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Old 08-31-2015, 12:29 AM   #1
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Name: Gerard
Trailer: Boler
Alberta
Posts: 21
Fridge for Boler re-do

Hey all, I wanted to collect your experiences on fridge replacements for a Boler reno.

I have gutter my 17' to the shell and am in the process of refurbing the guts before building a new shiny interior. One area I am struggling with is the fridge. The Boler had a working 3way fridge in it which I still have but as you know it is old, and quite hideous by today's standards (yellow interior, brown exterior, etc.)

I would like to put a new fridge in the RV on the rebuild, one that doesn't need an external vent and preferably one that doesn't run on propane. Any ideas?

I don't expect to have AC connections that often so I am concerned that running a fridge off the inverter / battery wont work well for long.

Appreciate your ideas / advice. I suppose i could refurb the original 3 way if I had to but its not really my preference.

Thanks!
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Old 08-31-2015, 01:56 AM   #2
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Trailer: Casita SD17 2006 "Missing Link"
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gvanginkel View Post
Hey all, I wanted to collect your experiences on fridge replacements for a Boler reno.

I have gutter my 17' to the shell and am in the process of refurbing the guts before building a new shiny interior. One area I am struggling with is the fridge. The Boler had a working 3way fridge in it which I still have but as you know it is old, and quite hideous by today's standards (yellow interior, brown exterior, etc.)

I would like to put a new fridge in the RV on the rebuild, one that doesn't need an external vent and preferably one that doesn't run on propane. Any ideas?

I don't expect to have AC connections that often so I am concerned that running a fridge off the inverter / battery wont work well for long.

Appreciate your ideas / advice. I suppose i could refurb the original 3 way if I had to but its not really my preference.

Thanks!
Not sure why you don't want to use LP as you say you won't have shore power very often. LP refers are used in most all RV's. You also already have the vent holes in the shell. There are many posts here that deal with folks that are using 12V refers with solar set ups too.
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Old 08-31-2015, 09:53 AM   #3
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Name: Edward
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Battery powered refers are possible. Nest caravan trailers out of Bend Oregon uses that setup. However there are three concerns first the setup is expensive (several thousand), second it takes at least 200 amp hours of batteries, third it takes 200 - 400 watts of solar to keep the batteries charged. It makes a nice, reliable, quiet setup but it costs.
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Old 08-31-2015, 11:12 AM   #4
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Name: kevin
Trailer: 13' Scamp
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!2 V Fridge all the way

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Originally Posted by AshlandEd View Post
Battery powered refers are possible. Nest caravan trailers out of Bend Oregon uses that setup. However there are three concerns first the setup is expensive (several thousand), second it takes at least 200 amp hours of batteries, third it takes 200 - 400 watts of solar to keep the batteries charged. It makes a nice, reliable, quiet setup but it costs.
I agree you may need to up the battery size and add some solar, but not nearly as much as you think. My Engel 60 averages 18w x 24hr @ around 75 degrees ambient.

Living in Colorado I only have 30 W of solar and an 80 AHr battery and I can camp for a week at a time. My friends use theirs with no solar for weekends with no issue. Ideally I would up the solar capability to 100W. 200-400 W is WAY over board, especially once you have upgraded to LED lights.
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Old 08-31-2015, 11:27 AM   #5
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Agree. I was specing for a 4 cu. ft Novakool or equivalent in the Pacific NW. A worse case scenario.
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Old 08-31-2015, 11:46 PM   #6
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Name: Gerard
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What fridge is running off battery alone?

Guys - thanks for the reply.

Can you post me the model or a link to the fridge that you run off battery alone? Im open to adding solar to avoid a 3 way as I dont want the hassle / vents to the exterior.

Im thinking 2x deep cycle gel batteries and LED will be installed.

Thanks.
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Old 08-31-2015, 11:56 PM   #7
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Before you decide you want to go with 12V to power your fridge, I suggest you price a couple deep cycle gel batteries and keep in mind that you will have to replace them every few years.
I just replaced one Trojan 27 TMX at a very good price ( for Canada ) of $240. Got the same about four years ago for about $300 at Lordco.
I could have got the AGM Trojan for $260, but it weighs considerably more ( another thing to consider X2 ).
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Old 09-01-2015, 12:12 AM   #8
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I had great success with 100 watt solar panel, a group 27 lead acid battery mounted on the tongue, and a NovaKool refrigerator in our 13' Scamp. I never ran out of power while camping for months at a time.
Dave & Paula
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Old 09-01-2015, 12:26 AM   #9
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Another consideration. Gerard is in Alberta and Dave is in Arizona. Solar rays are harder to come by in Canada.
More stuff to think about.
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Old 09-01-2015, 12:45 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glenn Baglo View Post
Another consideration. Gerard is in Alberta and Dave is in Arizona. Solar rays are harder to come by in Canada.
More stuff to think about.
True, but we were camping in Michigan, Oregon, Washington, Northern Idaho, and Colorado where we not only got a fair amount of rain but accumulation of snow and hail in August.
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Old 09-01-2015, 01:39 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by gvanginkel View Post
Guys - thanks for the reply.
Can you post me the model or a link to the fridge that you run off battery alone? Im open to adding solar to avoid a 3 way as I dont want the hassle / vents to the exterior.
Im thinking 2x deep cycle gel batteries and LED will be installed.
Thanks.
Still don't understand why you are so against outside vents as you already have them from the original refer. I do believe that most folks that are running a 12V only fridge still have vents in the shell to remove the heat along with a fan. Maybe through the floor but you still have to exhaust the heat. From what I've read in many posts the cost of a "truck type fridge" is pretty much equal or more than that of a new small LP refer. Not to mention the cost of a solar set up big enough to run it. Where are you thinking of putting the extra weight and volume of two batteries? As many folks here have told owners of new to them trailers, use it for a camping season before you start any major renos to find out just what you really want/need to change. You're one step ahead as you're refer does work . I've been boondocking for over 30 years and have never run out of LP and only last year added a portable solar unit to top off the battery for the lights and such. OK, those are my questions for now, your turn.
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Old 09-01-2015, 11:55 PM   #12
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Name: Gerard
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The reason I dont want the vents is due to water penetration and since I am moving the kitchen to the front of the boler I dont want penetrations where the road spray will be most severe (front).

