Propane and towing - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 10-15-2014, 08:31 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by catboat View Post
We don't have the 12 volt option, and we haven't seen it available very much.
We have been turning it off during the day when driving, but it seems to lose coolness pretty quick and take forever (3-4 hrs) to get cold. Does this sound about right? Maybe there is something wrong (or owner error) with our unit. The freezer does work well enough to freeze a couple of bottles of water, and the cold packs sound like a good idea.
I added bubble wrap insulation to the sides and top of my fridge and it helped a lot to keep it cool. Also made sure I closed off all the gaps in the rear and to the side cupboards are sealed.
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Old 10-15-2014, 09:16 PM   #16
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You may want to check what amount of amps you are getting the next time you are plugged into the vehicle and running the fridge on 12v
Discharged trailer battery is fully charged after 8-10 hours of towing with 12V fridge on.

The charge line to 7-way connector is about 20' of 10AWG wire. The connector is grounded with 3' 10AWG wire to the ground point in the TV trunk area.
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Old 10-15-2014, 10:31 PM   #17
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I know this has been discussed many times. I've towed with the fridge on propane in all my previous units for 16 years without any problems.
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Old 10-16-2014, 09:31 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by sokhapkin View Post
Discharged trailer battery is fully charged after 8-10 hours of towing with 12V fridge on.

The charge line to 7-way connector is about 20' of 10AWG wire. The connector is grounded with 3' 10AWG wire to the ground point in the TV trunk area.
Count yourself amongst the fortunate ones Many here including myself have found that the tugs charge line can not keep up with the 12v consumption of the fridge while towing. True of both the tugs I have used for my current trailer - one with factory tow package and one that had to have the charge line added to it.

Possible reasons for your good fortune is the gage of your charge line and as yours is a newer trailer the fridge may be more conservative on its 12V usage? It may also be impacted by what else is being used in the tug at the time - i.E.. AC, Heater, radios, phone charges etc.....

My point being is that one should not assume that all set ups are identical and if someone suggests that they are unable to run there fridge on 12V without some battery level depletion I would believe them.
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Old 10-16-2014, 11:50 AM   #19
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Propane and towing

I've had two different Aliners with 3-way refrigerators. One I pulled with a Dodge Caravan, the second with a
Ford Ranger. Until I reviewed the 12v line with #10 wire on the Caravan and in the Aliner, the battery would discharge if running on 12v. After rewiring, I did not have that problem. When I bought the second Aliner, I immediately did the same with it, and the Ranger. I do believe wire gauge is important if one wishes to travel on 12v. Just my opinion, for what it's worth.

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Old 10-16-2014, 12:19 PM   #20
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I'm retired and have had RVs of some sort for the last 50 years.
I always leave my refer on when traveling.
I think I've seen maybe 3 or 4 burned up RVs in the last 50 years and I don't remember how many miles..
While fueling up turn of the gas.
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Old 10-16-2014, 01:53 PM   #21
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Is it worth the risk?

This is an old argument. There's lots of things that people do that are somewhat risky and they get away with it for ever. Others don't.
When it comes to some activities it's a good idea to evaluate the risk vs the cost reducing that risk. Towing with the propane running the fridge is one those that also fits the "it only takes once" law. It only takes one time to forget to turn off the propane when fueling for vehicle, maybe you've got away with it a 100 times before. The conditions just right and a loud noise occurs. What's the cost of turning off the propane to further reduce the chances of a loud noise? In my opinion there is no cost, in fact it's less cost of time than running with the propane on. I don't have to get out before I get to the pump and turn the propane off. I don't have pull away from the pump then stop, turn the propane on the re-light the fridge.

Risk vs cost...
Law of once.
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Old 10-16-2014, 02:27 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by sokhapkin View Post
This is a BS. Sorry, can't resist. All vehicles have at least 80-100A alternators, fridge consumes about 10A on 12V.
I agree mostly with Bryon. Dude! It not the size of your alternator it's what you do with it.

There was a move afoot about 10 years ago to take car batteries to 24v because the electrical demands are so great in modern cars. Obviously it died out.

Plus, the capability to generate 100a doesn't mean "all you can use", is being made available to the charge wire in the towing harness. My Flex w/tow package has a 200A alternator and I know for a fact that only about 4 amps is passed to the trailer when my refrig is on DC and drawing ~10a.
(photo of test box in line with the trailer connection.)

I routinely arrive at my campsite with a dead trailer battery after a long trip despite my 200a alternator.
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Old 10-16-2014, 03:39 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Steve L. View Post
I agree mostly with Bryon. Dude! It not the size of your alternator it's what you do with it.

There was a move afoot about 10 years ago to take car batteries to 24v because the electrical demands are so great in modern cars. Obviously it died out.

Plus, the capability to generate 100a doesn't mean "all you can use", is being made available to the charge wire in the towing harness. My Flex w/tow package has a 200A alternator and I know for a fact that only about 4 amps is passed to the trailer when my refrig is on DC and drawing ~10a.
(photo of test box in line with the trailer connection.)

I routinely arrive at my campsite with a dead trailer battery after a long trip despite my 200a alternator.
I was quite surprised, I guess I shouldn't have been, when I went to purchase a new battery for my 2005 Dakota with tow package. They checked the current coming from the alternator no trailer, no accessories on, and the truck idling. The truck was using almost 100 amps at that point. It has a 150 amp alternator.
My previous tow was a 1998 Blazer, I managed to get 2 amps to the battery with nothing on in the trailer. As soon as I turned on the fridge I started drawing close to 8 amps out of the battery. Yes I put a meter on to be sure of what was going on.

Steve, they started talking about going to 24volt or even 32 volt systems about 20 to 25 years ago. The amount of copper was getting very hard to handle both weight and the cost of copper. Much of the problem was solved with CAN buss and microprocessors. It still takes a lot of current to run everything but you don't have to run large gauge wires to and from switches as well as power the stuff you need to run.
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Old 10-16-2014, 05:10 PM   #24
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My guess would be that the newer the car and the more stuff such as navigation system, blue tooth, tire monitoring, rear DVD, etc etc the more amps the vehicle uses up and the less that is available to go to the trailer. Could be wrong though!
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Old 10-16-2014, 09:27 PM   #25
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The unanswered question remains: It is not illegal to pull your trailer with the refrigerator ON in any of the 50 states nor, apparently, in the opinion of those states, is it unsafe.

Of course there are local exceptions for tunnels, ferries etc.

But, travelling in fear of every and any possible risk, is like living life on ones knees.
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Old 10-17-2014, 07:45 AM   #26
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but, travelling in fear of every and any possible risk, is like living life on ones knees.
x2
I can't agree more


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Old 10-17-2014, 10:27 AM   #27
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The unanswered question remains: It is not illegal to pull your trailer with the refrigerator ON in any of the 50 states nor, apparently, in the opinion of those states, is it unsafe.

Of course there are local exceptions for tunnels, ferries etc.

But, travelling in fear of every and any possible risk, is like living life on ones knees.
Seems the people that run the tunnels and ferries don't think it is safe??
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Old 10-17-2014, 11:04 AM   #28
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Seems the people that run the tunnels and ferries don't think it is safe??
Just like running your car in a closed garage, it's all about location, location & location. One would think that, should something happen with a leaky or broken LP line in an enclosed space that the consequences could be much greater than just when driving down the road. Again it's all about risk management.

BTW: In those instances ALL of the LP must be OFF and the tank valves closed. It's not the refrigerator flame they are concerned about, it's the entire system.
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