12 volt refrigerator? - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 10-22-2013, 09:26 PM   #15
Senior Member
 
Spanke's Avatar
 
Name: David
Trailer: 1978 Trillium 1300
Cumberland, Indiana
Posts: 382
Registry
Danforth 12 volt compressor refrigerators are no more expensive than a new 3-way ammonia type frig and are far more efficient. You can buy a 2.4cf for $639 + shipping here: Nova Kool R2600 68L Single Door Refrigerator (R2600) DC Only

This frig is pretty much a direct physical size replacement for the old Dometic rm211.

Since there is a compressor, they work much better than ammonia technology and you don't need propane or large vents on the side of your trailer. Only uses 3 amp when running. Easily can run a long time with only solar to replenish your battery.

If you have a generator to recharge you're golden. On shore power, if you have a converter, it only takes a 3 amp circuit to make it work.

Just more food for thought!

Spanke
__________________

__________________
Trilliums Rock!
Spanke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-22-2013, 10:49 PM   #16
Member
 
Name: Weldon
Trailer: Eggcamper 2007
Texas
Posts: 41
12v fridge

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lorelei L View Post
Anyone install a 12 v fridge? How is it working for you? Do you use solar panels?
I have a 12 volt. Norcold fridge in my Eggcamper, as suggested when I bought it new in 2007. It operates straight from the battery. Battery recharging takes place thru my power converter. It will operate about 3 days off a fully charged battery, if the battery is not getting recharged.
It is small, and actually has a small freezer. It does a great job for what I need and have had no issues with it Model is norcold DC40 or something like that. Manufacturer says direct battery connection for power, not thru one of the 12 volt outputs on the converter. Supposedly a cleaner 12 volt source to the unit. They are a bit pricey.
__________________

__________________
weldon freeman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-23-2013, 12:19 AM   #17
Senior Member
 
David B.'s Avatar
 
Name: Dave & Paula Brown
Trailer: Lil Snoozy
Arizona
Posts: 1,721
Registry
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spanke View Post
Danforth 12 volt compressor refrigerators are no more expensive than a new 3-way ammonia type frig and are far more efficient. You can buy a 2.4cf for $639 + shipping here: Nova Kool R2600 68L Single Door Refrigerator (R2600) DC Only

This frig is pretty much a direct physical size replacement for the old Dometic rm211.

Since there is a compressor, they work much better than ammonia technology and you don't need propane or large vents on the side of your trailer. Only uses 3 amp when running. Easily can run a long time with only solar to replenish your battery.

If you have a generator to recharge you're golden. On shore power, if you have a converter, it only takes a 3 amp circuit to make it work.

Just more food for thought!

Spanke

I have a NovaKool Danfoss 12 volt only compressor style refrigerator/freezer in our 13' Scamp. It has more interior capacity than the Dometic 3 way it replaced. We use it off the grid almost exclusively for 8 weeks at a time. The unit was less than $700.00, and a 100 watt Ramsond Solar Panel (less than a generator, & made in the USA) to keep our single group 27 battery charged. I plan to purchase a new fiberglass trailer in the future and will insist that it will have this technology in it.
Dave & Paula
Attached Thumbnails
DSC01194.jpg   DSC01214.jpg  

DSC01343.jpg  
__________________
David B. is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-23-2013, 09:00 AM   #18
Senior Member
 
David Tilston's Avatar
 
Name: Dave W
Trailer: Trillium 4500 - 1977, 1978 (2), 1300 - 1977, 1973, and a 1972
Alberta
Posts: 5,316
Registry
A 12VDC / 120VAC compressor fridge is what you are looking for. They are expensive, but they have many of the advantages of a regular house fridge, because they work the same way. Specifically they make cold fast in comparison to the absorption fridges, (more ice). They also require much less power then either the Peltier or the absorption fridges.

The three technologies are very different.

Absorption fridges:
These are the mainstay of the RV world. This is because almost everyone carries propane on their RV. On a 20lb bottle, some have told me that they can go for two weeks. The technology is difficult to explain. The process has many stages. It runs at a very high pressure as well. What is important to understand is that a little heat can make cold, even Ice. Making heat with propane is not too hard, with 12 VDC, it sucks up the power. Three way fridges have three heat supplies, propane, a 12 VDC resistance heater, and a 120 VAC resistance heater.

