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Old 09-08-2019, 07:35 PM   #1
kozzy
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Replace RV Fridge to Residential

Has anyone replace their RV style fridge with a residential style?
My Norcold 2118 uses so much electricity, to the point that at my seasonal site its an extra 50-60 a month just from the fridge, that I am considering removing it from my RV, selling it, and installing a residential style fridge that is much more efficient.
Any one done it before? Is it pretty straight forward, out with the old in with the new? Cap the propane line and be done with it?

thanks
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Old 09-08-2019, 08:02 PM   #2
Twinstax
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Replaced and loving it

We had the Norcold 2118 in our 2017 Montana 3820FK, and from day one we had nothing but trouble with it. We lost more "RV" enjoyment time from it, DW finally said enough. Had RV fridge pulled out by Modern Trailer Sales in Anderson, IN (still have it if anyone interested in parts), and bought a four door residential fridge that I installed. Problem solved.
Hardest part was securing to cabinet, but rigged tie down on floor of cabinet.
Should have ordered residential from beginning.
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Old 09-09-2019, 08:55 AM   #3
1retired06
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Have helped two of my snowbird neighbors. It is straightforward. Some trim work will be required, in both instances where I helped, units were fifthwheels, standard entry doors, and both old and new frigs fit thru the door with frig doors removed. If a drawer under the frig, additional work to create a base likely required. Some cover the vents, we left open, capped the propane line. Hardest part was selection of a frig that would fit properly in the space. We found the rv frig to be heavier than the replacement, but two man job to get in and out.
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Old 09-09-2019, 10:07 AM   #4
E Rod
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I think it's possible to do however you would need to install and inverter to supply 120v power to frig when on the road.
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Old 09-09-2019, 10:32 AM   #5
1retired06
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Inverter is not a necessity, but rather a factor of how you travel. For shorter distances, frig will stay cold for a few hours and recool quickly. On a seasonal site not necessary,. but handy if you experience power outage. On the new installs I posted about, we did not install inverters, both bring units into Florida, one from Canada, one from PA. Both happy without inverters. When we go to Florida for the winter, we do 6 hour hops, use a bar frig we installed in the storage compartment, and don't even turn our RV frig on til we get there.
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Old 09-09-2019, 10:32 AM   #6
Hblick48
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Here's a link to a company that sells a 12 volt DC kit to retrofit a compressor based system into your existing rv refrigerator. No cabinet modifications or inverter required.

https://jc-refrigeration.com/products/
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Old 09-09-2019, 10:59 AM   #7
waynemoore
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Wow what a find. THANK you. I put this info in my folder for when my fridge goes out. Much better than trying to get a residential fridge to fit.
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Old 09-09-2019, 11:09 AM   #8
Hblick48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hblick48 View Post
Here's a link to a company that sells a 12 volt DC kit to retrofit a compressor based system into your existing rv refrigerator. No cabinet modifications or inverter required.

https://jc-refrigeration.com/products/
Edited: My bad...it is a 120 volt AC, so an inverter would be required.
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Old 09-22-2019, 02:30 PM   #9
jcurryii
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Us too. Never had a problem with frozen items on our longest drive around 10+ hours. We don’t dry camp so saw no need for inverter. Wouldn’t go back, Love our Samsung(same model Keystone used 2 years ago).
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Old 09-22-2019, 02:42 PM   #10
Scootsk
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I’m with you on the amount of electricity. I just got a 2019 3791RD and it has the residential fridge. My bill for just the RV fridge running for the month was $64. Now it’s less than $20.
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Old 09-22-2019, 03:34 PM   #11
RyanTheTerrible
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We did it too.

