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Old 09-19-2009, 10:39 AM   #1
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Norcold LRIM Fridge Recall - Removal Problems

I took my 2002 Ultimate Advantage to have the fridge recall done on my 4 door fridge the simple recall has turned into a significant repair. The 1 /1/2 hr job has been in for 2 days and the repair will take at least 7 hrs. The Dealer has been in contact with Norcold and they are reluctantly agreeing to the extra work. Apparantly the access door is too small to slide the chimney into place so the fridge has to be pulled out from the inside. Winnebago sits the fridge on what appears to be a section of wall and has slid the fridge into place on a bed of silicone. The repairing dealer cannot get access to cut out the silicone from the back and has been in contact with Winnebago. The oak wood frame facia is screwed from the back and has to come out to get access to the bed of silicone. The fridge need to be pried away from the wall and this is immpossible to do without damaging the wood. Winnebago has told the dealer they will not supply the replacement wood as I am the 2nd owner past (6 yrs) and the age of the coach. What a crock!!! I have a cabinet maker making a new oak facia and I will be taking this up with Winnebago Customer Service and Norcold on Monday. Norcold says they will do the recall but cannot be responsible for Winnebago installation poor access door other than paying for the reasonable additional hours to do the work.

I just wonder how necessary this recall is I mean can you keep an eye on it. Apparantly if the tubes crack and the gas leaks there is a small chance the pilot light could cause a fire. Obviously the fridge would then have to come out again to be repaired!! Too late for mine the moulding are already damaged.
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Old 09-19-2009, 10:48 AM   #2
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Steve,

Mine was already leaking ammonia, and luckily I did not have a fire. Norcold paid to replace the cooling unit and install the recall kit. I believe the repair center had to remove my fridge, too, but I guess access to mine was more straightforward than yours. In my case, Norcold seemed to be OK to work with. My repair center handled all contact with them except for when I went to their website to register for the recall. They are even sending a $50 gas card (We'll see if that ever comes!!).

I think I'd go ahead and have the recall done. If you have a fire, you'll be repairing or replacing more than just your fridge. If you don't have it done, make sure your smoke detectors are working!! Just my opinion.
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Old 09-19-2009, 10:58 AM   #3
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Thanks for your comments. I had contacted Norcold and they advised my fridge was included in the recall. I had the parts orderd for the recall 2 months ago but got the Winnebago recall notice a couple of days ago after I already had the appointment and the dealer the parts. How do I get the $50 (LOL) I had to drive the coach 90 miles to the dealer, not to mention another 2/3 round trips or the woodwork. Where did you register the recall
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Old 09-19-2009, 11:04 AM   #4
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I just went to the Norcold website right after I got the letter. There is a link where you can check the status. I guess you know that you're affected already since you've got the parts on order. Here is the link just in case. HOME (Select Customer Support, then Recall Info).

I don't remember how I got to the $50 gas card. It might have been on this website.

Wish I could remember better.
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Old 09-19-2009, 11:28 AM   #5
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Thanks! I have the same memory issues but thats why I do not have a Job and RV all over the place - LOL
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Old 09-19-2009, 11:42 PM   #6
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The fridge in my Ultimate was also a difficult job. The first guy (mobile tech) who tried gave up. The second place, an RV dealership in Spokane WA, got the job done in about 4 hours. They did have to totally remove the fridge. The folks working on yours need to know that in addition to the screws under the top and bottom trim inside the coach, and in addition to the four bolts accessible through the access door (two on each side), there are ALSO two or more screws accessible through the roof after the vent cap is removed!!! And yes, mine was also stuck in with silicone. They managed to get it loose w/o causing any damage to the wood trim with one guy pushing from the outside one guy pulling from the inside. They also called Norcold and got allowance for more labor time.

