Woodalls Open Roads Forum: How to install AC Heater Element in Dometic RV Refrigerator
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 > How to install AC Heater Element in Dometic RV Refrigerator

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mr_cuzy

here

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Posted: 07/17/11 11:04am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I purchased a used 2002 RV in Feb '11, and its Dometic RM2852 refrigerator has cooled just fine on either LP or AC until just a few days ago, when I found it is not cooling when using 120 volt AC (campground's shore power). From my troubleshooting I found that the leads in the AC heating element had broken off (due to rough roads, I suspect). I have repaired the leads and I am now getting a good resistence reading of 38 ohms (Dometic service manuals I have found on the web indicate that it should be 44 ohms +/-10%, but this seems pretty good to me).

Now, however, I am not sure how to re-install the heating element. Does it just sit "loose" in the boiler section, or is there a bracket or something that it must fit in / slide into to hold it securely against the syphon pump? When I originally removed the heater it felt much "tighter" (more secure) than it does now when I am trying to reinstall it, but I couldn't see any backets or anything since the fiberglass insulation is blocking my view (and the heat from running the fridge on LP prevented me from digging around with my fingers under the insulation - I have fridge running on LP since it is full of food and I am a full timer). The Dometic parts schematic does not show any brackets, and I cannot find any "heater installation" instructions on the internet.

Do you know how I can be sure that I reinstall it correctly, with the heater making good contact with the boiler?

With the AC heater installed "loosely" and all covers re-installed, the lower fridge section when from 45 degrees (gas) to 53 degrees in three hours when I switched back to AC mode, so I suspect I don't have the heater element properly positioned.

Thanks in advance for your help! Sorry for the long post.

garym114

Bluff Dale, Texas

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Posted: 07/17/11 05:23pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The element fits down in a heating well. It is held tightly in place by insulation in the top of the well and around the chimney. Sounds like you removed to much insulation around the chimney. You will have to repack the insulation around the chimney to hold the element tighter. There is no bracken or clips to hold it in place, just insulation. The insulation is wrapped with the tin around the chimney.
The instructions for replacing the element say to slide the old element out and insert the new element. It says nothing about removing any insulation.
The reason for all the Dometic recalls was the weld that holds the heater well in place. They went from a 325w element to a 345w element without evaluating the effect of a higher wattage element on the weld. It is the weld that cracks.


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javaseuf

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Posted: 07/17/11 07:02pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

In fact, there are two sleeves that the element can slide into. The second sleeve is there for the three-way option fo a 12-volt element.
You should be able to use your finger and feel around to find the two sleeves/tubes.





ksg5000

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Posted: 07/18/11 08:25am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

This may help


Kevin

mr_cuzy

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Posted: 07/18/11 10:43am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks javaseuf, ksg5000 & garym114 for your quick replies.

I have found the "sleeve" that the AC heater slides into, buried behind all the insulattion. I have reinstalled it (snuggly inside the sleeve/tube this time, and my fridge is back to working on AC power again.

Freeezer is around 0 degrees and fridge (lower section) is at 42 degrees right now, with RV parked in sun (but patio awning providing the fridge area with shade) and outside temps at 90 degrees. This is approximately the same performance I was seeing when running my fridge on LP.

Thanks again, Cuzy.

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