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Old 05-09-2021, 01:40 PM   #1
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Furrion 12V Fridge on Battery Power

On the Furion website it says 15 Amps (i do not have the specs on hand). I am assuming that is when is running. Have anybody had the experience to run the 12V Furion on battery power and see how long they last? Not planning on boondocking but be able to pull somewhere to sleep overnight or perhaps stay a bit longer.

I know the fridge is not running 24/7 and keeping it close and some discipline can stay cold for a bit longer.

The reason that I am asking is because I want to replace the 12V and add another or swap the 12V for two 6Vs depending on power demand and output. Or... leave it as is.

I know, cannot go wrong with the highest Amp Hr but my wallet gravitational pull brings me down to earth every time.
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Old 05-10-2021, 08:20 AM   #2
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15 amps running is allot of power. My guess is that figure is the what it pulls starting the compressor and something less after its started (this being said without seeing the specs). You can't go wrong with a second battery regardless of your camping style. You could do a test while power is available with the battery full unplug and time how long it takes to draw the battery down with normal usage this would give you a baseline.
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Old 05-10-2021, 08:29 AM   #3
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15 amps running is allot of power. My guess is that figure is the what it pulls starting the compressor and something less after its started (this being said without seeing the specs). You can't go wrong with a second battery regardless of your camping style. You could do a test while power is available with the battery full unplug and time how long it takes to draw the battery down with normal usage this would give you a baseline.
Thanks for the reply and advice

15 amps X 12 volts is 180 Watts. Current is high but power is not that much almost 2 lightbulbs. Looks like a very low power comsumption for a fridge.

I was thinking about doing that myself but wanted to hear different scenarios/experiences.
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Old 05-10-2021, 09:10 AM   #4
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Math on the batteries is pretty simple. You have about 50 amps available per battery. Two would be 100 amp hours. Two gc2’s are the ticket. $200.

Worst case analysis is your fridge could wipe out a battery in hours. 50/15 is 3.3 hours. If you employ all know methods to extend that time you might get much longer.

Also this is dependent on outside temperature.

The math is that 50 amp hours is not much. Your parasitic loads plus normal lights etc. You can expect on a cold night the furnace will fail around 2 am.

Cpap’s are also big users.

Plug in every night and it does not matter.

A battery monitor is a good plan.
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Old 05-10-2021, 08:44 PM   #5
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Other threads on the 12v refrigerators suggest that the running current is about 7 amps. And remember that the unit may only actually run 30-50% of the time, depending on ambient temperature and the number of times the kids open the door and stare. 7 amps times 50% times 12 hours is 42 amp-hours, for example.
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Old 05-10-2021, 11:19 PM   #6
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It's unclear to me exactly what product you are trying to run but if it is a furrion air conditioner...that 15 amps is AC amps at 120 volts. which means 1800 watts and NOT 180. There is not way to run the AC or Microwave or other big appliances for a night with any number of batteries that would be less than the number that would still leave you a place to sleep!
Now that we are done with the technical explanation....
15 amps is 150 dc amps. A battery bank can only supply about 25% of it's rated amp hours continuously till depleted...you would need 600 amp hours just to run the furrion. THEN you have to ask...HOW LONG will those batteries last?? Well 150 amps an hour will be used or 150 amp hours...so it could last 4 hours...except you can only USE 1/2 your available amp hours before recharging is needed without damaging batteries...so 600 amp hours of batteries...that is SIX GROUP 31 batteries will run JUST your air conditioner for 2 hours. If you want 8 hours of cool sleep...that would need 24 batteries.
A better idea would be to by a 2000watt generator and run it when you need to be cool...while sizing your battery bank for your daily DC needs and maybe a couple of small loaf AC items with a small inverter. (PC, Charger, TV etc.)
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Old 05-11-2021, 06:14 AM   #7
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It's unclear to me exactly what product you are trying to run but if it is a furrion air conditioner...that 15 amps is AC amps at 120 volts. which means 1800 watts and NOT 180. There is not way to run the AC or Microwave or other big appliances for a night with any number of batteries that would be less than the number that would still leave you a place to sleep!
Now that we are done with the technical explanation....
15 amps is 150 dc amps. A battery bank can only supply about 25% of it's rated amp hours continuously till depleted...you would need 600 amp hours just to run the furrion. THEN you have to ask...HOW LONG will those batteries last?? Well 150 amps an hour will be used or 150 amp hours...so it could last 4 hours...except you can only USE 1/2 your available amp hours before recharging is needed without damaging batteries...so 600 amp hours of batteries...that is SIX GROUP 31 batteries will run JUST your air conditioner for 2 hours. If you want 8 hours of cool sleep...that would need 24 batteries.
A better idea would be to by a 2000watt generator and run it when you need to be cool...while sizing your battery bank for your daily DC needs and maybe a couple of small loaf AC items with a small inverter. (PC, Charger, TV etc.)
Is just the fridge. The one in our camper is a 12 V electric Furion. What I am asking is how long will work like lets say, 12 hrs period. I am not planning to boondock, is in case if I have to stop on the trip and to have an idea for how long will stay cold (fridge) if is working on batt power on and off.
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Old 05-11-2021, 12:14 PM   #8
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Not 15 amps

