Go Back   iRV2 Forums > CAMPING, TRAVEL and TRIP PLANNING > Boondocking
Click Here to Login
Join iRV2 Today

Mission Statement: Supporting thoughtful exchange of knowledge, values and experience among RV enthusiasts.
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 03-27-2014, 08:49 PM   #15
Senior Member
 
Papa_Jim's Avatar
 
Outdoors RV Owners Club
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Manitoba,Canada
Posts: 2,640
This is a frustrating thing to figure out.

Ever since we switched over to a residential fridge, I've been trying to figure out how much power our fridge is using. I've given up.

I suppose if the only thing using power was the fridge, I'd have a hope of figuring it out.

But, we like to have lights on. We like to make a cup of coffee. My wife and I both run CPAPs through the night. When nights are cool, the propane furnace runs, and it uses a lot of electricity to run the furnace fan.

Bottom line for us is, we don't run the generator any more or less than we did when we had the propane fridge.

I know. It doesn't seem to help much. But, that's our real life experience.

Jim
__________________

__________________
Jim & Kate
2016 Creekside 23RKS
2014 Ram 1500 4X4 Eco Diesel
Canada, eh?
Papa_Jim is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 RV Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

iRV2.com RV Community - Are you about to start a new improvement on your RV or need some help with some maintenance? Do you need advice on what products to buy? Or maybe you can give others some advice? No matter where you fit in you'll find that iRV2 is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with other RV owners, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create an RV blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 03-28-2014, 07:47 AM   #16
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 206
Quote:
Originally Posted by Papa_Jim View Post
This is a frustrating thing to figure out.

Ever since we switched over to a residential fridge, I've been trying to figure out how much power our fridge is using. I've given up.

I suppose if the only thing using power was the fridge, I'd have a hope of figuring it out.

But, we like to have lights on. We like to make a cup of coffee. My wife and I both run CPAPs through the night. When nights are cool, the propane furnace runs, and it uses a lot of electricity to run the furnace fan.

Jim
I assume your fridge plugs into a 120v outlet? If it does, and is NOT hard wired, get a Kill-A-Watt. Unplug the fridge, put the kilowatt in the outlet, then plug the fridge into the kill a watt. The KIW will total up the electric usage. After a week of normal usage, see how many watts you have used, divide by 7, and you have an accurate answer as to exactly how much your fridge uses in a normal day.
__________________

__________________
mpierce is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-28-2014, 08:12 AM   #17
Senior Member
 
az bound's Avatar
 
Workhorse Chassis Owner
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Surprise Arizona
Posts: 1,993
Papa Jim: Post the make and model of your refrigerator. More than likely someone allready has the information you want.
__________________
Harold & Linda
2009 CT coachworks siena 35V
W22 Workhorse 8.1L. Explorer Sport toad,
az bound is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-28-2014, 06:46 PM   #18
Member
 
Hwyhermit's Avatar
 
Tiffin Owners Club
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: El Cajon,Ca
Posts: 35
It's good to know that you're not using the genie more or less than the propane. Can I ask how often you do use your generator a day? (have solar?)
__________________
Hwyhermit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-28-2014, 08:06 PM   #19
Junior Member
 
Forest River Owners Club
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 4
Using Residential Fridge in NP

Here's something to think about. We recently visited Big Bend National Park. Their primitive camping rules forbid any use of a generator (including running the vehicle engine). The park has one campground which allows limited generator usage.

The no hook-up campground as well as the backcountry camping forbid generator usage. This would kind necessitate solar for any boondocking.

On the Road: Sometimes Confused, But Never Lost
__________________
rjohnso3a is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-28-2014, 09:58 PM   #20
Senior Member
 
Papa_Jim's Avatar
 
Outdoors RV Owners Club
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Manitoba,Canada
Posts: 2,640
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hwyhermit View Post
It's good to know that you're not using the genie more or less than the propane. Can I ask how often you do use your generator a day? (have solar?)
With the propane fridge, when we boondocked we ran the generator 1 1/2 to 2 hrs in the morning, and the same again in the evening before going to bed.

In current times, with res. fridge, and double the battery capacity, when we boondock, we run the generator exactly the same amount of time.

I've checked the fridge with the Kill-A-Watt. The consumption reports are ridiculously small.

It costs the same amount to buy fuel to keep the batteries charged up with this res. fridge as before with the propane fridge.

