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Old 03-07-2011, 09:22 PM   #1
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what to 'run' while driving down the road

as i like to say..."very much a newbee here"

we have an itasca 2009 suncruisr 35P
best way we have been learning "how does this work?" is through reading posts here
and
by trying things - or - trial and error

wondering what people 'run' or have turned on while driving?

there have been posts about 'set-up' when you arive; but what about while you are driving down the road?
What is turned on?
What is running?
such things as;
- is the water pump on
- is the fridge on / powered by propane
- is the inverter on

as always - thanks everyone for the advice
regards, pdq
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Old 03-07-2011, 09:35 PM   #2
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Depends on what you want on. For all trips we have the fridge on propane, turn water pump on and off based on need for use. Summer in Kansas is hot so we run the roof a/c's as needed on generator power. Same for microwave and coffee pot. Kids play xbox on bedroom tv or watch movies during dark drives. We shut the propane off when getting gas (of course). Never have run the hot water heater while driving, figured if we need hot water that bad we can warm it up in micro or just wait until parked.
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Old 03-07-2011, 10:09 PM   #3
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pdq_bc

Everyone will have their personal list and reasons/justifications, but this is what we have done for several years:

We have as 2000 Winnebago 35U, Triton 6.8 Gas engine.

Propane tank ON for Refrigerator and Furnace as needed (Furnace usually not needed due to Motoraid heater and Dash Heater).

Refrigerator ON AUTO (Refer auto switches to LP when shore power removed & we have had no problems with flame out even in very windy conditions at interstate speeds).

Water pump ON.

We don't have full time inverter so Genset ON/OFF as needed if DW needs to use microwave to warm up lunch/snack - (yes I know not safe but she also has pilots license, loves offshore fishing and has great "sea legs") or need additional A/C cooling.

We start out with hot water and the heat exchanger in the Atwood Water Heater keeps the water hot while under way.

I always shut down the Refer while refueling.

I spoke with Norcold several years ago and they stated their products were rated for operation while underway.

Others may take exceptions with my list and procedures - this will be a thread I watch.

David Kanoy
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Old 03-07-2011, 11:12 PM   #4
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I have a whole house inverter setup so I leave it on all the time.
Having the inverter on allows the refrigerator to run on electric (control set to auto).
Water pump is ON
Water Heater is ON propane (or OFF if I forgot to turn it on)
Microwave can be used with inverter
Rear TV and surround sound can be ON/OFF.
Air Conditioners, when needed, require running the generator .
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Old 03-07-2011, 11:16 PM   #5
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Why propane on the Refrigerator?

Everyone here states having th fridge on Propane, why not on 12 volts?

Ours has 3 way power, cannot remember the priorities the manual listed for "auto" mode, I thought it was Shore Power, 12 VDC then LP in that order.

We have heard some folks claim the 12 VDC is not the best way to operate but so far have not heard a consistant answer that makes sense.

What say all?
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Old 03-07-2011, 11:37 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TQ60 View Post
Everyone here states having th fridge on Propane, why not on 12 volts?

Ours has 3 way power, cannot remember the priorities the manual listed for "auto" mode, I thought it was Shore Power, 12 VDC then LP in that order.

We have heard some folks claim the 12 VDC is not the best way to operate but so far have not heard a consistant answer that makes sense.

What say all?
I'd say far more RV fridges have 2-way power (120V AC and LP) than 3-way like yours (adding 12V DC). That's why most of us run on LP while driving.
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Old 03-07-2011, 11:43 PM   #7
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12 volt reefer operation is not a popular choice because of the 12 volt load. As an example....if your reefer has only one electric heater it probably uses about 225 watts to operate it. When using 110 volts you would use about 2 amps.......when using 12 volts for the same amount of wattage you would use approx 18.5 amps from your battery pack. So, the short answer is 12 vdc operation uses too much of your available battery capacity. And, propane uses almost none of your battery capacity.
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Old 03-08-2011, 07:03 AM   #8
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I'm old school on the water pump and leave it off when traveling. If a leak were to develop or a faucet/toilet started leaking, you'd never hear the pump running.

Fridge always on as it runs on LP when 120v is not present.

Inverter always on, never turn it off.

Water heater off as it heats up quickly and holds heat well.

Generator on if I need the roof air conditioners in really hot weather.

Stereo system on as my XM radio is hooked to that.

As noted above, larger fridges are only 2 way and the ones that are 3 way draw a lot of amps on 12v.
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Old 03-09-2011, 06:39 AM   #9
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Don't know, haven't been able to take a trip yet! But the postings in this thread are very useful! Thanks to all the posters!!
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Old 03-09-2011, 06:52 AM   #10
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When a (3 way) fridge is running on 12 volts then there is (perhaps an exeption) no teperature control. It keeps on constant cooling. The little temp switch could not handle the big current. My little 90 liter fridge uses 7 amps on 12 volts.
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Old 03-09-2011, 07:17 AM   #11
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Fridge on auto, and as Route 66 says. No water pump in case of a leak. Turned on only as needed. Dash air usually sufficient unless it's really hot, then genset and roof air.
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Old 03-09-2011, 09:11 AM   #12
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Question? With whole house inverter on, is it being charged by the engine when driving down the road? Do you have your genset set for "auto turn on" to recharge the house batteries when needed?
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Old 03-09-2011, 09:45 AM   #13
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patmsp,

Yes - charged by the alternator when engine is running.

Most motorhomes have either a dual battery isolator/charger or as my Winnebago does, a 80-100 amp continuous duty solenoid that parallels the engine battery and the coach (house) batteries when the ignition switch is in the "on" position or the battery boost switch is depressed.

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Old 03-09-2011, 09:48 AM   #14
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I must be doing something wrong because I don't agree with most of the posts. I ALWAY run the generator when traveling. Why? Because anything that is connected with a hose, (propane, water, etc) can be broken while moving (rockin' and rollin') and I don't want my unit to blow up or to fill with water. So.... I have the use of everything I want to use. Air conditioning is 'whole house' (the dash air is probably as bad on gas mileage as the generator and only cools the front). The fridge is on AC (save the other settings for dry camping). Hot water is always hot when driving (Motoraid?). As for the comode, pump as needed. I've been doing this since 2003 and haven't had a problem (I shouldn't have said that, you know what will happen) and plan on continuing to do it. And with an 'auto-switch' to shore hook-up, I don't have to change anything, just enjoy.


But the true travelers are they who leave for leaving’s sake
Saying continuously, without knowing why: ‘Let us go on’.
Paraphrased from Baudelaire’s ‘The Journey’
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