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Dometic Fridge Questions
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WilsonsWesty
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2021 5:18 am    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

[email protected] wrote:
in about 25-30mins on propane this is what i was getting (scroll down about mid way)


I am curious to see what I get on propane today. 110V seemed to work pretty good, and did not generate much heat across the rear of the unit. Hope gas does the same.
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WilsonsWesty
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2021 5:28 am    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

SSWesty wrote:
A few of us posted temp pictures from experiments in this thread, they may help you understand the beast better...
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=657892


Thanks for sharing that thread, good information (especially since I knew nothing about how these worked until yesterday morning).
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DanHoug
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2021 5:36 am    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

on propane, the exhaust tubing dumps quite a bit of heat into the area behind the fridge. here's what i did to counteract that:
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=742402&highlight=
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MarkWard
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2021 7:25 am    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

We were camping on an extended road trip when the fan bearing started screaming. My first thought was to try and get some lube on it. I removed the side grill, but couldn't see an thing let alone get lube on the fan. Went outside and removed the city water service fixture to look inside.

When I removed it, the fan shut off so I couldn't pin point the noise. Put the service fixture back in and in a couple minutes the fan was squealing again. I quickly removed the fixture and the fan stopped. Just opening the side of the van was enough to dissipate the heat. We lived with it the rest of the trip about a week. It was fine at night.

When we returned and after doing some reading. Pulled the fridge and copied a few member's ideas. I added a shroud in hopes of better flowing air over the coils. I also added a second exhaust fan in place of the city water hook up. I added a 2 way toggle that lets me operate one or both fans manually, but left the original temp switch.

No temp data points, but prior my wife would state, "I don't think the fridge is cooling" Since the changes she has never mentioned it again. In fact, sometimes we have frozen carrots or cheese.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

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cmayna
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2021 8:24 am    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

Is your flame indicator lamp hooked up? BTW, if you run your Dometic often enough, you might be able to fire it up using propane, without having to run AC first. Yesterday afternoon I was able to do this and it's now been running overnight on gas. Maybe I should go out and check the temp.
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WilsonsWesty
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2021 11:33 am    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

DanHoug wrote:
on propane, the exhaust tubing dumps quite a bit of heat into the area behind the fridge. here's what i did to counteract that:
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=742402&highlight=


Pretty sure this is now on my to-do list for this little Dometic.
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If you want to see what I am doing to it, I have a facebook page started for the restoration: https://www.facebook.com/wilsonswesty
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WilsonsWesty
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2021 11:35 am    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

cmayna wrote:
Is your flame indicator lamp hooked up? BTW, if you run your Dometic often enough, you might be able to fire it up using propane, without having to run AC first. Yesterday afternoon I was able to do this and it's now been running overnight on gas. Maybe I should go out and check the temp.


It is not hooked up at the moment, but my model also has the analog flame indicator . . . I am impressed with how easy this thing fires up.
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WilsonsWesty
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2021 11:49 am    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

Update:

Gas seems to be working well... turned it over to gas at 9:00 this morning (so about 6 hours so far) and my temps are 15 degrees on the left and 24 degrees on the right with an ambient temperature of 77 degrees in the garage.
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1980 Westy Vanagon - Just getting started on the restore!

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cmayna
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2021 12:15 pm    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

I'm a little confused (wife says "little?"). Is your fridge installed in the cabinet in the Westy? Sounds like you are doing a bench test in the garage?
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SSWesty
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2021 2:28 pm    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

Sounds like you lucked out on picking up a good frig. The performance may degrade in the van because more heat will get trapped around the cabinetry and frig but your temp numbers are very promising. One more tip, these things burn around 600BTUs an hour if I remember correctly. So on one gallon of propane it will run about 6 days. 91,502BTUs per gallon / 600BTUs = 152.5 hours / 24 = 6.3 days
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cmayna
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2021 3:07 pm    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

And if I had read it more carefully, I would have seen that yes it is being bench tested.

Here's one of my many wireless fridge thermometers, you might consider. 37 is the fridge temp. 74 is the temp inside the camper.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.




If you ever start worrying about how much propane you have left, here's another toy to consider. Brand name is MOPEKA. Sensor is fastened to the bottom of the tank via magnets. Keep in mind, you cannot drive with this attached for it will fall off. Designed to measure the tank while remaining still.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.



I use another Mopeka sensor dedicated to measure how propane is in my grill and gas smoker's tank.
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'90 Westy / automatic.
If I'm not working on the camper or my '50 Chebbie truck, I'm either fishing with the wife or smoking Salmon.


Craig
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WilsonsWesty
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2021 4:06 pm    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

cmayna wrote:
I'm a little confused (wife says "little?"). Is your fridge installed in the cabinet in the Westy? Sounds like you are doing a bench test in the garage?


