Casita refrigerator issue - Fiberglass RV
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Old 02-21-2021, 02:14 PM   #1
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Name: Tom
Trailer: Casita
Minnesota
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Casita refrigerator issue

New member and owner of a 2018 casita deluxe . Dometic fridge. The refrigerator runs fine on 110v and gas with 110ív backup. My question is: how long should I be able to run the fridge on gas with 12 volt? Enjoy being off grid but only get a few hours out of the battery even with solar panel on. Is this normal? Would an extra battery or more solar help? Regards, Tom
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Old 02-21-2021, 02:17 PM   #2
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Name: Charlie Y
Trailer: Escape 21 - Felicity
Oregon
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Running on propane requires 12V for the control board and the gas solenoid; should run for days. I'd get the battery load-tested, it's probably time for a new one.


If you run it on 12VDC it will definitely suck the battery down fast (less than a day in hot weather.)
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Old 02-21-2021, 02:30 PM   #3
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Name: bill
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19; 1977 Trillium 1300
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+1 Step 1: take your battery to the auto parts store of your choice and get it tested (for free).
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Old 02-21-2021, 05:13 PM   #4
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Name: mike
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New York
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This is not normal . Are you sure your running it on propane instead of DC? On propane the battery would only run the controls.There would not be much draw on battery. On the other hand if you run it on 12 volt DC the battery would only last a few hours.
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Old 02-21-2021, 05:23 PM   #5
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Name: Steve
Trailer: 2018, 21ft escapeó 2019 Ram 1500 Laramie
NW Wisconsin
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We have camped up to 4 days with our Casita refrigerator on propane and not depleted our single 27F deep cell battery .
When we added a 100 watt solar panel we went well over a week
As others have said - Bad battery or refrigerator set to 12VDC
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Old 02-22-2021, 11:26 AM   #6
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Name: Richard
Trailer: casita
South Carolina
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Does anyone know how long the battery will last (in good shape to start with) in a 2017 Casita 17 with a Dometic 4.2cf 3 way refrigerator on propane with almost no loads on it but the refrigerator? I have tried to find info online from Dometic, among others, but no one can tell me what the refrigerator draws to run its igniter, control panel, etc. This would be for when ONLY the refrigerator is running. My lights are Luci lights and my phone and Kindle are charged in my truck while driving. The water pump is 12v but I can limit that severely. Thanx!
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Old 02-22-2021, 12:59 PM   #7
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Name: Bob & Jackie
Trailer: 17' Casita Spirit Deluxe
Arizona
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomash John View Post
New member and owner of a 2018 casita deluxe . Dometic fridge. The refrigerator runs fine on 110v and gas with 110ív backup. My question is: how long should I be able to run the fridge on gas with 12 volt? Enjoy being off grid but only get a few hours out of the battery even with solar panel on. Is this normal? Would an extra battery or more solar help? Regards, Tom
Save your 12v and use propane.
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Old 02-22-2021, 02:26 PM   #8
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Name: Dick
Trailer: '15 17' LD Casita and '17 Tahoe LT
Texas
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I think the converter will still be drawing current also, but not sure.
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Old 02-22-2021, 03:10 PM   #9
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Name: Steve
Trailer: 2018, 21ft escapeó 2019 Ram 1500 Laramie
NW Wisconsin
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Our original Casita Interstate battery only lasted 14 months before failing
(Shorted Cell ) We replaced our trailer battery with a Walmart special which lasted 5 years . If you still have the original battery which is now 4 years old
, I would suggest as others have to have the battery tested
The Dometic refrigerator has a low DC voltage detector
If the voltage drops to a certain level the refrigerator will shut off so you don’t totally drain the battery.
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Old 02-22-2021, 04:25 PM   #10
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Name: Jann
Trailer: Casita
Colorado
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Originally Posted by richardhh View Post
Does anyone know how long the battery will last (in good shape to start with) in a 2017 Casita 17 with a Dometic 4.2cf 3 way refrigerator on propane with almost no loads on it but the refrigerator? I have tried to find info online from Dometic, among others, but no one can tell me what the refrigerator draws to run its igniter, control panel, etc. This would be for when ONLY the refrigerator is running. My lights are Luci lights and my phone and Kindle are charged in my truck while driving. The water pump is 12v but I can limit that severely. Thanx!
We have camped for 3-4 days using our fridge on propane, using our lights and pump. We've never totally run the battery down in that time frame. If only fridge it should last a lot longer than that. Since then we've put in LED lights so I expect it to last 5-6 days.
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Old 02-24-2021, 04:22 AM   #11
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Name: Wil
Trailer: 2010 Casita 17' SD
Washington
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomash John View Post
New member and owner of a 2018 casita deluxe . Dometic fridge. The refrigerator runs fine on 110v and gas with 110ív backup. My question is: how long should I be able to run the fridge on gas with 12 volt? Enjoy being off grid but only get a few hours out of the battery even with solar panel on. Is this normal? Would an extra battery or more solar help? Regards, Tom

