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Angle of slope and damage to Dometic refrigerator

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Happy Tripping View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Happy Tripping Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Angle of slope and damage to Dometic refrigerator
    Posted: 03 Aug 2017 at 11:53am
From another thread - 
Originally posted by furpod

... the general consensus seems to be 3 degrees off level is the max it will still function.

This topic came up a couple of years ago. I have a driveway with, by crude use of a level and protractor, a 7 degree slope. At that time, the consensus seemed to be 7 degrees is max, but acceptable. So far, I have been able to precool the Dometic in my driveway before trips, altho I hope I'm not damaging it.

Why does Dometic fail to specify such an important point??

I don't doubt Furpod, but I would like to see an established standard on how much slope is acceptable, in black and white. 

I'm afraid this is another example of the industry keeping things 'under wraps' to avoid the hassles of lawsuits.
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jato View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote jato Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Aug 2017 at 7:22pm
Now you got me to thinking, "all those mountain roads we go up and down on in the Rockies and we always use propane when traveling.  Are we also in danger of 'toasting' the Dometic refer?"
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Post Options Post Options   Quote kymooses Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Aug 2017 at 8:46pm
Dometic specifies 3 degrees left to right and 6 degrees front to rear but for "optimal" cooling as level as possible is recommended.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote kymooses Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Aug 2017 at 8:47pm
Originally posted by jato

Now you got me to thinking, "all those mountain roads we go up and down on in the Rockies and we always use propane when traveling.  Are we also in danger of 'toasting' the Dometic refer?"

No issue while towing because everything is always in constant movement.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Danielw1 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Aug 2017 at 11:07pm
What about a constant incline over a mountain pass for 20 miles? I would think that would mimic being off level parked. Maybe 20-30 off level is not a big deal
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Post Options Post Options   Quote pgoelz Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 Aug 2017 at 7:40am
Given the fact that you risk permanent damage to a VERY expensive part of your trailer, I find it shameful at best that Dometic completely omits ANY reference to refer damage in the manual.  

In my research I have found the following tidbits:

1.  When asked (and ONLY when asked... it is not in the manual), Dometic does state 3 degrees side to side and 6 degrees front to back as the max allowable tilt while running.  However, they do not state how long beyond those limits is acceptable.  

2.  The damage is slow and cumulative, resulting in a slow decrease in cooling efficiency.  

3.  Supposedly the new round boiler enclosure Dometic models are more resistant to overheating and cooling unit damage.  How much is anyone's guess.  Dometic never mentioned this little gem when I was talking to them, and they knew I had a newer unit.  My guess is that the 3 / 6 degree limits still apply and that damage occurs slower if beyond those limits.  

4.  Running while towing is supposedly OK because the motion sloshes the coolant around and it does not stop circulating.  But since we have no idea how quickly damage occurs when stopped off level I do not plan on running with the refer on unless absolutely necessary.  

5.  You can purchase and install an aftermarket boiler overtemp shutdown device which should eliminate the risk.  It will re-start after an overtemp so no risk of the refer getting warm if you did not realize it had shut down re-started.  The lack of this vital safety feature on any refer I have seen is..... puzzling.... at best.  In fact, the ARP site includes some interesting reading about recalls and lawsuits.  

6.  There is a very healthy remanufacturing industry out there for cooling units.  Fed primarily by the fact that this crucial information is not in the Dometic OR the Forest River manuals.  

7.  The fact that you can permanently damage your refer to the tune of $1000 or more by running off level is common knowledge on the internet.  But ONLY if you know to look for it.  It is beyond me how new owners are supposed to get this crucial information.  

8.  Since the cooling unit includes hydrogen, there is a serious risk of fire if the boiler develops a leak while the propane flame is lit.  

9.  "Amish built" cooling units are apparently not a gimmick.  They are built with heavier tubing.  My guess is that the Amish are heavy users of gas powered refrigerators and build them to a higher quality standard.  

10.  This is a LOT to digest for an appliance that until now I had always considered to be "plug in and forget about it".  

Paul
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Post Options Post Options   Quote mcarter Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 Aug 2017 at 5:21pm
I did a post on the Amish units several months ago, they seem to be the lead in rebuilds, the post didn't get any response, but if I was looking for a rebuild I would investigate there.
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