Friday, January 9, 2009

RV Fridge

Talk about a year of learning especially in MT living with our family in an RV. Well our fridge quit working or so we thought....later learned we had a bad regulator..remember the nonworking furnace time. Ok well then the fridge worked again:0) Only for a few days later it quit working!! So we figured ok whatever it is cold enough outside (our negative temps well below zero) we stuck everything out in the ice chest.

We got to talking with another RVer from Bozeman and they brought up the question about our fridge. They have a brand new 2008 RV and it quit working during the cold snap so I came home and checked ours out. Guess what IT WORKS!!!! So I have inquired information where I always go from fellow lifer RVers for answers and here is the answer I got:

Your RV refrigerator is what is called an amonia/hydrogen gas obsorption type with a cooling unit on the backside. It is different than what is in your home. The home kind have compressors with freon. The home style works kind of like an air conditioner in your home and cool down quickly.
The fridge in your RV works off of heat. That is why you have 2-3 possible operations, gas/12v elec/110v elect. Not all fridges are 3-way, some are just 2-way. But they all work the same. If you open up the exterior vent on the outside of your RV where your fridge is located. You will see a series of coils going up the backside of the unit. This is what is called the "cooling unit." the cooling unit has amonia, hydrogen gas and water inside of it. It works off of heat supplied by your propane burner or electric heating element. so whether you operate your fridge on electric or propane, it is working with the heat that is produced. This causes the fluid inside of the unit to boil and perculate inside of the cooling unit. It actually will then "remove" the heat from inside of fridge. That is how it gets cold. This process takes between 5-8 hours to get as cold as it is going to get. If you will remember when the weather is nice outside, your fridge takes along time to get cold, doesn't it?
So with all the cold weather outside, your cooling unit isn't getting enough heat to work...

Also here is a website to explain it as well:

Makes sense actually. So we are back to a working fridge with these glorious warmer temps we have had:0) We are to get below zero again but not as drastic as before, but will be keeping our cooler nearby just in case.

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