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Norcold 1200 Amish Problems


Georgia Mike
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I installed a Amish unit on Monday and need some advice. First, my old cooling unit worked fine except the cooling fans never came on both times we went on a trip. It was cool weather and it seems to keep the temps in range. When installing the new coil I put in a new thermal switch and fans. Just before installing it back in the wall I tested the fans by heating the switch with a lighter and the fans didn't work. I traced the wires down to the control board and found I didn't have 12 volts on the one prong for the fans. Tell me if i am wrong but shouldn't there be a constant 12 volts on that circuit and the thermal switch just opens and closes to run the fans?  I figured the fan part of the board was bad so i ended up wiring the fans to the Frig Defender. I installed it back into the wall and hooked everything back up and it went down hill from there. After about two hours of running on gas the frig defender shut it down. I then tried it on AC and it started to cool a little bit but after a few hours the Frig Defend shut it down again. I disconnected the Frig Defend and ran the factory Norcold Electronics. The boiler temperature kept going from 350 to 450 range back and forth but i figured it needed to do this. I left and came back a few hours later and it was shut down again and had the No Co error. I then wired the AC heating elements direct bypassing the control board and hard wired the fans and after about 7 hours i was below 0 in the freezer and 28 in the frig so I guess I have a problem with the wiring or control board. Even though it worked before the change out i was wondering if the thermistor is bad. I have the Snip it to install so I am going to install that tomorrow and see if it does anything. I noticed on the two heavy gauge fan wires (black and white) that connect on the bottom of the control board there are two thin gauge wires piggy backed to those same two prongs that go in a plug harness on the bottom of the board. I am not sure what they control but since there is no 12 volts on that fan circuit what ever those thin wires control isn't working. I looked at a Norcold schematic but it really didn't show what they connect to. The control board worked fine before the change out so those two small wires on the fan circuit didn't have power then. My plan is to hook everything back up with the new snip it thermistor and hope it works. Just a few Points.....the frig is level and both of the fuses on the board are good. I have been working on this all week and im tired of looking at it. If anyone has an idea what those wires go to that would help.

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If you unplug the thermistor connector on the control board the fridge will run forever.  This is the thermistor test. 

What happens if you short the thermal snap-disc for the fans?  It appears K3A enables the fan circuit but doesn't show what energizes K3A.  Please don't use a lighter to test. 

I'd also call JC Refrigeration on Monday.  If there's a common gotcha with the changeover they've probably heard it before. 

Best,

- bob

1677001222_Norcold02.thumb.jpg.dc4bac434896ae9c6192166c8a8be10b.jpg

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I agree with CBR Bob, those folks at JC fridge are great!  I did my my own install, They reacted fast for me and know their stuff!  

 

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Yes, the K3A is confusing because you have the thermal fan switch for the fans and It shows the flapper heater is before the fan the thermostat so it should be live all the time is what I’m thinking.

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The "flapper heater" (not sure what that is . . . condensate heater around door frame?) has it's own switch (door switch?) 

Keep in mind nobody at Norcold won a Nobel Prize for engineering (or schematic drawing). 

- bob

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Do yourself a favor and get rid of your Norcold frig.  Members are now posting problems with the Amish solution.

A little over a year ago I saw the remains of a burned out motorhome caused by a Norcold refrigerator. I have a Norcold 1200 that had the recall done in Oct 2010 and I was searching the internet to see if this last recall has been effective in stopping the fires. What I found out is that the fires continue.

Chuck B 2004 Windsor

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So I went over today and installed the new thermistor and started the frig on gas. The boiler temp rose in an hour to over 430 degrees it just sat there and the back side of the frig coils didn’t even get warm. I’m so surprised because yesterday wiring it direct on electric it cooled down perfect I don’t know what the difference gas would make so I shut it down. I’m going to call J.C refrigeration on Monday and try and get this resolved. 

