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Old 07-23-2021, 07:53 PM   #1
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So how can you get a compressor fridge in an Airstream?

This is my very first post as a new member to this forum. We just ordered a 2022 Flying Cloud 23FB this week and the year long wait has begun. So I have some time on my hands to explore options. One of my 2 biggest questions is how can I have / get a 12v DC Danfoss compressor fridge in my Airstream? I've searched this forum and there are discussions of pluses and minuses and comparisons, but not finding any info on procuring one. Can you get Airstream to install one upon production or do you have to swap out aftermarket? And if aftermarket what brand/models are compatible and will fit the space? I already have a Dometic compressor fridge in my truck camper and love it. Just returned from Madera CA with 115 degree Temps, and no problem cooling, strictly on solar. I can't get right with the thought of having to settle for something less. The truck camper was $30k new. Shouldn't I be able to get a compressor fridge in an Airstream that costs 2.5 times as much? Thanks in advance for any help with this.
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Old 07-23-2021, 08:13 PM   #2
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There have been a few threads about this recently, and I remember reading that Airstream was switching over to compressor fridges on all units. Might just be on some models, but it was discussed in another thread. Maybe contact your dealer to confirm.
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Old 07-23-2021, 08:13 PM   #3
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I think the 2022 models come with compressor refrigerators as standard equipment. Not sure about the manufacturers being used.
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Old 07-23-2021, 08:16 PM   #4
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That would be great! I hope we'll hear more about it soon.
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Old 07-23-2021, 10:24 PM   #5
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We're not confusing a true compressor (Danfoss type compressor, 12v DC only) with the "2-way" 120v AC/12v DC absorption fridges, are we? There is a major difference.
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Old 07-24-2021, 09:35 AM   #6
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Hi

Once (if ever) the spec sheets come out on the 2022's we'll know what the stock fridge is on each one. Given the number of mid-year updates out of AS, who knows what may also get upgraded before yours is delivered.

Best guess: it's already got a compressor fridge.

Upgrade path: Pull the "old" one and sell it for big bucks to one of the absorption fridge fans. Then fiddle the cabinetry to fit around the outline of the compressor fridge you pick.

Bob
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Old 07-24-2021, 09:48 AM   #7
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Is there anyone out there who ordered a compressor fridge and had it installed by a dealer?
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Old 07-24-2021, 09:54 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by koberudy View Post
We're not confusing a true compressor (Danfoss type compressor, 12v DC only) with the "2-way" 120v AC/12v DC absorption fridges, are we? There is a major difference.
From what I know there is no such thing as a "2-way" 120v AC/12v DC absorption fridge (and if there is they were never installed in AS trailers). I have only heard of the absorption fridges as "2-way" 120v AC/propane or "3-way" 120v AC/12v DC/propane.
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Old 07-24-2021, 10:35 AM   #9
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12V DC/ 120V AC compressor fridges are made for marine applications. They are great as long as the engine is running and providing 12V power. Will tear up batteries fast once you shut down and are not plugged into shore power.
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Old 07-24-2021, 11:55 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by suncoasteng View Post
12V DC/ 120V AC compressor fridges are made for marine applications. They are great as long as the engine is running and providing 12V power. Will tear up batteries fast once you shut down and are not plugged into shore power.
Wow - this was hashed out in the other recent thread ad naseum. "Will tear up batteries fast" is relative to your battery bank size and your solar capacity. The new 12vdc compressor fridges are not at all like running an LP fridge on 12v, and they are much better than the old swing motor fridges Norcold used to have.
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Old 07-24-2021, 02:09 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by koberudy View Post
Is there anyone out there who ordered a compressor fridge and had it installed by a dealer?
Hi

Yes, there are a number of Basecamp owners who have done exactly that. Still, I'd say there is about a 95% chance your trailer will come with a compressor fridge as delivered from the factory.