Peltier Coolers:
These use a solid state cooling unit. They are typically low efficiency, so will drain you battery quickly. I can't say I understand the physics, but it is kinda like a thermocouple in reverse. Instead of heat making a little electricity, what happens is electricity makes a little cold. They typically have a 20C heat differential. That is they can cool ~20C below ambient temp. If it is 30C out, then the cooler is 10C inside.
__________________
David Tilston is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-23-2013, 10:12 AM   #19
Member
 
Lorelei L's Avatar
 
Name: Lorelei
Trailer: uhaul
Florida
Posts: 52
Thanks for all the info! I have some real direction for research now. Dave & Paula: nice solar setup!
__________________
Lorelei L is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-23-2013, 10:35 AM   #20
Senior Member
 
Carol H's Avatar
 
Name: Carol
Trailer: 22' Airstream Formerly 16' Scamp
British Columbia
Posts: 11,731
Registry
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lorelei L View Post
We like to stay in national parks and forests and with our old camper we have a larger 3way with a decent sized freezer that we used with propane. Now that we are looking for an egg, refrigeration is a concern. I know how fast you can go thru ice! I just don't want to have to spend another $1000 having a new 3way installed.
Here is my casual observation on the topic of do you spend the dollars up front on a 3 way Fridge or go with a newer 12 VDC fridge that sips power.

I also camp off the grid and have a 3 way which I never run on DC - in part due to it being an older fridge that sucks back DC - battery would be dead in less than a day, so I use propane when off the grid. Doesnt eat much propane so I am good for the long haul. I have a very small (inexpensive) solar system to keep my battery topped up due to my other light power usage when dry camping - have LED lights, water pump, furnace or FF fan and some phone and camera recharging.

I also camp with two parties with newer trailers (none fiberglass trailers) that have Norcold 12 VDC fridges - they are actually a bit smaller fridges than mine and I believe they are much like the 2.7 cubic foot marine style ones that Norcold sells (actually may well be those ones) - they sell for about $700 if I am not mistaken. Problem is that although they use far less DC than my old fridge by the end of 2 days of dry camping they are starting to worry about their batteries as they are either at or getting close to 50% - although they have both gone to the expense of switched to using 2 6 volt batteries to try and help out with that. As well as all LED lights in the trailer and being very careful with power usage. As a result both have had to invest in fairly large solar systems (at least compared to my set up) to deal with that. Which work if we are camping out in a sunny location but dont work so well on bad weather days or when camping under heavy tree canopy. Now after a couple of years of dealing with this issue and not overly successfully (having run batteries dead a few times and having to replace batteries due to that) they are looking at replacing the fridges with 3 ways or buying a generator. REALLY hoping as I camp near them they just replace them with a 3 way fridge and forget the generator!

I suspect that although $1000 sounds like a lot to pay for a fridge - if you add up the cost of a decent 12 VDC Fridge and the cost of solar that you will need to keep it running (assuming you have sun) for more than 3 days &/or the cost of a generator to stay off the grid for more than a few days, it may well be cheaper to just pay for the 3 way fridge up front and know you are going to be fine regardless of the weather.
Carol H is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-23-2013, 12:17 PM   #21
Senior Member
 
Name: Drew
Trailer: Trillium Outback - 2004
Alberta
Posts: 106
Registry
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lorelei L View Post
Anyone install a 12 v fridge? How is it working for you? Do you use solar panels?
I exclusively boondock and use a Nova Kool fridge, draws 2.2-2.4 amps when running. My battery bank is two T-125's and a 215 watt solar panel.

I'd suggest sizing your battery to your electrical needs and how long you want to go with no charge. Then you either decide to make your trips a certain length before plugging in or choose a panel to charge your battery bank properly.

I've used my fridge in all temperatures, it's never failed and always kept everything cold/frozen.
__________________
Where were going, we dont need a plug-in.
multi-task is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-23-2013, 01:53 PM   #22
Raz
Senior Member
 
Raz's Avatar
 
Name: Raz
Trailer: Trillium 2010
Vermont
Posts: 4,062
Hello Lorelei. We have one member who loves his drip coffee when boon docking. As such he has installed extra battery capacity and an inverter. Others want a microwave. Bigger batteries. Bigger inverter. Next comes bigger solar panels or generators. I read about one fellow who ran an air conditioner off grid. Realize you can run anything you want if you are willing to throw enough money at it. As Carol has suggested the propane fridge is as simple as it gets. It will run a long time on one tank and keep your milk from going sour. But the compromise is performance; it will not match a compressor fridge. A compressor fridge will freeze your ice cream and cool your beer as long as you have the energy and the overhead to provide it. Which is better is subjective. Let us know what you do and how it works out. Good luck, Raz
__________________
Raz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-23-2013, 03:11 PM   #23
Senior Member
 
MCDenny's Avatar
 
Name: Denny
Trailer: Lil Snoozy
Michigan
Posts: 551
We have a 3.6 cu ft 120v AC dorm fridge in our little snoozy with two t105 220ah 6v batteries and a 600w true sine wave inverter. It will run the fridge for 33 hrs before dropping to 50% charge and causing the inverter to fault out due to low voltage when the compressor motor starts. Running the inverter plus fridge draws 7 amps from the battery. This works pretty well but a 12v fridge with a danfoss compressor would run twice as long on the same battery power. Check out truck fridge.com. They look just like webasto units for half the price. A 4 cu ft model is $600.

