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Old 07-19-2009, 08:18 PM   #1
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Boondocking and Refrigerator, newb help please

Not exactly a boondocking perse, but please help out a newbie. I'm new to boondocking, and Airstreaming/RV camping in general.

I'm picking up a brand new 2009 25' international sig. FB this week and planning to do some boondocking/camping.

I'll plug the AS in the day before and get the fridge running, but when you are traveling and boondocking, what do y'all do? Run it on propane, battery, or keep it off? I'm planning on getting a Yamaha or Honda 2000 generator to run for a few hours to keep battery charged, but I would figure that the fridge needs to run. How long can you run it on propane or battery and what should I do? thanks!!
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Old 07-19-2009, 08:37 PM   #2
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run it on propane if you don't have elect. available. It uses very little propane. You could easily run it for a month on propane. We run ours on propane while traveling also to keep the food cold.
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Old 07-19-2009, 08:57 PM   #3
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Put the fridge on auto and it will automatically switch to propane when disconnected from your land power.. running on propane is and it really keeps things cold and frozen in the freezer too.
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Old 07-19-2009, 09:05 PM   #4
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I almost always boondock, in fact to this date I have never camped anywhere I plugged it in. Even in cold weather I use propane on everything with the exception I usually charge the battery in the evening with a small generator. Most of the folks I usually camp with use the Honda 2000, I have an old off brand 1300 and wish I had one of the Honda's, if not for being able to tie two of the beasts together, my little generator is at least three times louder than the Honda's.
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Old 07-19-2009, 09:13 PM   #5
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I have to second the propane suggestion. We've used it in the national park where you have no hook-ups and I was astonished at how well it runs the fridge. I don't understand it a bit, but it keeps frozen food frozen and everything in the fridge super cold and this is a 27 year old fridge! I think we tried the generator once but it's so much easier, cheaper, and quieter to use propane, that's all we do now.

I would ask others though--do you run the fridge on propane while driving or is that dangerous? We've been afraid to do so, but it seems like others do it with no problems or concerns. Anyone?
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Old 07-19-2009, 09:23 PM   #6
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When you pick-up the trailer have the dealer go thru EVERYTHING, start making your list now. If your like us you have a brochure, check it out for ideas. After staying on his lot overnight you will have even more questions. Lot camping is a MUST,( a lot like dock'n), don't let 'em chase you out and don't be in too much of a hurry to get "on the road"

We have always run the fridge on propane while traveling. After all it's not an "ice box".

Good Luck and keep us posted on your progress.
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Old 07-19-2009, 09:41 PM   #7
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Thanks all for the response...propane it is. I didn't realize that it was so efficient on the propane.

If you keep the fridge on propane all the time, do you turn it off at the gas station?? There is a pilot light, is there?

I'm not planning on lot camping since the dealer is only 20 minutes away from us

If I have a question, I can always call or drop by. Thanks again and I'll have a LOT more questions to follow probably.
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Old 07-19-2009, 09:53 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by lvcat2004 View Post
Thanks all for the response...propane it is. I didn't realize that it was so efficient on the propane.

If you keep the fridge on propane all the time, do you turn it off at the gas station?? There is a pilot light, is there?

I'm not planning on lot camping since the dealer is only 20 minutes away from us

If I have a question, I can always call or drop by. Thanks again and I'll have a LOT more questions to follow probably.
Set the fridge on auto it will switch over on it's own when on AC and re-light if blown out on the road.

Not to be a Smart ASS but I would stay on the lot overnight, sounds like you have a steep learning curve.

I do shut off the fridge before fueling, although the fridge and water heater are on the oppisite side.
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Old 07-19-2009, 10:33 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERT CROSS View Post
Set the fridge on auto it will switch over on it's own when on AC and re-light if blown out on the road.

Not to be a Smart ASS but I would stay on the lot overnight, sounds like you have a steep learning curve.

I do shut off the fridge before fueling, although the fridge and water heater are on the oppisite side.
Bob doesnt mean to be a Smart ASS... We love when people learn as they go.. its like sitting at the boat ramp with new boaters.. or maybe the dreaded dump station with a line up of people behind you

Dont worry. The trick is to be consistent and double check everything before you pull away. If you think something might be going wrong you are probably right, so go with your hunch and check it out. Ask a bunch of
questions! Mistakes can get expensive..

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Old 07-19-2009, 10:58 PM   #10
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The propane will keep you and your frig going for a long time...and with the automatic switch-over, it does all the work. We keep our propane on while driving...they are designed to do that, particulalry the more automated newer ones.

When we refuel, we try to use the end pump island so that our frig side is on the opposite side from the pump island...if we have no choice and there's a pump nearby, we turn the frig off while fueling...this also give us a chance to check the inside of the trailer to make sure everyting is traveling well, or to grab a soda for the road.

Some folks prefer not to have open gas lines while driving and turn them off at the tank. If you do this and you are going a short distance, and the frig is cold when you leave it will stay cold with the door closed for several hours...or you can put ice packs in to help. We prepare meals ahead (like spaghetti sauce, stew or chili), freeze them, then put a frozen meal or two in the frig to thaw slowly and help keep things cold.
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Old 07-20-2009, 12:13 AM   #11
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I appreciate your smart ASS advice Bob , but you don't understand where this dealership is. It's in the middle of Vegas, in not very good part of town, right on a fairly busy street (Sahara Ave.).

If you went there, you wouldn't think of staying there overnight either, trust me.

For those of us who live higher up in the elevation on the West side of Vegas, we don't venture out to the East side (across the strip) unless we really, really had to...like picking up a new Airstream
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Old 07-20-2009, 06:09 AM   #12
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we run our fridge on the road and don't turn it off at gas stations. it has been designed to be safe at gas stations. in fact there was a recall a year or two ago that improved the design of the pilot light shroud that protects the unit. when mine had the recall work done i found that the pilot light rarely blows out any more- another added benefit. good luck.
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Old 07-20-2009, 07:50 AM   #13
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If you went there, you wouldn't think of staying there overnight either, trust me.
Nuff said, been to Vegas, know of what you speak.

I had been Stream'n for 18 Seasons with a 63 Safari when we got the Classic. So I thought I knew everything I needed to know. NOT...big difference between a 63 and an 03. I got a very poor orientation from the Dealer, and was a little too anxious to get on the road.

With-in 5 miles I noticed the red warning light had come on for the brake controller indicating a bad connection. When I stopped to investigate I found the plastic 7-way on the ground with a nice bevel worn on it. It now gets zip-tied thru the holes on the cover, now it stays put.
Would a better walk thru discovered this concern?, probably not. But I was used too the old metal plug on the 63 that never separated and expected the "better" plastic one to perform as designed.

Point is, we all learn thru experience, and there is a wealth of that here!!

Good luck, keep posting and.... STREAM SAFE
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