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Old 04-13-2015, 06:41 PM   #43
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Regarding usage of the propane itself....I filled my tank 2 years ago. Still half full. Use propane only for the refrigerator and cooking (stove top and oven).
The refrigerator consumption is very minimal.
FormerBoater
I agree that an RV refrigerator uses very little propane when running on propane.

However "half full" is NOT a measurement of propane use, (unless you include the gallon capacity of the tank).
Some propane tanks hold as little as 5 gallons while others hold as many as 40 gallons... (mine holds 28 gallons).

What is the "gallon capacity" of the the tank, (of which you only used half of in 2 years), when you only used propane for the refrigerator and for cooking with the stove top and oven?

Wondering

Mel
'96 Safari
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Old 04-13-2015, 07:26 PM   #44
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So I'm thinking my solution is not good enough (no comment).


Maybe you want it easier?


Under you drawers inside the kitchen base cabinet, you will find an outlet. That outlet is used by the outside tv which works off the inverter.


Run a 12/3 cable from that electrical box to the back of your refrigerator. Plug your refrigerator into a new electrical box as I described.


That outlet will supply power to your refrigerator. When you are on shore power the circuit will be switched by the currently onboard inverter/charger. The inverter maintains the separation with the shore power appropriately. When you travel down the road, activate the inverter to run the tv/refrigerator circuit.


Do not use the current electrical box behind the refrigerator.


You have gotten all the advice you need.


P.S. The lp wariness is unfounded/unnecessary. You do not have a problem.
I like the idea. For sure going to look into it. I need to get in there with a meter and the schematics and dig around a bit and test a few things. What you suggested is just what I was planning on doing now that I know the general location of that outlet.

I now know it aint broke ( just the way it was designed) and I have a few options if I choose to try them. I could always just leave it as is and play around with other things for a while but I know that as soon as I run out of propane at a bad time I will be blaming myself for not having implemented some type of other method of keeping my fridge running at a safe temp. Yes i have a gennie and i could run it, I have gas and can use it. Having one more option is nice. My wife puts up with a lot, a fridge not cold and a loss of food because I failed to have a backup to the backup that is easy to do with a little planning is pushing it

I was taught (and it has served me well over my short lifetime, almost 50 and about to semi retire and go full time) to question everything and to never just accept "that is how we have always done it" as an answer. There is more than one way to skin a cat. Sometimes the way it has always been done is the best way and that is why it is still that way but if one does not ask why is it done that way how do we know? A lot of times things are still done the same way it has been done for years is because people in general have a dislike of new or different ways of doing things.

Thanks for the input.
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Old 04-14-2015, 05:58 AM   #45
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I like the idea. For sure going to look into it
I was taught (and it has served me well over my short lifetime, almost 50 and about to semi retire and go full time) to question everything and to never just accept "that is how we have always done it" as an answer.
There is more than one way to skin a cat.
Sometimes the way it has always been done is the best way and that is why it is still that way but if one does not ask why is it done that way how do we know?
A lot of times things are still done the same way it has been done for years is because people in general have a dislike of new or different ways of doing things.
Thanks for the input.
jbrv
Well said
Good luck with your project.
I admire people who can think out of the box and try to improve things rather that excepting things the way they are.
If everybody excepted things "how we have always done it" we would still be reading by candle light.... (and camping in tents).
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Old 04-14-2015, 06:18 AM   #46
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Not really Like i said I am sure it is safe if nothing out of the ordinary happens. If something does not having the gas on is one less thing that can go boom or feed a fire.

My like or dislike of lpg power is not really the issue. The issue is why the hell am i forced to use it if I have fully charged batteries getting charged by the alternator while driving?

I am assuming it is the way they built it to be. Came here to be sure not convinced driving with LPG running is safe or not.

I am almost sure it is due to putting in an inverter that is not up to the task of powering that fridge and not wanting to enlarge the battery box to be able to install enough amp hours to provide that power or move past using lead acid or agm batteries into lithium ion.

It is due to two things. Inverter technology is relatively new compared to gas technology. Battery technology still has not figured out how to store as much retrievable power as a propane tank. Between the inverter and battery you only get a few hours to a day or so with the bigger battery systems. With the propane tank you get months of refrigerator operation as long as you keep a small amount of battery power for the controller. (They used to make stationary units with no electric requirement. May still for all I know.) Given that most of us want the propane option. You are in the minority who want to run down your batteries or load your vehicle alternator with the power draw to run your refer. Most of us do not. What you are saying is "I want the poor choice as standard because I do not like the normal one." Fine if you want it then pay for the inverter upgrade and battery upgrade but don't whine that most of us do not want it so the manufacturers don't force it on us.
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Old 04-14-2015, 06:50 AM   #47
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Twinboat;

Yes on the watts. Your right on the 350 watts. I wasn't thinking he probably has a large two door. I based the 50-100 watts on my old small single door dometic. (about the size of a dorm frig) I measured 1 amp at 110 volts on that element several years ago when doing the LP calculation for heat.