If I had it to do over again I would have skipped the dorm fridge and put on a 12v danfoss unit.
__________________
MCDenny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-23-2013, 03:47 PM   #24
Senior Member
 
David Tilston's Avatar
 
Name: Dave W
Trailer: Trillium 4500 - 1977, 1978 (2), 1300 - 1977, 1973, and a 1972
Alberta
Posts: 5,316
Registry
I saw a 12VDC compressor fridge at my favorite wrecker for $25. I still kick myself for not getting it.
__________________
David Tilston is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-24-2013, 01:03 AM   #25
Senior Member
 
David B.'s Avatar
 
Name: Dave & Paula Brown
Trailer: Lil Snoozy
Arizona
Posts: 1,721
Registry
Some other benefits with switching to our NovaKool was the fact that we could immediately feel the cold after turning it on (important for 100+ degree days in Arizona) and could actually freeze food if not careful to keep the thermostat turned up. You do NOT need to level the trailer as it handles angles up to 30 degrees. It never blows out, nor does one need to switch from 12 volt travel mode to 110 volt while in RV park, to propane mode when off grid... just turn it on and forget it.
__________________
David B. is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-24-2013, 07:30 PM   #26
Senior Member
 
Mike Magee's Avatar
 
Name: Michael
Trailer: Li'l Hauley
Oklahoma
Posts: 5,142
My 3 cubic foot absorption type fridge won't keep stuff cold enough on hot days. Even when working well, this type of fridge will only reduce temps to about 35 degrees below ambient temp, if I recall correctly. So if it's 95 outside, the fridge is 60. That is why I'm contemplating a switch to a Danfoss type. I already have a 75W solar panel.
__________________
How much time do we have left? 2 Chr. 7:14
Mike Magee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-24-2013, 07:41 PM   #27
Senior Member
 
Name: asdf
Trailer: asdf
Alabama
Posts: 346
Mike, I'm pretty sure this is not the case. I have the smaller unit but I turned it all the way cold and was getting low 40s when it was in the nineties out. It can struggle to cool a full fridge of new (warm) stuff, but once cold it says pretty darned cold.

Which is not to say a compressor type won't outperform it.
__________________
jwcolby54 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-24-2013, 08:49 PM   #28
Senior Member
 
Carol H's Avatar
 
Name: Carol
Trailer: 22' Airstream Formerly 16' Scamp
British Columbia
Posts: 11,731
Registry
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Magee View Post
My 3 cubic foot absorption type fridge won't keep stuff cold enough on hot days. Even when working well, this type of fridge will only reduce temps to about 35 degrees below ambient temp, if I recall correctly. So if it's 95 outside, the fridge is 60. That is why I'm contemplating a switch to a Danfoss type. I already have a 75W solar panel.
It must depend on the brand of absorption fridges. The old one in my trailer is about 4.5 cubic feet & it does struggle in the heat but I have managed to improve on it and it now stays in the 45 or lower range when temps hit the high 90's low 100's. I added insulation to around the outside of it and add a rear fan which made a BIG difference & leaving open the side vent helps as well. Also closed off any small openings to adjacent cabinets. Cant open it to often though as the temp will climb fast so best to keep cold drinks in a portable cooler. Have to watch it though if its set to cold the freezer will ice up and thats when its performance starts to go downhill fast.
__________________

Carol H is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Two 6 volt vs. 12 volt deep cycle kevin242 Electrical | Charging, Systems, Solar and Generators 15 05-13-2017 10:52 AM
110 volt and 12 volt on the same switch? Chris Jones Modifications, Alterations and Updates 46 04-04-2013 02:36 PM
Refrigerator not working on 12 volt. Ken Lepard Problem Solving | Owners Helping Owners 10 09-10-2007 07:55 PM
12 Volt Legacy Posts Problem Solving | Owners Helping Owners 20 07-03-2003 03:43 PM
12 volt Legacy Posts Electrical | Charging, Systems, Solar and Generators 31 05-23-2003 07:46 AM

» Upcoming Events
No events scheduled in
the next 465 days.
» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:34 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.