How to Repair a Travel Trailer Refrigerator


Whenever you are on the road camping with your travel trailer, you need to have a supply of tools and spare parts to fix problems you may encounter along the way. While some problems may be minor and can wait until your next major stop to be fixed, when the refrigerator stops working, you will want to get it fixed so you don`t lose all of your food. Refrigerators in travel trailers usually work on electrical power while at the campsite, then run on propane when in transit.

Things You'll Need

  • Can of compressed air
  • Portable mini vacuum
  • Utility knife
  • Clean cloth
  • Replacement door seal
  • Wire stripper
  • Screwdriver
  • Clean the ventilation grids with a can of compressed air, or a small portable vacuum. Compressed air will clean them by blowing the dust and debris elsewhere. Working a vacuum head or crevice accessory into the grates is a better way to clean them.

  • Clean the thermostat using the can of compressed air. Thermostats can easily become dirty in a travel trailer and this will impede the fridge's performance. When inspecting the fridge, check the strip around the door and replace it if it is not providing a proper seal. If your fridge door does not close properly it will use more propane or electricity to run.

  • Use a utility knife and run it between the door seal and the door itself. As the knife goes around the door, pull the old stripping off of the door. Clean the area using a cloth to remove any residual glue or the door seal itself.

  • Peel the adhesive backing off of the new door seal and place it onto the fridge door. Once the entire door seal has been replaced, close the fridge door and check that it closes and seals properly.

  • Refill the propane tank at you first opportunity. Have the fuel gauge checked at the same time to make sure it is working.

  • Inspect all electrical connections and replace them where needed. Unplug the electrical cord and cut the old plug off the cord. Use wire strippers to remove a half-inch of the wire protective cover. Attach the negative wire to the negative pole on the replacement plug and attach the positive wire to the positive pole. Tighten the poles with a screwdriver and cover the plug with its rubber housing.

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  • Photo Credit coach, trailer image by Greg Pickens from
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