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Old 08-17-2017, 06:08 PM   #21
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Model: Challenger 37TB
State: Pennsylvania
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THOR #4486
Laco, your exactly right. Residential refrigerators are not designed for constant earthquake abuse. The Whirlpool tech also confirmed that when he came to fix my unit. Another kudo's to Thor for a bad design/decision.

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Old 06-16-2019, 02:29 AM   #22
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THOR #15665
I realize this is an old thread, however, while searching for help with my issue, I came across this thread, so I wanted to add my solution. I have a 2016 Thor 31W RV with the Whirlpool Residential fridge that I bought new. Mine has a full driver’s side slide out. A dinette is behind the driver’s seat, and a fold down sofa is behind the passenger seat. It’s on an E450 chassis with the V10. Like the others, this year my fridge was barely cooling to 40 degrees and wouldn’t freeze ice. My RV has only been used 2 seasons and has 18,000 miles on it. I am VERY disappointed in my RV overall. So far I have had to replace the leveler pump motor, generator main control board, coach and truck batteries, generator transfer switch (which almost burned the RV down), 3 tires because of bad sidewalls, front TV bad LCD, along with numerous falling moldings, roof leaks, leaking shower, and a long list of other little things that are just bad design/quality/build.
It was clear from the beginning that the fridge would not fit through the side door. Mine measured 25 ” front to back, 28” wide, and about 65” tall, make sure yours is the same. The 25 ” is the most important measurement. That’s with all doors, brackets, and shelves removed. I saw the suggested posts about removing the passenger side window and frame, or removing the windshield. I did not like either of those options. The windshield, I would have to have a company come and do. The side window I would risk a leak putting it back in. I took some measurements and determined that it will fit out the passenger door of the cab. Below are the steps, tools, and process I used. It took the better part of the day with lots of trial and error, hopefully this guide will help you do it faster. I also include the details about the new fridge I bought, which is slightly smaller than the Whirlpool, but has the same interior space. I also highlight the areas that I did some cosmetic damage to my RV in the hopes you can avoid it.
1) Put the slide all the way out
2) Remove the existing fridge. Brackets on the bottom and the top. Remove the drawer under the fridge to unplug the fridge. Remove the doors and door brackets, along with the door lock. Remove all shelves and drawers. (Damage note – watch the edge molding under the front of the fridge when you remove it, it easily scratches.)
3) Remove the passenger side A Pillar molding with the grab handle. Pull the square rubber plugs for the grab handle, use an 8mm socket for the bolts in there. The molding just pulls off.
4) Remove the black passenger kick panel (down under the dash) by pulling from the top and working it out.
5) Inside the kick panel is an area with 5-6 electrical plugs. There are two to disconnect for the power locks and windows. Follow the wires up to the area where they go through the door to figure out which ones.
6) Remove the passenger door of the chassis. Make sure to fold the side mirror all the way in against the door. There are 4 13mm bolts you can get to inside by the door hinges – note, remove the bolts going into the door – NOT the bolts into the chassis. You may want to take a marker and mark the bracket for alignment, although my lined back up perfectly. You CANNOT completely disconnect the door because of the side view camera and heated mirror wires (if you have those options). I put the door on top of a folding chair and leaned it up against the front fender. (Damage note – put a towel or cardboard between the mirror and the fender of the chassis, the plastic mirror housing rubbed though the paint!
7) Remove the passenger seat. Disconnect the wires for the seat belt sensor. There are two T60 TORX bolts in front (I only had a T55, it worked fine). There are two nuts on studs in the back, I used a socket, its probably an 18mm.
8) Remove the driver’s seat, just like the passenger seat.
9) Remove the console/engine cover
10) Unscrew the passenger side sofa sleeper. Mine had 2 bracket screws on each side in the back, 1 high and 1 low. There are 4 larger screws holding it to the floor. Move it all the way toward the back (effectively blocking the side door).
11) Lay down some blankets/carpets along the floor, going out the passenger door area to cover the seat studs and prevent damage to the floor
12) Slide the fridge toward the front and angle it out the door. Have the opening of the fridge (front) toward the dash. Have one person outside to catch the fridge and 1-2 people inside to lift. You will have to lift the fridge and angle it out the doorway. (Damage note – watch for damage to the seat back of the dinette, and the molding around the van cutout up top by the bunk, and the dash/airbag area. Go SLOW!
13) Put the new fridge in the same way and reinstall all the above items. Success!
Other notes – my new fridge was slightly smaller than the Whirlpool. It was a GE from Home Depot. I got it in black, which actually seems to match the interior better and you can use magnets on it. It was Model GTS16GTHMRBB and was $620, on sale for $580. I paid the $125 for the three year extended no fault warranty. With the doors, shelves, etc removed, it was about an inch shorter, same width, and less deep, so it went in easier than the Whirlpool came out. I used the original brackets to mount the new one. The door lock had to be modified since the GE doors are slightly thicker than the Whirlpool ones. That’s it!
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Old 06-16-2019, 03:59 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by schreinertms View Post
I checked all the window sizes and the windshield is the only one big enough.
I was told they have to be removed through the windshield. The windshield has to be removed and then replaced
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Old 06-16-2019, 05:57 PM   #24
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Challenger 37TB
