Atwood Fridge Not Working on Electric

If your atwood fridge is not working on electric, check the power source and the control board. A faulty dc element, fuse or thermostats can also be the culprits.

Refrigerators are essential kitchen appliances that keep your food and drinks fresh, cool and safe to consume. However, when your atwood fridge stops working on electric, it can be inconvenient, frustrating and costly. The good news is that there are several possible causes and solutions for this problem. This article will provide you with some tips on how to troubleshoot and fix your atwood fridge that is not working on electric.

By following these simple steps, you can save time, money and avoid potential food waste or spoilage. So, let’s get started!

Understanding The Atwood Fridge

Atwood fridges are an important appliance for rv and camper owners. They help preserve food and drinks during long travels and are essential for outdoor enthusiasts. Understanding how your fridge works and the features it offers can be a lifesaver during your camping trips.

In this blog post, we will delve into the atwood fridge and its workings while also highlighting how you can identify and solve issues with your fridge when it fails to work on electric mode.

Overview Of The Atwood Fridge And Its Features

The atwood fridge is a unique appliance that preserves your food and drinks while traveling. It features a simple, yet functional design that utilizes gravity rather than moving parts.

  • Efficient cooling: the atwood fridge is well-known for its cooling capabilities, keeping your food and drinks at the right temperature, even in extreme weather conditions.
  • Compact design: the atwood fridge’s compact size makes it an ideal appliance for small spaces.
  • Dual power source: atwood fridges feature a dual power source, enabling them to run on both electricity and propane gas.
  • Auto-reignite feature: the atwood fridge’s propane gas feature has an auto-reignite function that turns itself back on in case of a power outage.

Working Mechanisms Of The Atwood Fridge

Atwood fridges function by utilizing gravity.

  • Ammonia absorption: at the heart of the atwood fridge lies a heat absorption system that utilizes ammonia. The ammonia absorption process creates a natural cooling effect for the fridge.
  • Heat source: to start the ammonia absorption process, heat is required. In electric mode, the electric heating element generates the heat. Meanwhile, in gas mode, the propane burner provides the heat.
  • Circulation of ammonia: as the ammonia heats up, it rises, and the condensed ammonia gathers in the chimney. The ammonia then descends the chimney and flows to the evaporator. The refrigerant then repeats the cycle.
  • Temperature control: the atwood fridge temperature is controlled using a thermistor located in the fridge’s rear compartment. The thermistor communicates with the atwood fridge control module, which controls the electric heating element.

Differences Between The Atwood Fridge On Electric Mode And Other Modes

There are several differences between the atwood fridge when it’s running on electric mode and when it’s running on gas or lp mode.

  • Power source: when running on electric mode, the fridge uses electricity as the primary power source. Meanwhile, when running on gas or lp mode, the fridge uses propane as the primary power source.
  • Cooling efficiency: the cooling efficiency of atwood fridges differs between electric and gas modes. While the fridge cools better on electric mode, it cools slower on gas or lp mode.
  • Temperature control: the temperature control of the atwood fridge also differs between electric and gas modes. Electric mode features a thermostat, while the gas mode features a different control mechanism.

By understanding the workings of your atwood fridge, you can quickly diagnose and fix any issues that may arise. This knowledge helps you get the most out of your fridge and ensures that your camping trips are much smoother and more enjoyable.

Causes Of Atwood Fridge Not Working On Electric

Atwood fridge is one of the most popular brands on the market when it comes to rv refrigerators. These fridges are reliable, durable and designed to work efficiently on both electric and propane. However, when the fridge doesn’t work on electric, it’s not only frustrating but also needs to be repaired quickly.

In this blog post, we’ll cover the most common causes of atwood fridge not working on electric and what you can do to troubleshoot the issue.

Electrical Power Supply Issues

A lack of electrical power will prevent atwood fridge from working on electric.

  • Outages in the power grid or faulty fuses on the campsite will affect your fridge’s power supply.
  • Check the power cord and make sure it’s not damaged.
  • Check the power outlet and make sure it’s working correctly. Plug in another appliance to verify that the outlet is okay.
  • Check the fuse or breaker box and see if any of the circuits have been tripped.

Malfunctioning Thermostat

A malfunctioning thermostat can cause atwood fridge not to work on electric.

  • Fridge isn’t cooling enough, or the temperature fluctuates significantly
  • The compressor continually runs or doesn’t turn on at all.
  • Check the thermostat for signs of damage or rust. If you see any, it’s time to replace the part.

Broken Parts

A broken fridge part can also cause atwood fridge not to work on electric.

  • Burnt-out or failed compressor
  • Defective heating element or thermostat
  • Broken wiring or circuitry
  • Faulty condenser fan motor

Condensation Build-Up

Condensation build-up can cause the fridge to malfunction and stop working on electric.

