Submitted: Tuesday, Dec 18, 2007 at 16:58
ThreadID: 124286 Views:4529 Replies:3 FollowUps:9
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While installing new cable behind the fridge I noticed the compressor cooling fan was not working. I replaced it with a 90mm computer fan. The dimensions were identical to the original but a little plastic had to me removed to miss a fridge pipe, easy enough.
The fan operates when the compressor is working.
Also fitted a 80mm fan on the bottom shelf blowing up......yet to see how it goes. This runs continuously and is slowed by a fan speed controller to probably quarter full speed.
cheers and beers
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Reply By: NIK `N` OFF - Tuesday, Dec 18, 2007 at 21:01

Tuesday, Dec 18, 2007 at 21:01
My fridge fan [Waeco RPD 190] stopped working upon removing the lower external vent and checking it was found to have fallen apart, the fan blades had completely come off the spindle. To replace it i need to remove the fridge but cannot seem to work out whats stopping it's removal. It's the black flush mounted fridge, i have removed the panel screws but still it appears to be held solid, looking through the external vents doesnt show any other fittings. Its under warranty and the fridge tech was going to fix it but getting the fridge out is the problem, a call to BT tells me to undo the facia panel screws and it will slide out, but it doesnt.

The fridge is working fine so i don't know just how important this fan is.

AnswerID: 573729

Follow Up By: Turist - Tuesday, Dec 18, 2007 at 21:30

Tuesday, Dec 18, 2007 at 21:30
The flush mounted fridge has a strip of ply or timber about 1/2" thick along the front of the fridge at the bottom.
It is possibly glued as well as screwed and is a bit hard to see.
It need to be removed to slide the fridge out.

We had to remove one of those fridges some time ago (not my van) and found that we had to remove the timber strip with a sharp wood chisel.

From memory when the strip is removed there was access to some screws but the memory on that is not so good.

Also have a look at the back of the fridge, sometimes there is a screw into the "floor" of the cabinet.

Let us know if this helps, others may be interested.

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Follow Up By: NIK `N` OFF - Wednesday, Dec 19, 2007 at 01:58

Wednesday, Dec 19, 2007 at 01:58
Hi Bob,

Thanks you were correct in saying the bottom strip of ply was the culprit.

Try and explain what i found and some questions of my own.

I managed to remove the L shaped piece of wood grain plastic trip without damage, I then used a sharp wood chisel and seperated the ply that was glued to another piece which in turn was glued to the base, so in other words I left one glued, removed the top one. No other screws were found. That enabled me to wiggle the fridge and slide it out.

Once out i laid it on its face, to remove the fan i also had to remove the compressor as the screws were inaccesible with it in place. I unclipped [4] the compressor being careful not to stretch or damage the gas lines i then undid the zinc metal base [6 screws] and that gave me just enough space to unscrew the fan housing [4 screws] The replacement came with the connectors so it was just a matter of un plugging the old and fitting the new. Reinstall was a matter of reverse, and sliding the fridge back in fixing all the facia panel screws, and zip tie up the wiring from the outside access. Now i did not bother putting the piece of ply back in, and i used double sided tape on the plastic trim, it all looks like new. If I need to remove the fridge again it should slide out without much effort.

I do have a question regards internal venting, as our RPD is designed to internally vent I thought i would give it a go, I removed the top trim section that BT put over the rectangular vent holes just above the freezer door, I expected to see something similar along the bottom but it appears to be just a waeco panel about 100mm wide, looking in behind it the panel has a mesh type pattern with lots of square holes. If anyone else has the RPD that is internally vented could they let me know what the panel is like on their fridge please.

As i see it i have two choices, remove the panel that appears to be glued hopefully without damage and then use a jig saw and cut off a section along the base to gain the airflow, or just drill lots of holes in the bottom panel. At present i have done nothing other than remove the top blanking trim and intend to see how the fridge works at that.

Blanking off the exterior plastic vents is the next job, i'm thinking of a piece of perspex silasticed over, Or removing the fridge again and glueing ply across the holes, I am preferring option 1 as i can then still remove them for access, any ideas?
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Follow Up By: NIK `N` OFF - Wednesday, Dec 19, 2007 at 02:06

Wednesday, Dec 19, 2007 at 02:06
wont allow a gallery pic upload, try this

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Reply By: Taj Mah Tracker - Wednesday, Dec 19, 2007 at 02:27

Wednesday, Dec 19, 2007 at 02:27
Hi Mick & Vickie,
Our RPD190 was installed by BT in July 2004 as an internally vented fridge. We have never had the van skin cut for external venting.
The internal venting consists of a strip of 9 holes, across the top of the freezer, about 30mm x 10mm each.
At the bottom below the fridge door is a strip small of round holes. The strip is about 75mm high.
Hope this is of some assistance.
Our fridge has worked well on settings up to 3.5 in the hotter months (say 35C)
AnswerID: 573730

Follow Up By: NIK `N` OFF - Wednesday, Dec 19, 2007 at 05:58

Wednesday, Dec 19, 2007 at 05:58
Thanks Ian,

At the time i was all set to not have the skin cut also, but a call to Waeco convinced me to have it externally vented due to it being a caravan and possibly subject to hot weather conditions, more airflow the better the tech told me. At the time i thought by externally venting it then it would be easier for me to block off the vents than cut and install them if it needed to be done. But from hearing about yours and also others that have done this with the RPD's and also the other models i am going to give it a go.

