Fridge no longer cooling on electric power - Escape Trailer Owners Community

Go Back   Escape Trailer Owners Community > Escape Tech > Problem Solving | Owners helping each other
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 04-19-2017, 09:10 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
jamie beers's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Vancouver, BC, British Columbia
Trailer: 19'
Posts: 325
Fridge no longer cooling on electric power

A new fridge problem occurred for the first time on our recent camping trip. I'm hoping someone may have some advice.

The fridge no longer cools when on electrical power. It still cools well when on propane.

Electrical power used to be the best way to cool it. I've had it plugged in at home for the past 30 hours. Outside daily highs have been around 55 F, reliable fridge thermometer shows 59 F inside fridge. That's about as cold as it got during our camping trip. On our camping trip we switched to propane and fridge cooled to 36 F in a reasonable time, using the same thermometer.

Hopefully the solution is something simple I've never learned before!

It's the large (6.7 cf?) fridge in a 2014 19'. Interior fridge light is working when switched to electrical power. Thanks.
__________________

jamie beers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 09:15 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Somewhere, Florida
Trailer: 1804 Schooner
Posts: 1,642
Did you check to make sure it is still plugged into the outlet?
__________________

__________________
“Quoth the Raven, ‘Nevermore’......” E. A. Poe
C&G in FL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 09:23 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Notasulga, Alabama
Trailer: 2010 EggCamper (#083); 2017 Escape 21 (#053); 2016 F-150 5.0L FX4
Posts: 1,734
If it is still plugged in (to an AC outlet located just inside the outside vent cover; at least that's where it is on our 21'), do you hear it cycle on and off?
War Eagle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 09:39 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
jamie beers's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Vancouver, BC, British Columbia
Trailer: 19'
Posts: 325
thanks for the replies. sorry, forgot to mention that it is still plugged in, and I figure it's getting power since the interior light is working.

Don't hear it cycle on/off. I did notice that the surge protector/power commander shows a draw of zero amp
jamie beers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 09:49 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
Iowa Dave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Benton County, Iowa
Trailer: 2013 Escape 21 Classic Number 6, pulled by 2018 Toyota Highlander
Posts: 4,278
Is the cooling unit perhaps on a separate breaker than the interior light and perhaps tripped? Just a thought. If the lights on inside the box there should be a draw of some kind?
Dave
Iowa Dave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 09:51 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: n/a, Texas
Trailer: Escape
Posts: 408
Is the on/off breaker on the power post turned on?

Suggest you plug another appliance into an outlet in the trailer to confirm that 120v power is operating.
Viajante is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 09:57 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
float5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Denison, Texas
Trailer: 2015 21'; 2011 19' sold; 4Runner; ph ninezero3 327-27ninefour
Posts: 5,156
Don't think you are getting power when showing zero on the EMS. You have not mentioned the control panel settings.
__________________
Cathy. Floating Cloud
"Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air.... "
Emerson
float5 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 10:27 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
Mike Lewis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Santa Rosa County, Florida
Trailer: 2014 Escape 21
Posts: 2,120
Recently I discovered that my fridge was not cooling with 12V power. I removed the side vent cover and saw that a wire had become disconnected from a terminal block on the back of the fridge. Perhaps you have a similar problem. As I was about to take the trailer in to Camping World to be serviced, I let them reconnect the wire. That fixed the problem.
__________________
Mike Lewis
Photos and travelogues here: mikelewisimages.com
Mike Lewis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 10:30 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: North of Hertel, Wisconsin
Trailer: TBD
Posts: 2,105
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamie beers View Post
thanks for the replies. sorry, forgot to mention that it is still plugged in, and I figure it's getting power since the interior light is working.

Don't hear it cycle on/off. I did notice that the surge protector/power commander shows a draw of zero amp
Are you positive that the refrigerator light is not 12V DC ?.
If the light is 12V DC then it would not be an indicator that 120 VAC is present at the refrigerator.
steve dunham is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 10:31 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Trailer: 1979 Boler B1700
Posts: 11,797
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamie beers View Post
sorry, forgot to mention that it is still plugged in, and I figure it's getting power since the interior light is working.
I would expect the interior light to be on 12V DC power, not 120 V AC power which is not working for cooling. I suggest plugging something (a lamp... anything) into the outlet to see if there is power available.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jamie beers View Post
Don't hear it cycle on/off. I did notice that the surge protector/power commander shows a draw of zero amp
It's hard to hear the heater on an absorption refrigerator. The power display is more informative.

