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Old 07-11-2019, 08:02 AM   #43
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Get a Honda 2200 generator for the rare times that the 600+ watt solar + 2000 watt inverter that you should buy does not keep up, or for running the AC.

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Old 07-11-2019, 08:24 AM   #44
Join Date: Mar 2018
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Originally Posted by LeisurePursuits View Post
Get a Honda 2200 generator for the rare times that the 600+ watt solar + 2000 watt inverter that you should buy does not keep up, or for running the AC.

I think I would have to get two of that size to run my AC or buy the 3000 which ends up being the same cost of two 2200's. The fuel tank on the 3000 is bigger and will run much longer. It's not as convenient because of the weight and I would have to buy a cargo carrier though I don't think I'll have to worry about it being stolen because of the weight. I've gone back and forth on this.

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Old 07-11-2019, 10:05 AM   #45
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One Honda eu2200i will run it provided you also install a Micro-Air EasyStart 364 in your AC. The Predator or Honda 3000 look pretty good if you don't mind the extra bulk and weight.
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Old 07-11-2019, 10:51 AM   #46
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Originally Posted by RVPioneer View Post
Try this. With the camper in your driveway, charge the batteries, fill the fresh water tank and load up the refrigerator. Now, unplug and live in the camper. Don’t go in the house to use the bathroom, make coffee or watch TV.
I thought this was some of the best advice given as it will place everything in a "real world" situation. From that you will be able to evaluate and adjust until you get to the maximum time you will be able to boondock.

We have boondocked for up to 2 months at a time since the late 70's with two different TC's and a MH, but with a gen and propane appliances. For us the major limiting factor was fresh water and holding capacities.

Best of luck with whatever you decide to do.

1994 26' Fleetwood Flair, 454 TBI.

1994 30' Monaco Dynasty, 5.9 230 HP Cummins, MD 3060, 1992 Geo Tracker.
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Old 07-11-2019, 03:28 PM   #47
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I have a residential fridge, 6 AGM batteries and 4 solar panels on the roof. No problem running fridge all night. Do it all the time.
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Old 07-11-2019, 03:37 PM   #48
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I just want to bring up one thing not mentioned so far....

I would NEVER want a dual use refrigerator in any coach or travel trailer for two reasons;

1) (Minor) The interior space is small compared to a residential, but more importantly it does not keep things nearly as cold (and certainly doesn't freeze as well)

2) (Major) These unit are notorious for catching fire! A very high percentage of all fires are directly attributed to these units! Just not worth the risk IMO.
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Old 07-11-2019, 04:19 PM   #49
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Stick with 2 way fridge. Nothing better than backup. Get a generator.
2000 Newmar Dutch Star 38'
2014 Honda CRV dinghy
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Old 07-11-2019, 04:27 PM   #50
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Agree with much of the above. Our 5th is configured for extended boon dock camping for the DW and me and two small dogs.

What we have is:

1. four 230 AHr 6v GC batteries
2. Trimetric 2030 battery monitor with shunt
3. 1050 watts solar panel
4. Morningstar 60 Amp solar controller, with remote monitor
5. 115 amp converter (120 to 12v), never used since solar was installed
6. Champion 3500 watt generator
7. All LED bulbs
8. Two way (propane/120v) Norcold frig
9. Two way water heater
10. 62 gal fresh water
11. 40 gal black and 55 gal gray, as I remember
12. Large Barker waste water transport tank,
13. 60 gal fresh water bladder
14. Macerator pump to transfer waste water to the tote in the back of the truck
15. Spare 12v water pump to pump water from bladder in truck into the fresh water tank
16. Hoses to hook of this up
17. Standard 2 30 lbs propane tanks
18. Carry spare 20 lb propane tank
19. Spare 5 gal gas for generator
20. 12v power outlets all over the rig to recharge phones, tablets and computers. We have 12 volt based adapters for both computers

With this we can stay out for very extended periods, just make trips back to refill tanks/dump and pickup food.

