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Old 10-05-2013, 07:19 PM   #1
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boondocking with residential refrigerator

I would like to hear comments from anyone that boondocks and has a residential refrigerator.
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Old 10-07-2013, 05:34 AM   #2
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I am going to comment before others in an idea that I would like to put forward. I see the ongoing issues with the three-way and I would not want one because of fire danger. We are into serious boondocking and rely entirely on solar. We camped on the north shore of Lake Superior for eight days and used a Waeco refrigerator powered entirely by solar. It is the size and form factor of an ice chest and we had food for eight days. Rather than try and power a residential refrigerator, while you are boondocking use an Engal or Waeco/Dometic portable refrigerator. If we can last eight days with out going to the store and eat well with a bit of planning so can you.
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Old 10-07-2013, 06:05 AM   #3
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I am going to comment before others in an idea that I would like to put forward. I see the ongoing issues with the three-way and I would not want one because of fire danger. We are into serious boondocking and rely entirely on solar. We camped on the north shore of Lake Superior for eight days and used a Waeco refrigerator powered entirely by solar. It is the size and form factor of an ice chest and we had food for eight days. Rather than try and power a residential refrigerator, while you are boondocking use an Engal or Waeco/Dometic portable refrigerator. If we can last eight days with out going to the store and eat well with a bit of planning so can you.
That seems like a perfectly acceptable solution IF you don't have your full size reefer already full of food. Seems like, with careful planning and food purchases, you could transfer the food successfully.
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Old 10-07-2013, 06:07 AM   #4
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I am going to comment before others in an idea that I would like to put forward. I see the ongoing issues with the three-way and I would not want one because of fire danger. We are into serious boondocking and rely entirely on solar.
Which means you must stay in the sun whereas most people would prefer a shady spot, especially in summer.

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We camped on the north shore of Lake Superior for eight days and used a Waeco refrigerator powered entirely by solar. It is the size and form factor of an ice chest and we had food for eight days. Rather than try and power a residential refrigerator, while you are boondocking use an Engal or Waeco/Dometic portable refrigerator. If we can last eight days with out going to the store and eat well with a bit of planning so can you.
And the cost of the solar panels and fridge was how much?
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Old 10-07-2013, 06:09 AM   #5
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I would like to hear comments from anyone that boondocks and has a residential refrigerator.

You may want to refine your question to include your parameters for "boondocking" ... I.E. Running a genset is acceptable ? ... How many days off grid ... etc.
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Old 10-07-2013, 07:13 AM   #6
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You may want to refine your question to include your parameters for "boondocking" ... I.E. Running a genset is acceptable ? ... How many days off grid ... etc.
I would like to keep the discussion as wide open as possible, staying within the topic.
I am looking more for experiences in doing so, and expect most will elaborate. At least I hope so.
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Old 10-07-2013, 07:19 AM   #7
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I have a 66 cell high voltage panel feeding a Morningstar MPPT controller and it generates usable current from sun up to sun down and in shady camp sites. We spent those eight days on the shore of Lake Superior in a camp site with trees and only about one hour a day with no shade on the panel. I have a 145W high voltage flexible panel that I can put out on an extension cord on the beach, but found I did not need it. I monitor our state of charge with a Victron battery monitor and at the end of the eight days while we had lost a little ground each day we were at 64% SOC. The trailer has a water pump, LED lights, TV/DVD which we used one night, XM receiver... The one big deviation is that I use Computer case fans in place of a Fantastic Fan. Last year we were in Big Basin Redwoods and there was no full sun on the panel and during the day the refrigerator stayed in our TV powered by the alternator/battery. Power usage the night before including powering the lap top TV and refrigerator were made up during the day with no direct sun. The panel will reach 17V under a full moon and open circuit is 70V
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Old 10-07-2013, 07:34 AM   #8
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We don't boondock much but my guess from having a residential fridge in our MH is that you will need to run your generator for some time each day. Solar would help I'm sure but I would have to weigh the cost of enough to be affective compared to just using the generator.

Honestly I think if we had planned to boondock much i would have stuck with an RV fridge.
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Old 10-07-2013, 07:44 AM   #9
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We don't boondock much but my guess from having a residential fridge in our MH is that you will need to run your generator for some time each day. Solar would help I'm sure but I would have to weigh the cost of enough to be affective compared to just using the generator.

Honestly I think if we had planned to boondock much i would have stuck with an RV fridge.

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Old 10-07-2013, 10:50 AM   #10
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I would like to keep the discussion as wide open as possible, staying within the topic.
I am looking more for experiences in doing so, and expect most will elaborate. At least I hope so.
What I was getting at is:

Do you consider any overnight stay without hookups to be "boondocking"?

In other words, is a single night at a Walmart parking lot, "boondocking"?

If so, I do that. I have a residential Summit 10.3 cf reefer and, if I bring the box down to 36 degrees, and I shut the genset off at 10pm, and don't open the reefer doors, the food is still safe at 40 degrees at 5:30am. I don't run the reefer on the inverter.
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Old 10-07-2013, 11:50 AM   #11
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How is that off topic? He asked for comments from anyone that boondocks with a residential fridge. We don't much but have found without adding a lot of gear we need to run the generator.
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Old 10-07-2013, 12:21 PM   #12
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How is that off topic? He asked for comments from anyone that boondocks with a residential fridge. We don't much but have found without adding a lot of gear we need to run the generator.
Don't know ... that's why I asked the OP if he wanted to add some parameters ...
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Old 10-07-2013, 12:38 PM   #13
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AZ.... Running the small residential frig on batteries can be done but a 6 pack of 6V batteries running the typical RV boondocking items and the frig too will give you about 3.5 hours of run time.....Firing up the genny every 4 hours for a minimum of 2 hours might just get you in bounds of survival....keeping the freezer cold enough and frig cold enough to maintain....everytime that frig door is opened and or fresh food added..the frig then will need to cycle in the cooling mode again to catch up.
VSHEETS... you in on this? Look at the concern and see if we can come up with the adequate balance for the power consumption.
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Old 10-07-2013, 01:20 PM   #14
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I thought that most would understand. Guess I do need some parameters.
No I do not consider a parking lot as boondocking, some must, nor just an overnight.
Gennys are ok. Solar is ok.
How about a week or better.

I am not looking for comments on what is required to do so. I know how, been doing so for 11 years. I am more interested in hearing from those that do and how they are set up to do so.
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