If you're comfortable with a tester and 120 V AC power, the logical thing to do is to remove the heat shield around the burner and check to see if power is getting to the element... and if not, where it stops.
Brian B-P is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 10:44 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Notasulga, Alabama
Trailer: 2010 EggCamper (#083); 2017 Escape 21 (#053); 2016 F-150 5.0L FX4
Posts: 1,734
Or alternatively, pull the trailer up near your house and plug the refrigerator directly into AC from your house using an appropriate extension cord to see if that will work. If so, then you just need to buy enough extension cords to reach from your house to wherever you plan to camp. Let me know before you do that so I can buy stock in extension cords.
War Eagle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 11:10 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
jamie beers's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Vancouver, BC, British Columbia
Trailer: 19'
Posts: 325
Quote:
Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
Are you positive that the refrigerator light is not 12V DC ?.
If the light is 12V DC then it would not be an indicator that 120 VAC is present at the refrigerator.
no, sadly, not positive if the light is 120
jamie beers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 11:11 PM   #13
Senior Member
 
jamie beers's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Vancouver, BC, British Columbia
Trailer: 19'
Posts: 325
Quote:
Originally Posted by Viajante View Post
Is the on/off breaker on the power post turned on?

Suggest you plug another appliance into an outlet in the trailer to confirm that 120v power is operating.
good idea, previously tried, sadly the other 120 v appliance worked
jamie beers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 11:13 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
jamie beers's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Vancouver, BC, British Columbia
Trailer: 19'
Posts: 325
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Lewis View Post
Recently I discovered that my fridge was not cooling with 12V power. I removed the side vent cover and saw that a wire had become disconnected from a terminal block on the back of the fridge. Perhaps you have a similar problem. As I was about to take the trailer in to Camping World to be serviced, I let them reconnect the wire. That fixed the problem.
thanks. looked around inside but couldn't see find anything loose.
jamie beers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 11:15 PM   #15
Senior Member
 
jamie beers's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Vancouver, BC, British Columbia
Trailer: 19'
Posts: 325
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post

If you're comfortable with a tester and 120 V AC power, the logical thing to do is to remove the heat shield around the burner and check to see if power is getting to the element... and if not, where it stops.
thanks...sadly and unfortunately, a little beyond my skill set..... always a first time I guess...
jamie beers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 11:24 PM   #16
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: North of Hertel, Wisconsin
Trailer: TBD
Posts: 2,105
Is the 120 VAC receptacle for the refrigerator fed off a GFCI receptacle. It may be as simple as no power to the refrigerator because the GFCI has tripped.
steve dunham is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 11:31 PM   #17
Senior Member
 
jamie beers's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Vancouver, BC, British Columbia
Trailer: 19'
Posts: 325
Quote:
Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
Is the 120 VAC receptacle for the refrigerator fed off a GFCI receptacle. It may be as simple as no power to the refrigerator because the GFCI has tripped.
that one I don't know, I'll check, thanks.
jamie beers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 11:33 PM   #18
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Trailer: 1979 Boler B1700
Posts: 11,797
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamie beers View Post
good idea, previously tried, sadly the other 120 v appliance worked
Okay, so there is 120 V AC power elsewhere in the trailer... but have you tried it at the outlet which runs the refrigerator, to see if there is power in that specific circuit?

When you remove the lower refrigerator vent (which has an opening panel for routine access) you can see an ordinary outlet with the refrigerator's cord plugged into it. Unplug the refrigerator, plug in your test appliance, and see if there is power.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jamie beers View Post
thanks...sadly and unfortunately, a little beyond my skill set..... always a first time I guess...
The first time should be with assistance. I suggest the simple check of the outlet first.
Brian B-P is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 11:58 PM   #19
Senior Member
 
jamie beers's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Vancouver, BC, British Columbia
Trailer: 19'
Posts: 325
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
Okay, so there is 120 V AC power elsewhere in the trailer... but have you tried it at the outlet which runs the refrigerator, to see if there is power in that specific circuit?
.
Thanks for the tip, I had not done that yet. I did it, and the fridge electrical outlet has power to it.
jamie beers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2017, 12:22 AM   #20
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Trailer: 1979 Boler B1700
Posts: 11,797
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamie beers View Post
... the fridge electrical outlet has power to it.
Too bad in a way... some of the easiest-to-fix causes (tripped breaker, tripped GFCI) are ruled out.

Now we're down to components within the refrigerator:
  • thermostat (depends on model, but likely shared with propane operation so not the problem)
  • control board
  • heating element
  • wiring
Knowing that it is within appliance, this might be a good time to call in a repair tech...
__________________

Brian B-P is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off






» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Escape Trailer Industries or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:57 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright 2012 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.
×