YouTube instruction video for fridge replacement? - Escape Trailer Owners Community
Journey with Confidence RV GPS App RV Trip Planner RV LIFE Campground Reviews RV Maintenance Take a Speed Test Free 7 Day Trial ×

Go Back   Escape Trailer Owners Community > Escape Tech > Escape Systems | Water, Waste, Charging & Propane
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 11-09-2022, 11:34 AM   #1
Senior Member
 
Mike Lewis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Santa Rosa County, Florida
Trailer: 2014 Escape 21 Tow: 2013 Toyota Tacoma
Posts: 2,958
YouTube instruction video for fridge replacement?

Soon I will replace my Dometic 8555 refrigerator with a Norcold compressor fridge. I don't know how to do this-- in particular I don't know how the current fridge is secured within its space. Could someone refer me to a YouTube video that does a good job of showing how to do the replacement? Thanks.
__________________

__________________
Mike Lewis
She don't lie, she don't lie, she don't lie-- propane
Photos and travelogues here: mikelewisimages.com
Mike Lewis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2022, 12:02 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2021
Location: Calgary, Alberta
Trailer: Future 2023 E19 Owner
Posts: 101
I'd suggest checking out the "AZ Expert" channel. I've learned a lot about RV repair/maintenance from watching James' videos.

I don't think he's posted anything that would serve as a specific step-by-step guide to replace an absorption with a compressor fridge....but there are a couple of recent videos that provide a good overview of what's involved in removing/reinstalling an RV fridge:



__________________

Selkirk is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2022, 12:54 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
Ron in BC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: North Van., British Columbia
Trailer: 2014 Escape 19, sold; 2019 Escape 21, Sept. 2019
Posts: 7,574
Mike, removing the fridge is dead easy. The only potential sticking point, bad pun, is just that. On mine there was serious doubt in my mind at one point that I would be able to pull it out. To say that it was a tight fit is an understatement. Hopefully yours isn't as tight a fit.

Worked at it, wiggle and jiggle, and eventually got it out. I wood rasped the edge of the opening before re-installing.

Put some sort of a platform, at the height of the fridge bottom, that will temporarily support the fridge.

Ron
Ron in BC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2022, 03:00 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
Mike Lewis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Santa Rosa County, Florida
Trailer: 2014 Escape 21 Tow: 2013 Toyota Tacoma
Posts: 2,958
Selkirk-- thanks for the link. That's what I was looking for.


Ron-- would you recommend that I remove the fridge doors first? I intend to dispose of the Dometic fridge.
__________________
Mike Lewis
She don't lie, she don't lie, she don't lie-- propane
Photos and travelogues here: mikelewisimages.com
Mike Lewis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2022, 04:28 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
Ron in BC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: North Van., British Columbia
Trailer: 2014 Escape 19, sold; 2019 Escape 21, Sept. 2019
Posts: 7,574
I removed the door because it not only reduced the weight a bit but made it easier to grab.

The poly is there because there was some mold on the plywood baffle and I didn't want to get any inside the trailer.

Ron
Attached Thumbnails
P4090004_resize.jpg  
Ron in BC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-10-2022, 04:04 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Mike Lewis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Santa Rosa County, Florida
Trailer: 2014 Escape 21 Tow: 2013 Toyota Tacoma
Posts: 2,958
I found four mounting screws in the front, two on each side. Are there mounting screws in the back? I chipped away at the foam insulation and didn't see any. Also, can/should I remove the wood trim around the front opening?
__________________
Mike Lewis
She don't lie, she don't lie, she don't lie-- propane
Photos and travelogues here: mikelewisimages.com
Mike Lewis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-10-2022, 04:12 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
Ron in BC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: North Van., British Columbia
Trailer: 2014 Escape 19, sold; 2019 Escape 21, Sept. 2019
Posts: 7,574
Several years ago now that I removed mine but I think that there are only the front screws.

I did pry off the front trim without damaging it.

Good luck,

ron
Ron in BC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-11-2022, 12:14 AM   #8
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Surrey, British Columbia
Trailer: 2014 Escape 19'
Posts: 257
Mike,

Yes to what Ron said, and I will add my 2 cents.