It is a bench test - going to do some modifications once I get it running to my satisfaction. I want to work on keeping the back as cool in the Vn as sitting on the bench.
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~WilsonsWesty~

1980 Westy Vanagon - Just getting started on the restore!

If you want to see what I am doing to it, I have a facebook page started for the restoration: https://www.facebook.com/wilsonswesty
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WilsonsWesty
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2021 4:07 pm    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

SSWesty wrote:
Sounds like you lucked out on picking up a good frig. The performance may degrade in the van because more heat will get trapped around the cabinetry and frig but your temp numbers are very promising. One more tip, these things burn around 600BTUs an hour if I remember correctly. So on one gallon of propane it will run about 6 days. 91,502BTUs per gallon / 600BTUs = 152.5 hours / 24 = 6.3 days


That is really promising - I am only a weekend camper, so it will more than cover my needs.
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1980 Westy Vanagon - Just getting started on the restore!

If you want to see what I am doing to it, I have a facebook page started for the restoration: https://www.facebook.com/wilsonswesty
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cmayna
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2021 5:02 pm    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

WilsonsWesty wrote:
cmayna wrote:
I'm a little confused (wife says "little?"). Is your fridge installed in the cabinet in the Westy? Sounds like you are doing a bench test in the garage?


It is a bench test - going to do some modifications once I get it running to my satisfaction. I want to work on keeping the back as cool in the Vn as sitting on the bench.


That's going to be pretty tough to do since there is very little air space between the back of the fridge and the siding of the rig. Also keep in mind that as soon as the sun starts shining on the driver's side the temp inside the wall starts to go up. None of this is encountered when sitting on a bench.

So yes, you might want to consider the idea of improving the insulation along the wall as well as maybe a heat deflector material. I assume you have a operable window right above where the fridge will reside?
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If I'm not working on the camper or my '50 Chebbie truck, I'm either fishing with the wife or smoking Salmon.


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spitsnrovers
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2021 5:46 pm    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

Here are some mods that help mitigate the heat-in-the-cabin problem, and help cool the fridge.

http://www.griffco.ca/VW/vwmods.htm

Just scroll down to find the fridge mods.
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WilsonsWesty
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2021 8:34 pm    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

spitsnrovers wrote:
Here are some mods that help mitigate the heat-in-the-cabin problem, and help cool the fridge.

http://www.griffco.ca/VW/vwmods.htm

Just scroll down to find the fridge mods.


Thanks for sharing. I am going to make as many mods as possible now while I am redesigning the galley. I am trying to convert my P22 kitchen (short model) to a full kitchen without increasing the footprint.
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~WilsonsWesty~

1980 Westy Vanagon - Just getting started on the restore!

If you want to see what I am doing to it, I have a facebook page started for the restoration: https://www.facebook.com/wilsonswesty
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WilsonsWesty
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2021 8:36 pm    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

cmayna wrote:
WilsonsWesty wrote:
cmayna wrote:
I'm a little confused (wife says "little?"). Is your fridge installed in the cabinet in the Westy? Sounds like you are doing a bench test in the garage?


It is a bench test - going to do some modifications once I get it running to my satisfaction. I want to work on keeping the back as cool in the Vn as sitting on the bench.


That's going to be pretty tough to do since there is very little air space between the back of the fridge and the siding of the rig. Also keep in mind that as soon as the sun starts shining on the driver's side the temp inside the wall starts to go up. None of this is encountered when sitting on a bench.

So yes, you might want to consider the idea of improving the insulation along the wall as well as maybe a heat deflector material. I assume you have a operable window right above where the fridge will reside?


I am trying to work out how to move the heat out from behind the cabinet without increasing the temp too much in the cabin of the Vanagon. I think I have some solutions, but I am still designing.
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1980 Westy Vanagon - Just getting started on the restore!

If you want to see what I am doing to it, I have a facebook page started for the restoration: https://www.facebook.com/wilsonswesty
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cmayna
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 31, 2021 7:22 am    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

Just remember.....Without pictures, it never happened. Looking forward to see what you come up with.
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spitsnrovers
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 31, 2021 7:52 am    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

Wilsons Westy - this idea: http://www.griffco.ca/VW/vwfridgevent.htm

or here https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=683477

to keep the cabin cool.
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jayinduluth
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 31, 2021 11:06 am    Post subject: Re: Dometic Fridge Questions Reply with quote

cmayna wrote:


If you ever start worrying about how much propane you have left, here's another toy to consider. Brand name is MOPEKA. Sensor is fastened to the bottom of the tank via magnets. Keep in mind, you cannot drive with this attached for it will fall off. Designed to measure the tank while remaining still.

I use another Mopeka sensor dedicated to measure how propane is in my grill and gas smoker's tank.


Sorry to hijack, but which Mopeka did you buy to monitor the van tank? Just the standard one?

Thanks!
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