Our habits/needs:
Seldom camp where the A/C is needed
Operate 2 Fanistic Fans and windows to move air
Be careful about lights
Use gray water to flush toilet with minimum amount needed
Do lots of sponge type baths
Have water cut-off valve at the shower head, Navy style showers only, not many of those
Use paper, plastic for eating
Cook on grill outside
Limit microwave use to 5 - 10 minutes per day. This allows us to get by with needing only five gallons of spare fuel for the generator for four months
Solar has provided 100% of our 12v power since it was installed, even in Alaska for four months. The converters have been turned off at the breakers since the solar was turned on.
Be very careful and planned when opening the frig door. Once before the meal and once after the meal.
Use minimum water for dish washing, recycle that too. Only do dishwashing when there's enough stuff, not much since we use paper/plastic.
Save bathroom sink water to flush with. I have found that we can be too good about this fill the black tank long before the gray tank!
Never need to run the generator to recharge batteries. When sizing a generator remember it will loose about 3% of rated output for every 1000 ft elevation gain. For us at 7,000 ft plus you have to be aware what you are really working with as far as generator output goes. If you boon dock in the low lands no real issue.
We seem to need heat far more often than A/C when camping. So we have a propane catalytic indoor heater, 100% efficient with propane and no 12v power. Never run it when away or asleep.

As I said with this setup can stay put in a boon dock site as long as we want/allowed to. You can do it, just understand your life style and needs and planned based on that, not what anyone else does.
Fred & Denise (RVM157) New Mexico
2007 Excel Classic 30RSO & 2015 Mini Winnie 22R
2007 RAM 3500, Diesel, 6Spd Auto, SWD, 4x4, CC & LB
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Old 07-11-2019, 04:54 PM   #51
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My opinion: trying to do this without a generator is at the very least impractical if not impossible. I would recommend you stick to a Honda since it is going to be something you use regularly. Nothing is as reliable, fuel efficient and quiet as a Honda generator and they always seem to be able to handle more of a load than an equally rated generator from another brand. The Champion & Predator generators are great for an emergency but too loud for regular use.
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Old 07-11-2019, 05:12 PM   #52
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My 2017 5th wheel has a residential fridge and my two 85ah 12V deep cycle batteries will only power the fridge for 15 hours. As others have said, you should switch out the fridge for propane, buy generator and some solar panels.
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Old 07-11-2019, 05:32 PM   #53
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Hi Glen,
You most likely have the Samsung RF18 Refrigerator. Its a really good and efficient unit. I replaced my Norcold 1200 the first summer I owned the coach. See they can't tolerate ambient temperatures above 95 degrees for long periods, not to mention the number of fires those things have caused. Mine didn't even have the safety recall installed! I discovered it after it failed at the beginning of my first summer.

The RF18 extremely efficient and has multi-mode operation: Energy efficient and Normal. I use mine in energy efficient mode when off grid and on inverter. I also power a CPAP machine I run at night. I can get about 10 hours off of a full charge.

I can't advise on solar as I run the onboard generator to recharge the batteries for two hours in the morning and two hours before bedtime minimum. Longer if I run the A/C during the summer. I can burn a lot of diesel for the cost of a good solar setup. I'm not opposed to solar its just not a priority. I did run into a guy in Quartzite that used a wind generator to keep his batteries charged. Seemed to work pretty good for him.

Best of luck!
2006 National Tradewinds
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Old 07-11-2019, 05:35 PM   #54
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We also have a residential frig and have boondocked several times from 1-2 weeks at a time. We use a portable generator for a few hours during the day to keep everything charged up & have never had an issue with the frig staying cold. No solar panels-
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Old 07-11-2019, 05:39 PM   #55
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I gotta wonder why anyone who planned to boondock would ever buy a unit with a residential refrigerator???.....Residential refrigerators are for places with constant A/C electric supply.

Propane/electric are for us folks with RVs....they have been around for decades and do a good job.

Time to trade in your mistake and get a unit that does what you want without dozens of batteries.

I boondocked with a very quiet Inverter Generator (+/- 2,800 watts).
Relied on propane for refrigeration....generator to keep battery charged and supply power for lights, color TV, water pump etc.

Whoever decided to put a refrigerator designed for residential use into a RV should be put into a mental health facility (IMHO).
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Old 07-11-2019, 05:41 PM   #56
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I see a lot of replies re your battery capacity and solar vs. generator. I didn't see much about water conservation. I have a smaller TT with 2 12 v marine batteries. I have a portable solar kit to charge my batteries and mostly can survive 4-5 days on them, when I have a few hours of full sun during the day. I have a 2 way fridge. Water conservation is very important. Forget about daily showers, even with a large fresh water tank. I mostly do "sink baths" and also use conservation when washing pots, and dishes. YOu can find some good ideas on You Tube for this.

Surveyor 2016, Jeep Commander 5.7Hemi
RV nights: 2017-100 nights, 2018- 50 nights
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