Possibly the generator burned less propane before, and the fridge burned some propane. Possibly now all the propane is being burned by the generator. But, I figure what's the difference. It still costs the same amount of money to buy propane as it did before. So the res. fridge isn't costing me any more to operate than the propane fridge did before.

Jim
__________________
Jim & Kate
2016 Creekside 23RKS
2014 Ram 1500 4X4 Eco Diesel
Canada, eh?
Papa_Jim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-2014, 09:28 AM   #21
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Fulltimer
Posts: 186
If you want to play around with how using a residential refrigerator boondocking works I have a spreadsheet you can download here that will help you calculate how many panels, batteries, and genset runtime you need under various scenarios.

This is stored in Google Drive and should be downloaded and run in Excel. NOT in Google Sheets - since it is too hard to look at in Sheets and I have not tried it to see it if works in Sheets.

The data for refrigerators in the spreadsheet are ACTUAL data collected from people with these refrigerators. They are not calculations or guesses. You can play with the factors and see what the effect is of adding more batteries, panels, running the genset longer, etc.

It is NOT exactly accurate - there are too many variables to be totally accurate. But over time it has proven to be a reasonable tool. I use it in my design activities for revising RV electrical systems.

Feel free to use it and to modify it. If you do modifications that you think are "greatly" useful feel free to send me a copy of it. Also, if you have ACTUAL data on a refrigerator I'd definitely like to hear that.... I DO NOT support this spreadsheet.
__________________
Jack and Danielle Mayer
2015 New Horizons Majestic 44RLTSS/ Volvo 780
Jack Mayer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-2014, 09:51 AM   #22
Registered User
 
Monaco Owners Club
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Varies Depending on The Weather
Posts: 8,517
I have posted this a few times on other threads so here it is one more time.

I performed a 3 month study using a Kill-O-Watt meter on my Samsung RF197 residential fridge.

I found the average daily consumption to be between 1.81 and 1.83 KwH.

That number works out very close to what the yearly Energy Sticker stated that was posted on the fridge when new.

If a person is worried about energy consumption or running out of fuel to power their RV when camping off the grid I would suggest sticking to the full hookup RV parks. Or you could buy a RV that has very little need for any type of energy or creature comforts.

Most large comfortable RV's made today were not designed to be used for days on end without any usage of some type of energy.

Just my opinion.

Dr4Film ----- Richard
__________________
Dr4Film is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-2014, 09:59 AM   #23
Senior Member
 
bruceisla's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: St. Lucie West, FL
Posts: 5,135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr4Film View Post
I have posted this a few times on other threads so here it is one more time.

I performed a 3 month study using a Kill-O-Watt meter on my Samsung RF197 residential fridge.

I found the average daily consumption to be between 1.81 and 1.83 KwH.

That number works out very close to what the yearly Energy Sticker stated that was posted on the fridge when new.

If a person is worried about energy consumption or running out of fuel to power their RV when camping off the grid I would suggest sticking to the full hookup RV parks. Or you could buy a RV that has very little need for any type of energy or creature comforts.

Most large comfortable RV's made today were not designed to be used for days on end without any usage of some type of energy.

Just my opinion.

Dr4Film ----- Richard
X2 ...
__________________
2005 Newmar Essex 4502, 2013 Caddy SRX
1997 HR Endeavor 37, CAT, 1996 Geo Tracker
bruceisla is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-2014, 10:43 AM   #24
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Fulltimer
Posts: 186
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr4Film View Post
Most large comfortable RV's made today were not designed to be used for days on end without any usage of some type of energy.

Just my opinion.

Dr4Film ----- Richard
Agreed. But as you know you can retrofit a modern luxury RV for offgrid use and there is no reason that it will not perform as well as a less "luxurious" unit.

As an example, our New Horizons is about a luxurious as you would find - read "energy hog" into the luxurious part.

Having a properly designed and large enough electrical system allows us to boondock in the same fashion as our previous coaches that were designed specifically to boondock. With the price of solar panels at around $1/watt or less it is viable to load the roof, and to even place panels where they may be shaded part of the day (thus getting more total power). With a large battery bank and a genset it is no issue to boondock for a long time - even with a residential refrigerator.

