How to Troubleshoot a Norcold 12V Refrigerator

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Norcold 12V refrigerators are commonly found in recreation vehicles, mobile homes, marine applications or other areas with limited space and/or power. The refrigerator is compact in size and can be bought in select recreational vehicle retailers, marine suppliers, Norcold dealers or online. While regular maintenance and care should keep a Norcold refrigerator running well, problems can arise now and then. If this happens, owners can try some troubleshooting to fix the issue themselves before calling in Norcold or another service professional.

Things You'll Need

  • Towels
  • Hot water
  • Trays
  • Clean cloth(s)
  • Dishwashing liquid
  • Defrost the refrigerator if excess ice or frost appears on the freezer plate. Unplug and turn off the Norcold refrigerator after removing all food items. Set towels inside the refrigerator and trays of hot water into the freezer compartment. Empty the drip tray once the refrigerator has completely defrosted and wipe the refrigerator and freezer interior. Restore power and return food to the unit once a desirable cooling temperature has been reached.

  • Use a mixture of dishwashing liquid and warm water to clean the refrigerator interior if the unit begins to smell bad. Wipe the surfaces with a clean damp cloth and dry with a towel. Keep food items closed or wrapped tightly to help prevent food odors.

  • Set the thermostat to "3" if the outdoor air temperature is between 70 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit if the battery seems to drain quickly. If frozen food is stored, increase the setting to "5."

  • Keep the space around the refrigerator clear of objects, furniture or fabric if the unit does not cool properly. Do not install the refrigerator near a heater, furnace, stove or in direct sunlight.

  • Contact Norcold with any additional problems or questions.

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