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Old 08-26-2017, 05:34 PM   #1
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Fridge leveling question

I have read about the importance of the fridge being level when operating and my Norcold Owner's Manual says it should be within 3 degrees side-to-side and 6 degrees front-to-back of level. My driveway is slightly inclined. Does anyone know of a reliable way to determine what degree of incline my driveway might be? When I get ready for a trip and want to turn the fridge on several hours before leaving I don't want to damage it. First trip out (before I was aware of this warning), I turned the fridge on the night before we left and it had been on about 12-13 hours before we left and was very cold and worked fine. I tried placing a carpenter's level down on the driveway and the bubble was outside the center section with the edge of the bubble just touching the lines of the level section. My concern is the side-to-side restriction because that is the part that would be inclined with the motorhome sitting in my driveway.
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Old 08-26-2017, 06:00 PM   #2
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Lay a level in the bottom of the freezer, that will tell you how level the fridge is, half a bubble off is fine. If you don't have jacks you can use 2x6 or regular leveling blocks which you might need when camping. My driveway is a little off, I use the jacks when I park there.
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Old 08-26-2017, 06:20 PM   #3
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My last RV (2000) the fridge worked fine in my driveway at the time... The current one (2014) wouldn't work in the same driveway without leveling...

3 degrees isn't much - and the angle of driveway may not be the same as the angle of the fridge (some rigs sit slightly nose down already).
Use a protractor with the level to measure the angle if you want to... but base it on the floor of the RV or floor/rack in the fridge rather than the driveway.

If it worked already in your driveway it may be fine - but safest and for longest life of the fridge - drop the jacks or otherwise level.
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Old 08-26-2017, 06:27 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by wayneroe View Post
First trip out (before I was aware of this warning), I turned the fridge on the night before we left and it had been on about 12-13 hours before we left and was very cold and worked fine.
Then I wouldn't worry about it. I've been on some serious inclines over the years with different rigs and NEVER had an issue with the fridge.
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Old 08-26-2017, 07:22 PM   #5
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When I put the level down in the driveway, it was a full bubble off. I do have auto levelers. Hadn't been using them when it was just parked in the driveway. Just to be safe, when I get it from the storage facility a day or two before leaving on a trip, I'll level it when I get ready to turn the fridge on to cool it down.

Appreciate all your responses.
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Old 08-26-2017, 09:18 PM   #6
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I actually have a small bullseye level that I put in the fridge to make sure.

It shows 360 level and I feel better than trying to use front to back or side to side.
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Old 08-26-2017, 09:48 PM   #7
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Interesting. You go up and down hills and the refer still works. The crown in the road puts you off side to side, the refer still works.
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Old 08-26-2017, 10:40 PM   #8
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Interesting. You go up and down hills and the refer still works. The crown in the road puts you off side to side, the refer still works.
Yes because the RV is bouncing around the road: It doesn't stay off to the side, it doesn't stay tilted due to the hills--its moving.
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Old 08-26-2017, 10:43 PM   #9
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I guess that they work best when level; but not being level isn't exactly like driving a stake through their hearts!

Our rig will have the automatic leveling system in it. While almost picking it up today, they showed us how it worked: VERY impressive!
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Old 08-26-2017, 10:46 PM   #10
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I guess that they work best when level; but not being level isn't exactly like driving a stake through their hearts!
Actually: Yes, if the refer is out of level enough it can pretty much destroy itself.

I know when ours is out by about 3" or so the refer actually warms instead of cools.
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Old 08-26-2017, 11:13 PM   #11
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Actually: Yes, if the refer is out of level enough it can pretty much destroy itself.

I know when ours is out by about 3" or so the refer actually warms instead of cools.

NOTE TO SELF: When or if I end up tipping the rig over into a ditch: turn off the refrigerator, before checking on the Missus...
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Old 08-27-2017, 08:07 PM   #12
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NOTE TO SELF: When or if I end up tipping the rig over into a ditch: turn off the refrigerator, before checking on the Missus...
Well - think I would check on the Missus first... but turning off the propane would likely be second (maybe 3rd as we have a 4 legged critter on board too...)
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Old 08-27-2017, 10:07 PM   #13
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Okay... how about
1. turn off the propane
2. Check on the pooch
3. Turn off the Fridge
4. Try to quiet the Missus down...
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Old 08-27-2017, 10:22 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Bob Denman View Post
Okay... how about
1. turn off the propane
2. Check on the pooch
3. Turn off the Fridge
4. Try to quiet the Missus down...


How about just grab a lawn chair and set back a ways and watch it go. It's totaled anyway, as far as the wife you tell her she has to learn to do things on her own. ( be prepared to eat fast food and sleep on the sofa for two weeks minimum.).
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Old 08-28-2017, 12:01 PM   #15
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You and I must have gone to different High Schools together!
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Old 08-28-2017, 02:22 PM   #16
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If you have a smartphone, there are tons of "bubble level" apps that will tell you the angle
Just calibrate by taking a reading, then flip the phone 180 degrees and measure again. If the measurements don't agree then the app needs calibrating to re-zero.

regarding running the fridge off level
TONS of good info on that subject here
https://www.arprv.com/
many pages or write ups and even several videos where he shows the boiler temperatures when sitting at angle.
I'm not affiliated with them in any way....just sleep a bit better with the thing installed.
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