My wife and I replaced our RV fridge with a residential. Totally worth it. The OEM fridge stopped working in Canada on our maiden voyage from AK to IL. We stuffed it with ice to get us to IL, then did the swap in the Granite City KOA. We chose not to install an inverter for some of the same reasons already voiced. It works well for us. I plan to install solar someday when we aren’t living in it. We full time currently in central WA. Anyhow, good luck making the switch. I’d do it again in a heartbeat.
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Old 09-22-2019, 03:44 PM   #12
Bill M
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Stsy away from a Samsung. For the third time another Samsung residential Refrigerator is being replaced under warranty. No adjustment to freezer which runs at -20 degrees. Bad supply of Samsung???
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Old 09-22-2019, 04:14 PM   #13
Hamlej
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Will this conversion work with the Norcold 2118?
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Old 09-22-2019, 05:06 PM   #14
7.3Ford
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hblick48 View Post
Here's a link to a company that sells a 12 volt DC kit to retrofit a compressor based system into your existing rv refrigerator. No cabinet modifications or inverter required.

https://jc-refrigeration.com/products/
Says you need 600 watt inverter, so is not 12 volt. Would be nice if it was 12 volt. I think there is a 24 volt DC refrigerator out there.
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Old 09-22-2019, 05:15 PM   #15
jcurtis934
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No trouble with our samsung which I installed after ditching the norcold 1200 series. My fridge and freezer can be set to what I want. I did follow the spacing requirements per samsung. I am not certain what happened on the assembly line, but if like the install of the norcold...keystone did not adhere to installation requirements.
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Old 09-22-2019, 05:18 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill M View Post
Stsy away from a Samsung. For the third time another Samsung residential Refrigerator is being replaced under warranty. No adjustment to freezer which runs at -20 degrees. Bad supply of Samsung???
That's pretty nuts. On the inside of the cover that encloses the PCB on back or on top is a wiring diagram. If it is not there then glued to the back of the unit. Might find it online with a model# search. The temp sensor for the freezer can easily be checked from the board. Also the sensor chart can be found online but is below. You may have gotten techs that were not worth their pay. If the sensor is good, then the PCB need replacing most likely.
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File Type: jpg samsung sensor chart.jpg (499.1 KB, 4 views)
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Old 09-22-2019, 05:45 PM   #17
PNW Fireguy
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JC Refrigeration makes several retrofit kits for RV absorption refrigerators. One converts the absorption fridge to a DC compressor unit. Much more energy efficient and no need for an inverter. If you are a boondocker or already have modest solar this unit might be a good choice. No cabinetry modifications required. Uses much less energy than the absorption unit. DC powered from existing electrical system. One word of caution, may need to run larger gauge wire either direct from the battery or your dc distribution panel for the heavier compressor load. If you are in Shipshawana they can install soup to nuts.
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Old 09-22-2019, 06:32 PM   #18
chuckj
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I have a 2017 Montana 3790RD with a Norcold 2118 refer which I plan to swap out for a residential refer next month. For those of you who have converted from a Norcold 2118, what make and model of refer did you replace it with. The Norcold 2118 is 36" wide. Track50 told me what model residential he has in his Montana 3701 which is 33", however his rig is a different model. For those that have converted their 3790RD what make, model and width refer did you go with. I'm concerned that a 36" wide unit may be to wide. Thanks for any help.
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Old 09-22-2019, 06:45 PM   #19
mtlakejim
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jcurryii View Post
Us too. Never had a problem with frozen items on our longest drive around 10+ hours. We don’t dry camp so saw no need for inverter. Wouldn’t go back, Love our Samsung(same model Keystone used 2 years ago).
That's us too.

Unless you boondock there really isn't a good reason to have an RV fridge. They don't perform as well as even the cheaper residential and folks seem to have more trouble with them. You can buy two residential for the cost of one RV version too.
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Old 09-23-2019, 03:30 AM   #20
DebNJim B
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chuckj View Post
I have a 2017 Montana 3790RD with a Norcold 2118 refer which I plan to swap out for a residential refer next month. For those of you who have converted from a Norcold 2118, what make and model of refer did you replace it with. The Norcold 2118 is 36" wide. Track50 told me what model residential he has in his Montana 3701 which is 33", however his rig is a different model. For those that have converted their 3790RD what make, model and width refer did you go with. I'm concerned that a 36" wide unit may be to wide. Thanks for any help.
You will also likely limit your choices to counter depth models.
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