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Replacement Refrigerator

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#1 CalCop

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 07:59 AM

Recently I've been searching for an answer to the refrigerator problem. I ran across this item.

Has anyone considered this as a replacement refrigerator?

 

http://truckcamperad...and-a-few-tips/



#2 Euphoria

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 10:06 AM

If I ever did have to replace my ammonia absorption fridge, I would certainly go with one of these new compressor fridges. Ammonia fridges have their few good points, (like no moving parts,) and they have been around for quite a while, but they are "outdated" technology to me. As long as it works, I'll keep it, but if it ever does crap out, the compressor unit will be my choice. FWIW.


Edited by Euphoria, 10 July 2017 - 10:07 AM.

"If I have seen a little further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants."

Sir Isaac Newton

 

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#3 CalCop

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Posted 11 July 2017 - 08:59 PM

Thanks Greg for your input
I agree this would be a fine answer if you
boosted your 12 volt system in order to support it

#4 Hot Toddy

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Posted 13 July 2017 - 03:12 PM

I agree with Greg. If my stock fridge dies, I would upgrade to newer technology. I followed your link CalCop and think that little Danfoss compressor would be the way to go if you are looking for a replacement unit.

Toddy

#5 Peter2072

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Posted 31 August 2018 - 03:05 PM

I'm just learning, but the idea of a gas powered fridge in the back while I drive is worrisome. Does anybody just take out the propane powered fridge and install an AC only unit for multiple days with hook ups, and get by with a cooler otherwise?



#6 clairemr1

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Posted 31 August 2018 - 03:54 PM

I'm just learning, but the idea of a gas powered fridge in the back while I drive is worrisome. Does anybody just take out the propane powered fridge and install an AC only unit for multiple days with hook ups, and get by with a cooler otherwise?

no, peter, i wouldn't do that. the beauty of the casita is the ability to boondock extensively & in comfort, while running appliances on propane. works great. i'd highly recommend that you have a propane specialist check your system for leaks& make sure you have a functioning propane detector before setting up housekeeping. also, have the age of your propane tanks checked, it might be wise to replace them.you'll appreciate the propane option even if you don't plan to boondock extensively, but simply need to do a quick overnight in a rest area. also, plans evolve over time & while you might not see the need for these propane options now, your camping style may change radically over time & you could come to need/want the option.

    if travel with propane on worries you, simply turn off the propane at both tanks before you set out. use a cooler or stop at a grocery store near your destination to stock up. some of us are able to run our fridges on 12v while traveling, others find their tow vehicle wiring can't keep up with the fridge demands. it depends on the wiring in your tow vehicle.

    i'd suggest doing the above first, camp/travel extensively with your new trailer before making radical changes to it's systems. the casita is amazingly appointed for almost any camping/travel style.my bet is the more you learn about yours, the more you'll value how it is set up. safe travels.


Edited by clairemr1, 01 September 2018 - 05:02 AM.

claire and merlin, excellent schnoodle

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#7 Euphoria

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Posted 01 September 2018 - 06:49 AM

If you do find that your Propane tanks are getting "old and tired" as well as out of test date, I would suggest trading them in at one of those places that sell new filled Propane tanks, usually from one of those expanded metal caged enclosures. The down-side is that (1.) they don't fill them all the way up, and (2.) they are a little bit expensive, so you probably don't want to do this every time you need to refill a tank. But, on the plus side, insist on picking out your own replacement tanks from their cage, and make sure you get a couple of brand new ones. Then, after that, I'd just take your new-to-you tanks to any other Propane filling place and just have them refilled for a lot less. It will only be expensive one time, but once they're in your hand, you own them. And it will still be cheaper than buying a brand new empty tank, and then also paying to have it purged and filled. (Purging is only done once on a brand new tank that hasn't been filled, to remove any air inside.) Then, down the road, if you feel that your Propane tanks are getting nasty looking, you can always repeat the process.

 

And, FWIW, many people regularly do travel down the highway while running their fridges on Propane because their tow vehicle's charging system can't keep up with the draw, and many folks report having a drained trailer battery when they arrive at where they are going. Just be sure to shut it off before you go into a gas station to refuel.


Edited by Euphoria, 01 September 2018 - 06:52 AM.

"If I have seen a little further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants."

Sir Isaac Newton

 

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2004 Nissan Frontier, Crew Cab, V-6 2WD

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#8 flcoxjr

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Posted 01 September 2018 - 08:02 AM

According to the article the compressor refrigerator uses an average of 60 amp-hrs per day, on top of other usage. The author uses 330 watts of solar panels, and a battery bank with 220 amp-hrs capacity.
My existing unit has always worked perfectly, even in really hot weather. I think I’ll stick with it.

#9 Hot Toddy

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Posted 01 September 2018 - 11:28 AM

I prefer to start my fridge out on propane the day before we leave town as it is much more efficient and faster cool down than AC would be. I also run the fridge on propane during transit and have never had a lick of trouble with it. If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it!

Toddy

#10 Hot Toddy

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Posted 01 September 2018 - 11:29 AM

I prefer to start my fridge out on propane the day before we leave town as it is much more efficient and faster cool down than AC would be. I also run the fridge on propane during transit and have never had a lick of trouble with it. If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it!

Toddy
  • thetravelkids and NASA42 B like this

#11 Dutchman

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Posted 01 September 2018 - 05:51 PM

I think I just heard an echo. ;-)  

 

Dutchman


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#12 Zimm

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Posted 05 September 2018 - 03:31 AM

It can be worrisome about thinking about "running on propane" for the fridge.  I was that way too until I pulled the access panels and actually looked at how the fridge works.  There's a little chimney and a tiny little flame like a lighter or pilot light running.  It only makes enough heat to thermo-cycle the ammonia.  I had mental images of a huge burner like a furnace running, but it's not.  When on electric, there's a heating element in the same location that does the same thing.  The reason 12v doesn't work well is that it's inefficient at powering a heating element.

 

Wikipedia has a good article on it.  Scroll down to the bottom to "single pressure absorption refrigerator".  https://en.wikipedia...on_refrigerator

 

Danfoss compressors are awesome.  I have an ARB 50 quart fridge/freezer in my Jeep.  They're expensive ($900) but cool to temp in about an hour.  Depending on the temperature differential it'll run 1-2 days before it kicks itself off due to low battery voltage (it saves enough of the vehicle battery so it will start).  If you'll always have electric, the new models make sense.  I do like the fact I have the ability to cool food for 3 weeks on a tank of propane though.


Edited by Zimm, 05 September 2018 - 03:32 AM.

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