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Old 06-12-2013, 11:34 AM   #1
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Traveling with fridge on.

On another note about traveling with fridge on. If you stop for a meal, to shop, or any reason and the parking area is not level do you turn off the fridge or let it run. I've heard so many horror stories about operating a fridge that is not level I now have nightmares about it. Living in East Tenn a lot of the parking lots are not level at all.
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Old 06-12-2013, 11:53 AM   #2
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I turn my fridge on "auto" the day before I leave my house and turn it off the day after I arrive home. If I left the camper parked on a hill for a long period of time (hours), I might consider turning it off.

The more controversial thing is if you leave the fridge on while fueling up or not. Many people turn it off to fuel up and back on after they pull away from the pump. Many people leave it on the whole time. And, a few will be adamant about their stand (either for or against).
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Old 06-12-2013, 12:11 PM   #3
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We make a trip to Knoxville each year. The parking lot of our usual meal stop slopes up pretty steep. We are usually there about 45 minutes as my wife is a slow eater. I've not been turning it off but wondering if I might be flirting with potential problems.
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Old 06-12-2013, 12:48 PM   #4
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I could be wrong (and obviously, your rig, your decision)- but I wouldn't be overly concerned about an hour for a meal. But, I'm not terribly educated on the fridges- so take it for what it's worth. I likely wouldn't worry especially because my fridge is a hassle to get to (I have to partially extend a slide to get to the button).
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Old 06-12-2013, 01:07 PM   #5
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On another note about traveling with fridge on. If you stop for a meal, to shop, or any reason and the parking area is not level do you turn off the fridge or let it run. I've heard so many horror stories about operating a fridge that is not level I now have nightmares about it. Living in East Tenn a lot of the parking lots are not level at all.
We've never traveled with the fridge on in our 10 years of RVing/trailering. We find the best way for us is to load up 1 or 2 coolers with the refrigerator items plus 2 or 3 small ice packs/cooler just before heading out. One trip to the truck with the cooler(s). Drive to your destination, turn on the fridge and then load the fridge when it has cooled down. Ice packs go in the freezer while camping and we do the same for the return trip. This way, there are absolutely no worries of anything going wrong outside and inside the fridge. Good coolers and ice packs will keep things cold far longer than you will ever drive in a day. Many modern coolers plug right into the 12 volt outlet if you want to avoid ice packs. If we plan on stopping for lunch or a food break, the cooler is always handy.
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Old 06-12-2013, 01:16 PM   #6
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How level is level?

If you have a Dometic fridge, than their manual addresses the question. Here is a copy of the User Guide for a Dometic DM2652 for example.

Two points are important here:

1)... the vehicle needs to be leveled only so it is comfortable to live in (no noticeable sloping of floor or walls).

So, basically, this gives you an idea of what they consider to be "level". If sloped badly at the restaurant, than the second item is that you have some time before it becomes an issue.

2) ...Any time the vehicle is parked for several hours with the refrigerator operating, the vehicle should be leveled to prevent this loss of cooling.

In my own experience, I have never had to shut if off and it has never lost its ability to cool because it was not level during a stop.
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Old 06-12-2013, 01:35 PM   #7
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Geez- look at Mr. Goody reading the manual.

Good stuff, actually! Thanks, Scott.
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Old 06-12-2013, 01:45 PM   #8
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I turn mine on auto a day or two before we leave and have never worried about it. Been doing this the same way for as long as I can remember. I shut it off when the trailer is back beside my house and ready to unload.
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Old 06-12-2013, 02:17 PM   #9
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I turn mine on auto a day or two before we leave and have never worried about it. Been doing this the same way for as long as I can remember. I shut it off when the trailer is back beside my house and ready to unload.
x2
IMO, I suspect there would be a lot more information and warnings from manufacturers if this was an issue.
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Old 06-12-2013, 02:21 PM   #10
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I only turn my off to defrost it. We use it as a backup fridge and keep the IBC root beer cold. Also we do not have to wait for a day to allow the fridge to get really cold.

The trailer makes for a very good lifeboat if your zoning allows it.
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