I have exposed the 9 holes across the top, sounds like i need to drill a series of holes along the bottom strip,

I have cut and shaped some perspex and glued it into the external covers to seal them off, a tiny hole still allows me to turn the catch to access, i'll see how that goes, now its easy to remove the fridge i may just glue some ply on the inner panel and cover the hole.

will PM you,

FollowupID: 848988

Reply By: Kiwi1 - Wednesday, Dec 19, 2007 at 05:03

Wednesday, Dec 19, 2007 at 05:03
I'm intrigued by the thought of venting the fridge internally rather than externally. How many owners have gone for this option? Is there a downside - heat inside the van on hot nights? Maybe operable vent hatches for switching between outside and inside venting is a practical option?
Our fridge vents externally and needs a good blast from a servo air hose to clear accumulated dust from time to time. In damp conditions, this is not so easy - the dust sticks.

AnswerID: 573731

Follow Up By: NIK `N` OFF - Wednesday, Dec 19, 2007 at 06:04

Wednesday, Dec 19, 2007 at 06:04
Michael from reading Brian Fox's modifications to his fridge to internally vent it I havent heard of any negatives, I'm sure others will speak from their experiences.

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Follow Up By: Pixellator - Wednesday, Dec 19, 2007 at 10:57

Wednesday, Dec 19, 2007 at 10:57
I think that internal venting is an addition in the last couple of years to the Secret Squirrel List of Unpublished Options kept in the bottom drawer at Bushtracker. I'm amazed at the number of people we have met with new vans who were not offered all the little bits.
We were very fortunate to have design input during our planning stages from a former member, Anthony, Ernie (Nomads UsR) and Jay (Luvntravln). We had a few spirited discussions to get such simple things as gas struts on the cargo doors- prevents them being caught in the wind, and gets away from those ridiculous cabin hooks-, and support legs at the rear of the van, as well as lights in the cargo hold (with pilot/warning lights inside the van).
Best wishes
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Follow Up By: Turist - Wednesday, Dec 19, 2007 at 17:26

Wednesday, Dec 19, 2007 at 17:26
Post #3238 on the members forum has a lot of detail regarding fridge venting.

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Follow Up By: NIK `N` OFF - Thursday, Dec 20, 2007 at 01:14

Thursday, Dec 20, 2007 at 01:14
Ok further to my job of changing the RPD from externally vented to internal.

Spoke to Taj Mahal Tracker and got info comparing our two fridges, thanks Ian.

I was slightly perplexed at the lower panel as it did not appear to have been blanked off by BT but in actual fact it was, mine had a lot of black mastic sticking the facia on, so much that i decided to remove the panel complete so i could tackle it in the shed. To do this i removed the 8 facia screws and peeled off the plastic wood grain angle at the base, this needs to be removed or the fridge base fouls with it, I was then able to slide the fridge out, I only needed 20cm or so and i was able to get the drill up behind and drill out the 4 pop rivets. With them out i could then pull off the lower panel. It takes a close look to see that a facia had been glued on but with careful prising i was able to peel it off exposing another black panel with all the square holes in it. A clean up with some solvent and then put it back on with new pop rivets.

On the plastic dometic external vent covers, i cut some polycarbonate sheeting to the exact size as the outside recessed pattern of the vents, some silastic stuck around the edge keeps it all in place and dust proof. I did drill a tiny hole directly over the catch just large enough to put a small blade screwdriver in so i can still lock and open the vents for access.

Job done, my fridge is now internally vented.

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Follow Up By: Turist - Thursday, Dec 20, 2007 at 01:43

Thursday, Dec 20, 2007 at 01:43
The way that the fridges have been installed by BT is just an example of sheer bloody mindedness by someone who will not admit that their theory is wrong.
Reference to the manufacturers installation instruction shows that the correct venting method is how you have now done it, with an air flow all around promoted by natural convection.
The other fridge, the white one where the door protrudes a little should also be vented internally according to the installation manual.
The information in post #3238 shows just why the fridge should be vented internally.
You will find that your fridge now performs better.

On a trip to the factory about 3 years back I demonstrated the difference by measuring the temp at the back of the fridge in my van and the temp in another van parked next to it.
Both vans had the fridges running and both were in the same environment.
The temperature behind my fridge, around the motor and cooling coils, was around 10ºC cooler than the externally vented fridge.
The difference in ambient on an internally vented fridge is around 4º-6º while the difference in the externally vented fridge is around 12º-14ºC.
(That is, the difference between the temp inside the van and the temp behind the fridge.)
Even with those figures demonstrating the better performance the internal venting method was scoffed at by stg.

As a bynote, these fridges are also fitted to boats and work very well in them.
I have yet to see a hole cut in the side of a boat to vent the fridge. LOL.


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