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Old 08-17-2016, 11:03 AM   #1
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Replacing electric only fridge with gas/electric?

Hello, first post so bare with me please.

I am looking into purchasing my first travel trailer. Have picked out a model and its a Vibe 311rls Like everything about it for the price point except the Electric only fridge. I would like to be able to use this at deer camp and the fridge would require me to run a generator at all times.

So Does anyone know what it would take to replace the electric only fridge with a duel power unit.

I am a mechanic, and grew up in construction but travel trailers and propane appliances are a new thing to me. Would it be as simple as framing in for the new unit and running a propane line to it? or is that a pipe dream?


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Old 08-17-2016, 11:12 AM   #2
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To get an idea what the differences are, I recommend looking at a similar unit that has an absorption frig.

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Old 08-17-2016, 11:21 AM   #3
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Actually you might do some research. Residential refers come with anminverter and usually 4 golf cart batteries. Giving several days before recharging is necessary. Remember the refer does not run 24/7, but actually, based on outside temps might actually only run for a couple hours a day. Residental refers are trending to be the preferred refer as they last longer, and cool better. Do your research before making a decision.
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Old 08-17-2016, 11:21 AM   #4
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Are you sure it is not also a gas frig. Most refrigs are duel mode in these type of campers. Can you order one with the Gas/elec option if this one is all electric? Later RJD
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Old 08-17-2016, 11:36 AM   #5
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According to this ad, the refer is a 10.7 cu ft Residential Refer w/Inverter built-in so if you have two or four 6V golf cart batteries you'll be able to run it for an extended period without shore power.
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Old 08-17-2016, 11:59 AM   #6
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Yep, I also looked this up and the Vibe 311 rls does indeed come with a "10.7 CU Feet Residential Reefer With Inverter". I can say that I wish that my unit, a 310 BHDS, came with the 10.7 Residential Reefer. I have never tried to run my reefer off of gas, just never had a reason to. The ad I looked at does not state IF there are additional batteries to run the fridge or not. As stated in post #5, if there were two or four golf cart type batteries I would bet that the fridge would last four days with conservative use. As far as replacing the fridge with a dual power unit, the dual power (electric/gas) units are very high priced and you would have to factor in running a gas line to the new fridge. I have helped two people take their old dual power units out and replaced them with household electric fridges and they were happy with the results.
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Old 08-17-2016, 01:05 PM   #7
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JMO but with the money you're going to have spend for a elec/gas fridge and install it, you might consider putting that money into extending your "off grid" capabilities. Like some batteries and a solar panel. Gas fridges simply do not cool as well and lots of people have problems with them. I replaced my norcold with a 12v fridge after reading how many things many different people have tried to get them running right. Some are lucky, some not. It's a hit and miss it seems. Not trying to scare you but the reality is the odd one even catches fire. This as been going on for years and the company(ies) feel not enough RVs have burnt down to warrant a redesign or fix the problem once and for all. I will not spend my money on companies like that. Another benefit is you don't have to be nearly as level with running a non-propane fridge as you do with the propane ones. Running propane fridges beyond a certain angle really does them in.
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Old 08-17-2016, 01:07 PM   #8
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You also have to consider cutting holes for venting.
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Old 08-17-2016, 01:51 PM   #9
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For comparison, this 9.0 cu. ft. fridge is $1,400. It's smaller, doesn't work as well as a residential all-electric, and needs a looooong time to get cold.
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Old 08-17-2016, 02:05 PM   #10
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Just buy the duel fuel fridge. You're looking at a nightmare to retrofit one. And consider this, you own a fridge probably nobody wants. If you figure all that in, your upside down before you get started.

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