Is it me thermostat?

Submitted: Sunday, Jun 25, 2006 at 18:23
ThreadID: 35253 Views:1568 Replies:5 FollowUps:9
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My Dometic 3way built-in fridge is freezing the contents when set at 1 on the dial, using either 240v or gas. Ambient temperature is quite low here in VIC, but I can't stop it from freezing.

I figure it's most likely the thermostat. Any other likely cause?

Has anyone replaced one? Is it a task within the capabilities of a good handyman?

(Mind you, it's not so long since I made some changes to the fridge installation, blocking off the airspaces around the fridge and improving the venting, according to instructions I found somewhere on the forum.)

Ideas and comments appreciated.
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Reply By: navaraman - Sunday, Jun 25, 2006 at 18:27

Sunday, Jun 25, 2006 at 18:27
Check the door seal as well. A poor seal will result in the fridge freezing.

Pat
AnswerID: 180288

Follow Up By: Nifty1 - Sunday, Jun 25, 2006 at 18:33

Sunday, Jun 25, 2006 at 18:33
Thanks. That's a bit of a surprise! Thought it would make it warmer in there. Any idea of the reason that happens?
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Follow Up By: fc_holden - Sunday, Jun 25, 2006 at 20:40

Sunday, Jun 25, 2006 at 20:40
Nifty1 If the door seal is leaking then warm air can leak in, cold air leak out this will affect the thermostat and the fridge will never cycle hence anything near the cooling coil or near the bottom of the fridge will freeze
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Follow Up By: Alloy c/t - Monday, Jul 03, 2006 at 13:23

Monday, Jul 03, 2006 at 13:23
fc-holden ,hate to dispel your theory but a 3 way fridge 12v/240v/gas does not cycle.
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Follow Up By: fc_holden - Monday, Jul 03, 2006 at 13:56

Monday, Jul 03, 2006 at 13:56
Alloy c/t
If it does not cycle why would it have a thermostat? , and if it did not cycle it would freeze everything and would be called a freezer not a three way fridge. So i therefore stand by my statement that it cycles.
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Follow Up By: Alloy c/t - Monday, Jul 03, 2006 at 14:33

Monday, Jul 03, 2006 at 14:33
fc-holden ,in order for a fridge to cycle it would have to have a compressor that switches on and off ergo : "cycle". no three way powered fridge or freezer uses a compressor therefor does not cycle ,a 3 way is constantly "on" when in use , on 12v 8/10amp constant powerdrain no thermostat control ,on gas constant flame so no thermostat control , on 240v the heating elements thermal value can be slightly varied by the thermostat ,,Still want to stand by your statement ??
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Follow Up By: fc_holden - Monday, Jul 03, 2006 at 15:42

Monday, Jul 03, 2006 at 15:42
Alloy c/t
Yes cycling does not just imply that it is a compressor, cycling means the varying or turning off an item, when on 240v the thermosat does turn off the element it does not vary the voltage to the element the thermostat is a simple on / off temperature actuated control switch. Depending on the model of the Dometic fridge as to what the thermostat controls as some contol only 240V whilst others have multiple stats which control all three modes of operation. see at below link and study diagrams.

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Follow Up By: fc_holden - Monday, Jul 03, 2006 at 15:43

Monday, Jul 03, 2006 at 15:43
Sorry and not really interested in this tit for tat posts anyway.
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Reply By: Geoff (Newcastle, NSW) - Sunday, Jun 25, 2006 at 19:20

Sunday, Jun 25, 2006 at 19:20
Hi Nifty,
"(Mind you, it's not so long since I made some changes to the fridge installation, blocking off the airspaces around the fridge and improving the venting, according to instructions I found somewhere on the forum.)"

How hard is it to reverse this work?
If the problem persists after you reverse the above then look at the thermostat or other problems. You may have increased the fridges efficiency.

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Follow Up By: Nifty1 - Sunday, Jun 25, 2006 at 21:10

Sunday, Jun 25, 2006 at 21:10
Not hard to reverse it, as it was mostly just temporary to see what the effect was. I also got the van very level this time. So I have a combination of better frig installation and venting, properly levelled for once, and bloody cold night temperatures, but I would have thought that at setting '1' it wouldn't freeze.

I'll be away at the van this week so I'll try a few experiments and see what the effects are, and let you all know. I'll have a look at the door seals too. I don't want to replace the thermostat unless I have to.

Thanks for your replies and advice.
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Reply By: Nifty1 - Monday, Jul 03, 2006 at 10:00

Monday, Jul 03, 2006 at 10:00
I may have found the problem. Looks like the thermostat control knob might have slipped a bit, so when it is on setting '1' it is really on about 5. I've set it at '5' for a few days and will check again. Upsetting the levelling seemed to have no measurable impact.
AnswerID: 181556

Follow Up By: Alloy c/t - Monday, Jul 03, 2006 at 13:27

Monday, Jul 03, 2006 at 13:27
Nifty1 ,you have not indicated whether you are on gas or 240v or 12v ??thermostat on a 3way only operates on 240v ,,
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Reply By: Nifty1 - Monday, Jul 03, 2006 at 14:12

Monday, Jul 03, 2006 at 14:12
Alloy, the problem was apparent on both gas and 240v (didn't try it on 12v). My recollection is that there are actually two thermostats, one for gas and one for 240v, and there is no temperature conytrol at all for 12v. Botht thermostats are controlled by the one knob.

Anyway, I'll have another look in a couple of days.

I don't know about cycling. The gas system apparently varies the gas delivery rate between 'bypass' and 'full' to give you some control over temperature.
AnswerID: 181606

Reply By: Nifty1 - Thursday, Jul 06, 2006 at 13:35

Thursday, Jul 06, 2006 at 13:35
Well, the answer is that the knob has somehow slipped around. Haven't fixed it yet but it's under control. Thanks for your help fellas - isn't it nice when a problem turns out to have the simplest and least expensive solution...
AnswerID: 182124

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