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Replacing Norcold 1210 with Residential Refrigerator


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#1 PrairieDog1951

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 02:15 PM

We are new to Motorhomes (1 year this month). Had 5th Wheels and had Norcold frig in them with no problem but lots with the 1210. We are looking into replacing the Norcold with a residential but don't know what will work and I have heard of some brands that will work in the cutout space used with the Norcold. Does anyone have a brand or type that they have replaced the 1210 with?

We have a 2008 Damon Essence (bought used last year with 9,000 miles so we did well with that) and not happy with the Norcold and could use help, advice,etc. from anyone who has gone through this.

I have looked through the forum and it is great!!

Appreciate any help we can get.
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#2 wolfe10

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 02:35 PM

PrarieDog1951,

Can't help with the selection of a particular residential refrigerator, but be sure your electrical system is up to the task, particularly if you camp without electricity.

Dry camping will require a reasonably substantial house battery bank and a quality inverter (pure sine wave best).
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#3 PrairieDog1951

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 04:06 PM

Wolfe10,

99.9% of the time we do not dry camp and have the generator if we ever do and I am making sure the inverter is a pure sine wave, so I have gotten the electrical part figured out but trying to find out if one will fit is the issue and what brand anyone might know will handle the "jostling" in the MH.
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#4 kingfr

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 09:49 PM

Generally a 21.7 CF Whirlpool will replace a Norcold 1210 with not many cabinet mods, at least that was the case in my coach!
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#5 TBUTLER

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 10:19 PM

I posted an article about 18 months ago which detailed our experience replacing our Norcold 1200. Replacing a Norcold Refrigerator describes the process and has photographs to illustrate that process. I'm not sure how the size of a Norcold 1200 relates to a Norcold 1210 but if the sizes are similar, I have cited the model refrigerator that we now have. I am pleased to say that we have the same battery bank we had before we replaced the refrigerator and we do boondock. We have had no problem going overnight without the generator. Likewise when we drive during the day, not using the generator we also find no problem with our 4 x 6 volt battery bank. Most important, we have a dependable refrigerator and I'm not worried about the hazard of the old 1200.
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#6 bizsmith@yahoo.com

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Posted 31 August 2012 - 06:15 AM

Be sure the frig you choose will run OK on the modified aquare wave of the inverter. The Samsung French door model fits very nicely in the 1210 space. We have had one since March and it is doing nicely so far. Other posters report the same. Look in all the 1210 problem categories.
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#7 Jaxon

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 09:46 AM

Have heard several people changing to the Samsung both with Foretravels and Country Coaches - much better refrigeration. Keeps contents cold while on the road due to superior insulation. Main benefit is no need to worry about the potential fire hazard and the frequent recall of recalls Norcold’s famous for. Pay attention to Brett’s post.
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#8 titanbus

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 09:47 AM

We did a lot of research, measuring in Lowe's, Home Depot, etc., and opted for the Samsung 19.7 cuft French Door/Bottom freezer unit. (About $950). Samsung also makes the unit in a 21.7 cuft model, that fits the same hole but is 4 inches deeper. We went smaller because it would pass thru our emergency window without removing the window, barely went thru but worked out fine, and still has 50% more space than the Norcold.

This is a low amperage compressor, has worked well on the inverter, a square wave 2000 watt Dimensions original issue on our 2007 Allegro Bus. I had previously replaced the house batteries with 4 12v AGM Lifelines so I have about 420 Amp-hrs there. We do not dry camp, except for an occasional overnite, and could always run the generator if necessary.

The Norcold was junk, and a fire hazard. We have about 8 months and 18,000 miles on the Samsung. It is great to wake up, open the door and see "36 deg." in there!
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#9 TonyFord

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 11:11 AM

We are in the process of removing our Dometic sidewise fridge for a SamsungNDA1402WD. The task will begin tomorrow when the fridge is delivered. Measure once, twice or ten times like I did. The width of this new fridge is perfect as is the depth for our application. The cabinet will have to be elongated a few inches cause the new unit is taller.

Although we have had absolutely no problem with the Dometic, the Norcold stories are legendary. We are opting to change to this fridge for some very simple reasons. First the Samsung simply has much, much more space than our Dometic. The new fridge is a 20 cubic foot french door model with bottom freezer. We ordered it in black to match our other appliances. This model we chose has an internal ice maker. No water or Ice to the door. For us, this was the best choice cause as we are on the go, we tend to use bottled water and can't remember the last time we used the door mounted water dispenser. We are also confident that the residential fridge will make much more ice than did the Dometic. It's important to keep up with cocktail hour.

