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Old 06-20-2016, 01:28 PM   #1
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Can your refrigerator holding 40F with this record heat??

Thought this would be "good" weather to do a refrigerator make/model survey. How is your van refrigerator holding temperature and is it really sucking up battery power to do it?? Also is your freezer keeping things frozen? List your make and model the ambient temp in your area and how your refrig. is doing. I hear Death Valley is 130ish today.
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Old 06-20-2016, 01:39 PM   #2
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I'm right around 39-40 degrees in 95 degree heat. Van is well insulated though with reflect, and such. Fridge is Norcold DE-0041.
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Old 06-20-2016, 06:38 PM   #3
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still trying to thaw me Engel fridge...
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Old 06-21-2016, 05:36 PM   #4
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Hard to say. Yesterday it was kinda hot:
90* outside and it was 102 inside. The fridge was set to just over 3 and inside temp from the cooler evening had it down to 39*. When it reached 96 outside, the inside temps reached 124* which raised the fridge temp to 42. Mind you my thermometer is in the door which is much warmer than the center of the fridge.

Sorry I didn't and haven't recorded the cycle rate and cycle length. It's a Norcold DE-0041
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Old 06-21-2016, 07:34 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by daveb View Post
Hard to say. Yesterday it was kinda hot:
90* outside and it was 102 inside. The fridge was set to just over 3 and inside temp from the cooler evening had it down to 39*. When it reached 96 outside, the inside temps reached 124* which raised the fridge temp to 42. Mind you my thermometer is in the door which is much warmer than the center of the fridge. It's a Norcold DE-0041
That sounds like darn good performance, congratulations.
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Old 06-21-2016, 09:35 PM   #6
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Can't give you precise numbers but, ran the Truck Fridge for 2 days with no solar and battery's are at 11.5. The Ice cream in the freezer is solid and the beer is rocky mountain blue. Checked when van temp was 90.
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Old 06-22-2016, 12:28 AM   #7
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I was thinking of pulling my Norcold out and cleaning the coils.

Anyone do that to clean the dust off the coils or anything else that might affect efficiency?
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Old 06-22-2016, 05:26 AM   #8
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Quote:
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I was thinking of pulling my Norcold out and cleaning the coils.

Anyone do that to clean the dust off the coils or anything else that might affect efficiency?
Clean coils or other parts of the refrigerant gas plumbing is beneficial in general. Even if dust isn't visibly present cooking fumes etc can form a film potentially affecting efficiency.

Best method is using a dedicated liquid coil cleaning solution available from A/C service suppliers, most likely online too. Follow directions and you should do fine.

Be sure to NOT use high pressure washers as those can injure refrigerator plumbing.
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Old 06-22-2016, 02:05 PM   #9
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That sounds like darn good performance, congratulations.
Yeah except I haven't really found how far it can take my battery reserves down. On the bad side it pulls about 6 amps while running. Seems like it runs more often but for a shorter time. I used to use one of those battery operated fans inside and it seemed to help equalize the inside temps. It also seems to work better when the fridge has stuff in it. I'm planning to add a little fan in the back to help when it's hot outside. Supposed to be 107 here in a week Maybe I'll give it another try.
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Old 06-22-2016, 03:48 PM   #10
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I will recommend the computer type fan to vent the rear of the fridge that daveb mentions. I have the original norcold fridge that SMB was installing in '05 and it would really heat up the upper cabinet as well as its own cabinet. I used to take everything out of the upper cabinet and leave the doors open in really hot weather. I installed a fan to draw air from above the fridge compressor/coils across the solar controller (which is in the above cabinet in a duct like box) and out into the cabin. The fridge cabinet shelf stopped short of the back by 2-3" already so I installed a grill in the lower cabinet door so cool air would enter from there. A small thermostat controls the fan. Perhaps I should have just taken a picture instead of typing all this but I hope you get the idea. The difference has been much shorter run times, no more warm stuff in the upper cabinet, and the fridge internal temp seems more stable. I highly recommend getting that hot air out.

To answer the original question. Yes. I usually set the dial at 3.5 ish. A little closer to 4 If I want it to be perfect beverage temperature and the inside of the van is 95*. When I set it at 4 drinks will freeze even if it's hot in the cabin. All this is after the fan was installed.

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