I am leaning to an Engle SB70F Engel SB70 Built-in Refrigerator

I think this will work for all my needs and may work well with 1 deep cycle gel battery.

Any advice?

Thanks.
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Old 09-02-2015, 12:01 AM   #13
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Measure twice, cut once.
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Old 09-02-2015, 12:43 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gvanginkel View Post
The reason I dont want the vents is due to water penetration and since I am moving the kitchen to the front of the boler I dont want penetrations where the road spray will be most severe (front).
I am leaning to an Engle SB70F Engel SB70 Built-in Refrigerator
I think this will work for all my needs and may work well with 1 deep cycle gel battery.
Any advice?
Thanks.
That's makes more sence for the vents, you didn't mention the kitchen move. You're still most likely going to need venting but you could run it through the floor. Maybe others that have modded a front kitchen will pop in to tell us how they dealt with vent issues/spray and how it's worked out.
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Old 09-02-2015, 09:37 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Glenn Baglo View Post
Measure twice, cut once.
Thanks Glenn ... Always sage advice.
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Old 09-02-2015, 11:57 AM   #16
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Name: Edward
Trailer: Casita
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Dave I'm very impressed with your real life results with the Novakool. My review of the 4.0 cu. ft. Novakool 24 hour power use was 25-30 ah. My 120 watt solar only produces 20-25 watts a day with reasonable open exposure here in Oregon (I got about 5 ah more when I live in AZ). I don't tilt my panel, do you? At the rate I thought I'd charge I'd be losing a few ah per day just with the fridge and need to add to that for any other power needs. Any other thoughts based on your experience?
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Old 09-18-2015, 12:13 AM   #17
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Name: Jim
Trailer: Boler 13'
Yukon
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Koolatron sells several 110/12 fridges thru Amazon.com and Amazon.ca including one that fits the opening in Betsey, 1973 Boler. And Canadian Tire was having a sale a couple days ago on solar panels. Lots of choices. I'm still fighting with the original one which seems to either not work or freeze everything, but may switch over. Already have a simple 20 watt solar to keep things going and putting in a 12v plug or USB plugs for phone, iPod, computer, etc. so will likely have to up the solar panel. Even putting a couple old computer fans (12v) on the Wagonmaster furnace.
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Old 09-18-2015, 07:30 AM   #18
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I have an Engel fridge in my fiberglass truck camper. We are very pleased with it. We have a solar system with a 140 W panel and 170 Amp Hr battery. We have LED lights and removed the furnace for a catalytic heater. We ran the fridge almost continuously for most of a year on an epic trip to Panama and back where shore power was a rarity. It performed flawlessly. Here at home (Alberta) I often leave it on between trips and the solar easily keeps up.
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Old 09-18-2015, 12:13 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glenn Baglo View Post
Before you decide you want to go with 12V to power your fridge, I suggest you price a couple deep cycle gel batteries and keep in mind that you will have to replace them every few years.
I just replaced one Trojan 27 TMX at a very good price ( for Canada ) of $240. Got the same about four years ago for about $300 at Lordco.
I could have got the AGM Trojan for $260, but it weighs considerably more ( another thing to consider X2 ).
Also price out what the 200W or more solar system is going to cost you to keep the best of the new 12V fridges powered up in cloudy or tree covered sites...
As well as the cost of a GOOD battery monitoring system need to keep a close eye on the state of the battery regardless of what type you go with.

May all start to make a vent on the side of the trailer for the fridge seem pretty reasonable.
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Old 09-18-2015, 02:04 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gvanginkel View Post
The reason I dont want the vents is due to water penetration...............
After some time on this site, I never read a post regarding water penetration through the reefer vents. Has anyone else had this problem?

If it is a problem, I should think that it would be reduced closer to the front of the trailer.
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