Posted on July 27, 2013
There are several components that work together to get the refrigerator to cool properly. Understanding the basics will help you in locating the cause of the failure.
AC/DC model Norcold refrigerators are fairly simple in troubleshooting. You will know that you have one of these models if the refrigerator has a compressor in the back (typically installed in boats and trucks. Most RV's have gas absorption refrigerators and these can be more troublesome since there are more components that affect the cooling.
The first thing to know is that the cooling units on every Norcold gas absorption refrigerator are gravity operated and MUST be level in order to run properly.
The second thing you need to understand is that the refrigerator will not cool properly if it is too hot outside (typically over 100 degrees F ambient). The refrigerator needs good air flow across the "condenser fins" that are located at the top of the cooling unit. If you remove your refrigerator's access panel on the outside of the RV you should be able to look up and see these fins. Make sure that there are no obstructions. If your refrigerator doesn't have good air flow it will not cool properly.
The next thing to check is your Thermistor (thermostat/ resistor) located inside the refrigerator. It has a 4-prong connector located at your light fixture at one end and the other end connects inside the refrigerator on one of the back fins. To test this Thermistor you don't need any tools whatsoever. Provided your refrigerator is not showing any fault codes, you can turn the temperature setting as cold as it gets and disconnect this Thermistor. If it cools properly, you have a bad Thermistor.
Need further assistance?! We will diagnose your refrigerator over the phone or via Email for a flat fee of $40. Save yourself time and money by locating the problem from the comfort of your RV. After we locate the problem we can sell you the faulty part right over the phone! You can schedule your technical support by clicking the link below: