June 16, 2024

If your Norcold refrigerator isn’t cooling or if you notice yellow residue behind the fridge or an ammonia smell your Nor cold cooling unit is probably failing and needs to be replaced. Our remanufactured units use a 130 F thermostatic switch that causes the two rear fans to turn on much sooner, helping to move the heat out faster.
Durability

A Norcold type fridge uses a bit of science and technology to keep food cold on the road. These absorption refrigerators can use either propane or electricity (they switch over automatically if you have the right power source) to initiate a chemical process that absorbs heat within your fridge.

The boiler inside the fridge is heated by an electric heater or a gas flame to turn the ammonia into a gas and water state. The ammonia gas rises into a different chamber and absorbs the heat, turning back to liquid ammonia when the fridge’s thermostat and temperature call for a change in status.

A Norcold refrigerator is designed to be durable and energy efficient, but as with all appliances things can go wrong from time to time. If your fridge is running but the green light on the cooling unit is blinking, you probably need to reset it by cycling the power off and on. This is usually done by first removing the cover of a small black box, frequently found in the lower left corner of your fridge.
Noise

The refrigeration units that Nor cold produces use gas absorption. They convert LP gas into cooling energy through a distillation process. They distill the ammonia into a gas and leave the water as a liquid. The cooling unit consists of a series of tubes with the working fluid inside. It is placed at the rear of the refrigerator and the back of the unit has a sheet-metal pan that sometimes have screws in it.

A rattling noise can be caused by electrical wires or loose connections that need to be tightened. It can also be a sign that the fridge is not isolated well enough from the camper. It is a good idea to have custom insulation and mounting installed to help isolate the refrigerator better.

The JC Refrigeration replacement that I installed is running much quieter than the Norcold unit did. It is also cooler in the freezer. The internal fans turn on several hours sooner than the Norcold fan does, which moves heat out of the fridge much faster.
Energy Efficiency

Nor cold refrigeration systems use less energy than other brands of refrigerators. This is because their compressors are smaller and require less amperage to run over a longer time period than other refrigeration units. They also are more efficient at reducing the amount of heat generated.

In addition, the JC Refrigeration cooling unit we sell uses a special formula and tubing design that improves the performance of a Dometic or Norcold fridge for the long lasting cool that RV owners need in the hot summer weather. This is the reason that they perform so much better than the original factory cooling units.

The Fridge Defend patented automatic temperature monitoring device is an added safety and failure prevention feature. This monitors the boiler temperatures of your Dometic or Norcold fridge and shuts off the heater if they get too hot (click here to view video). This prevents cooling unit damage and failure. Then it starts the fridge up again when the normal boiler temperature is reached.
Value

Norcold refrigerators (manufactured in the US by Thetford Corporation) are a great value. They are quiet, durable and use gas (or propane) as their energy source. They also consume less than HALF the electricity that a residential fridge would consume on average.

However, like any other device they do not last forever and eventually the cooling units inside of them are going to start experiencing problems. Fortunately, a new product has come onto the market called the JC Refrigeration refrigerator replacement that allows you to convert your Norcold absorption fridge into a Freon based system similar to those seen in residential refrigerators.

The patented Fridge Defend is designed to monitor the Dometic and Norcold fridges’ boiler temperatures to prevent thermal run away conditions that cause them to overheat and potentially fail. This is a feature that no other product currently on the market can offer, including Dometic’s HTS and a Norcold thermofuse. This is an important upgrade for your RV refrigerator!Nor cold cooling units

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