Home Forums Truck Camper Adventure Forum Compressor Refrigerators succeptible to off-roading jolts?

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    • #17540
      David Casterson

      When our local RV repairman was fixing my absorption refrigerator, I asked him about compressor fridges. He said that they can break down on rough roads. Has anyone here seen that?

    • #17541

      Sounds like the RV repairman has not kept up with the world of offroading or options available for slide-in campers.
      I have used compressor fridges for years as I am normally over 2 hours from any ice machines. Here is an aussi article that can explain answer most questions.
      These are portable and the next link is for built in units from truckfridge.
      TF130DC – 12v Refrigerator for Custom Installs – SUBSTITUTE ITEM AVAILABLE

    • #17604
      Mello Mike

      Yeah, I’m with Bear on this one. DC Compressor refrigerators are pretty robust and can be used in very rough terrain and conditions. We’ve been using ours for 2 years with no issues. I’ve never heard of any vibration troubles relating to these refrigerators. They’re pretty stout.

    • #17696

      David, I installed my Domectic CR1110 compressor refrigerator in 2013. They are very stout units that have proven themselves to be very reliable even in some of the most ruff area that a TC can get into. Most of these refrigerators use the same Danfoss compressor regardless of the brand. These are some of the trail I’ve been on with this refrigerator..White Rim Trail,Canyonlands Utah, South draw Trail out of Capitol Reef NP, Death Valley’s Lippcott Jeep Trail, Cotton Canyon Valley trail, Burr’s Trail and over 16,5000 mile on our 2015 summer journey.

      I’ve never regretted switching to a compressor refrigerator and it’s sure is nice to reach in your cold refrigerator when it’s over a hundred outside and pull out that cold drink. Read up on some of the blogs on who did the switch and what they had to do when going to a compressor refrigerator.

    • #17702
      David Casterson

      Thanks Mike and Alex. That’s what I like about this forum, great experience tested answers! Being that I live and camp a fair amount along the Pacific Coast, what would your recommendations for solar panel wattage and batteries be for running a compressor refrigerator?

    • #17817

      Hi David, Mike and I (for now) have a little different approach to supplying power for our compressor refrigerators. Mike has 240 watts of solar and a Zamp 160 watt portable suit case set up and his house batteries. We both have auto inter connections with our truck electrical system to keep the house batteries charged.

      Where I difference in that I have a small generator, only 80 watts of solar and a huge 4D Interstate battery besides my normal house battery and a by-pass on my electrical system to my truck.

      Something else to do is to upgrade your charge wiring from your truck to your camper.

    • #17877
      David Casterson

      Thanks for the info Alex. I remember reading the article you wrote on your battery charging system some time ago. You have me thinking I should read it again! Also just viewed you youtube on the Moki Dugway. Nice work!

    • #18022

      David, this is than excellent article written by Cal Willis on truck to camper electrical charging…https://www.truckcamperadventure.com/2016/03/heavy-duty-alternator-charge-system-modification-2/

    • #18026
      David Casterson

      Alex: Thanks for the link to the Cal Willis article. I am considering buying a new Camper and will definitely have it built with the hardware he suggests so that I can upgrade that which is in my 2016 3500 RAM to match his system. That way I can probably power a camper with a compressor fridge and Truma heater in the fog and rain of the Pacific NW with one fixed solar panel and use my suitcase 100 watt Renogy as a backup when doing and extended stay.

    • #18206

      Hi David,

      You RV repairman seems to be far back in the beginning of home-compressor-fridges 😉

      One more comment on the Danfoss-Compressors, now SECOP. SECOP is owned by a Chinese competitor since years. But i will NOT say that they produce crap….

      In Europe we love the australian-made ENGEL-Fridges:

      They have some great advantages especially for campers:
      – they are really quiet. The computer-fan behind the 3-way-fridge is louder than this thing! My wife loves it. We installed this one in our old Jayco:

      – They are really plug and play! No thick cables needed. The Engel-Compressor doesn´t need this much power to start like a Danfoss. I needed around 10 ft of AWG 15 following the ENGEL-Instructions. My old Dometoc with Danfoss BD-35F would not START with cables smaller than AWG 7 or 8. If you have to wire such cables through your camper you will need big holes in your cabinets, big connectors and paying todays prices on copper wiring you can afford the higher price of the fridge by the savings of the wiring.

      – the AMP drag is very competetive….
      – there is no brand outdoor proven like these fridges !


      2000 F-250 SuperDuty SC Lariat Longbed 7.3 ltr. 4x4
      1992 Jayco-Sportster 8ft Popup - rebuilt 2014/2015

      Only official TravelLite and Palomino-Truck Camper Dealer in Europe

    • #27769
      Travels with Yoly

      Our experience with the ARB fridge/freezer over several years prompted me to put a compressor fridge in our new Eureka when we first got it. It’s rated input power is 80W with a current draw of 1 Amp. It’s a small 3.2 cf Edge Star model with a nice large, separate freezer. Once turned on, it comes down to temperature (freezer – 0* / fridge – 35*) in less than an hour. (try that with an evaporator fridge). Once down to temperature, the compressor runs for about 5 minutes max every hour if you don’t open the doors too many times or leave them open. It runs off my 1500W inverter connected to a 100 AH AGM battery which charges from the truck while driving. Bottom line is that my food stays cold and the battery never notices. It’s always fully charged when we stop. Also, compressor fridges are not overly sensitive to altitude or lean angles like evaporator fridges are. Oh yeh, did I mention the fact that our Edge Star was $230 compared to the $1,200 Dometic in our Adventurer.

      Neil & Yoly
      2016 Ram 2500HD Tradesman, 2WD Crew Cab, 6.4L Hemi
      2018 Travel Lite 840 SBRX
      Honda EU2000i

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