Yup, the 4 screws inside the fridge you have found are the only things physically securing the fridge, aside from the very tight fit mentioned by Ron. Of course, LP and electric connections at the rear. The foam is just providing an airtight barrier, it is not hiding anything that secures the fridge.

Gently pry the trim off before removal. I was able to reinstall it with the original brads. You might want to put some tape marks on the wall so you know precisely where to position it on replacement if the new fridge has similar dimensions, and can reuse it.

If you want to preserve the eyebrow panel, remove it before pushing the fridge from the rear. I think there were 2 screws inside the fridge at the top holding it in place, or maybe it just pulled off. (Sorry I forgot!)

I didn't remove the door, not needed for removal, but might help if reinstalling the same fridge so you aren't pushing on the door to get it back in.

You can only apply pressure from the back of the fridge at the bottom, the front side gets pushed up with this action. This effect might be less with the heavier 8555, I have the smaller 8551. I would push a bit from the back, the front would ride up, then pull the front side down again before pushing again from the rear. Rinse and repeat, eventually it comes free.

Edit: Having the eyebrow panel off makes pulling the front of the fridge down possible, and keeps it from getting in the way when the front of the fridge lifts up.

If you are like me, this kind of thing is scary until you have done it, but it is not rocket science.

Good luck with your project,
__________________
Kirk & Shelley
2014 19'
Surrey, Beautiful BC, Canada
KirkB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-11-2022, 07:36 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
alanmalk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Arvada, Colorado
Trailer: 2015 E'21 - 'Velocity'. Tow: Toyota Tacoma V6, 4X4, manual.
Posts: 1,473
Mike,
Take copious notes and photos and become our local expert. I may be next in line to do a replacement.
alanmalk is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2022, 12:15 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Mike Lewis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Santa Rosa County, Florida
Trailer: 2014 Escape 21 Tow: 2013 Toyota Tacoma
Posts: 2,958
Removing the old fridge

Quote:
Originally Posted by alanmalk View Post
Mike,
Take copious notes and photos and become our local expert. I may be next in line to do a replacement.

Okay, here's what I did. The secret to doing this alone is to make a platform to slide the old fridge out onto, and then use it to position the new fridge to slide it into place.

- I shut off the propane at the tanks and burned off the residual gas via the stove. Then I disconnected the fridge's propane line.

- I disconnected the 12V and line voltage connections at the rear of the old fridge. I removed the fuse at the panel.

- Then I examined the fridge for mounting screws. I found two screw holes on each side at the front, but only the screws on the right-hand side were in place. I removed these.

- I taped around then removed the trim, as Kirk suggested.

- I constructed a platform from two wooden crates that were the right height when stood on end. I ziptied them together. I put furniture skid pads under the crates when I put them in front of the old fridge.

- I banged on the rear of the old fridge with a hammer and 2x2 stick near the bottom, being careful to avoid the propane line and everything else. This might not be the best idea but it did eventually force the fridge to move forward a few inches, enough to expose the door hinge screws.

- I removed the doors.

- There was almost no side-to-side play in the fridge space, but there was a bit of vertical leeway. So I could tilt the fridge forward then yank on its bottom. After a bit of effort it became easier when about six inches of the fridge were exposed from its cavity. Then it slid on out.

- I slid the fridge on its platform toward the door. Then I removed it from its platform.

- I backed my pickup to the trailer door with the truck's tailgate down. I tilted the old fridge onto the truck bed and slid it into place.

- I cheerfully took the old fridge to the county landfill. I was directed to leave it with other abandoned refrigerators. I pointed out that it was an ammonia absorbsion fridge, not a Freon fridge, but they didn't seem to care.
Attached Thumbnails
20221113_old_fridge_hinge_mount.jpg   20221114_crate_platforma.jpg   20221113_old_fridge_mounting_holesa.jpg   20221114_moving_old_fridgea.jpg  
__________________
Mike Lewis
She don't lie, she don't lie, she don't lie-- propane
Photos and travelogues here: mikelewisimages.com
Mike Lewis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2022, 12:22 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
Mike Lewis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Santa Rosa County, Florida
Trailer: 2014 Escape 21 Tow: 2013 Toyota Tacoma
Posts: 2,958
Installing the new fridge

Look at the photo of the empty space, the 12V wires at the bottom, and the burned spot in the back. Hmm.

