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Old 01-05-2015, 10:57 AM   #1
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Refrigerator doesn't cool when cold outside

My refrigerator doesn't seem to be cooling very well, outside temps are below zero outside. It is a Norcold and been running on electricity, but just switched to gas and doesn't seem any better.

Anyone have this problem?

Thanks
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Old 01-05-2015, 12:31 PM   #2
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Maybe you should block off some of the vent outside to see if that helps. leave at least 1/3 of it open for vent.
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Old 01-05-2015, 05:45 PM   #3
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Maybe you should block off some of the vent outside to see if that helps. leave at least 1/3 of it open for vent.
X2, an absorbtion fridge needs heat to work so extreme cold will stop the process.
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Old 01-05-2015, 06:12 PM   #4
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...and I would recommend sticking with gas - on ours it seems to do a better job in cold weather than electric.
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Old 01-05-2015, 07:26 PM   #5
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Maybe you should block off some of the vent outside to see if that helps. leave at least 1/3 of it open for vent.
I don't think I would try this.
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Old 01-05-2015, 07:37 PM   #6
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I don't think I would try this.
I'm up in North Dakota now, some guys do this or put an a 60w light bulb to keep it warm. The gas vents through the roof as long as you leave the top row open it can't hurt.

From an rv cold weather site:

Of Special Note: Your RVs Refrigerator is very vulnerable in cold weather. Your RVs refrigerator has chemicals in the cooling unit that will gel up like diesel fuel if the outside temperature gets down too far. This will stop your refer from working properly. There needs to be a certain amount of heat in the vented compartment behind the refer for it to operate as it should. For that reason, it is important to park your RV so the back of the refrigerator gets as much southern exposure as possible. While this will not guarantee that your refer will continue to work, this will help. If that is impossible to do or if it is extremely cold, you can open the access door on the outside of your RV and add a bat of UNFACED FIBERGLASS INSULATION to cover the vent holes in the lower compartment access, thereby slowing down the circulation of air through the compartment and keeping some of the heat in. A single bat of unfolded and unfaced R11 should be good enough.You are not trying to completely block off the vent... you Just want to slow down the movement of air through the compartment on the backside of your refer. NOTE: Use only UNFACED fiberglass insulation as it is not adversely affected by heat sources or open flame. AS a suggested rule, place the bat in the compartment when the outside temperature gets down to and stays below 15 degrees... just remember to pull the bat out the next spring or the refrigerator will run too hot and will stop working as well. NEVER cover or block the upper vent. In conjunction with the UNFACED fiberglass bat, I've seen the use of a small shielded 60 watt bulb in the bottom of the compartment to help further provide heat to the cooling unit in cold weather as well. Just insure if you use the bulb, place it in a drop light socket with shield and place it away from wires or anything else it may come in contact with. THE MAJOR REFRIGERATOR MANUFACTURERS FROWN ON THIS PRACTICE SO, IF YOUR REFRIGERATOR IS STILL UNDER WARRANTY, YOU MAY WANT TO FIND AN ALTERNATIVE MEANS TO KEEP YOUR FOOD COOL. The major manufacturers provide for no preventive maintenance in this area. It was explained to me that an RV refrigerator goes in an RV... Following that thought, an RV is what it is... a RECREATIONAL VEHICLE, and the use of their product was not intended for extreme cold weather operation. Thus so, the procedure for a frozen cooling unit is to remove it from the RV and let it thaw in a heated garage or room for at least 72 hours or more and then retest it for operation before re-installing it. Why wait for it to freeze in the first place? Preventive maintenance is the key.
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