Refrigerator issue – Ideas needed!

We have had some ongoing issues with our Domestic RM3962 in our 2012 31’ Classic. The last known time it was working was Christmas time and it worked fine.

We have been getting ready to full-time from Jan to May of this year so the trailer was going through some changes and the refrigerator was not turned on at that time. The trailer was hooked to shore power throughout and I have a Boondocker 4 stage converter/charger so being continually plugged in does not bother me. We have a 50amp shore power connection that I have a 90-degree angle plug and then a 50 to 30amp adapter for the power from the house.

When I was installing the Solar panels and controller we had to remove the refrigerator to gain access to the roof vent. We reinstalled the refrigerator and I turned it on. All parts seemed to be working. This was when it was on the street with a 50-15amp adapter.

Once we were 2 days away from launch I turned on the refrigerator but there was no response. No display, nothing. I checked all the power points on the lower control board and the seemed to be responsive. There is also an upper eyebrow control board but I opted to replace the bottom one. The switches ohmed out just fine.

I replaced the lower control board with no luck. I then ordered the upper control board and had it shipped to my mother’s house where we would be in a few days. We took off without a working refrigerator.

When the upper control board arrived it would not fit. One connector worked fine but the other one was a 4 prong connector but I need an edge connector. No go with that.

I read somewhere that there is a reset switch on the heater flue so I tried that and it seem to be tripped. I disconnected 12v for 30 sec and reattached it. I heard the propane start up (I disconnected the 120v)! The display was flashing 8’s. However it appeared to be working. I put a remote temperature sensor in there and it started dropping.

I let it go for 2 days before it seemed like it was doing OK. We loaded it with groceries and left my mom’s house. I still couldn’t control it at all. The buttons did nothing.

The refrigerator kept items cold for about 2 weeks then the other day it just went dead again. No life, nothing. We moved all our items to the parks’ community refrigerator and contacted a local RV service. They planned on getting there that afternoon, to our trailer which surprised me. The helpful lady on the phone asked me about the voltages I was getting and I told her, via my IPN-Pro, that it was 13.2v. My solar kicks in a .1v below the threshold for my converter so the converter has priority when we hare hooked up. I also read in some troubleshooting that some converters also throw in a bit of AC when charging the DC. New to me but the Dometic refrigerator could not handle more that 6V AC. I ready 0V AC on the DC. But it got me to thinking a bit.

Prior to our trip, I put in a Progressive Industries EMS-HW50C surge protector inline inside and I had heard it click on and off a few times while here. Most importantly if I would turn off the breaker for the converter/charger and then back on it would click (the surge protector). At this RV park, I only had my 30amp setup (90-degree connector and the 50-30). I started to wonder about that.

I got out my 50amp cable, plugged it directly to the trailer and the pedestal. Reset the refrigerator and it came right on! All functionality with buttons and everything. The RV repair guys (3 of them!) showed up shortly after this. I told them all that I had done, they wanted me to keep an eye on it and didn’t even charge us! Great people here in Texas.

It is now 5 days since then and all is good with the refrigerator.

In my pea brain thinking it appears some kind of short or bad connection occurred in the adapters I was using. We had a lot of rain at home and some large amounts here. There was a bit of water that came out from the adapters when I disconnected them! This short/bad connection caused the 120V AC to do odd things to the refrigerator or perhaps the charger/converter was sending bad 12V. Thoughts and ideas are welcome. Anyone with any ideas why some short like that might cause this issue?

I will be decommissioning my twist-lock 50A connectors and getting a SmartPlug setup but for now, we have a working refrigerator again!

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