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Old 07-10-2013, 03:59 PM   #1
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5 day trip coming up- Refrigerator question

My 2003 CCD 22 footer,does it have an inverter? If yes then refrig. is set on AC (getting power from truck) when traveling on the road, propane or hook up at campsite? Thanks,
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Old 07-10-2013, 04:08 PM   #2
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I don't know if an inverter was a factory option for your trailer, but I would recommend against trying to use it to power the 2-way fridge on the road. You're not likely to get enough current down the charge line to keep from draining the battery to run what's essentially a heater on the back of the fridge.

For an absorption fridge the practical means of operation on the road is propane. If you're nervous about running the propane side of the fridge on the road AND are staying up in the north/cool country you can just treat it like an ice chest when on the road, pack it full of already-cold food and frozen cold packs and hope it stays cold.
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Old 07-10-2013, 04:26 PM   #3
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Thanks for the quick response. I'll run the propane on the road and when I can plug in I'll switch to AC. Thanks
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Old 07-10-2013, 05:20 PM   #4
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If you have an inverter you will have a wall switch and at least two wall receptacles just for the inverted power. I have a 600 Watt inverter and it located under the front bench seat next to the water tank and pump. The refer runs on 120 Volts AC shore power provided provided through circuit breakers and a dedicated 3-pronged wall outlet behind the refrigerator. I alway travel with the propane on with the exception of the Washington State ferries where they require you turn off your tanks. But that is a short period.
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Old 07-16-2013, 08:22 AM   #5
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We ran the fridge off the inverter for part of a trip on a hot day where we had to travel through a tunnel (and thus have propane off). It was sunny when we set it up, but started raining, so the solar system (~270 watts) wasn't doing much good. We have three batteries. The batteries were pretty run down when we got to the campground, even with the tow vehicle charge and some sun we'd gotten. It was perhaps two hours of use. So, I wouldn't recommend that solution for very long.
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:09 AM   #6
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I don't understand the concept of running the fridge on the inverter. I need some help here. In my trailer I have two dedicated outlets for the inverter, no three of them. One is under the table, one is next to the television and the third is in the bedroom by the television mount there.

If I wanted to run my fridge on the inverter, wouldn't I have to reroute my cord that plugs into an outlet behind the fridge back into the coach and over to one of the three outlets I have?

Just "turning on the inverter" isn't going to power up all the outlets, especially the one the fridge plugs into.
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:28 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aftermath View Post
I don't understand the concept of running the fridge on the inverter. I need some help here. In my trailer I have two dedicated outlets for the inverter, no three of them. One is under the table, one is next to the television and the third is in the bedroom by the television mount there.

If I wanted to run my fridge on the inverter, wouldn't I have to reroute my cord that plugs into an outlet behind the fridge back into the coach and over to one of the three outlets I have?

Just "turning on the inverter" isn't going to power up all the outlets, especially the one the fridge plugs into.
Your inverter sends 120VAC to selected outlets only (as you have outlined above). Running your fridge on electric (thru the inverter) will deplete your batteries quickly, as resistance heating (the AC heating element in your fridge) is the least efficient use of electricity in the coach.

If you needed to run the fridge on 120VAC in your case, you would have to either re-wire the inverter circuits to include the fridge outlet or run an extension cord from the back of the fridge to one of your existing inverter-powered outlets.

As an example of just how inefficient the inverter operated fridge would be, here is an example:

The heating element in your size fridge typically draws around 3 amps running on 120VAC. A direct conversion to DC would them be 30 amps @ 12VDC. Since no inverter is 100% efficient, add 15% to the total for inverter loss and you have an almost 35 amp draw from your batteries.

If you have the stock group 24 batteries in your trailer, you have a total of 160 amp/hours of capacity, of which 50% or 80 amps is useable (without potential damage to your batteries from too deep a draw down).

Do the math and you get just over 2 hours of inverter power for the 120VAC heating element of the fridge. NOT MUCH! And your TV's charge line will not be of much help in adding amp/hours to your battery bank. A properly sized solar array would help, but you would need at least 500 watts of solar panels and a sunny day to replenish 35 amps to the batteries every hour.

USE PROPANE! That's why it is included in your fridge operation system. Also, if you have to turn off the LP when going thru a tunnel, the closed fridge will keep food cold for several hours, as long as the door is not opened.
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Old 07-20-2013, 07:46 PM   #8
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Just "turning on the inverter" isn't going to power up all the outlets, especially the one the fridge plugs into.
In mine, it does. The original owner installed a 1500 watt inverter in ours, so we can run everything but the A/C off the inverter. The inverter powers the entire 120 volt system. They also installed a 3rd battery. Presumably they did a lot of boondocking with the trailer.
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