Jump to content

Fridge Heating Elements Upgrade?


Ldsundance
 Share

Recommended Posts

has anyone upgraded there heating elements to an equivalent wattage of what the gas is supposed to give,

the mains and 12v elements on mine are rated 95w and the gas supply is supposed to be an equivalent of 175w, so in theory if changing the elements to 170w should give near enough the same cooling output as gas?

Towing with 2. 0 darkside mk3 Ford Focus hatch named the Naked Turtle, towing a 1993 Abi Jubilee Emperor Named Michelle

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The Dometic fridges I am familiar with have a "box" that the element goes into, so in theory if the end probe/element is physically the same size then a upgrade can be done.

 

However I cant guarantee the electrical supply board will be able to cope with the extra load.

 

You don't say what model or make you have, but if I was you an email to the technical department of the company that makes the fridge would be the best action.

 

Other things to consider is the caravans 12 volt supply cable, will it take the extra current?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As a Dometic engineer the answer is NO.

The fridges are designed and built for optimal operation. If it was meant to have a larger heating element it would have been built with it .

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have to agree with Brecon, why do you want to fix something that ain't broke? If your cooling is poor under electric then maybe your element is going but it could be something else. Uprating the element would produce more heat than the system could cope with.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If your cooling is poor under electric then maybe your element is going but it could be something else.

 

 

Correct installation of the fridge usually improves the situation. :rolleyes:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Correct installation of the fridge usually improves the situation. :rolleyes:

Indeed, this has been proven by some members on here in some tests. Maybe somebody can write a 'how to' on this?

An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.

Mahatma Gandhi

Link to comment
Share on other sites

the fridge is an rm212f, i am going to upgrade the elements to see if it does make a difference, the cables and board should take the extra load, i have previously improved/reduced the gap behind the fridge but for marginal difference

 

the mains is about 0. 4 Amps so would increase to 0. 8Amps

12v is about 8 Amps but would increase to about 14 Amps

Towing with 2. 0 darkside mk3 Ford Focus hatch named the Naked Turtle, towing a 1993 Abi Jubilee Emperor Named Michelle

Link to comment
Share on other sites

the fridge is an rm212f, i am going to upgrade the elements to see if it does make a difference, the cables and board should take the extra load, i have previously improved/reduced the gap behind the fridge but for marginal difference

 

the mains is about 0. 4 Amps so would increase to 0. 8Amps

12v is about 8 Amps but would increase to about 14 Amps

I thought you where just increasing the 230v element?

An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.

Mahatma Gandhi

Link to comment
Share on other sites

no it will be both

Towing with 2. 0 darkside mk3 Ford Focus hatch named the Naked Turtle, towing a 1993 Abi Jubilee Emperor Named Michelle

Link to comment
Share on other sites

no it will be both

That is a large draw for 12v. . I hope the Towcar wiring is up to the job?

An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.

Mahatma Gandhi

Link to comment
Share on other sites

yes the wiring is up to it, just fitted some larger 42Amp cable to a voltage sensing 70 amp relay direct from the battery to the towbar wiring

Towing with 2. 0 darkside mk3 Ford Focus hatch named the Naked Turtle, towing a 1993 Abi Jubilee Emperor Named Michelle

Link to comment
Share on other sites

yes the wiring is up to it, just fitted some larger 42Amp cable to a voltage sensing 70 amp relay direct from the battery to the towbar wiring

I have two 4. 6mm cables running straight from the battery to a 30amp vs relay and to pin9 but I also have a ignition switched 20amp separate supply running to the rear for the lighting circuit. I am seriously considering replacing the VS relay with a standard 40amp relay using the ignition switched relay as the switching source.

Reason being as my car has stop-start, sometimes the voltage at the back of the vehicle is measured at over 13. 8v and is causing significant relay chatter. I have also found that trying to draw too much power can cause this relay to start chattering too. Stop start batteries seem to be able to hold over 14v for a fair while at rest!

 

A 6m run of 42a cable will not be able to provide 42a at 12v. What is the diameter of the cable or the number of strands I. e. 84/0. 3mm ?

An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.

Mahatma Gandhi

Link to comment
Share on other sites

So let me get this right. ..

 

Question asked. ..

 

has anyone upgraded there heating elements to an equivalent wattage of what the gas is supposed to give. ..?

Reply given. ..

 

As a Dometic engineer the answer is NO.

The fridges are designed and built for optimal operation. If it was meant to have a larger heating element it would have been built with it .

Response from OP. ..

 

the fridge is an rm212f, i am going to upgrade the elements to see if it does make a difference. ..

Why bother asking the question?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

it's 6mm2

Towing with 2. 0 darkside mk3 Ford Focus hatch named the Naked Turtle, towing a 1993 Abi Jubilee Emperor Named Michelle

Link to comment
Share on other sites

it's 6mm2

Assuming approximately 5m from the battery to the fridge 6mm2 is just acceptable at 14A. It'll drop around half a volt or around 3. 5%. You'd be better off with 8. 5mm2 or larger.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Fridges are designed to work in certain ambient temperature ranges. Poor fridge performance is usually a result of exceeding those - interestingly, too cold can be as troublesome as too warm. Hence my fitment of temperature sensitive fans to improve air flow over the elements. The fridge works perfectly in weather as hot as we have caravanned - about 34 deg C. I also wouldn't recommend modifying the fridge itself - easy route to a smouldering wreck you used to call a caravan.

