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Old 06-07-2014, 06:28 PM   #43
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A residential fridge may be better for you in how you use your RV but that doesn't apply to the vast majority of other RVers. My reply to your previous comment wasn't to be combative or argumentative. It was to simply keep the discussion factually based for other readers who happen across this thread


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Old 06-07-2014, 06:34 PM   #44
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We were on our 3rd or 4th recall fix; it was garbage. Maintained and serviced to a fault. Stuff froze in fridge and ice cream was gooy in freezer. Someone is defending them? Glad its gone !

Someone above spent a lot of time defending it and then said "I'm not a huge fan of these absorption based refrigerators. A lot more design needs to be incorporated to help prevent the problems they have." ????????????

Like I said: getting rid of what most people consider a fire hazard made an instant and noticeable difference in our quality of life as full-timers. This is our third coach and now we have a fridge that works ALL the time and costs pennies to operate.
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Old 06-07-2014, 06:38 PM   #45
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Fact is something better came along.

If you can get one, fine. If you like yours, fine. If all new coaches come with them, fine.

We like ours and are happy and feel safer that we changed it. Maybe this will help; our new residential fridge is better than all our absorption fridges.
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Old 06-07-2014, 06:44 PM   #46
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Yea, I fat fingered the keyboard.. meant to type 15 watts. Regardless though, it's still 10x less draw IF you're using a resi fridge powered by an inverter. As mentioned in my original post, it takes about 10amps DC to produce about 1 amp of AC.
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I'm not sure where you got this number, but what I've read is more in line with the 1.5-2 amps estimated in this article. That amounts to ~20-25 watts which is about 1/4 the power draw of a residential fridge.

RV Converters and Amp Draw - RV Information (RV Maintenance)
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Old 06-07-2014, 06:59 PM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pa Uon View Post
We were on our 3rd or 4th recall fix; it was garbage. Maintained and serviced to a fault. Stuff froze in fridge and ice cream was gooy in freezer. Someone is defending them? Glad its gone !

Someone above spent a lot of time defending it and then said "I'm not a huge fan of these absorption based refrigerators. A lot more design needs to be incorporated to help prevent the problems they have." ????????????

Like I said: getting rid of what most people consider a fire hazard made an instant and noticeable difference in our quality of life as full-timers. This is our third coach and now we have a fridge that works ALL the time and costs pennies to operate.
3rd or 4th recall fix?
there is something to be gleaned here
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Old 06-07-2014, 07:12 PM   #48
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The majority of the hype over these things lies solely with the 1200 series norcolds. Period.

Were they problematic? Yes.

Should the same logic be applied to ALL absorption refrigeration? Certainly not.


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Old 06-07-2014, 07:21 PM   #49
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I believe, when I started this discussion, it was geared to the 1200 series.
I did, however, have the smaller unit, give up the ghost-aka ammonia, in a prior coach. It was quite timely, as my mother-in-law was to stay in the coach for that weekend. Trip cancelled, new fridge- Whirlpool, installed. She came the next weekend~
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Old 06-07-2014, 07:43 PM   #50
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Just for the cash outlay, if my Norcold 1200 fails, I will install a residential fridge. I am fortunate the previous owner installed or had installed a Amish cooling unit. My fridge works well, we boondock 40-50 days a year. The absorption fridge let's me run the Genny less.
But, for the price difference, I will get a residential unit and run the Genny more.
Until then I will make sure burner is good and clean, and ditto for the roof vent.
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Old 06-07-2014, 07:56 PM   #51
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Also- as we have purchased- quality fire extinguishers
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Old 06-07-2014, 08:08 PM   #52
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Less power - no way is there even any comparison. Your resi refrigerator is costing you 100watts every hour running. If you're using an inverter to power it then it's costing you 10 amps DC every hour it's running. The absorption based units use less than 5 watts of power at 12VDC, plus propane costs. Replenishing the batteries on a constant 10amp draw basis for the resi fridge on an inverter will far exceed the costs of the absorption based units.
94-Newmar,

I think your assessment of this argument is fairly accurate and fair. In the interest of "keeping things accurate" however, based on my experience, I would take some exception to your power comparison above. First, if you compare the power needed to run a small modern residential refrigerator compared to a Norcold 1200 series on AC, the residential refrigerator is much more efficient, which is what docj originally meant. However I grant that that is not a valid comparison, since we are only concerned about power consumption when dry camping and then you'd have the Norcold running on propane. You've already corrected your watt estimate for that, I see.