Now as far as energy use...the Samsung will use about 75% less electrical energy than does the Dometic. We are lucky that our 08 American Eagle has a high capacity pure sine wave inverter. The new fridge will be plugged into the inverter supplied outlet. (we have two outlets to the rear of the Dometic). We do not dry camp very often, however when researching the switch and consulting our American Coach Owners Yahoo group, we found that NO ADDITIONAL BATTERIES ARE NEEDED. We should expect (with actual testing from another AC owner) 12 hours of operation if dry. Plenty of time to run the generator a couple of hours a day if needed. Anyway I hope this helps.
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#10 Skiput

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 01:24 PM

We had our Norcold replaced 18 months ago in Red Bay in our 2007 Phaeton. There were two models from Whirlpool that could be used depending on whether the frig was on the slide or on the wall.

It works perfectly, we do not dry camp and it will hold the cold while we drive. I have installed a pure sine wave inverter with two batteries for the future.

For us it was a good move.
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#11 swestrup

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 06:13 AM

Does anyone know a place to have household refrigerator installed in the Jacksonville, FL to Charleston,SC area? I am having similar issues with the No®cold. Thanks,
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#12 hermanmullins

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 06:40 AM

Just an idea. Has anyone thought of adding a second Inverter and Batteries just for the household fridge? I know it would be expensive but a smaller inverter/charger might help while on the road and boondocking.

Just a thought.

Herman
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#13 bizsmith@yahoo.com

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 05:22 PM

Swestrup - we had the work done at Alliance Coach in Wildwood, FL. They mostly use the Samsung French door and always have them in stock. We were mostly satisfied but no matter where you go they will never do it as fast as you would like. They have a "campground" where you can stay but be sure to make your appointment so you get a place.
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#14 swestrup

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 10:51 AM

Thanks, bizsmith!

We are scheduled for next week.

They are in stock 2 max 3 days for install.
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#15 jlousteau

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Posted 28 September 2012 - 03:21 PM

Glad to hear of your success with replacing the Norcold 1210. We too have an ongoing saga of dissatifaction with ours. The history is one of having Allegro in Red Bay check and reset the doors and gasket seals as the first attempt to get the fridge to cool down. No luck. In box circulating fan also not useful. We then experienced an unusual ratcheting sound coming from the a component in the void area that has the cooling unit (the space between the MH side wall and the actual fridge insulated wall. I cell phone videoed it, but had no one interested in seeing it. I had the cooling unit replaced in toto.

The end result-one extremely unhappy wife and a Norcold 1210 that gets down to about 45 degrees F on a good day. BTW the MH is a 2007 Allegro Bus 40'QDP. My wife wants to replace the ***n thing with a residential unit, preferable frost free, and thru the door water & ice if possible. I also have to consider the door hinge side factor. Or as the Norcold has, double swing doors.

If you have any info on possible replacement units that might fit, physically as well as financially, we'd appreciate it.
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#16 elmercrochet

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 10:38 PM

My wife and I own a 2004 Holiday Rambler 40 foot Endeavor. With my son's help, I have removed the Norcold 1200LR through the front door of the motor home. I plan to purchase a Samsung RF197 residential fridge to replace the Norcold. Size wise, it is a good fit except for the height. To compensate for the extra height, I removed the propane furnace that was sitting under the Norcold. After capping off the gas line, moving the icemaker water line, and slightly modifying the refrigerator cabinet, I am ready to have the Samsung unit delivered. I have two questions: 1. How does one secure the residential refrigerator in place so there is no shifting movement while on the road? 2. How does one secure the refrigerator and freezer doors to keep them shut while on the road?
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#17 DickandLois

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 06:16 PM

Elmer,

Think you might have a raised pedestal that the fridge sets on, this allows space for the water and heat runs. One can remove the leveling pads if the floor is level in relation to the floor. You the can place screws through the holes used for the levelers to fasten it to the top of the pedestal. Tight spot so a right angle Philips screw driver is required (Ratcheting screw driver) works the best. Place washers under the screw heads to cover the hole and allow you to use a smaller screw size. Too long of a screw and it can cause damage to the items under the pedestal.

You can use Velcro loop(s) around the handles to keep the doors closed should things shift and push on the doors. Some bottom freezers have a lock, requiring you to lift up and pull out to open it. How does yours work?

You might want to do some changes to the AC wiring to the outlet for the fridge so it can run off the inverter. This would require information on just how your coach circuits are wired.

Rich.
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#18 wigginsjsr

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 01:58 PM

Our 2011 Monaco Knight came with a Frigidaire Model FGHC2335LE residential refrigerator. It is so much better than the Norcold we had in our last coach. Keeps constant temperature, ice maker, thru the door ice and water. 22.6 Cu. Ft. with touch controls. I suspect it fit in the same size hole as the standard Norcold. Of course, inverter and house batteries are sized for the job, along with AGS.
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