Waeco CR110 fridge problem

Submitted: Saturday, Jun 03, 2017 at 13:32
ThreadID: 135008 Views:10235 Replies:8 FollowUps:0
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Hi there,
Hoping some of you knowledgeable people can help me with troubleshooting a problem with our Waeco CR110 upright fridge as I have somewhat limited experience with this type of thing.
Symptoms are as follows.
It works fine on 240v 100% of the time. Unplug from 240v, and after approximately 12 to 15 hours the fridge starts flashing 1 red light every few seconds which indicates a voltage drop issue. This occurs no matter what the outside temperature is or time of day. Could be 32 degrees outside or 20 degrees or overnight it does not seem to matter.
When we are not on mains power we have 300watts of solar on the roof of the van feeding 2 x105amp Fullriver AGM batteries. Fridge connected from batteries with what’s looks to be around 4-6mm wire running approx 2 metres to the back of the fridge.
When the light first appeared the solar regulator stated 12.6v of battery power remaining which was confirmed when I tested the batteries with my multimeter. So I’m assuming availability of power is not the issue.
When the red light flashes, the fridge fan runs for approximately one minute and then the compressor starts up for around 7 seconds, then shuts off, with the fan kicking back in. This cycle then seems to continue.
Now something that I really don’t get. This morning, the solar regulator was showing 12.2v when the compressor was working (again for approx. 7 seconds) and NO red light. As soon as the compressor stopped, the fan started (for approx one minute again) the regulator showed 12.6v, and the red light STARTS flashing 1 time again. Again, all these readings confirmed with my multimeter.
So Im trying to figure out if it really is a voltage drop problem (wiring to small), weak battery problem, thermostat problem, fan problem or something else. Again as stated before, I have limited knowledge in this area. Might be time to pay through the nose for a Waeco repairer.
Any ideas?
Thanks in advance for your replies.
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Reply By: Jarse - Saturday, Jun 03, 2017 at 14:35

Saturday, Jun 03, 2017 at 14:35
I had a similar problem when I had one of those. I think you're heading in the right direction with your diagnosis.

My solution was to increase the wire gauge, and the problem disappeared.

There is also another problem with that model, which makes the thing run almost constantly. The solution is a Waeco fix which incorporates a small heating element near the temperature sensor. Somehow, this fixes (or minimises) the almost constant running of the fridge. Mine was done under warranty by their agent in Blacktown NSW. When I got it back there was a little black rocker switch in the lamp/thermostat housing.
AnswerID: 611642

Reply By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Saturday, Jun 03, 2017 at 15:19

Saturday, Jun 03, 2017 at 15:19
Hi gazza,

A single flash of the red light indicates that the voltage supply to the fridge is too low.
As Jarse has suggested, this may be due to cable size to the fridge being too small.

However, that would probably not be the case if the fridge has worked OK in the past. So is that the case?...... Has the fridge worked OK on 12v previously.

Another possibility is the development of a poor connection in the wiring. If you are able, test the voltage right at the fridge while its motor is actually running (before the 7 second shutdown) but I realise that may be difficult.

It may even be a problem with the battery. If the battery has developed high internal resistance then its output voltage will drop as the fridge applies a load.
In this case, The battery voltage may appear to be OK when you test it with your multimeter if there is no load at that time. Try applying load to the battery when testing its voltage by turning on all the van's 12v lights or connecting some other load. Do this when there is no solar input by either switching it off or performing the test after dark.

A battery shop will usually load-test your battery for free.

If the fridge runs OK on 230v then it is unlikely to be a problem within the fridge so do not rush to a Waeco serviceman prematurely.

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AnswerID: 611643

Reply By: HKB Electronics - Saturday, Jun 03, 2017 at 15:46

Saturday, Jun 03, 2017 at 15:46
Yep, typical symptoms with a low batter, first thing to do is actually measure the voltage at the fridge itself when the compressor tries to start, I would not assume as it is ok at the battery it will be fine at the fridge, you could have a faulty fuse holder, connector etc between the battery and the fridge so it pays to confirm if it is a low voltage issue or not.

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AnswerID: 611644

Reply By: Gronk - Saturday, Jun 03, 2017 at 21:22

Saturday, Jun 03, 2017 at 21:22
I have the same fridge and the only time I had the problem was when it was traced to a "faulty" fuse connection at the fuse box.
If it's a problem that is there all the time, try connecting it direct to the battery to see if it fixes the problem. If so, you have a connection problem somewhere !!
AnswerID: 611651

Reply By: Gazza70 - Sunday, Jun 04, 2017 at 08:14

Sunday, Jun 04, 2017 at 08:14
Thank you all for your replies. Some good troubleshooting tips there that i will start on today if i get some time.

Have a great day and cheers.
AnswerID: 611662

Reply By: Sigmund - Sunday, Jun 04, 2017 at 19:43

Sunday, Jun 04, 2017 at 19:43
When a fridge starts up it takes more current than when it's ticking over.

Batteries that show OK voltage may have trouble delivering the current. As posted, that can be a matter of wiring and connections, or it can be a matter of age (a load test will show that). Many RV batteries are chronically undercharged. Running a recondition cycle with a quality mains charger may help restore some load capacity.
AnswerID: 611689

Reply By: TerraFirma - Tuesday, Jun 06, 2017 at 19:02

Tuesday, Jun 06, 2017 at 19:02
There is also a switch on the fridge for the battery sensing, low, medium, high check that. Also sometimes its the cigarette lighter plug. Have you tried with the engine running and plugged straight into a 12v socket? These will help isolate the problem, they are very sensitive to voltage which is a pain sometimes notwithstanding the importance of not flattening your batteries
AnswerID: 611726

Reply By: Gazza70 - Sunday, Jun 25, 2017 at 07:44

Sunday, Jun 25, 2017 at 07:44
Just a quick follow up for those interested.

I took the batteries out and had them tested by a reputable local company.Batteries showed okay under quick load test. However, after load testing for a period of time, it soon showed 1 battery had a capacity of 20amp and the other 40.

Have just purchased and fiited 2x130amp SSB AGM batteries and the fridge is running beautifully.These batteries were a lot cheaper than replacement Fullrivers so will see how they perform. Come with a 3 year warranty as well so im thinking they must be of reasonable quality.

Thanks for all your help.

AnswerID: 612128

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