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Norcold Problems Starting On Propane


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#1 QuiGonJohn

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Posted 13 August 2012 - 04:38 PM

I have a Norcold Model N611LT.

On our trip home yesterday we noticed the gas and on lights flashing about once every second. I read the bit of a manual I have and it said that indicates the burner did not light and the unit should have shut the gas valve. I thought it was going to be a big problem. When I got home and parked, I tried again and it lit. After 5 minutes or so I shut it off. Then later in the evening I tried again and it would not light, flashing lights. Then I shut it off, waited a minute or so, turned it on, and it did light. Again, after 5 minutes or so, I shut it off.

Anyone have an idea what may be going on with my unit? We will be dry camping, w/o electric in Sept. and need to be able to rely of the refrigerator.

Thanks!
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#2 wolfe10

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Posted 13 August 2012 - 04:53 PM

Pull out your refrigerator owners manual and to the burner area tuneup. It is recommended preventive maintenance once a year.

No special tools and no parts are needed.

Issues that could cause this that are addressed in the tuneup are:

Debris or rust in the burner tube.
Improper ignitor gap.
Debris or rust between ignitor and ground.
Dirty propane jet causing too small a flame to trigger the thermocouple.

Only after doing each step in your book should you consider "throwing parts at it".

Brett
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#3 JFellerer

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Posted 13 August 2012 - 05:00 PM

My Norcold 841 would light and then go out after a couple minutes, I called the local Ford tech and he came out and cleaned the rust particles from the burner and it worked fine. However we were out this weekend and it started doing the same thing. Vacummed more out of the burner chamber and it seems to work okay again. Would have saved $75. had I cleaned it first. Live and learn.
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#4 QuiGonJohn

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Posted 13 August 2012 - 05:26 PM

Hi Brett, the manual I have, (which is a section in a large manual covering most of the RV systems), mentions the PM you talk about, they tell you to do a list of things, but no instructions on how to do them or good diagrams on where to find the given parts. In fact, they say to have a dealer or Norcold Service Center do it.
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#5 desertdeals69

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Posted 14 August 2012 - 10:51 AM

You might verify that you have the correct lp pressure. It should be 11 inches of water column or about 1/4 lb. We usually test at the stove by taking one burner off and hooking a manometer or pressure gauge to it.
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#6 QuiGonJohn

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Posted 14 August 2012 - 04:21 PM

Hmm, how do I do that? Is there a tester I need to get, just for LP gas? Thing is, my Tank Levels Indicator still says I have 2/3 of a tank of LP. Same as when I bought the RV in April. We only have been out over weekends and this was our 4th camping trip.
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#7 hermanmullins

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Posted 14 August 2012 - 04:48 PM

QuiGonJohn,
Even though your tank says it is 2/3rds full it may no bet. A quick check would be to light your Range. If it lights you have Propane, If not you may just be out of gas.

Just a thought.

Herman
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#8 QuiGonJohn

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 05:44 AM

Hi Herman,
That was one of the first things I did, after the first couple relight attempts, (on the highway) did not work. And yes, I have propane as the stove lit fine.

The burner tube, propane jet and ignitor, (that I need to clean), would these be under the refrigerator or in the back access panel area. I already looked in the back, but could not make them out. However, there was at least 1 metal cover inside the back access panel area that could be removed, would they be under that?
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#9 wolfe10

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 06:20 AM

Outside access area. At the bottom of the flue (chimney).
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#10 jc21014

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 07:02 AM

Hmm, how do I do that? Is there a tester I need to get, just for LP gas? Thing is, my Tank Levels Indicator still says I have 2/3 of a tank of LP. Same as when I bought the RV in April. We only have been out over weekends and this was our 4th camping trip.



Here's a link that might be usefull.
http://www.rverscorn.../manometer.html
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#11 wolfe10

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 01:24 PM

Suggest you do/have done the burner area tune-up. If still an issue, check gas pressure with a manometer. BTW, you can easily build a manometer for under $5.
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#12 QuiGonJohn

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 01:49 PM

Will try the burner cleanup. I guess from what you have said, it is probably under that metal cover w/screws, inside the rear panel access area.

What do you recommend to clean it with, wipe with a cloth and spray with compressed air, or something else.
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#13 DickandLois

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 04:31 PM

At Times a little dirt can build up in the orifice and that can restrict the flow of gas.
One can use a number drill to clean it out> BUT DO NOT increase the hole size !!!!
Use a smaller drill with your fingers or a pin vice to hold the drill bit and very carefully run it in and out about 3 times. Blow out any loose material with compressed air. Reassemble.
Then set up the air mixture for the proper flame.

Rich.
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#14 wolfe10

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 05:12 PM

In addition to verifying that the gas jet orifice is clean, you will need to clean the burner tube (remove and clean) and check ignitor gap.
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#15 QuiGonJohn

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 02:00 PM

I found it, it was under the metal cover at the bottom of the chimney flue, (that is why I could not see anything when I first looked in the rear access panel. I think I got it cleaned out good and when I tested it, it lit right away and I kept it lit for a couple minutes, just fine. Thanks for all the help.
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#16 wolfe10

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 02:41 PM

Good job.

You are welcome.
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#17 patsy613

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 05:59 PM

I have a 400 norcold, which was 11/2 yrs old when I bought my 1990 classic toy RV. The refrigerator gave me troubles from the start and 3 dealers later and 1 1/2 yrs later the selector switch was changed and Norcold covered it.

Now I am having problems again. It lites now after after paying someone local to clean the burner. He did not check the gap, the pressures or the nozzle. When I turn down the thermostat to a lower # it goes out every time. The refrigerator works OK on electric. Norcold is worthless to call.

How do I check the pressures? The gauge in access panel reads 7. Thank you.
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#18 patsy613

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 06:31 PM

I have a 2006 Norcold 400 2 way. in past lots of problems, new selector switch solved it.

Now having problems again. works OK electric, but on LP it goes off when I turn down the right hand thermostat to a lower setting. When I light it it sounds like a blow torch and will stay on at high #'s. but gobbles gas and freezes everything. Then goes off when turned down. Already had burner cleaned of rust. That is all he did. It would not lite before that.

Any suggestions?
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#19 DickandLois

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 10:42 PM

Patsy,

The burner should light to heat the ammonia tank. Once it is active and the set temperature inside the refrigerator is reached, the flame should go out and relight when the thermostat calls for cooling.

Have you cleaned all the board(s) contacts? use an eraser to clean the contacts. The other item(s) that comes to mind is the temperature control board or a thermocouple issue.
Edit 11:18 PM
Your model has a Thermocouple interrupter on the gas valve, is should turn off the gas supply when the set temperature is reached inside the refrigerator. This item my be the problem, the thermocouple inside the fridge directly controls this valve !!!!

I will review some of my notes to see what I'm overlooking.

Rich.
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#20 patsy613

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 12:18 PM

HI, the first round of problems included replacing the gas safety value. but that was not the issue as the selector switch proved to be the problem.

No, I have not cleaned the board. Do I just snap the cover off to get to the controls?

I did not realize that the flame could go off and on. I assume the unit is working when the indicator panel is in the green area. Also, if I leave the thermostat # in a hi position, it will freeze everything and does not go out.

Waiting to hear more.
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