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Old 08-30-2010, 04:25 PM   #1
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Removing the refrigerator

I am back seeking advice, please.

Have any of you folks pulled out the original refrigerator and replaced it with an all electric one ? My RV is on a permanent site and I don't relish spending the $900 it takes for an RV refrigerator. I have gone online and found some good pictorials about how to do this particularly at :

RV Technician Magazine Fall 2005

I am wondering if there are things I need to know before I tackle this project that are particular to Sunline RV's or that any of you folks that have done this could share that would allow me to benefit from your wisdom?
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Old 08-30-2010, 06:46 PM   #2
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Several people here have replaced theirs with a home electric unit and are pleased with the results, not to mention the associated cost savings.
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Old 08-30-2010, 08:40 PM   #3
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Drake, I did this a very long time ago in another trailer. There's not much that is special about the job. Safely capping off the propane line is most important. There should be some 12 vdc wiring that can be cut back removed, capped off, whatever as long as it is safe and secure.

If the existing reefer uses 110 vdc, there should be an outlet somewhere near the unit that you can utilize for the new one. If it's hardwired, you will likely want to cut the wire at the reefer and install an outlet somewhere in the cabinet where the new one can be plugged into easily and safely.

The rest is just some woodworking to fit the new fridge in place of the old one.

There is nothing Sunline specific about this that I am aware of.

One thing to keep in mind is that cabinetry is screwed to the frame of the trailer from the outside prior to installation of the aluminum skin. So if you remove all the screws you can find and the thing still won't budge, it's a good bet there are screws through the studs into the cabinets instead of the other way around. If you need to remove a cabinet, you'll find this tip invaluable.

AFAIK, you probably won't need to totally remove a cabinet from the trailer for this mod. Most likely you will just need to adjust the opening and perhaps the base under the new fridge. Straightforward woodworking project for the most part.

Since you won't be moving the TT, you won't have to deal with inventing a way to secure the door while in motion. Come to think of it, you won't have to secure the fridge either; provide a level base and adequate opening in the cabinet. You'll want adequate ventilation behind the new fridge, but there is already ventilation top and rear of the compartment.
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Old 08-30-2010, 09:31 PM   #4
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Drake, I'd suggest for when you do take the old unit out, keep the front panel from the old refrigerator door. It's simple, like two screws and the top cap will come off, and then you can just slide the panel up. This way, you will have a matching panel, and if you can't use it for your electric model, then at least you'd have the panel if you decided for to get a RV model later on. Just stick it face down inside a storage cabinet somewhere, or next to the new refrigerator inside that cabinet.

Many people think that panel was a Dometic part, but it was indeed put in by Sunline. And there's no finding a new one these days...

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Old 08-31-2010, 05:41 AM   #5
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Thanks good folks for your quick and thoughtful responses.....I feel much more confident in tackling this job now.
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Old 08-31-2010, 07:21 AM   #6
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One more question if I may....when the refrigerator is taken out, does it slide out into the trailer in one piece, including the part that is accessible through the access door in the side of the trailer, or does the part that is accessible from outside of the trailer have to be removed separately from the actual refrigerator inside the trailer. If separately, are the only connections from the inside and the out, the 120 plug, the LP hose and the 12volt wires?
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Old 08-31-2010, 08:52 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drake View Post
One more question if I may....when the refrigerator is taken out, does it slide out into the trailer in one piece, including the part that is accessible through the access door in the side of the trailer, or does the part that is accessible from outside of the trailer have to be removed separately from the actual refrigerator inside the trailer. If separately, are the only connections from the inside and the out, the 120 plug, the LP hose and the 12volt wires?
It's all one piece which slides into the trailer. You should be able to disconnect all power connections from the outside hatch. There are probably a couple of screws there which will need to be removed before the fridge will slide out. Don't forget you'll need a #2 square head driver of some kind.

Capping off the propane will probably require a trip to the hardware store to get the right plug to fit into the compression connection. It is a standard brass fitting, just needs to have the right nose on it to mate into the compression area. If you can't find the right fitting, you could always slide under the trailer and disconnect the copper line where it connects to the main black iron pipe. Then you can use a standard plug or cap (1/2" if I remember correctly) and you'll need the right teflon tape for propane. Yellow is the one for that.
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Old 08-31-2010, 10:16 AM   #8
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Thank you so much, Steve!
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