Don't understand your "gas with 110v backup," or "gas with 12 volt." On ours on "Auto" it will automatically switch between "AC" and "Gas" with "AC" taking preference. That is, when 110v is available it runs on that. Disconnect from 110v and it runs on gas. Set for "Gas" only it ignores 110v. Set for "AC" it ignores gas. Set for "DC" it runs full time directly from the battery/dc supply - no gas or 110. These are the heat source selections. (Yes, it uses heat to make the refrigerant work.) In every case it requires 12v to run the controls. So if the "DC" light is on you're using DC for heat, no gas or 110v, and the battery will be run down in only a few hours no matter how good it is. Our rule is NEVER RUN IT ON "DC." We leave it on "Auto" and let it do the switching between AC and Gas depending on what is available.
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Old 02-24-2021, 02:31 PM   #12
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Name: Jann
Trailer: Casita
Colorado
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Originally Posted by wilyoung View Post
Don't understand your "gas with 110v backup," or "gas with 12 volt." On ours on "Auto" it will automatically switch between "AC" and "Gas" with "AC" taking preference. That is, when 110v is available it runs on that. Disconnect from 110v and it runs on gas. Set for "Gas" only it ignores 110v. Set for "AC" it ignores gas. Set for "DC" it runs full time directly from the battery/dc supply - no gas or 110. These are the heat source selections. (Yes, it uses heat to make the refrigerant work.) In every case it requires 12v to run the controls. So if the "DC" light is on you're using DC for heat, no gas or 110v, and the battery will be run down in only a few hours no matter how good it is. Our rule is NEVER RUN IT ON "DC." We leave it on "Auto" and let it do the switching between AC and Gas depending on what is available.
This is how we do it also. One reason to set it on auto is so if you are gone for the day and on 110v if the electric goes out it will bounce onto gas immediately and your fridge will not get hot. We've had the problem with electric failures at campgrounds and came back with it on propane. The only time we put it on propane only is when the electric isn't good enough. It will never go to 12v unless you set it there.
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Old 03-06-2021, 08:49 AM   #13
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Name: Bonnie
Trailer: Casita
Massachusetts
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When to use 12 v for fridge:

Twelve volt DC may be preferred when towing AND 12 volt power is provided by the tow vehicle through the tailer to tow car electrical connection. This avoids the possibility the propane flame being blown out by the 60 mph tow speed, and gusts created by passing, or being passed by, other vehicles.
Don't forget to change back to propane when stopped for long duration (more than an hour), or you might find the fridge has drained the trailer AND the tow car batteries.
Jon MB
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Old 03-06-2021, 09:00 AM   #14
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Name: Steve
Trailer: 2018, 21ft escapeó 2019 Ram 1500 Laramie
NW Wisconsin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bonnie RB View Post
Twelve volt DC may be preferred when towing AND 12 volt power is provided by the tow vehicle through the tailer to tow car electrical connection. This avoids the possibility the propane flame being blown out by the 60 mph tow speed, and gusts created by passing, or being passed by, other vehicles.
Don't forget to change back to propane when stopped for long duration (more than an hour), or you might find the fridge has drained the trailer AND the tow car batteries.
Jon MB
What type / make of vehicle are you towing with ?
Did you modify your tow vehicle / trailer wiring ?
Our vehicle has the factory tow package and a 220 amp alternator and we cannot accomplish what you describe in your post
If we drive / tow all day with our refrigerator running on 12 VDC , when we arrive at our campsite our battery is partially depleted .
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Old 03-06-2021, 09:20 PM   #15
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Name: Jann
Trailer: Casita
Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bonnie RB View Post
Twelve volt DC may be preferred when towing AND 12 volt power is provided by the tow vehicle through the tailer to tow car electrical connection. This avoids the possibility the propane flame being blown out by the 60 mph tow speed, and gusts created by passing, or being passed by, other vehicles.
Don't forget to change back to propane when stopped for long duration (more than an hour), or you might find the fridge has drained the trailer AND the tow car batteries.
Jon MB
Some vehicles don't keep the battery up enough when using the fridge on 12v. We stopped for lunch one day and the fridge was getting warm and the trailer battery was pretty dead. My husband had accidentally bumped the 12v button before we left the campground. We never use the 12v for that reason except to get from campground to gas station then after gassing up we put it on auto.
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