I got my letter w/offer of $50 gas card after I had the recall completed ...I presume they sent it based on the info sheet that comes with the repair kit. The repair place has to complete it and submit it to get their payment. The letter I finally got from Winnebago telling me of the recall after I had already had it done said the following along with other info about the possibility of the cooling unit cracking & leaking ... "...If a leak occurs ... hydrogen gas may be expelled and can be ignited." THAT GOT MY ATTENTION!!! Hydrogen gas is very flammable!!! In the past two weeks I have read of two Norcold refrigerator fires on coaches with refrigerators that are not yet part of the recall ...one had major damage and the other was totaled. I definitely would get the recall done.
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Old 09-20-2009, 07:23 AM   #7
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If you think the recall isn't really needed take a look at my friends web site at www.bob-marie.com and see the results of the possible fire. What can happen when parked and hooked up to shore power is the coolant leak can short out a heating element while the frig is on AC blowing the AC fuse, the unit automaticly switches to propane and the flame ignites the coolant. To prevent this, when parked and on shore power swiitch the frig from automatic to AC, this will prevent the auto switch to propane and the probable iginition of coolant.

My frig cooling unit failed, along with a heating element, and the main board so I replaced my unit with their new model the 1210 prior to the recall. Sorry I did, after installing the unit and filling out the warranty card I found that the Norcold is under warranty for one year. I checked and found that Dometic frig's are under warranty for three years.
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Old 09-29-2009, 09:51 AM   #8
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Still waiting to get my coach back. New mouldings and a new motherboard that somehow was broken upon removal. Fridge installed and works fine on propane but will not work on A/C. The dealer says both 110V elements are burned out. Co oincidence? As far as I know the A/C was working when we returned last spring from the USA. Any one have any idea of how these work, do they have to take the fridge out again to remove.?
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Old 09-29-2009, 10:16 AM   #9
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Hello Steve,
Sorry to hear of your troubles in getting the recall done. We had removed our refer to replace the heaters (2 of them) prior to hearing of the recall. OUrs too was sealed on the bottom with a silicone material that prevented me from sliding it out of it's position. I used a 2 x 4 through the outside access door to pry it loose. I had to use a vertical 2 x 4 against the vertical edge of the access door to prevent damage to the outer wall. I was pretty easy after that silicone bond was broken.
The heater replacement was pretty easy with the refer removed from the wall. We also replaced the insulation around the flue and resealed the refer outer skin using silver foil refer tape.
When they removed the refer for the recall (last week) they were done in about an hour. Much easier to remove the 2nd time.
The new electric heaters make the refer cool better when on AC.
On the $50........ I sent a copy of the recall repair order to Norcold. Call 800-767-9101 to get the address to send it to.
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Old 09-29-2009, 01:49 PM   #10
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Unhappy

Wow.....I'm either really lucky or really screwed. I haven't had any issues with the recall on my frig. I made the appointment. Took it in. They called me 5 hours later and said it was done.

Looked at the back of the frig through the outside access panel and saw a shiney new modification had been added to my flue with wires going to a connection on the back.

Been on 2 trips since then on propane both trips. No issues. Frig works just like it did before. Well actually better since I replaced the icemaker too. But temp wise, just the same.

Really sorry to hear about all the issues you guys have had. My big question now is....do I want to know what they did or just let the sleeping dog lie?
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Old 09-29-2009, 07:30 PM   #11
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Just let those dogs lie, Jim.
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Old 10-02-2009, 08:26 AM   #12
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Got the M/H back everything working, I quess I was lucky it looks like the A/C elements had just gone and the pipe insulation was burned. Dealer charged me nothing and said they would take up everything with Norcold and would let me know. Heading to Arizona in 2 weeks 30 F here this morninng.
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Old 10-02-2009, 01:51 PM   #13
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As Jim reads about trips to Arizona and Florida in time for winter, he can be heard to say "I can't wait till I'm retired" over and over and over and over and over and over again.
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Old 10-02-2009, 04:00 PM   #14
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Hi Steve,

Glad you got it back and everything's in order. Have a great winter trip.
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