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Old 10-01-2022, 02:25 PM   #1
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Abnormal Propane Use While Dry Camping

"Finally", got my new 2023 Back Country 21RWS!

Q. This is my first time dry camping with it. The propane to the fridge seems to be lighting up at an abnormally high rate.

How can I tell what the "normal" rate should be. The fridge side is in the shade until late afternoon. And the temperature at about sea leve, is in the 60's to low 70's.

Your advice would be greatly appreciated!
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Old 10-01-2022, 03:54 PM   #2
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As long as the refer is at normal temps I wouldn't think it is running any more than it should. Make sure your door seals are fully engaging--put a dollar bill on the door edge, close and pull. There should be resistance all around. You should run on one tank in those temps for days. Use it for a while and see where it goes.
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Old 10-01-2022, 04:16 PM   #3
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How often is the propane lighting off?
How long is the flame staying on?

How often are doors being opened?
How long are doors open?

How is the freezer temp?
How is the food compartment temp?


Large 4 door rv fridge only uses a 2200btu burner assembly
Propane has 91,500btu per gallon
*7.5 gal per 30# Propane Cylinder
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Old 10-02-2022, 06:17 PM   #4
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Years ago they never shut off. They'd go to a low flame in the standby mode and we never really knew what was going on nor really cared so long as the food and drinks were cold. I hear mine go on and off all the time and I imagine mine goes on and off like yours and I'd think it's fine. If you're still concerned, time the on and off sequences and along with the fridge temp and the out door temp and contact Norcold(assuming Norcold)tech service, provide this data and run it by them and see what they think.
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Old 10-02-2022, 10:51 PM   #5
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Just got back to the trailer, and cell service.
Thank you for your replies. Followed the NORCOLD Consumer Guide, and MtCamper's. There is a slight drag using a dollar bill on all sides of fridge and freezer doors. All sides exact same resistance. Just ordered (another) AcuRite fridge & freezer digital thermometer. So I'll know what the Temps are in a few days. When I picked it up at Thompson RV it was over 100, now its in 60 and 70 days and 50s at night. Until now it was set at #3 setting, I backed it down to #2 setting and everything seems fine. Good advice, I am measuring the usage best I can. I think what's different now is I couldn't hear it turning on and off in my previous RV's do to the different design layouts. And in this unit, unfortunately you can hear it from the bed. And if its quiet from the dinette too. ASAP I will keep track of the run and off times. Then call NORCOLD to see if those times are in the normal range, then Post the results.
Thank all of you for your suggestions and recommendations!
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Old 10-02-2022, 11:32 PM   #6
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Govee Bluetooth or WiFi thermometer in the fridge will allow temperature graphing over time and might allow you to view cycling periods...
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Old 10-03-2022, 12:22 AM   #7
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It sounds like all is well.

BTW, have you looked into getting a Fridge Defend unit? Well worth the money as far as I'm concerned.
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Old 10-04-2022, 12:20 AM   #8
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wolfgolden, I ll look into those products. I just ordered the old faithful AcuRite set. But I'm always up for a more accurate product.
Unplanned Tourist I'm not familiar with the Fridge Defend product, but I will check it out. Thank you both!
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Old 10-04-2022, 11:15 AM   #9
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Quote:
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wolfgolden, I ll look into those products. I just ordered the old faithful AcuRite set. But I'm always up for a more accurate product.
Unplanned Tourist I'm not familiar with the Fridge Defend product, but I will check it out. Thank you both!
If you do decide to get a Fridge Defend unit, I would suggest getting one with the fan control circuit. That's what I got and after installing an extra fan in the back of the cooling unit, the fridge works great.

I also like that it shuts down the fridge if it gets hot from running off level too much. Sometimes you can't help being off level when you have to stop for a short while.
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Old 10-06-2022, 06:40 PM   #10
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Quote:
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... I think what's different now is I couldn't hear it turning on and off in my previous RV's do to the different design layouts. And in this unit, unfortunately you can hear it from the bed. ..!
For me it is the noise of the flame that brings the fridge to my attention. I noticed it the first time we were off grid in a quiet campground. I thought maybe the unit had a fan running but then confirmed that no, I was hearing the propane flame burning. Truely it is the only thing about my trailer I wish I could change because I deeply love the QUIET of a serene campground, especially at night.

On a trip two week ago in the Ruby Mountains outside Elko, Nevada the temps were cool and overnight into the 40's and 30's and still I heard the refrigerator flame. Turned it down to setting 1 overnight and back to 2 in the morning. It helped. I do have a thermometer in the fridge, just to check it. The fridge does not recover well to opening and searchiing for things.

I don't notice huge amounts of propane actually being consumed by the refrigerator, but the sound is very noticable. And since I am practicing turning a negative into a positive - I am grateful that my hearing is still good enough to hear the fridge running.
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Old 10-06-2022, 08:36 PM   #11
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LearningMore, noise from the fridge flame? In all the RVs we had with absorption fridges, I can say that I never heard the flame/burner from inside the RV.

Ken
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Old 10-06-2022, 08:54 PM   #12
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Go to the $ store and buy a cheap thermometer, start from there.
All the rest is bs till you get a baseline.
Imo, 35*f is ideal.
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Old 10-06-2022, 09:49 PM   #13
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One other possible cause of using more propane could be a leak somewhere else in the system. Might be worth a little soap and water at all the joints just to make sure. I check mine annually.
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Old 10-06-2022, 11:00 PM   #14
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LearningMore, noise from the fridge flame? In all the RVs we had with absorption fridges, I can say that I never heard the flame/burner from inside the RV.

Ken
I can hear mine at night. I can also hear the water heater, too. But I have always heard those things in my trailers and truck campers. They go away after I fall asleep.
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