Edited by BFM

Enjoy every minute of every day. It doesn't last nearly as long as you'd like, and there's no guarantee of coming this way again.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The RM212 is an OLD fridge and changing the heating elements will not improve its reduced performance due to age.

 

As has been said, you asked a question, I, amongst others have replied with best information yet you still think you know best. ............Oh well.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Another thing to consider on the 12v side, will you altenator be fit to supply car, caravan battery and fridge?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

no I don't know best, but if you haven't actually done it, then this way I can say for sure if it does/doesn't work, as for the alternator that is fine I upgraded from 80A to 120A that was way before I got the caravan

Towing with 2. 0 darkside mk3 Ford Focus hatch named the Naked Turtle, towing a 1993 Abi Jubilee Emperor Named Michelle

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have already told you, as a Dometic engineer that your idea will not work, it may well however end the useful life of your fridge by causing irreversible damage,

The elements are suited to each model of fridge to ensure correct function of the absorbtion principle, adding more heat will stop the fridge working correctly.

 

(However Ii feel that I am wasting my time, just glad it is not my money !)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As has been said, the 212 is an old fridge, past its prime, uprating the element will only put extra heat into the system which will most likely have a detrimental effect on one and maybe all the chemical elements within the the cooling unit, which will render he fridge useless calling for a replacement. your money your choice.


Skegness 'The Sunnier Side of Britain'

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have already told you, as a Dometic engineer that your idea will not work, it may well however end the useful life of your fridge by causing irreversible damage,

The elements are suited to each model of fridge to ensure correct function of the absorbtion principle, adding more heat will stop the fridge working correctly.

 

(However Ii feel that I am wasting my time, just glad it is not my money !)

Brecon, as a Dometic 'bod'....Somewhat off-post but can you please satisfy my curiosity.

 

Why do some fridges appear to work better than others, when they are identical & even fitted in identical 'vans ?

 

My daughters fridge, using gas, is down to 5deg. within about 12 hours whereas mine takes 24 to 36 hours. Ambient temp. 25deg. I've noticed this in different 'vans over the years so it's not an isolated incident. It was even more pronounced when we both had Thetford fridges (never again, but that's another story), hers would freeze-up within a day (on full gas) whereas mine never managed to do more than make things cool at best. It was serviced & supposedly OK.

 

Is it likely that there is not enough cooling fluid in the system, & if such a thing is possible, can it be checked & top-up?

3L auto Nissan Terrano, 2004 & Swift Elegance 530, 2018. As Leonardo da Vinci once said: 'If you find from your own experience that something is a fact & it contradicts what some authority has written down, then you must abandon the authority & base your reasoning on your own findings' ie: use your common sense!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Mick,

A lot of the problems are in the fitting of the fridges in the vans.

I will not go into Thetford fridges, there is too much to say, suffice that they should have stuck to making toilets.

 

There is an optimum distance from the cooling matrix and the side of the van to allow sufficient cooling air to circulate correctly.

If the gap is too big the air does not escape quickly enough from the top vent and "pools" around the top of the cooling matrix, making it hotter than it should be.

Also, fridges fitted in the UK are built for optimum operation up to 30 degrees C, and as in this current hot weather that is at the top of the limit.

Add an awning which covers the intake and exhaust vents and the temperature can, and does, reach over 100 degrees C.

 

A good air flow is essential at all times and this is where either fridge vent fans come into their own to blow cooler air up and over the cooling matrix.

Improving the ventilation can also be achieved by removing the vent covers, and if needed placing a table fan directed into the lower vent to force the air to move.

 

Some Dometic fridges can have the cooling matrix replaced, but they are very costly. Recharging is not an option, unlike car air con systems.

It is unusual for there to be a lack of cooling fluid but it is possible that during manufacture some kind of contamination has entered the cooling matrix, although at Dometic extreme care is exercised during build to prevent this kind of contamination.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Brecon, on 26 Jul 2014 - 7:56 PM, said:

Hi Mick,

A lot of the problems are in the fitting of the fridges in the vans.

I will not go into Thetford fridges, there is too much to say, suffice that they should have stuck to making toilets.

 

There is an optimum distance from the cooling matrix and the side of the van to allow sufficient cooling air to circulate correctly.

If the gap is too big the air does not escape quickly enough from the top vent and "pools" around the top of the cooling matrix, making it hotter than it should be.

Also, fridges fitted in the UK are built for optimum operation up to 30 degrees C, and as in this current hot weather that is at the top of the limit.

Add an awning which covers the intake and exhaust vents and the temperature can, and does, reach over 100 degrees C.

 

A good air flow is essential at all times and this is where either fridge vent fans come into their own to blow cooler air up and over the cooling matrix.

Improving the ventilation can also be achieved by removing the vent covers, and if needed placing a table fan directed into the lower vent to force the air to move.

 

Some Dometic fridges can have the cooling matrix replaced, but they are very costly. Recharging is not an option, unlike car air con systems.

It is unusual for there to be a lack of cooling fluid but it is possible that during manufacture some kind of contamination has entered the cooling matrix, although at Dometic extreme care is exercised during build to prevent this kind of contamination.

:goodpost:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...