Portable Fridge Danfoss Intermittent 3 Flash Error Code

Submitted: Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015 at 14:58
ThreadID: 130969 Views:3653 Replies:7 FollowUps:8
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My 2008 National Luna portable fridge is giving me grief . In 2013 Error Code 3 (compressor failed to start ) resulted in the Power module been replaced at a cost of $648 .
Now the fault has returned intermittently.
Last month when fridge was shifted from car to tent, Error Code 3 reappeared, after some hours it rectified itself. The service people suggested it was a unbalance of gasses.
Two weeks ago, aware of this issue, I transferred the fridge to the car the night before we were leaving . Connected the 240v power up at 5:30 am – Error code 3 again !!!!.
I took it to there Refrigeration experts where they plugged it in and saw the Error code 3 .
It took them 5 days to get to work on the fridge and guess what, they plugged 240v power in again and it works perfectly.
They suggest I replace the Danfoss Control board at a cost of $450.
I question how they know this is the cause ? It may be a compressor winding fault or the original
National Luna Power module like previously, even thou I measured 23v at Compressor terminals with fan running with the fault code flashing.
Anyone had similar experiences or advice before I shell out big bucks on a maybe faulty part ?
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Reply By: 2517. - Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015 at 17:17

Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015 at 17:17
Seems like they are into replacement you paid until they find the problem,maybe a different repair shop,lots of cheap frigs around.


AnswerID: 593084

Reply By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015 at 18:00

Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015 at 18:00
To me it sounds as though you have a fault within the motor/compressor itself.
Suggest you have a chat with their National Service Manager on 07 3425 2420.
Cheers
Allan

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AnswerID: 593086

Follow Up By: Member - Boobook - Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015 at 19:39

Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015 at 19:39
Ditto. I had a problem with this ( which turned out to be me turning it on its side to clean it). He was very helpful.
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FollowupID: 861270

Follow Up By: Member - pedro1 - Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015 at 20:46

Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015 at 20:46
I had contacted National Luna Service in Perth , they basically only repair/fault find the National
Luna Power module, anything else they send to a Refrigeration service company. That where the fridge is now .
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FollowupID: 861276

Reply By: tony_j - Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015 at 20:30

Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015 at 20:30
I've had this error code on a Danfoss compressor fridge. Usually happens when I shut the fridge off when the compressor is running and turn it back on straight away, such as when disconnecting 240volt and changing over to 12v or 12 to 240. Happens because of the pressure of the gas is too high for the compressor to start. Wait a while (a few minutes) and it works fine. Also sometimes happens when the fridge is in heat stress, i.e., very hot day with the fridge in hot sun. Once had a faulty transformer that caused that same error code, although it should have thrown fault code 1.
AnswerID: 593092

Follow Up By: Member - pedro1 - Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015 at 20:42

Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015 at 20:42
Tony, I wish my problem was so simple, I was aware of the gas pressure issue that's why I moved
the fridge the night before and connected the power the next morning . That also ruled out the temperature cause
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FollowupID: 861275

Reply By: Al-one - Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015 at 20:43

Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015 at 20:43
Hello Pedro1,
Rather than me go through all the details, I have copied a link that will give you a bit more information.
http://www.kollmann-marine.com/tip2.aspx
I have had to replace on the road the Danfoss control board in my fridge that had exactly the same symptoms. It was only a 5 to 10 minute job for a part price of less than $300, probably about four years ago.
The old one was full of Western Australia red dust. I cleaned it when I got home and it worked again.
Could you clarify on what you mean by the Power Module? Is it the same as the Danfoss control board? If not they have picked the wrong option to change. The Danfoss control board to me is the the electronic package that plugs into the side of the compressor and is held in by one screw. I spoke to a caravan fridge repairer and he said he almost never replaces the compressor unit but he does have to replace the control boards occassionally.
(this is before the Chinese started to supply the Danfoss compressors so I don't know what the situation is now).
Hope this helps.
Al-one
AnswerID: 593093

Follow Up By: Member - pedro1 - Wednesday, Nov 25, 2015 at 11:32

Wednesday, Nov 25, 2015 at 11:32
Hi Al-one
Some interesting reading in that link, doesn't give you to much confidence in the service techs.
Re the modules , the National Luna Power module is where the 240v and 12v input sockets are and also has the display and low voltage cut off features, plus temperature set controls. As mentioned previously when this module replaced in August 2013 with a 3 flash fault, the error code cleared and the fridge worked normally for the next two years. This module supplies 23V on 240v AC operation to the Danfoss control board (this testing with 3 flash error code evident )
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FollowupID: 861313

Reply By: Al-one - Wednesday, Nov 25, 2015 at 13:13

Wednesday, Nov 25, 2015 at 13:13
Hello Pedro1,
All I could suggest is to find a friendly 12 volt fridge repairer and see if he is willing to try a new Danfoss control board without commiting you to by it. It is really a quick job to try a new board. Alternatively if yours happens, as mine did, to have the circuit board coated with iron rich Pilbara dust give it a clean and try it again.
If you were in Brisbane at any timeI may be willing to help.
Regards,
Al-one
AnswerID: 593110

Follow Up By: Member - pedro1 - Wednesday, Nov 25, 2015 at 13:39

Wednesday, Nov 25, 2015 at 13:39
Unfortunately the fridge is with the fridge repairer at the moment and is working.
I have refused to have them to replace the danfoss module till the fault reappears
and a bit of fault finding is done.
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FollowupID: 861314

Reply By: Member - pedro1 - Thursday, Dec 31, 2015 at 20:58

Thursday, Dec 31, 2015 at 20:58
After a couple of days away I can say the fridge is fixed but It took the repairers 5 days to get to work on the fridge and guess what, they plugged 240v power in again and it works perfectly. After much stuffing around, they finally got it to go faulty again.
It works OK at 2000 RPM with C & T shorted out on the Danfoss control board, however when the NL power module in circuit it goes faulty (3000 RPM) .They replaced the controller board, no difference. On closer measurements of the compressor windings they observed one of the windings was 1 - 2 ohms. The other two were 4 to 5 ohm. Therefore they replaced the compressor at a cost of $780 plus $77 initial cost. Fingers crossed.
AnswerID: 594378

Follow Up By: Member - Bookleaf - Monday, Jan 04, 2016 at 21:55

Monday, Jan 04, 2016 at 21:55
Excuse my ignorance, but could you not have replaced the fridge for the $780 repair bill??
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FollowupID: 862881

Follow Up By: Member - Bookleaf - Monday, Jan 04, 2016 at 22:00

Monday, Jan 04, 2016 at 22:00
Cough!
Just looked up this brand..
Had no idea they were THAT price.
No wonder you wanted it fixed instead of replacing it.

I will be satisfied with my FrigeMate
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FollowupID: 862882

Follow Up By: Member - Boobook - Monday, Jan 04, 2016 at 22:13

Monday, Jan 04, 2016 at 22:13
They are expensive, but a bloody great fridge.
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FollowupID: 862884

Reply By: Member - pedro1 - Tuesday, Jan 05, 2016 at 00:28

Tuesday, Jan 05, 2016 at 00:28
The bottom line was it was the Danfoss part that failed.The benefit of this fridge was the huge
internal storage as well as the ability of swapping hinges so we could take the lid off when required.
When we use this portable fridge in a Kombi, where the removal of the lid is important but when it is in the Landcrusier the fridge hinges are changed to the fixed type. Another important issue when we bought it, was the way the power plugs were reasonable flush with the fridge. So overall the choice to spend the money wasn't too hard. BTW there were plenty of Engels and Waecos lined up for the fridge doctor as well.
AnswerID: 594493

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