All this costs money of course. AND adds weight. It is definitely a lifestyle choice.
__________________
Jack and Danielle Mayer
2015 New Horizons Majestic 44RLTSS/ Volvo 780
Jack Mayer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2014, 12:28 AM   #25
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 19
Personal Experience

I have a 5th wheel that has a 18cf residential refrigerator. The only issue I have encountered in NP has been the hours you are permitted to use a generator. As an example Mammoth Caves in Kentucky the generator cutoff time was 10:00 pm while at Great Smoky Mountains NP in TN it was 8:00 pm. If your out for a long day worth of hiking or whatever activity and you get back late your screwed for generator time. What I did was in morning when I got up first thing I did was start the generator and let it run till I headed out. This way if I got in late the batteries were still in good shape. Also, If I am going to be gone overnight I didn't worry about it. The batteries will hold a good charge for at least two days. I have 2 Yamaha ef2000i generators and will run just the one for charging. It will go about 9 hours on a gallon of gas so the cost there is small.

This past winter I dry camped in Key West, FL from Thanksgiving till late February. No electrical hookups the entire time,strictly generator. Will do it again.
__________________
wanderer69 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2014, 05:28 PM   #26
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 748
Hwyhermit

Solar panels can now be bought commercially for around $1/watt. RV dealers will charge one heck of a lot more.

A small solar array should be enough to keep a normal PbS battery suite of 200 amp-hours (two batteries) charged enough to keep a propane refrigerator operating. I assume that you are not trying to run the refrigerator on AC but just have enough 12 V battery power to run the refrigerator on propane. There are some good strings on solar under the Going Green Forum at this site. One guy in particular posts with some very good information on fabricating your own system and you should read what he has to say.

We do have a large solar array and a large LFP battery suite so we are basically solar autonomous. We do have a 1 kW Honda just in case but we only run it once a month since we have been told that it needs to be run periodically. We do run the refrigerator on AC on sunny days and 24 hours/day if it will be sunny two days in a row. We have about 200 amp-hours at 54 V (800 amp-hours at 12 V) or approximately 10 kW-hours of which 8 kW-hours are usable daily. This battery suite weighs 250 pounds.

Running the refrigerator in this manner plus normal night usage (watching a Mystery Theater DVD etc) can bring a - 3kW-hour deficit in the morning but we have gotten 1.2 kW to controller at full sun and are normally fully charged (in summer) by 10 am and by noon if we go full AC on refrigerator.

We had a much smaller system on previous rigs. We started with 2 panels (175 W each) and about 400 amp-hours (4.80 Kw-hours) of glass mat (2 kW-hours usable at 60% charge cycle) and went up to 4 panels (700 W or so). This was sufficient for 90% of situations. Fisherman's Bridge CG in Yellowstone had a no-generator ever policy and most folks had to leave after two days. We stayed for two weeks.

With solar you have to look for sunny areas. We check to make sure that we will have sun for at least 4 hours a day, otherwise, it is a no-go if we want to spend a week. We just spent 4 days in full shade at Stewart CG at El Portal (Chirachua National Forest). We turned off the inverter (60 W drain) and used propane for refrigerator. We were only down -3 kW-hours. The entire southern tier of sites at Fisherman's Bridge were in the shade all day but there were others that had good sunlight.

Reed and Elaine
__________________
Reed Cundiff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2014, 05:33 PM   #27
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 748
The guy that posts on "Going Green" uses the moniker of VSheetz (or something like that) and seems to know what he is discussing.

Using LEDs cuts down power consumption by 90% or more in electricity.
__________________
Reed Cundiff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2014, 06:33 PM   #28
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 748
Have only heard good things about AM Solar. Check with them on requirements.

We would have gone with them but we have a son in the business (finishing up a 1.8 megawatt solar system as prime subcontractor)
Reed and Elaine
__________________

__________________
Reed Cundiff is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
fridge



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Residential fridge over furnace in 2004 Diplomat DST (1.5 bath) tkcas01 Monaco Owner's Forum 55 08-17-2015 10:28 AM
Which residential Fridge 2500HD Travel Trailer Discussion 11 02-06-2014 10:48 AM
Help - need residential fridge in Dutchstar 3810 evernan84 Newmar Owner's Forum 8 01-28-2014 09:44 PM
Residential fridge & boondocking bluegrassrv RV Systems & Appliances 22 01-09-2014 09:38 AM
Residential fridge G.G. RV Systems & Appliances 4 06-23-2013 11:29 AM

» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:59 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.