Adding a minifridge

Discussion in 'Refrigerators and Coolers' started by arnettlisa, Mar 6, 2017.

  1. arnettlisa

    arnettlisa New Member

    Mar 6, 2017
    I'd love to see some pictures of campers that don't come with a fridge and how you have added one in. We are thinking of putting it where there currently is an ice chest. Thanks a ton.
  2. Halford

    Halford Well-Known Member

    Sep 28, 2011
    Santa Clarita, California
    Welcome to Popupportal!

    I have a small 3.0 cu fridge that has small freezer inside that I plug in and use it if I camp over 3 days.

    Can you put the brand, model, year of your popup and tow vehicle to your signature? (see my signature). That way we would know which answer is the appropriate one. The answer may work for Coleman but not for others. etc etc....

    I cannot answer until I know what you have first.
  3. 1380ken

    1380ken Well-Known Member

    Nov 7, 2013
    I don't have a picture but I can say that it is an easy conversion. Four screws to remove the ice chest and the new fridge fits right in the same hole. There was a plug right next to it.
  4. terry1419

    terry1419 Active Member

    Mar 6, 2016
    Streator, IL
    x2. Same for my '92 Jayco except that the hole had to be made slightly wider. Easy conversion.
  5. TDS-MN

    TDS-MN Member

    Sep 29, 2013
    Minneapolis, MN
    I found a small 1.7 cu ft refrigerator, that was virtually the exact same size as the icebox.
    I did not need to modify opening in cabinet at all. I kept the Styrofoam base that the refrigerator shipped in, under the unit, which allowed the door to swing right over the bottom of the opening.

    I put thin wood strips vertically on either side of the opening, and they keep the 'box' of the refrigerator behind the face of the cabinet. They are thin enough that they fit in the 'gap' where the gasket is and do not interfere with closing the door at all, plus they closed the visible gap neatly. They were added after this picture was taken. I put 2 small eye hooks, one on each side, and use a small bungee to hold the door shut during travel if I have stuff in there.


    I added a duplex outlet inside the cabinet which I use to plug the refrigerator into. And I included a switch so I can choose NOT to run the refrigerator. ( haven't chosen that for camping, but have while cleaning/modding in the driveway ).

    Kept the old ice box, in case we end up selling this popup. I had initial concerns about the dorm fridge surviving in the mobile environment of the pup, but so far it has been flawless, and will hopefully last us for years to come.

    Do wish it were a little larger sometimes, but I always have a separate cooler for drinks anyway, so it's just for foodstuffs that I want to keep dry and cool.

    Not visible in this photo: This cabinet is where my curb-side wheel well is located, behind that door to the left of the refrigerator. I cut in an air transfer grille at the end of the cabinet visible next to the door, to allow additional air into the cabinet. Had allowed for the addition of a 12volt fan if it got hot under the cabinet, but I have not yet found the need for any additional ventilation.
  6. Jeepguy93

    Jeepguy93 Member

    Mar 30, 2014
    Neither of my colemans have a fridge. This is a pic of a 3 way fridge I have I really like it. I also have a mini dorm fridge I use once and a while.


    Heres a picture of my dorm fridge matching beautifully..

  7. inthedirt

    inthedirt Active Member

    Aug 28, 2012
    SW Montana
    I added a dorm fridge to my last Pup because it didn't have anything of the sort. Of course, its electric-only so I would need to be plugged in all the time to use it. I thought my 100w solar panel would be enough for it, but no. Gave the Pup to my brother, but kept the solar and dorm fridge for future projects. Keep in mind that it you want to boon with solar, you may need more power for your fridge.
  8. Orchid

    Orchid Sharp Shootin' Grandma

    We have a fairly large (for a pup) refrigerator and freezer that we just sit on a long counter and plug in. Our built in 3-way fridge works great, but just too small for us. Anything we replaced it with would have also been to small, if it were to fit in the space, so we just left it there. We use it as a dry food storage cabinet. Perfect for that since it's air tight so can't attract ants or anything. Not that we've ever had any food attract ants, or bugs, but you never know. [LOL]
  9. johnnyboy

    johnnyboy New Member

    Feb 28, 2016
    I removed the ice box and installed a Thetford Curve toilet. I use the second bunk for storage, so got a 3.2 CF fridge with separate freezer and it resides there. No kneeling on the floor to get at it and plenty of storage. Only downside is that it is too tall to be kept inside when folded, so I have to carry it to the minivan when travelling. It keeps the temps inside well enough for a day's travelling while unplugged.
  10. Orchid

    Orchid Sharp Shootin' Grandma

    Same with us. Ours has to ride in the back of the van. But it's huge with a separate freezer and works fantastic. Will hold cold a very long time. When we turn up the cold to it's highest setting in the fridge, it also keeps frozen food frozen. Not sure if it would freeze from a non-frozen state, but we pre-freeze everything anyway.

    And it's worth it to move it from van to pup to have a fridge that I can get into without standing on my head.
  11. TRR

    TRR Active Member

    Nov 3, 2014
    Alabama USA
    Let's hope you remember that when you're reaching for a cold one. [emoji28]
  12. JPBar

    JPBar Well-Known Member

    Sep 22, 2016
    Now that is funny!!
  13. kcsa75

    kcsa75 Active Member

    Sep 9, 2013
    Kansas City
    What make and model fridge did you get that fit the hole?

    Thanks in advance.

  14. TDS-MN

    TDS-MN Member

    Sep 29, 2013
    Minneapolis, MN
    It is an Emerson, I found it at Target, but have seen similar size units at Walmart too.
    Google tells me that it is most likely model CR177WE2.
    It is super quiet, and has functioned well for us in low 50's temps to high 80's temps.

    I got a wireless thermometer, and put the sensor in the refrigerator. With the readout on the cabinet across the way by the sink. That was I can keep tabs on interior temp.

    Yes, it is electric only. But so far that has not been an issue for us. we just pick sites with service. It did behave a little flaky once when I had to run a 75 foot extension cord from a friends RV to my location, probably due to voltage drop. Whenever I can plug pup direct to power pole it has been very reliable.
  15. mpking

    mpking Active Member

    Jun 17, 2014
    Raynham, MA
    That's a 3 way? AC/DC/ Propane? What model? (I need to replace my fridge)
  16. Jeepguy93

    Jeepguy93 Member

    Mar 30, 2014
    Yes 12v/AC/propane. Its an older Dometic RC1600. I like it because it doesn't buzz.
  17. mpking

    mpking Active Member

    Jun 17, 2014
    Raynham, MA
    That is so cool! Unfortunately, I can't find a current model that's sold in the US. (Currently Dometic 1600 EGP) Seems like it only runs on 230V, do you run it on 120V?
    For the price, I'd be better off replacing the Dometic RM2193 that is not really fully functional.

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