to see what the trailers had in them for refrigerators. I only saw one Dometic and the rest were Norcold. But in checking Norcold on the internet, it seems they have their share of problems too. Ice box anyone? Loren
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Old 01-24-2015, 11:51 AM   #45
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Although I'm on the waiting list for an Escape, in the absence of a compressor fridge option, I'm considering moving on. After reading about all the issues with the Dometics (operational and reliability) and talking to people who have had 3-way fridges and hated them, I'm just not looking forward to dealing with one in a $25K investment. The only possible advantage I can see to a 3-way is the ability to be off the grid for extended periods of time. However, with the proper solar and battery setup, this should be a non-issue.

I do hope Escape will choose to offer their customers a compressor fridge option. What's the big deal with that? I honestly don't get it.
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Old 01-24-2015, 12:29 PM   #46
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Used to wonder along those lines myself after being told "no" many a time for this or that by ETI. There's more & more demand for them I figured they need to keep the production process streamlined. They still do way more than most if not all other companies to customize.

You could always get a credit for no Dometic then add more solar & batteries and have a good shop in Seattle area do a Novacool install.
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Old 01-24-2015, 12:44 PM   #47
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I guess that's what I find confusing. It seems Escape does all kinds of crazy one-off stuff for people, some of which seem to be pretty involved. It also seems that a different fridge would not be that big of a customization and might prove to be a popular one, hence easily repeatable. I could be wrong. They must have their reasons.

Spending that much money, then having to go have the trailer outfitted by a third party seems kind of ridiculous. I just want to pick it up and go. If it costs more for a compressor fridge option, so be it.

As for the solar and batteries, I mentioned that would be in my build, regardless.
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Old 01-24-2015, 12:48 PM   #48
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never mind
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Old 01-24-2015, 01:03 PM   #49
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It's true, ETI does lots of crazy, one-of-a-kind stuff for people but installing a one-of-a-kind trailer with a different fridge could present the start of a very slippery slope. The Escape Trailer molds are made for the included, posted extras. What if people wanted a custom range or an electric awning or a urinal in the wet bath? Should ETI satisfy those requests too? And who pays for the training, mistakes and Research and Development of these one-of-a-kind mods?
It's quite clear in ETI's brochure what you get in an Escape Trailer for a stated amount of money and the above appliances are not listed.
Singletracker, I think that's what the 'big deal' is.
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Old 01-24-2015, 01:46 PM   #50
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I know that after purchasing 2 Escape trailers, Reace and Tammy will try hard to accommodate most change/customization requests. Every time I talked to Reace about one that was denied it made sense. Some were just not feasible, others for structural reasons. Remember its not just a money thing there are also deadlines to meet, trailers can't be hung up in the manufacturing process waiting for parts or for problems to be rectified due to customer changes. Reace told me last week that the new 2 door fridge was up to the job and that was good enough for me.

I also highly doubt that a compressor fridge would be a big seller due to the fact that the new fridge is supposed to work as intended. In all fairness to ETI they seem to go above and beyond when ever they can.


Doug & Eileen
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