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Old 11-17-2020, 07:46 AM   #1
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Fridge too darn cold!

Hello, long time lurker, first post!
Bought my 2012 145RB in October. Great little trailer. Working on lots of mods that I plan on sharing as they come along. Right now I have a question about the fridge. I tried searching, but havenít found a good answer yet.
Iíve heard lots of complaints about these 3-way absorption fridges. Iíve never had one before. Most people seem to complain they donít cool enough. Mine freezes everything solid. Here is my experience:

1st trip - October (in RI)
Outside temps 31 - 55 degrees
In the camper 60 - 70 degrees
Had fridge set on 4 (out of 5) by the first morning everything was slushy.
Turned fridge down to 2 and by afternoon everything was frozen (including my beer!)

2nd trip - last weekend (in CT)
Bought a thermometer so I could track fridge temps
Outside temps 27 - 47 degrees
In the camper 60 - 70 degrees
Precooling the fridge before I left @ 3 dropped the fridge to 15 degrees overnight!
I warmed it up some, packed it, and set out with it set at 2. Was 33 an hour later and still dropping. Turned it to one, and temp continued to drop. The only way I could maintain reasonable temps was to turn it off when the fridge got down to 30 then turn it on when it got back to 38. I had to cycle like this every few hours.

Is this normal?
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Old 11-17-2020, 08:27 AM   #2
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Nope. But not uncommon. It's not a delight to find you have a dozen frozen eggs and frozen lettuce

But not a hard fix .

https://www.rvrepairclub.com/video/r...oling-007899/#

Air circulation is important and hopefully you don't need a new thermistor. I see your unit is 8 years old
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Old 11-17-2020, 04:48 PM   #3
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Thanks for your quick response!
I went out a played some more with the fridge. Discovered I have a Norcold N302.3. I thought I found the thermistor but it didnít look like the videos I had watched (which is why I missed it before). I watched some more videos on testing your thermistor and sure enough, what I found looks nothing like a thermistor. It is clipped to the fins in the fridge, but was a bear to remove. When I did it is a solid wire without any casing on the end. Literally just looks like an aluminum wire about 1/8 inch in diameter. When I search parts lists for an N300x I see no thermistor only thermocouples. Pics of a thermocouple look a bit like what I have.
Now, I admit Iím new on all this and may be missing the obvious, but I donít see a thermistor for the life of me anywhere inside the fridge. Just this one solid wire. Are N302ís unique, or am I blind? Iíll keep poking around and see what I can find.
Any help would be useful!
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Old 11-17-2020, 05:08 PM   #4
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The manual for Norcold 300 series mentions nothing of a thermistor. You have to manually control the temperature. No auto temp control.

https://rvrefrigeratorrepair.com/wp-...rvice-N300.pdf
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Old 11-17-2020, 05:56 PM   #5
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That was my take on it too, hoppers4. But nothing I have found seems to confirm that. Everything appears to assume there is a thermistor. The other part is that even with the fridge turned to its warmest setting it still freezes everything solid. Perhaps a call to Norcold is in order. Either that or I manage it by turning the fridge on and off every few hours. Someone else with an older 154RB or 17x/185 should have some experience with this. No?
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Old 11-18-2020, 04:40 PM   #6
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Well, called Norcold. Sadly, I wasnít impressed. I explained everything, game my year and model #. Kevinís immediate answer was, ďyou have a bad thermistor.Ē When I pushed back and said I wasnít sure my model had a thermistor he went digging. Sure enough he said, ďthatís strange.Ē It doesnít look like your model has a thermistor. Maybe itís a bad thermostat.Ē He then went digging again and said, ďMaybe itís a bad control board. If it isnít a thermistor then we tend to think itís the control board.Ē He didnít seem to have any suggestions on how I can test 5his or even find a replacement. I left feeling he knew less about my unit than I do and Iíve only owned it for 6 weeks!
As I continue to dig I cannot seem to find a replacement board listed anywhere. Iíve looked into replacing it but a new one is $1000. At least it cools. For now Iíll plan on manually watching the temps and turning it off and on as needed.
Any other 2012 Jayco owners have suggestions?
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Old 11-18-2020, 05:11 PM   #7
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Here's a product that will help if you're using 115VAC. It won't help if you're on propane. I use this for my electric smoker and it does a great job.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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Old 11-19-2020, 04:30 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Parkerís Progress View Post
Well, called Norcold. Sadly, I wasnít impressed. I explained everything, game my year and model #. Kevinís immediate answer was, ďyou have a bad thermistor.Ē When I pushed back and said I wasnít sure my model had a thermistor he went digging. Sure enough he said, ďthatís strange.Ē It doesnít look like your model has a thermistor. Maybe itís a bad thermostat.Ē He then went digging again and said, ďMaybe itís a bad control board. If it isnít a thermistor then we tend to think itís the control board.Ē He didnít seem to have any suggestions on how I can test 5his or even find a replacement. I left feeling he knew less about my unit than I do and Iíve only owned it for 6 weeks!
As I continue to dig I cannot seem to find a replacement board listed anywhere. Iíve looked into replacing it but a new one is $1000. At least it cools. For now Iíll plan on manually watching the temps and turning it off and on as needed.
Any other 2012 Jayco owners have suggestions?
OUCH!! 1K for a replacement board...For that price, I'd consider replacing the entire refrigerator with a 12 volt compressor refrigerator!
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Old 11-21-2020, 04:24 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hoppers4 View Post
Here's a product that will help if you're using 115VAC. It won't help if you're on propane. I use this for my electric smoker and it does a great job.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
That is awesome. I just ordered a wireless one for $22. I think itíll work great on AC power.
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