Residential frig or not – page 2 – winnebago owners online community year 6 electricity

If I bought a new RV it would no doubt already have a residential refrigerator in it. There is a reason for that. Plus with pure-sine inverter being the standard these days, and that you will get 4-6V house batteries, the only other thing I would do to this setup is add 4-100W solar panels on the roof from Renogy and a MNPT solar controller.

Note: Some RVs mounted the gas-frig on top of the room heater so you may have to go with a 10-CU residential refrigerator in these situations from Avanti, which is okay, and which you can get at Home Depot for less than $300. However, in most other RV models you can install a 16-CU refrigerator and an ice maker. I chose a stainless steel door and I used a bright Popular Wood base board… with some "swim noodles" to line the sides for insulation and I used the 120 volt outlet already plumbed in my 2004 Itasca "Horizon" to power the new AC residential refrigerator.

Note: I think the 16-CuFt residential refrigerator weighed slightly less than the 10-CuFt double-door Norcold. What you need to consider is that your front door jam may limit the size of the refrigerator you install… and be prepared to remove the passenger front chair.

I would also agree you can keep your quaizi-sine inverter by Sennata "Dimensions" as this is a very good inverter for an older 2002-2010 vintage RV, but the lower quality inverters that are not pure sine wave may indeed shorten the life of your residential refrigerator from 10 yrs to 5 yrs, but that’s still okay since you are taking about a $300-$600 refrigerator.

You know there are many people who have spent $2,000 maintaining their 10 year old gas frigerator and that does not even begin to speak to all the food they lost or inconveniences they have had… vs… a residential refrigerator that is "on" all the time and works perfectly all the time. Mine is 3 years old and I see no issues with it. Plus when you are docked in an RV park you are getting 110-120AC anyway! So I don’t expect any less longevity just because I use a quaizi-sine inverter on the road or when boondocking….In my opinion, the only reason techs will not endorse AC residential refrigerators is because that they make (stiff) you thousands of dollars for every gas-frig on the road!

Back to other considerations: If you RV does not charge the house batteries while you are driving, then you can add a VSR or "battery isolator" to do that job for $125. I bought this one from Keyline (140A) and it’s been woring seamlessly for me… and for more than 3 years now.

However, if you only have 2-12V house batteries on your rig, then I would not put in a residential refrigerator in your rig as you will be replacing house batteries every 1-2 years. …Remember, lead-acid batteries are best maintained above 60%, which basically means you only have 40% or 225AHx4/2×60%=270AH of useful life (between battery charges) if you want your batteries to last 3-5 years!

My experience is different than others have had. I had a 2016 Mobile Suites with a 22 cubic whirlpool refrig., 2 6 volt batteries and a Magnum 1000 watt inverter charger. We had forgot to plug unit in one weekend when we returned from a trip. 24 hours later I realized what had happened and the refrig. was still working fine. Since then we bought a used Itasca Suncruiser. I removed the Norcold 1200 and installed a Samsung Residential refrig. The norcold had burned a spot about 8” in diameter in upper left corner. When we saw that we were very happy we made the change. At the same time I installed a 1000 watt inverter charger ( magnum 1012 ) dedicated to the refrig. only. I left the 2 -12 batteries in to try it. We went to Quartzite during RV week. Ran generator 1 1/2 hours in the morning during breakfast and the same at night. We had absolutely no problems we refrig. Eventually I will replace the 2-12 volts with 2-6 volts. That has been our experience. Of course if you are going to run other items you will need more batteries. We also ran wifes C-Pap on 12 volts at night.