- I made a ramp, then wheeled the new fridge into the trailer with a hand truck

- I tilted the new fridge sideways onto the bed, the slid the platform beneath its bottom. Then I tilted the new fridge onto the platform. I should have done this in reverse when removing the old fridge but I didn't think of it. Duh.

- I put the new fridge in place and screwed in its mounting screws.

- I reinstalled the trim. I didn't attempt to reuse the staples; instead I used 5/8" brads from a staple gun. I did better than I expected.

- I wired it up and capped the propane line. Then I started testing the new fridge.

~
Attached Thumbnails
20221117_ramp.jpg   20221118_capped_propane_line.jpg   20221115_fridge_spacea.jpg   20221117_new_fridge_in_placea.jpg  
__________________
Mike Lewis
She don't lie, she don't lie, she don't lie-- propane
Photos and travelogues here: mikelewisimages.com
Mike Lewis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2022, 12:35 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
Mike Lewis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Santa Rosa County, Florida
Trailer: 2014 Escape 21 Tow: 2013 Toyota Tacoma
Posts: 2,958
Compressor refrigerator testing

I'm wrapping up a two-week test of my new compressor fridge. My initial conditions were: 355 watts of rooftop solar panels, 400 Ah of lithium batteries, 33.5 deg N latitude, second half of November. I filled the fridge compartment with water bottles and Cokes to simulate food, but put nothing in the freezer compartment. Well, nothing except photographic film I had in the trailer.

The weather has varied, which is good. I had sunny days, cloudy days, and this morning it was storming. The batteries always charged to at least 90% every day, they got to 100% a few times, and did not drop below 85% at any time. I checked the batteries at least twice a day, at around 8:00 a.m. and again at around 4:00 p.m., just before sunset.

The refrigerator has maintained its temperatures in the upper 30s F. the whole time after initial cool-down. The freezer has stayed below 10 deg F. Good.

I'm encouraged by this, but-- it has been cool here, with the temperatures in the mid-70s and below. I didn't put extra insulation behind the new fridge before installing it, and this might be a mistake.
__________________
Mike Lewis
She don't lie, she don't lie, she don't lie-- propane
Photos and travelogues here: mikelewisimages.com
Mike Lewis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2022, 12:47 PM   #13
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Chattanooga, Tennessee
Trailer: 2015 Escape 21'
Posts: 279
Mike, was the ETI installed 12v wiring adequate for the Norcold? I'm thinking of going the same route.
__________________
Tom & Linda
ATHiker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2022, 12:49 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
Mike Lewis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Santa Rosa County, Florida
Trailer: 2014 Escape 21 Tow: 2013 Toyota Tacoma
Posts: 2,958
Correction: my latitude is 30.75 deg north.
__________________
Mike Lewis
She don't lie, she don't lie, she don't lie-- propane
Photos and travelogues here: mikelewisimages.com
Mike Lewis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2022, 12:51 PM   #15
Senior Member
 
Mike Lewis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Santa Rosa County, Florida
Trailer: 2014 Escape 21 Tow: 2013 Toyota Tacoma
Posts: 2,958
Quote:
Originally Posted by ATHiker View Post
Mike, was the ETI installed 12v wiring adequate for the Norcold? I'm thinking of going the same route.

Yes, it looks like a 10-gauge wire, needed for the old Dometic's heater when on 12V power. That mode drew 14 amps, compared to the 7 amps when the new fridge is running, according to its specs. 15 amp fuse is still recommended.
__________________
Mike Lewis
She don't lie, she don't lie, she don't lie-- propane
Photos and travelogues here: mikelewisimages.com
Mike Lewis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2022, 12:57 PM   #16
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Chattanooga, Tennessee
Trailer: 2015 Escape 21'
Posts: 279
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Lewis View Post
Yes, it looks like a 10-gauge wire, needed for the old Dometic's heater when on 12V power. That mode drew 14 amps, compared to the 7 amps when the new fridge is running, according to its specs. 15 amp fuse is still recommended.
Thanks!
__________________
Tom & Linda
ATHiker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2022, 06:59 PM   #17
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Comox, British Columbia
Trailer: 5.0 TA #9
Posts: 216
following.
Thanks
__________________

sleepy 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 07:17 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2023, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright 2012 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.
×