If the OP is planning on using an inverter for a significant portion of the operating, he would be better off replacing the absorption frig with a residential frig.
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Old 04-14-2015, 11:31 AM   #48
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You could try stopping every 100 miles or so , Buy a 10lb. bag of ice & stick it in the crisper. Dump the crisper & refill the ice as needed. Problem solved for 2-3 cents per mile.
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Old 04-14-2015, 01:40 PM   #49
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You could try stopping every 100 miles or so , Buy a 10lb. bag of ice & stick it in the crisper. Dump the crisper & refill the ice as needed. Problem solved for 2-3 cents per mile.
Yes, or just purchase block ice now and use it like back in the day. How and why did we move past that when it worked so well? no reason to improve on an already working system is there?

Just because I am in a sharing mood. My new LED bulbs arrived today. 3watts each, Generate almost no heat (unlike those hot, hot hot, halogen) and use very little power. cost me Just over a dollar a bulb. (deal! found i the link to them somewhere on these forums i think.) leaves me more battery power left over to run my fridge if i choose to do that. !
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Old 04-14-2015, 02:03 PM   #50
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What you could do, right now, is try my method out. Use an extension cord from under the cabinet drawers out the window to the back of the refrigerator and plug it in. Press your inverter button by the door and see what happens.
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Old 04-14-2015, 02:21 PM   #51
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What you could do, right now, is try my method out. Use an extension cord from under the cabinet drawers out the window to the back of the refrigerator and plug it in. Press your inverter button by the door and see what happens.
I plan on it. This weekend. I still hold a full time job (at least my boss thinks i work full time) and I am only able to get to the storage area on weekends. Good news is that full time income leaves me enough money to fix any mistakes i make without to much pain. That will all end soon enough, the job, not the mistakes.

I have some thoughts and better schematics and a meter. I am thinking the solution lies in that plug that the main tv plugs into that I know is powered by the inverter and located close to the fridge I think. I see the ice maker plug now on the fridge schematics so I am interested in seeing where that goes and if it really is powered by the inverter. Oh and install my new LED bulbs! so excited.

I will see if I can remember to get back in here sunday and share my results. If this is like most everything else in life I will come home sunday with some things resolved and whole new set of problems/obstacles/choices and things to modify.

If this is like boats I played around with before ( and it is sure looking a lot like it is) the list of things to mess around with/fix/improve is never ending. gives me something to think about in the evenings while enjoying a beer or two or three and pretending to listen to the wife.
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Old 04-14-2015, 02:47 PM   #52
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JB, You have/had, that love/hate thing with boats too. Every time I complain to myself
about 8.5 mpg. I think, how sweet it would have been if any one of those boats could have gotten 8.5 mpg. at 60 mph.
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Old 04-14-2015, 03:14 PM   #53
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JB, You have/had, that love/hate thing with boats too. Every time I complain to myself
about 8.5 mpg. I think, how sweet it would have been if any one of those boats could have gotten 8.5 mpg. at 60 mph.
Mine was sailboats. So fuel usage was not a huge issue. Unless there was no wind then I had the hard choice to make, Sit and go nowhere or run that loud annoying engine. Decided to switch to an rv about 2 years ago after an 8 day trip to Dry tortugas where we had zero wind for the trip down, got stranded there 48 hours longer than we wanted because a suprise front with 50knot winds roared through and then again no wind for the trip home.

I decided there was a lot of north america I can see and enjoy by RV for a while. Wife is pleased with the rv over sailboat choice also. Boat was just a little more work than she bargained for.
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Old 04-14-2015, 03:23 PM   #54
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FormerBoater
I agree that an RV refrigerator uses very little propane when running on propane.

However "half full" is NOT a measurement of propane use, (unless you include the gallon capacity of the tank).
Some propane tanks hold as little as 5 gallons while others hold as many as 40 gallons... (mine holds 28 gallons).

What is the "gallon capacity" of the the tank, (of which you only used half of in 2 years), when you only used propane for the refrigerator and for cooking with the stove top and oven?

Wondering



Mel
'96 Safari
Mel, the Eagle has a 40.3 gallon tank. As we live in Florida and travel out of the state only in the summer the furnaces are only used for "test " purposes (just to make sure they still work!)
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Old 04-14-2015, 04:37 PM   #55
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Hey, went to the Dry Tortugas last week.

Left the Trawler in Key West and took the ferry. Didn't want to get stuck, out there.

We boat 7 months, RV for 5.
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Old 04-14-2015, 05:08 PM   #56
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Here's an idea no one has mentioned. The fridge uses very little propane. More or less its an over sized pilot light. How about adding a few valves, a tee, pressure regulator and a bit of extra hose to fuel the fridge off small disposable propane cans while going down the road. The cans are inexpensive, you can find them just about everywhere and would limit the potential volume of gas in the even something happens. Plumb the system so the can is inside the fridge which will help contain leaks and limit exposure to a heat or spark source, as long as the door stay shut. What I don't know is how long a can will last.
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