Bob
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Old 07-24-2021, 04:41 PM   #12
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My '21 Caravel has a NovaCool AC/DC compressor refrigerator in it. All current AS models come with compressor fridges.
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Old 07-24-2021, 08:43 PM   #13
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I beg your indulgences one more time and apologize for wearying the topic. But can anyone confirm that when we're saying 12v dc "compressor " fridge were are actually meaning one with the Danfoss type compressor? These were developed maybe a decade or so ago to address this very issue of reducing battery amp draw down to a small amount for prolonged off grid usage. And for any of you who did "special order" one of this type can you furnish a make and model #? Forgive me if I sound incredulous, I just want to make sure we're comparing apples to apples. Thanks for your patience.
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Old 07-25-2021, 05:42 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by koberudy View Post
I beg your indulgences one more time and apologize for wearying the topic. But can anyone confirm that when we're saying 12v dc "compressor " fridge were are actually meaning one with the Danfoss type compressor? These were developed maybe a decade or so ago to address this very issue of reducing battery amp draw down to a small amount for prolonged off grid usage. And for any of you who did "special order" one of this type can you furnish a make and model #? Forgive me if I sound incredulous, I just want to make sure we're comparing apples to apples. Thanks for your patience.
Did you see post #12 above?
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Old 07-25-2021, 05:49 AM   #15
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Exclamation -- No Advance Confirmation of Anything is Possible IMO!

Quote:
Originally Posted by koberudy View Post
I beg your indulgences one more time and apologize for wearying the topic. But can anyone confirm . . .
. . .
At this time -- in my personal opinion -- not one human being on Earth can confirm anything about what fridge will actually have been installed in any new Airstream, until you can look in the new trailer and see for yourself!

Period.

As suggested in Post #10:

Quote:
Originally Posted by richard5933 View Post
Wow - this was hashed out in the other recent thread ad naseum.
. . .
There are many more than "the other" threads which have regurgitated this to further dysfunctional states of nausea IMO. When I am back home later, I will provide links to many many other threads, which will probably require a few hours to read in complete detail, if you request this.

Good luck,

Peter
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Old 07-25-2021, 07:55 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by koberudy View Post
I beg your indulgences one more time and apologize for wearying the topic. But can anyone confirm that when we're saying 12v dc "compressor " fridge were are actually meaning one with the Danfoss type compressor? These were developed maybe a decade or so ago to address this very issue of reducing battery amp draw down to a small amount for prolonged off grid usage. And for any of you who did "special order" one of this type can you furnish a make and model #? Forgive me if I sound incredulous, I just want to make sure we're comparing apples to apples. Thanks for your patience.
Hi

Yes, these are using the now obsolete and now "high current draw" Danfoss compressors rather than one of the newer / better designs.

Bob
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Old 07-25-2021, 08:22 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by suncoasteng View Post
12V DC/ 120V AC compressor fridges are made for marine applications. They are great as long as the engine is running and providing 12V power. Will tear up batteries fast once you shut down and are not plugged into shore power.
This is patently false. The NovaCool compressor fridge included in the '21 Bambi/Caravel is incredibly efficient and only draws right around 4A when the compressor starts and falls to below 3A running.

Even a basic 160Ah bank of Group 24 AGM batteries provides 112Ah of usable power (drawing down to 30%). Assuming the fridge runs 50% of the time (less in my experience, but whatever), this means those two batteries will provide about 72 hours of runtime for the fridge, not counting any augmentation from the factory 90W solar setup on those same rigs.

Even with normal use of the water pump and trailer lights, you can easily get a weekend trip out of the battery setup and a compressor fridge.

Tack on another 90W of solar and swap out your Group 24s for two 100Ah lithium batteries and I reckon the fridge could run indefinitely without shore power.
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Old 07-25-2021, 03:11 PM   #18
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Ok, thanks for the replies. It sounds like I'll be getting a quality fridge with a low drawing compressor cooling unit vs the absorption type. Sounds encouraging. It seems technology has moved forward even beyond the Danfoss generation of fridges. Exciting prospects.
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Old 07-25-2021, 03:41 PM   #19
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I have a Flying Cloud being built in August 2021 and the dealership assures me it will be delivered with a 12v refrigerator.
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Old 07-25-2021, 04:26 PM   #20
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Having just visited the Nova Kool site I learned that their current units such as the r4500 RV 4.3 cubic foot fridge does have the Danfoss compressor. Problem solved, it's all good ��. Happy camping to all.
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