State: Pennsylvania
Posts: 410
THOR #4486
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjthorson View Post
I realize this is an old thread, however, while searching for help with my issue, I came across this thread, so I wanted to add my solution. I have a 2016 Thor 31W RV with the Whirlpool Residential fridge that I bought new. Mine has a full driver’s side slide out. A dinette is behind the driver’s seat, and a fold down sofa is behind the passenger seat. It’s on an E450 chassis with the V10. Like the others, this year my fridge was barely cooling to 40 degrees and wouldn’t freeze ice. My RV has only been used 2 seasons and has 18,000 miles on it. I am VERY disappointed in my RV overall. So far I have had to replace the leveler pump motor, generator main control board, coach and truck batteries, generator transfer switch (which almost burned the RV down), 3 tires because of bad sidewalls, front TV bad LCD, along with numerous falling moldings, roof leaks, leaking shower, and a long list of other little things that are just bad design/quality/build.
It was clear from the beginning that the fridge would not fit through the side door. Mine measured 25 ” front to back, 28” wide, and about 65” tall, make sure yours is the same. The 25 ” is the most important measurement. That’s with all doors, brackets, and shelves removed. I saw the suggested posts about removing the passenger side window and frame, or removing the windshield. I did not like either of those options. The windshield, I would have to have a company come and do. The side window I would risk a leak putting it back in. I took some measurements and determined that it will fit out the passenger door of the cab. Below are the steps, tools, and process I used. It took the better part of the day with lots of trial and error, hopefully this guide will help you do it faster. I also include the details about the new fridge I bought, which is slightly smaller than the Whirlpool, but has the same interior space. I also highlight the areas that I did some cosmetic damage to my RV in the hopes you can avoid it.
1) Put the slide all the way out
2) Remove the existing fridge. Brackets on the bottom and the top. Remove the drawer under the fridge to unplug the fridge. Remove the doors and door brackets, along with the door lock. Remove all shelves and drawers. (Damage note – watch the edge molding under the front of the fridge when you remove it, it easily scratches.)
3) Remove the passenger side A Pillar molding with the grab handle. Pull the square rubber plugs for the grab handle, use an 8mm socket for the bolts in there. The molding just pulls off.
4) Remove the black passenger kick panel (down under the dash) by pulling from the top and working it out.
5) Inside the kick panel is an area with 5-6 electrical plugs. There are two to disconnect for the power locks and windows. Follow the wires up to the area where they go through the door to figure out which ones.
6) Remove the passenger door of the chassis. Make sure to fold the side mirror all the way in against the door. There are 4 13mm bolts you can get to inside by the door hinges – note, remove the bolts going into the door – NOT the bolts into the chassis. You may want to take a marker and mark the bracket for alignment, although my lined back up perfectly. You CANNOT completely disconnect the door because of the side view camera and heated mirror wires (if you have those options). I put the door on top of a folding chair and leaned it up against the front fender. (Damage note – put a towel or cardboard between the mirror and the fender of the chassis, the plastic mirror housing rubbed though the paint!
7) Remove the passenger seat. Disconnect the wires for the seat belt sensor. There are two T60 TORX bolts in front (I only had a T55, it worked fine). There are two nuts on studs in the back, I used a socket, its probably an 18mm.
8) Remove the driver’s seat, just like the passenger seat.
9) Remove the console/engine cover
10) Unscrew the passenger side sofa sleeper. Mine had 2 bracket screws on each side in the back, 1 high and 1 low. There are 4 larger screws holding it to the floor. Move it all the way toward the back (effectively blocking the side door).
11) Lay down some blankets/carpets along the floor, going out the passenger door area to cover the seat studs and prevent damage to the floor
12) Slide the fridge toward the front and angle it out the door. Have the opening of the fridge (front) toward the dash. Have one person outside to catch the fridge and 1-2 people inside to lift. You will have to lift the fridge and angle it out the doorway. (Damage note – watch for damage to the seat back of the dinette, and the molding around the van cutout up top by the bunk, and the dash/airbag area. Go SLOW!
13) Put the new fridge in the same way and reinstall all the above items. Success!
Other notes – my new fridge was slightly smaller than the Whirlpool. It was a GE from Home Depot. I got it in black, which actually seems to match the interior better and you can use magnets on it. It was Model GTS16GTHMRBB and was $620, on sale for $580. I paid the $125 for the three year extended no fault warranty. With the doors, shelves, etc removed, it was about an inch shorter, same width, and less deep, so it went in easier than the Whirlpool came out. I used the original brackets to mount the new one. The door lock had to be modified since the GE doors are slightly thicker than the Whirlpool ones. That’s it!
Have you considered having the fridge repaired? I had mine repaired within the first year cause the core got a hole in it from all the travel vibration. It was doing the same thing as your fridge, barely cooling and no ice.
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Old 06-16-2019, 06:45 PM   #25
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THOR #15665
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Originally Posted by schreinertms View Post
Have you considered having the fridge repaired? I had mine repaired within the first year cause the core got a hole in it from all the travel vibration. It was doing the same thing as your fridge, barely cooling and no ice.
I did consider it- however with all the buzz about these Whirlpool fridges failing, and the cost estimates of $900 - $1200 + labor to fix it.... I opted to replace it. Not sure if the GE will be any better, but I wanted to let people know you don't have to pull side windows or the windshield to get the old one out.