  • The fridge has high humidity levels
  • Frost is building upon freezer walls rapidly.
  • Check the seals around the door and ensure that there are no rips or tears.

Poor Cleaning Or Maintenance Practices

If you haven’t been doing regular cleaning and maintenance, your atwood fridge may not work on electric. Dirt, grime, and debris can all cause the fridge’s components to deteriorate and malfunction.

  • Clean fridge coils every quarter of the year
  • Deep clean the fridge interior and exterior every three months. Be sure to remove expired items, dust, and debris.
  • Lubricate the door seals with petroleum jelly to keep them from drying out and cracking.

By understanding the root causes of your atwood fridge not working on electric, you can have a clear plan on how to address the issue. These common issues are not always expensive to fix; in some cases, they require nothing more than a basic troubleshoot.

By keeping your fridge clean and maintained, you can avoid most of these problems.

Troubleshooting Solutions

Atwood Fridge Not Working On Electric

If you’re an avid camper, chances are you rely on your atwood fridge to keep your food and drinks fresh and cold. Unfortunately, when it stops working on electric, it can be a real nuisance. The good news is that you don’t have to spend a fortune on repair costs.

With some troubleshooting, you can often figure out the issue on your own. Here are some solutions to help you fix your atwood fridge.

Conducting Regular Maintenance Practices And Cleaning Your Fridge

To ensure that your fridge is always working efficiently, it’s crucial to carry out regular maintenance practices.

  • Clean your fridge regularly to prevent the buildup of bacteria and mold.
  • Check and replace the door seals if they are damaged or worn out.
  • Ensure that the fridge is level to optimize the cooling.

Testing The Electrical Power Supply

If your atwood fridge is not working on electric, it’s possible that there could be an issue with the electrical power supply.

  • Try plugging in another appliance to check if the outlet is working.
  • Check whether the fuse has blown or the circuit breaker has been tripped.
  • Test the wires to see if there is a broken wire or a loose connection.

Adjusting The Fridge Thermostat

If the electrical power supply is working fine, then it’s time to check the fridge thermostat and adjust it.

  • Make sure the thermostat is set correctly between 35 and 46 degrees fahrenheit.
  • Adjust the thermostat if it’s not providing enough cooling or freezing.
  • Ensure that the thermostat sensor is not obstructed by food or drinks.

Replacing Broken Parts

If the above checks don’t reveal any issues, then it’s possible that one of the fridge components may be broken.

  • Check the condenser coils for dirt or damage. Clean or replace them if necessary.
  • Inspect the fan blade for any damage or obstruction.
  • Look for any signs of damage on the electrical components. If any are damaged, replace them.

Defrosting The Fridge

Sometimes, a fridge can stop working if the cooling coils are frozen over.

  • Turn off the fridge and unplug it from the electrical outlet.
  • Leave the fridge door open and allow the ice to melt.
  • Once the ice has melted, wipe the inside of the fridge clean.

Replacing The Ac Heating Element

If your fridge still doesn’t work after trying all the above solutions, the ac heating element could be the problem.

  • Purchase a new heating element. You can find them at most rv or camping stores.
  • Turn off the fridge, unplug it, and access the heating element at the back of the fridge.
  • Remove the old heating element and replace it with the new one.

By following these troubleshooting solutions, you can save yourself time and money on atwood fridge repair costs. Regular maintenance, testing the electrical supply, adjusting the thermostat, replacing broken parts, defrosting the fridge, and replacing the ac heating element are all possible solutions for a fridge that’s stopped working on electric.

FAQ For Atwood Fridge Not Working On Electric

How Do I Know If My Atwood Fridge Is Not Working On Electric?

If the fridge is not cooling down, the cooling unit could be faulty or the power source could be having issues.

What Should I Do If My Fridge Is Not Working On Electric?

Check the circuit breaker and fuse to ensure they are working fine. You may also want to consider seeking professional repair services.

Can An Atwood Fridge Work On Both Electricity And Propane?

Yes, atwood fridges are designed to work on both electricity and propane. You can switch between these power sources using a control panel.

Is It Possible For An Atwood Fridge To Malfunction Even When Connected To An Electricity Source?

Yes, electrical components can fail while the fridge is connected to an electricity source. This can impact the fridge’s performance.


Having an atwood fridge not working on electric can be frustrating and challenging. However, it is essential to remain calm and follow the troubleshooting steps to identify the problem before seeking professional assistance. Regular maintenance and proper usage can prolong the longevity of the fridge and keep it running efficiently.

Taking the time to examine the power source, thermostat, and ventilation system can save you time and money in the long run. It is recommended to consult the user manual or reach out to the manufacturer for guidance, especially if the fridge is still under warranty.

Remember to prioritize safety and turn off the power source before attempting any repairs. By following these tips, you can restore your atwood fridge’s electric functionality and enjoy perfectly chilled food and drinks.

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