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Old 05-24-2016, 09:09 PM   #1
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Using a residential fridge

We are heading out on our first long trip with our new to us coach, and we're curious as to the operation of our residential model fridge. The previous owners retro fitted the fridge the day they bought the coach new, but there is no user documentation aside from the manufacturer manual. Any thoughts on what should be set while travelling? Any help would be appreciated!
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Old 05-24-2016, 09:13 PM   #2
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Set it and forget it. Might have to figure a way to hold the doors shut, we did with ours. Used a piece of plywood with a cut in it over the door handles. You also may experience stuff sliding around on the shelves and falling out when the door is opened. Pack stuff in tight or get some of the spring loaded curtain rods to hold things back.
Glass jars falling out onto a tile floor cause sticky messes and cut finger/toes!
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Old 05-24-2016, 09:19 PM   #3
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Make sure there are some aux catches on the doors or use a Velcro strap on the handles for when you go around a corner. You don't need the milk and eggs all over the floor. You'll need the inverter on when driving to keep power going to it. Then enjoy your hard ice cream.
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Old 05-24-2016, 09:24 PM   #4
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Thanks, wasn't sure about leaving the inverter on or not.
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Old 05-24-2016, 09:33 PM   #5
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Absolutely--leave the inverter on--that is how the whole system is designed to work. The alternator on the diesel will provide 12v power for the battery bank, in turn the inverter will produce 120v from the bats to run the fridge-- all day long if need be. When stopped, the inverter will feed off the bats--no problem. The average fridge only draws 2-3 amps so well within the inverter's capabilities. Assume you have at least six 6-volt bats, if only four, you may need to watch your battery bank a bit closer to ensure you maintain adequate power reserves if you stop for extended periods of time.
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Old 05-24-2016, 09:33 PM   #6
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Set it and forget it. You also may experience stuff sliding around on the shelves and falling out when the door is opened. !
I use sections of "pool noodles".
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Old 05-24-2016, 09:34 PM   #7
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Use if the same as you would if the fridge was installed in a home without wheels. Temp settings are dependent on your personal preference.

Now if you're asking about power, that will depend on how the seller set everything up. If it is configured correctly regardless of what you're doing, driving, parked at a camp site on shore power or on the generator you should not have to do anything. Power should shift automatically to include the DC to AC invertor when driving.

When parked without power (aka boon docking) and the invertor is pulling power from the batteries to power the fridge you'll need to watch the battery voltage level. How long you can go without recharging has some variables depending on how much battery capacity you have and how much power the coach is consuming. You might need to run the generator twice a day, midmorning and after dinner, to recharge the batteries.
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Old 05-24-2016, 11:08 PM   #8
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My residential fridge only used 1.4 amps. I have 4 6-volt batteries. I also have 150 watts of solar panels on the roof to help keep the batteries charged. My 2000 watt inverter keeps the fridge running 24/7 without needing much else from me. If I park by a shade tree or the weather is really cloudy and my 150 watts of panels can't do their job, then in a couple days I may need to plug in or run the generator for a bit. At some point I may add another 100 watt solar panel.

Enjoy that residential fridge. I wouldn't use anything else!
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Old 05-25-2016, 04:47 PM   #9
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You may want to turn off the ice maker to be sure water doesn't splash out and may a big block of ice in the ice bin.
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Old 05-25-2016, 06:25 PM   #10
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160K miles,13 years, and no "blocks of ice" in the freezer--drive it, use the ice maker, enjoy it. However, if you do a lot boon-docking, the ice make will use some extra amps. Some older fridges also have a defrost cycle that uses more amps--I adjust the mechanical timer on my Amana defrost cycle to coincide with my generator time when boon-docking....
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Old 05-25-2016, 07:03 PM   #11
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I use sections of "pool noodles".
Yep, that will work and cheap from the $1 store!
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Old 05-25-2016, 09:31 PM   #12
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as for sliding contents I find the rubber mats used outside the fridge to work in the fridge as well. They can be cleaned off easily if ever necessary. Used them because I had them and they worked in the old absorption fridge.
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Old 05-25-2016, 10:24 PM   #13
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as for sliding contents I find the rubber mats used outside the fridge to work in the fridge as well. They can be cleaned off easily if ever necessary. Used them because I had them and they worked in the old absorption fridge.
Are you talking about the rubber mats often used to line shelves? If so I never thought about using them in the fridge. Never thought of the noodles either although I'd like to see a picture of that as I can't quite visualize it.
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Old 05-25-2016, 10:34 PM   #14
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We use a combo of plastic bins ans the shelving stuff to keep things from sliding around.

As far as running the inverter all the time, you don't have to. We have gone 20 hours without power and everything was still frozen and the fridge section was still below 40.

When people say their fridge "only" draws 1.2 amps, that is AC voltage. A good rule of thumb is that it takes 10 amps of DC to make 1 amp of AC.

Me, we leave the inverter on all the time. If I go to bed with a 95% battery charge at 10PM, at 7AM I am at 85% battery charge.

For your situation, you need to experiment with it. For holding the doors shut on our Samsung, we use this:
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