Truthfully, if this one fails again very soon, Ill be replacing with a RV style fridge...
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Old 03-20-2021, 11:21 PM   #26
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THOR #10325
Fridge removal

How do you get the fridge out. Our2018 Challengers freezer is cold but the fridge runs around 45 degrees and its set to the coldest setting.
We are full time so I have to be able to pull it the same day the repair tech comes out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by schreinertms View Post
After our last camping trip, our Whirlpool residential refrigerator starting experiencing cooling issues. The refrigerator and freezer would get no colder than about 40-45 degrees. It was during a weekend in October in PA so wasn't weather related. Once we got home, I tested the fridge and confirmed that it was an issue with the unit and not power related. I also bought external temp sensors and confirmed that the unit was only getting into the 40's, both freezer and fridge. Luckily, my warranty still had several weeks left so I contacted Thor and they provided me with the number to call at Whirlpool for warranty service. Thor made it clear that the only thing they would cover is removal of the fridge from the cabinetry and Whirlpool would cover the refrigerator. Rather than waste time taking my coach to CW just to have them remove the fridge, my son and I did it ourselves. Not a big deal. So Whirlpool came out and confirmed the fridge has issues and ordered a new compressor but they weren't 100% sure it was a compressor issue. So two weeks after their first visit, they came back yesterday with a certified refrigerant tech and he confirmed the fridge leaked out most of the refrigerant. He did not replace the compressor instead vacuumed out all the remaining refrigerant and added all new with die. They will be coming back in 4 weeks to check the unit with a black light for leaks. While the tech was here, he noticed that if this fridge needed to be replaced, there is no easy way to get it out of the motorhome since the fridge is wider than the door by at least 3-4 inches. Whether or not you could take the door frame off and then get the fridge out is questionable. Nevertheless, the tech suggested that I get an extended warranty on the fridge so at least the issue of replacing it is less likely during the extended warranty period. For about $45 a year, I can get a 5 year extended warranty on the fridge which I plan to do very soon. Something to keep in mind if you have a fridge that may not be easily removed from your coach.
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Old 03-20-2021, 11:52 PM   #27
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THOR #15665
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Originally Posted by alarmingfriend View Post
How do you get the fridge out. Our2018 Challengers freezer is cold but the fridge runs around 45 degrees and its set to the coldest setting.
We are full time so I have to be able to pull it the same day the repair tech comes out.
I did this in my Thor 31W Chateau. I removed all the doors and brackets off the old one and new one. The new one I bought was from home depot and was about $500. I unbolted the passenger door and propped it up so I didnt have to unhook the wiring. I removed the passenger seat - doghouse cover, and it makes it out the door. Take your time - I did have to loosen the jackknife sofa and move it back about a foot away from the passenger seat area as well. Included some pics below - ask any other questions you might have! Good luck!
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Old 03-20-2021, 11:55 PM   #28
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More pics if it helps including the fridge I bought to put in...
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Old 03-21-2021, 01:52 AM   #29
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Model: freedom elite 24he
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THOR #21327
Why not go through the emergency exit window?
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Old 03-21-2021, 02:58 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by JoefromGa View Post
Why not go through the emergency exit window?
I measured - it wouldnt fit in mine, the window opening isnt tall enough.. The only other option was the factory way which was to have someone cut out the windshield and reinstall it. I did some measurements and determined I could use that passenger door.

The one side window was close - but I didnt want to break those seals either. LOL - I just read up - I completely forgot doing that writeup 2 years ago... That GE fridge is still going strong.
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Old 03-21-2021, 04:10 AM   #31
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THOR #4243
If mine quits and if repairing is not an option I will take the Sawzall to it and find one that fits through the coach door
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Old 03-21-2021, 05:27 PM   #32
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One more good reason to be happy with an old fashioned absorption fridge!!
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Old 03-21-2021, 05:31 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by Pete'sMH View Post
One more good reason to be happy with an old fashioned absorption fridge!!
That is the other option...
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Old 03-21-2021, 06:43 PM   #34
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One more good reason to be happy with an old fashioned absorption fridge!!

Agree on compact size. Depending on old-fashioned absorption fridge capacity you are referring to, an even larger compressor fridge with same outside dimensions may be available. And it would likely weigh less too.

In any case I do like idea of a fridge that fits through entry door.
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Old 03-21-2021, 07:07 PM   #35
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So does that mean that we'll be seeing wider doors in the near future?
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