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Old 11-19-2018, 06:04 AM   #1
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Residential refrigerator vibration failure?

Is there any issues with residential refrigerator failures related to the vibration, shaking they receive while driving a Class A RV?

I am asking because I just installed a French door GE and I've got it set in the cabinet and have some secure precautions so it won't fall out. It has tabs on the bottom so it won't slide out from the bottom, an "L" bracket screwed to the back bottom. Yesterday i placed some firm foam at each side to prevent the front to back movement (actually side to side of refrigerator but front to back of the coach)so movement is almost non existent. I also placed a bit of foam across the front top at the hinges to help front to back movement and tipping. It can jiggle a little bit, probably maybe a quarter inch play at most.

This is about all I can do as this cavity wasn't made for this refrigerator, the Norcold was mounted solid, this one kinds sits in there and it's not possible to bolt it down solid.

If it matters I do not plan to run the compressor while traveling, only when stopped either for the night or for a break at a rest stop, I can fire up the generator and cool it back off.

I am probably overthinking this but just how secure, solid do they need to be?

I love the larger capacity and the elimination of the headache's the Norcold gave us. It's a 2016 and it failed twice, last time was the cooling unit.

Thanks!
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Old 11-19-2018, 08:30 AM   #2
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I’ve never seen anyone mention vibration problems with their residential fridge. We run ours all the time when driving and have had no issues.

I have see posts about failures in fridges run on MSW inverters rather than PSW inverters. But that’s about all.
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Old 11-19-2018, 10:26 AM   #3
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Knowing how the compressors are mounted, many have some small movement items built in to avoid bending/breaking the refrigerant lines as the compressor moves when starting but that is not something that we would want to change, even if we could. No true guarantees but I would guess that there would not be any terribly unusual movement in any of the frig components that would make it fail sooner.
If it has an auto defrost system, you might want to be aware of where that water goes and empty the tray, etc. before moving down the road. Some will have a tray and fan system to dry it but we might see enough to slosh out??? Maybe that is overworking the worry factor but something I might look over!
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Old 11-19-2018, 10:50 AM   #4
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Thanks

Quote:
Originally Posted by creativepart View Post
Iíve never seen anyone mention vibration problems with their residential fridge. We run ours all the time when driving and have had no issues.

I have see posts about failures in fridges run on MSW inverters rather than PSW inverters. But thatís about all.
I expected that a MSW inverter would stress the compressor, which is the one I have but for now I don't think I need to run it off an inverter. If in the future I do, I planned to get a PSW Xantrex and have it wired to the refrigerator. I kinda doubt I will need it though. I just didn't know about how firmly they need to be mounted, I think I may just fine. Thanks for the replies.
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Old 11-19-2018, 10:51 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morich View Post
Knowing how the compressors are mounted, many have some small movement items built in to avoid bending/breaking the refrigerant lines as the compressor moves when starting but that is not something that we would want to change, even if we could. No true guarantees but I would guess that there would not be any terribly unusual movement in any of the frig components that would make it fail sooner.
If it has an auto defrost system, you might want to be aware of where that water goes and empty the tray, etc. before moving down the road. Some will have a tray and fan system to dry it but we might see enough to slosh out??? Maybe that is overworking the worry factor but something I might look over!
Thank you for the feedback and answer.
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Old 12-05-2018, 05:58 PM   #6
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Top location tie to frame of wall

I'm a bit off the vibration subject but wanted to give you a heads up on our experience.

We were on our second trip with our new 2016 rig which has a Whirlpool French door fridge. As I rounded a corner off an interstate ramp we heard this huge crash , looked back and observed that our fridge had tipped over out of its slot and fell across the rig crashing into the microwave and ripping out the wood trim it was encased in. The fridge was ruined as was the microwave and fridge.

The fridge was speced to be installed with toe tie downs in the front at the base which was done properly. However it was also to be strapped from the top hinge bolts with a steel strap that ran from the top hinge bolts back and bolted to frame members in the wall at the rear of the fridge. During the factory installation they missed the frame member tie to the wall, thus there was no anchor for the upper part of the fridge. The fridge could not stand the forces of a normal 90 degree turn and it ripped out and fell.

The repair was to properly anchor the new fridge as specified at its highest possible point to the wall as well as the low point "toes" in the front. (WBGO shows this strap in its drawings for our model)

It may be in your best interest to make sure the appliance is strapped into the wall frame at the highest point to assure it does not tip while the rig is in motion. Just passing our experience along and hope it helps. You will love having a french door residential fridge!!

Joe
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Old 12-05-2018, 06:03 PM   #7
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Ouch. No fun. I haven't official checked ours... I've tugged on it hard. And driven with it for 16,000 miles. No movement yet. We've only had a door fly open once when crossing a tall speed bump at a sharpe angle in a RV Park entrance causing sever rocking. That same occurrence caused 2 or 3 drawers and a cabinet to fly open, too.
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Old 12-05-2018, 06:06 PM   #8
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Has anyone had or heard of a residential fridge failing due to vibration? I'd like to know. I searched IRV2 and didn't find any such posts. I only found folks that thought it could be a problem.
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Old 12-05-2018, 06:18 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by creativepart View Post
Ouch. No fun. I haven't official checked ours... I've tugged on it hard. And driven with it for 16,000 miles. No movement yet. We've only had a door fly open once when crossing a tall speed bump at a sharpe angle in a RV Park entrance causing sever rocking. That same occurrence caused 2 or 3 drawers and a cabinet to fly open, too.
I'd bet (but can't guarantee) your OK of you've ever come off an exit ramp and made a turn that would stress the fridge top forward. Its pretty hard to verify unless you remove the top brow trim panel. Then you'd have to grab the top of the fridge and give it a couple of good yanks to see if the straps are loose and if it tips. Bottom probably won't move due to the screwed in toes.

The brow panel trim on the 38Q is just stapled in at the sides and was easy to get out of the way and reinstall.
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Old 12-05-2018, 06:31 PM   #10
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Securing Refrigerator

I had the same worry about the frig being "loose" and coming out. I replaced my Norcold 4 door with a residential which occupied less space than the original . To help secure it, I went through the outside access door to the refrigerator and ran a couple of lag bolts down through the back floor frame of the frig into the wood flooring under the frig. Also at the top front, I put a piece of wood tight against the top of the frig. This makes the frig very secure in its place with no movement at all.
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Old 12-05-2018, 08:27 PM   #11
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Thanks for the heads up. I have the bottom so it won't slide out and the top has enough compression against the tops of the door hinges so it can't wiggle out. There is just no way to strap the top, I have no access to it or anything to attach it to. There is a top trim piece that has 3 long screws with washers on each side to the top of the refrigerator cavity attached to the frame work and it is also siliconed down as well. See pictures. It's the best I can do, there is a dense foam pad pressing down on the hinge covers on each side to add friction.
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Old 12-05-2018, 08:30 PM   #12
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This shows how that top trim covers the top. I don't think it can tip too far forward before the back top would hit against the top of the cavity roof, it has to cme straight out from the bottom, and that is secured. I will be mindful when taking left turns for sure!
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Old 12-05-2018, 08:36 PM   #13
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These steel tabs are screwed into the metal frame of the slide room floor in 3 locations across the bottom to keep the bottom from sliding out, there is also some "L" brackets mounted in the back to the wood floor. I can grab the handles and pull it it won't even wiggle now.
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Old 12-05-2018, 11:43 PM   #14
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Some of the apparent factory assembly issues in this thread and others leads me to think that Winnebago might want to re-evaluate its quality control procedures. Am I being too harsh here?
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