PDA

View Full Version : 2015 Keystone Hideout 20 rd we Atwood refrigerator problem


Dennisjane
06-09-2020, 04:46 PM
I just bought a 2015 keystone hideout, 20 RD WE. I have come to realize that my Atwood helium refrigerator will only work on Gas. It will not cool or freeze ice on Auto or A/C. Not sure it has a D/C setting but as I am currently hooked up to electric it is not appearing as an option.

I have been told by a repairman that he also has the same refrigerator and it is impossible to get parts for the repair. My wife spoke to him I think he mentioned theristate or something of that nature. He said the good news is it will continue to work fine on gas. While that may be well and good it rules out a lot of options. So it is my understanding that they had so much trouble with this refrigerator that the new owners Dominic I believe discountinued the Atwood and there are no parts out there for them is this the case does anyone know? Also if this refrigerator is such a lemon what does one replace it with that fits the hole. in the wall will a current refridge Keysone hideouts have in them fit my hole and if so what is the cost to do that if anyone has already gone to this option.

Lastly should I be posting this elsewhere in the forum?
Thank you in advance
Dennis

JRTJH
06-09-2020, 05:26 PM
Dometic did buy the Atwood refrigerator line and discontinued production followed by discontinuing any parts/technical support. Almost overnight, the Atwood HE2 refrigerator became an "orphan"....

If you drive a Mercury, a Pontiac or a Plymouth, then you'd probably feel right at home with the Atwood, otherwise, not so much.

Parts are hard to find, support is growing harder to find on a daily basis and when it "goes, it's going to be gone"....

There are some Dometic refrigerators that will fit the space with a little reframing. Cost for a 6 cuft Dometic "2 way" refrigerator is around $1000. If you can do the installation, that's about all you'll need to spend. If you decide to "hire it out to an RV repair center" plan on another $400-600 for them to install it... Is it worth that much? If I were you, with a 5 year old "entry level trailer", as long as the current refrigerator works, I'd not invest any money in the trailer that you won't get back when you sell it or trade it in. So, enjoy your current investment and hope the gas side keeps cooling.

The "good part of it all" is that there seems to be very little complaints from members who have "working Atwood reefers"... Like Timex, "they take a lickin' and keep on tickin'....."

Gegrad
06-09-2020, 06:05 PM
The "good part of it all" is that there seems to be very little complaints from members who have "working Atwood reefers"... Like Timex, "they take a lickin' and keep on tickin'....."

Darn it John, I hope you didn't just curse my Atwood Helium reefer, which has worked quite well in the 3 years I have had it. :lol::lol:

But seriously, thanks for highlighting the orphan nature of the fridge. Now you will have me worrying about what to do when mine goes down since parts are not really available anymore... Currently it is operating fine in its parking spot in advance of this weekend's trip.

JRTJH
06-09-2020, 06:18 PM
Chuck has significantly more experience with them than I have, so I'll defer to his comments, but it's been my experience that if it is working after the first 12-18 months, it's going to last until the trailer shakes itself apart. If you got a good one, it'll last and last, if you got a "tinker with it to keep it running" one, then you're going to be replacing it sooner rather than later...

They seem to either be "bulletproof" or "deserving of a bullet" There's just no middle ground with the Atwood from what I've seen.

Gegrad
06-09-2020, 06:38 PM
Chuck has significantly more experience with them than I have, so I'll defer to his comments, but it's been my experience that if it is working after the first 12-18 months, it's going to last until the trailer shakes itself apart. If you got a good one, it'll last and last, if you got a "tinker with it to keep it running" one, then you're going to be replacing it sooner rather than later...

They seem to either be "bulletproof" or "deserving of a bullet" There's just no middle ground with the Atwood from what I've seen.

Well that eases my mind a little bit as this one has not been a "tinker to keep it running" one so far. Only time I have had an issue with it was maybe 2 years ago when I pulled into the campground, plugged in, set up, went in and it was on fault mode and had not been running on gas when travelling. Checked everything.....Yep, the LPG tank my supply was switched to had run dry :facepalm:

JRTJH
06-09-2020, 07:36 PM
Well that eases my mind a little bit as this one has not been a "tinker to keep it running" one so far. Only time I have had an issue with it was maybe 2 years ago when I pulled into the campground, plugged in, set up, went in and it was on fault mode and had not been running on gas when travelling. Checked everything.....Yep, the LPG tank my supply was switched to had run dry :facepalm:

Then it worked like it is supposed to, it's the "operator" that had the malfunction and let the propane tank run out... LOL :angel:

B-O-B'03
06-10-2020, 08:50 PM
If the heating element is bad I wonder if the element from another brand could be made to work?

I did a little googling and found there are some parts available, like the control board (https://www.dyersonline.com/atwood-replacement-refrigerator-board.html) and the heating element (https://rvpartsexpress.com/product/atwood-14044mc-ac-heating-element/)

Maybe I should buy one of each now, before they are all gone ;)

-Brian

JRTJH
06-11-2020, 05:44 AM
For the control board, I've emailed Dinosaur Electronics to ask if they market any parts for the Atwood HE2. I'll post their response when they answer. As for other parts, it's been my "misfortune" that every part I buy in anticipation of a failure has always remained "unwrapped and unused"... For me, it seems the only thing that breaks is the part I don't have on hand, so buying before you need it, at least in my experience, means "money and space being used on something never needed"... YMMV.

MarkEHansen
06-11-2020, 06:02 AM
In that case, think of it like insurance against the part failing at a bad time. Seems like a good deal to me :)

JRTJH
06-11-2020, 06:39 AM
In that case, think of it like insurance against the part failing at a bad time. Seems like a good deal to me :)

Good Point......

R-man
06-15-2020, 09:12 PM
I just had the same thing happen with our "new-to-us" 2015 Hideout refrigerator. It was the AC heating element that had failed. Our dealer had no trouble getting one and I installed it myself. I found several sources on the internet, but our dealer is very good and had one fast and within a few dollars of the online prices (around $125).
The sad thing with this type of failure on this unit is that nothing tells the refrigerator brain that it needs to transfer to propane....so out to the garbage goes any food that might be left in the fridge or freezer.

Dennisjane
06-18-2020, 07:57 AM
Do you have a part number by any chance we had found some parts but they were in the $15 range

Dennisjane
06-18-2020, 08:15 AM
picture of the part that fixes the A/C cooling problem would also work. How do you open that panel? Can an idiot replace it by himself or do you need a $200 service call from a mobile repair.

R-man
06-18-2020, 01:18 PM
This is what worked for mine:

https://rvcoolingunit.com/Atwood-300-watt-AC-Heating-element-14044-P5772441.aspx

If yours has a ground wire, you will need the three-wire version like this one.

R-man
06-18-2020, 01:42 PM
If you are fairly proficient at DIY stuff, you can probably replace the element yourself.
Two things are important - Turn the refrigerator off for a couple of hours before you do the replacement, because even though the AC heater isn't working, it will be hot if the fridge has been on because the propane will have been heating the same area.
Also, if you don't turn the refrigerator off, you'll still have DC to the circuit board and you could easily short out circuitry if you happen to have a tool slip into the wiring or circuit board...it would be best to pull the DC fuse to the refrigerator as well as unplugging the AC cord.
Here's a helpful video link:
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=XoryMLBZueg

LaTundra
06-25-2020, 08:30 AM
https://www.rvpartscountry.com/AtwoodHeliumRVRefrigerators.html

This link has parts