Another factor is the "100w every hour" figure that you used for a residential refrigerator. That seems like an awfully high estimate. I don't believe modern energy efficient residential refrigerators consume anywhere near that much energy. Power usage over time is, of course, dependent on many factors like the ambient temperature and the efficiency of the refrigerator itself (and they do vary). For example, the Samsung RF197 is extremely energy efficient. It's rated at 445 KWh/year which is more like 51 wH, as opposed to 100. But of course, that takes into consideration that the compressor is probably running less than 50% of the time. The DC current is about 8A (rather than 10), unless it is in it's defrost mode (which occurs about once a day).

From practical experience, I can tell you that when dry camping, if I charge my batteries fully each evening, they are still at about 80% in the morning when I wake up. Of course nothing much else is consuming energy while I'm sleeping except the residual loads that are always present, one fantastic fan on low to keep air circulating, and the TV in stand-by mode (because I keep forgetting to turn that off). Still, I think that's pretty efficient. If you throw another full charge on the batteries about mid-morning, you are only using a very small fraction of your batteries useful life to run the refrigerator - especially if you dry camp as infrequently as many folks do.

Of course those who dry camp on a frequent basis have other considerations. If I was doing that, I'd consider perhaps adding two more house batteries and/or maybe a small efficient dedicated inverter for the refrigerator. The expense of doing that would not be significantly high, but I'd have to be dry camping a lot before I'd go to that effort.

Bottom line here... Unless you mostly use your motorhome for boondocking, no one should really be too concerned about the energy requirements of a modern 12 cf residential refrigerator. To those who have never had a residential refrigerator in their motorhome, that may seem counter-intuitive. I would not have believed it either without first hand observation. If you add the realities about power consumption to all the other advantages that come with a residential refrigerator, it is easy to see why almost everyone who does the conversion says they would never go back - whether or not they dry camp.
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Old 06-07-2014, 09:03 PM   #53
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Another factor is the "100 watts every hour" figure that you used for a residential refrigerator. That seems like an awfully high estimate. I don't believe modern energy efficient residential refrigerators consume anywhere near that much energy. Power usage over time is, of course, dependent on many factors like the ambient temperature and the efficiency of the refrigerator itself (and they do vary). For example, the Samsung RF197 is extremely energy efficient. It's rated at 445 KWh/year which is more like 51 wH, as opposed to 100. But of course, that takes into consideration that the compressor is probably running less than 50% of the time. The DC current is about 8A (rather than 10), unless it is in it's defrost mode (which occurs about once a day).
I have posted a few times here on iRV2.com what I had determined to be the actual power usage of the Samsung RF197 fridge from a 3 month study using a Kill-O-Watt meter attached to the fridge.

Based on the study, the RF197 used on average between 1.81 - 1.83 KwH's per day.

I will conduct another study this summer to see if there has been any change. I did the last one between October and December 2013.

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Old 06-08-2014, 08:16 AM   #54
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....Another factor is the "100w every hour" figure that you used for a residential refrigerator. That seems like an awfully high estimate. I don't believe modern energy efficient residential refrigerators consume anywhere near that much energy. Power usage over time is, of course, dependent on many factors like the ambient temperature and the efficiency of the refrigerator itself (and they do vary). For example, the Samsung RF197 is extremely energy efficient. It's rated at 445 KWh/year which is more like 51 wH, as opposed to 100. But of course, that takes into consideration that the compressor is probably running less than 50% of the time. The DC current is about 8A (rather than 10), unless it is in it's defrost mode (which occurs about once a day).
Robin, you're missing another 25watts or so being consumed by the inverter. If you're only metering the AC consumption/usage at the outlet where the refrig plugs in, then yes, I suspect, and as confirmed by Dr4Film, you'd see around 75 watts of 120vac being consumed (1.81-1.83kwh/day). BUT if you meter the 12v DC to the inverter you will see it hover near 10 amps inbound due to the overhead and efficiency loss created by the inverter. 10amps DC usage is a very valid and real number.
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Old 06-08-2014, 09:17 AM   #55
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Another Norcold story

Quote:
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94-Newmar,


From practical experience, I can tell you that when dry camping, if I charge my batteries fully each evening, they are still at about 80% in the morning when I wake up. Of course nothing much else is consuming energy while I'm sleeping except the residual loads that are always present, one fantastic fan on low to keep air circulating, and the TV in stand-by mode (because I keep forgetting to turn that off). Still, I think that's pretty efficient. If you throw another full charge on the batteries about mid-morning, you are only using a very small fraction of your batteries useful life to run the refrigerator - especially if you dry camp as infrequently as many folks do.

.

Not to go off topic.
I read many times about people having meters to check their battery charge state.
Are they built in. I haven't seen anything in my EMS about it.
Where can a person get one?
I google it and come up with many different types.
Thanks

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Old 06-08-2014, 10:35 AM   #56
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Love my Norcold fridge. Works great, quiet, cools great, makes a lot of ice. Love the ability to run on a/c or propane.

To each his own!

Cheers!
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