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Old 03-10-2019, 08:57 AM   #1
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2009 25' FB International
Wilmot , New Hampshire
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Newbe, about to purchase?

Hi, sorry for all the questions but:

I just realized that the frig only runs on electricity! I just assumed that it would also run on propane like the frig in our International trailer. Now I see that the frig is listed as 12v and the freezer as 110! Does that mean that the freezer won’t run at all while dry camping?😫😫
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Old 03-10-2019, 09:09 AM   #2
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Not sure of your model and year of Interstate, but believe that both will run on 12V. Ours is a combo fridge/freezer. It has a 12V DC compressor, so even when 'running on 120V AC' the 120V is converted to 12V DC to actually turn the compressor. The unit uses 120V if it is available - it is then converted to 12V DC. Since you mention the freezer separate from the freezer it sounds like they are separate units.

But I expect that both compressors are 12V compressors and you should be fine when boondocking. But 'fine' is relative. Many recent posts on an Interstate with separate fridge and freezer complain about them being power pigs compared to the battery capacity and solar that comes standard on the rig.
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Old 03-10-2019, 11:22 AM   #3
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Managing expectations

Do not purchase a stock Airstream Interstate with the illusion of quietly dry camping for more than a day or two. As Titus said, the fridge needs quite a bit of power. Technically you can boondock as long as your propane lasts since you can run the obnoxiously loud generator to recharge the batteries (if your neighbors don't run you out of the woods). Only with expensive major battery and/or solar upgrades can you live out the Airstream marketing dream.
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Old 03-10-2019, 12:40 PM   #4
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Ai 1919

We have completed our first extended outing. A 7 day trip, four of which were boondocking. New Interstate 19 foot 4x4. We went 3 days, six short showers. Ran the fridge each night AND the Truma combi heater on 12v. Woke up to battery at 70 percent for two nights, 65 percent for two nights. The Norcold 12v compressor fridge has a night setting using half power consumption. Works, just do not open the fridge much. The Truma system is fantastic. Set on eco mode, it ran on propane each night, it was down into the 40's. The 19 has 250 watts of solar, and two AGM's standard. I pulled the fuse on the Fusion, which also disconnects the Magnum and 110 power controller, saving precious juice. After the third night, I refueled the propane with 4.5 gallons, and filled the fresh and drained the waste tanks. The Truma runs at 90 percent efficiency, according to the manufacturer, and I believe it. So quite, you dont even know it is on. The beauty of the Truma is when you are plugged in to shore power, you can use 110 for both hot water AND the forced air ducted heat. No more space heater, or LOUD Suburban heater. Is the 19 perfect? No, everything is a compromise, right? No spare tire, the Fusion power drain drama, (come on Airstream, put a switch to turn it off when boondocking). Minor fit and finish issues. The solar panels should be hard mounted on a rack, not 25 friggin' holes drilled through the Sprinter roof! Bad form Airstream. The Fantastic fan does not close all the way for some reason. Too many squeaks and rattles. My previous Leisure Travel Van had very few. And what is up with the FAKE cabinet and door locks! They are totally non functional, except as a door and drawer pull! They don't function as a lock at all. Overall, we like the 19 footer, just expected a little more "detail" oriented fit and finish.
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Old 03-10-2019, 01:23 PM   #5
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Good to hear about the Truma.

We really enjoy our old bus, I just wish I didn't have to obsess about power issues when using it. One of these days (years) I'm going to upgrade the solar and batteries so we can boondock like a real hipster!
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Old 03-10-2019, 05:55 PM   #6
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Picking ours up in a few weeks. Our first RV experience... so appreciate your insights.
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Old 03-10-2019, 06:04 PM   #7
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People are not reading your post

Quote:
Originally Posted by jagzoo View Post
Hi, sorry for all the questions but:

I just realized that the frig only runs on electricity! I just assumed that it would also run on propane like the frig in our International trailer. Now I see that the frig is listed as 12v and the freezer as 110! Does that mean that the freezer won’t run at all while dry camping?����
You posted in the Sprinter and B Van area, not in the trailer area, so people did not answer appropriately.

Unless your fridge has been replaced with something other than it came with;
Your fridge/freezer should work on propane and 12v, together. Propane provides a flame for heating the refrigerant.
Your fridge/freezer should work on 120v and 12v, together. 120v energizes a heating element for heating the refrigerant.
12v is required all the time to operate the controls. 120v or propane is the energy option.

There is no separation in the mechanism that provides cold in the fridge/freezer. There is only one refrigeration unit.

Your owners manual, page H-4, and the Dometic operation manual are a good place to read.
https://www.airstream.com/wp-content...manual-168.pdf
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Old 03-10-2019, 09:30 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A W Warn View Post
You posted in the Sprinter and B Van area, not in the trailer area, so people did not answer appropriately.
Unless I am mistaken, the OP was just about to buy an interstate. His info still shows a trailer, but he was researching an Interstate.

He is correct in that the refrigerator (and freezer) in the Interstate run on 12v power. If 120v power is available, 120v is converted to 12v to run the box.
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Old 03-11-2019, 01:06 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pahaska View Post
Unless I am mistaken, the OP was just about to buy an interstate. His info still shows a trailer, but he was researching an Interstate.

He is correct in that the refrigerator (and freezer) in the Interstate run on 12v power. If 120v power is available, 120v is converted to 12v to run the box.
Thanks for setting me straight!

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Old 03-11-2019, 07:18 AM   #10
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Excellent review by 1919.

Hi, Jagzoo. Many of us have upgraded our solar and electrical systems to give us the "energy security" that we want. My record to date is off-grid for 5 weeks straight, and that's with an all-electric fridge (I am not retired, still have a job, can't stay away for longer than that, but I plan to someday). Our Interstate is water-limited, not power-limited. It started out not being able to boondock for more than about 36 hours without getting into battery trouble - now it can do so indefinitely. It is expensive to upgrade (we did lithium) but to me it was a no-brainer.
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Old 03-11-2019, 06:53 PM   #11
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Looked into upgrading the electrical system - around $15000 for a reliable system ��
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Old 03-13-2019, 06:48 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jagzoo View Post
Looked into upgrading the electrical system - around $15,000 for a reliable system ��
It doesn't sound unreasonable. My husband and I went high-end on as many components as we could, and we ended up spending close to $10,000 for 300 watts solar, 2,000 watt Xantrex inverter, 300 AH lithium, ElectroDacus control system, and a bunch of other components including an upgraded alternator, battery-to-battery charger, 8020 panel vaulting frame, etc. (descriptions here). No labor cost in our number as it was all DIY. I've seen lower numbers than $15,000, but I don't recall what they entail.
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