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Old 06-02-2012, 06:12 PM   #1
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Traveling with the propane turned off

In all our years of traveling we have always left the propane on so that the Dometic refrigerator would stay cold using the propane heat source.

My question is, do you need to turn the inverter on to give the Dometic a 120v source to run or does it run on 12v if the propane is off and you are moving down the road. Or must the propane be on when you are moving for the refrigerator to function.
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Old 06-02-2012, 07:20 PM   #2
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Hi Jerry, most modern day refrigerators run on AC or propane only with 12vdc powering the circuit board on the unit.

Therefore if you shut your propane off while traveling, you will need a 110vac source for your refrigerator to work either from an inverter or by running your ac generator.

Back in the 80's there were 12v heating elements in the cooling unit boilers, but they drew so much current and were problematic so they were eventually done away with.

We leave our propane on all the time traveling or not. Back east where there are long tunnels you're required to turn the propane off while traveling through those tunnels.

Best of luck and safe travels
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Old 06-02-2012, 07:24 PM   #3
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Hello!

Don't know if your Dometic has an automatic switchover between propane and electricity. However, you definitely CAN keep the refrigerator on propane while driving. :-)
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Old 06-02-2012, 07:33 PM   #4
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We leave our LP gas on while driving. While on gas the Fridge only needs 12 VDC from the house batteries so we leave the disconnect switch on as well.
Our inverter does not supply 110 VAC to the Fridge so if we wanted the gas off we would have to run the genny.

Some folks don't run the fridge at all while driving and if you’re in reasonable temps and don't open the doors than it will keep the inside cool enough to prevent food from spoiling unless you drive a lot of hours during any given day.

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Old 06-02-2012, 07:52 PM   #5
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We travel with the propone on and the fridge on gas. Our inverter also does not power the fridge - but we have a 110VAC icemaker - so I rewired the icemake to run on the inverter so that we can make ice while traveling down the road.
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Old 06-02-2012, 10:47 PM   #6
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Does the Alpine supply 12vac to the Dometic

Thanks for the replies. Now, does the alpine supply the Dometic refrigerator with 120vac so that you can travel with the inverter on and the propane off so the refer is running on the house batteries?
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Old 06-03-2012, 08:10 AM   #7
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My 2001 does not run the refer from the inverter.
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Old 06-03-2012, 08:53 AM   #8
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Interesting--never fails to amaze me how Alpines vary from year to year. Either by law [long tunnels--really?] or by personal choice [safety issue], you can decide which way is best for you. The alternator on our Cummins has produces sufficient AC power [converted thru the inverter] to power our residential fridge for years. Somewhat familiar with RV fridges--but get the idea propane cycle works well but DC not so much. If your Alpine Rv frig outlet isnt wired to the inverter circuit--it would be a simple matter to move that circuit from the shore power side to the inverter side [eg one breaker box to the other], just need to look at existing load distro in the inverter breaker box and pick the best candidate--not a major issue as doubt the RV fridge pulls much current anyway. Not familiar with the 2001 wiring config but "assume" it is similar to our 03.....good luck.
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Old 06-03-2012, 09:00 AM   #9
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Jerry, the answer is you do not need to leave your inverter on to run the fridg on propane. If I read your post right that was your question correct?
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Old 06-03-2012, 10:44 AM   #10
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Hello Jerry:

On Alpines the Refrigerator was not wired to the inverter. This means that when the coach is not connected to 120 volts either by shore power or generator the dometic will only run on propane.

Since I do not like to run down the road with the propane on (safety reasons). I ran power from another plug which has power when the inverter is on and installed another plug to the back of the refrigerator so I can keep it running while we drive.

I do have to remember to switch to propane when we dry camp or it will run down the batteries in no time.

I am in the process of trying replace the Dometic with a residential refrigerator. This upgrade is in the research stage at this time.
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Old 06-03-2012, 10:51 AM   #11
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When on propane your refer needs 12v to operate the control board.

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Old 06-03-2012, 04:53 PM   #12
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Hi Jerry, Dave is right on the money. There are a hunk of AC cords in the refrigerator compartment, but not all are on the inverter, so it will take some hunting. Hope to see you soon, our NorCal group is having a rally at Hat Creek, July 20, hope to see you there. Matt
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Old 06-03-2012, 06:40 PM   #13
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Thanks Dave and Matt, that's the info I was looking for. We are in the process of taking some long ferry rides in the San Juan Wa. area and they want the propane off and I don't think we can run the generator. Just have to keep the fridge closed without power for a couple of hours.

Thanks again
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