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Should have changed the to the electric Amish compressor/ coil unit. I did the 120V one three years ago myself. If I ran into a problem I just called JC and they walked me through it. Works great. Just needed to replace the control board on installation. ( My Old  board was smoked when the old unit died. ) Thank goodness the recall was done so it shut down when the ammonia started leaking out. (Safety switch.)  Absorption units burn down coaches and travel trailers. They don’t get as cold either.   👎🏻

Jim 2000 Monaco Dynasty 

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I'm very happy with the Amish conversion on my Norcold 1200. It's the propane/electric one, and it's a great improvement over the original Norcold. JC did the install at the FMCA rally last year. And, by the way, they tested the fan thermostat with a small torch. Oh, I have a 2003 Monaco.

 

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When I had the Norcold in our 2000 Diplomat, over a period of 10 years I changed out the electric heaters that failed, the fan control disk, the temperature sensor inside, the control board, and several ice makers. Every fix kept it working, but hot days would always see temperatures creep up to low forties during the days. We tend to stuff the thing full of food and leave the door open while we search for what we want to eat. It is hard to break those habits plus I got tired of worrying about it. It just got to the point I could not relax. Also, every time I went on this forum to ask about a problem, I was always told to get rid of it.

Last year, I finally decided if I was to enjoy the Diplomat, I had to change it out. I found a Frigidaire that would fit and only draws a half amp. It works great, holds more food, and we still stuff it full. On a trip south this winter, we had 35 pounds of Kansas Angus beef in the freezer with never a worry.

Now, I figure, if the Frig has problems, I will go to Home Depot and pick up a new one for $500. It only takes an hour, with a little help, to remove the old one and put in the new one. I solved a lot of worrying, and many hours of trouble shooting and waiting on parts, and really enjoy firing up the Traeger for steaks or ribs. Now I have plenty of time to worry about other things with a nice cold drink and my weight problem.

Greg

2000 Diplomat with Ford Fusion on dolly

 

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The emergency escape window, in the living room area opens completely vertical. The frig fits nicely through it with the doors removed. It may have gone through the door, I did not try, figured I would need to remove the passenger seat.

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It is not if your Norcold will Catch on fire, it's a matter of WHEN.  This issue has been around for over 2 decades.  Mine caught fire in the middle of the night.  We are fortunate it woke my wife up or we would not be here today to post about it.  Band-Aid fixes are like real Band-Aids, the will come off.

Why continue to throw money at a device that Can send you to the promise land?????  Chuck B 2004 Windsor

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Back in around 2016, I filed a class action lawsuit against Norcold and won.  I received over $307.00 in 3 payments.  Several members attached their claims to my lawsuit receiving the payments in 3 payments.  Chuck B 2004 Windsor

https://topclassactions.com/lawsuit-settlements/closed-settlements/norcold-rv-refrigerator-defect-class-action-settlement/

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Posted (edited)

I finally got my Amish unit to work. There were two problems that created the perfect storm for me. First when I had the Amish unit on the floor working on it the ammonia solution got redistributed. When I stood it up Paul from ARP said It would have helped to turn it on the burner side then stand it up which I didn’t do. Then I didn’t realize that my burner even though it had a nice blue flame wasn’t hot enough. The first time I turned it on it was on LP which wasn’t hot enough to get it circulating. The second time on AC I got the NO CO error because it hadn’t gone through its fist cycle. Then I wired the heating elements direct and after 7 hours it cooled down good. Then I went back the next day to LP and it struggled to get the freezer cool at all I thought what the hell is going on. The next day I tried it on AC with the Norcold electronics hooked up fearing the No Co again but in only 5 hours the freezer was below 0 and the frig was 27. I had the door setting on 6. Today I tried  it again on AC with the setting on 4 and I had around 0 in freezer and 32 in the fridge so it seems to be working great on ac. I called JC refrigeration and they said to clean the burner and soak it in alcohol so that’s what I’m doing now. The burner wasn’t getting hot enough. I monitored the boiler temps with both and found it took an hour on LP for the temperature to get up to 370 degrees. On AC it took 15-20 min. So hopefully this will get the LP hot enough. Hope this will help someone in the future replacing there unit.

Edited by Georgia Mike
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59 minutes ago, Georgia Mike said:

I monitored the boiler temps with both and found it took an hour on LP for the temperature to get up to 370 degrees. On AC it took 15-20 min.

Where and how are you measuring the boiler?

- bob

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