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Discussion in 'Refrigerators and Coolers' started by nighthawk, Jun 4, 2011.
How many days before leaving do you plug your fridge in for?
days? About 2 hours for me.
I usually plug it in the night before we leave, then load up the food & clothes in the morning, hitch up and then we are off.
24 hours for us
Overnight gets it nice and cold.
I say depends on your fridge....My current camper seems to cool quiickly, my last one took a good 36 hours to get cold. So I would plug it in and see how long it takes to get to the temp you are hoping for, then use that. It is going to be different for everyone due to fridge types, capacity and their location/weather.
On, the day before the trip, off- on the road, on- as soon we park in our site.
I just use 3 or 4 frozen water bottles (regular 16.9 oz) and everyting still very cold by the time we get to the capground. never had the need to use gas. (Last trip was 6 hrs drive)
Similar for us. I usually turn it on the morning we are leaving and throw a few ice bottles inside.
Plug in at camp due to having ice machine and take 3 5 day coolers.
I've found it depends on the time of year. Early in the season, that morning, for a few hours is fine. Weather in the 90's; 24 hours does it.
Also found what you put in there has an impact. Putting frozen meat in there to thaw, when camping in cold weather can drop the temp to below ideal. Putting a big bag of unrefrigerated apples in can bring the temp up.
We now stock our fridge before we leave since we have a high side and can squeeze in, to access the fridge without popping up.
We plug in once at campsite while using the Coleman thermoelectric in the car getting there.
I haven't used electric for my fridge for about 2 years. When I did I would plug in the night before or in the morning.
We started running the fridge on propane and it cools much better and faster. I can start it up about 2 hours before we leave. In fact on high cool it can freeze things that are placed in the back of the fridge
With our camper, we like to keep it ready to go. Just load up the van, hook it up and go! So what we do is keep two 2 liter bottles of water in the fridge. Then, the day before we leave, we plug the camper into the house. The fridge will nearly freeze the water (we turn it to the lowest setting before lowering the top). Then, when we get to the CG, the fridge is nice and cold for the food. (We just put the food in the van. Freeze the meat, and use that to keep the other stuff cool. Our drives usually don't exceed 2 hours)
Our PUP doesn't have a fridge, but we take a mini fridge.
We plug it in and load her up a good day before we leave.
Two days for us. PUP lives in the garage and the 04 Sequoia has full access to the fridge and all cabinets with the top down. So, two days out I'll plug in the PUP and turn the fridge on "AC". One day out, we'll pack the PUP with all our food, clothes, and stuff. Once it's packed, I'll switch the fridge to propane and button the PUP up. The day of departure all I have to do is push the PUP out of the garage and hook it up to the TV.
Obviously different units perform differently. We just got pack from a trip and this is how it went for us.
I turned it on, on electric and set it for the coldest setting about 3 PM the afternoon before we left. In the morning it was colder than the ideal range, according to the thermometer we keep in there [it was about 31 degrees]. I set the temp higher, loaded it with our refrigerated stuff, and placed two 1-gal bags of ice in the freezer compartment. I went three hours with the thing off as I drove and made stops along the way. When I popped up and turned the fridge back on it was still too cool in there, so I turned it to the lowest setting. Days were in the mid 70's, nights in the mid 50's. It never got too warm and some nights we had to turn it off to get it not to be too cool.
We load up the night before, running the fridge on AC during that time period. When we are ready to go, we switch to DC for the drive to the campground (dual deep cycles that maintain a charge through the TV wiring). Works pretty good for us.
I jinxed myself after making the statement above. This past weekend I don't think my fridge ever got cool. Who knows...
Do you have a dual system (gas and electric)? Most RVs we have owned cool much quicker on gas. Our existing Niagara will come up to full cool (starting to freeze water) overnight or during the day if started early in the morning.
Gas or electric, you can help it. We usually keep a couple of gallon and 1/2 gallon milk jugs full of ice in our freezer. Place one of those on a lower shelf and turn the fridge on. The refrigerators cool from the top, so adding cold to the lower compartment will speed things up greatly.