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Originally Posted by KnP View Post
Is just the fridge. The one in our camper is a 12 V electric Furion. What I am asking is how long will work like lets say, 12 hrs period. I am not planning to boondock, is in case if I have to stop on the trip and to have an idea for how long will stay cold (fridge) if is working on batt power on and off.
Pretty sure all the 12v refrigerators are 11 amp starting (for a few seconds) and 7 amps after that.

Assumptions:
--At 70 degrees F ambient, the duty cycle is 1/3 or 33%.
--At 95 degrees F ambient, the duty cycle is 2/3 or 67%.
--You are starting with a full battery, 50 amp-hours usable.

At 70 degrees F, 50 Amp-hours divided by (7 Amps times 0.33) = 21.6 hours

At 90 degrees F, 50 Amp-hours divided by (7 Amps times 0.67) = 10.7 hours

This will give you something to work from. If you want to refine it, you could do the following experiments.
  • Most multi-meters (even the cheap ones) have a 10 Amp scale.
  • Set the multimeter to the 10A DC scale.
  • Plug the red lead into the special 10A jack.
  • Plug the black lead into the COMmon jack.
  • Find the refrigerator fuse.
  • Unplug it.
  • Turn the multimeter on.
  • Put one probe on one fuse terminal.
  • Put the other probe on the other terminal. (It doesn't matter which probe goes where--you might simply get a reading with a "-" sign.)
  • Read the current.
  • Let us know what the real current is.

  • When it is 70 degrees outside,
  • When the refrigerator hasn't been opened for a while.
  • When you hear it start to run, capture the time and start timing
  • When you hear it stop running, capture the time, and start timing again.
  • When you hear it start running again, capture the time.
  • Subtract the first time from the second time--that's the on-time or Ton.
  • Subtract the second time from the third time--that's the off-time or Toff.
  • Add Ton to Toff for Ttotal.
  • Ton/Ttotal is the duty cycle, the fraction used in the estimates above.

  • When it is 90 degrees outside,
  • Repeat the 70 degree measurement.
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Old 05-11-2021, 12:33 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by KnP View Post
On the Furion website it says 15 Amps (i do not have the specs on hand). I am assuming that is when is running. Have anybody had the experience to run the 12V Furion on battery power and see how long they last? Not planning on boondocking but be able to pull somewhere to sleep overnight or perhaps stay a bit longer.

I know the fridge is not running 24/7 and keeping it close and some discipline can stay cold for a bit longer.

The reason that I am asking is because I want to replace the 12V and add another or swap the 12V for two 6Vs depending on power demand and output. Or... leave it as is.

I know, cannot go wrong with the highest Amp Hr but my wallet gravitational pull brings me down to earth every time.
These things are power hogs. We initially had two cheap 12 V batteries with a 50 watt solar panel and thought we were good to go. Our first night out unplugged, we were nearly down to 50%, and found we had to run our generator several hours the next day just to catch up, then chased the fridge the rest of the long weekend. With just one battery, you'll likely have issues.

Two 6V GC2 are cheap. In fact, if you're a Sam's Club member, they're on sale for $69 apiece (sale ends this weekend), so you'll have 215 Ah for $140 (half that usable Ah). As I've found from personal experience, if you go in-person and buy with their app, they don't charge you the core fee.

https://www.samsclub.com/p/duracell-...c2/prod3590228
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Old 05-11-2021, 12:51 PM   #10
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What Larry said!

I use a cpap every day. Our typical use per day is about 100 amps. No furnace.

The DW discovered Harvest host last month. Stopped at two in a week. Thus our demand for power just went up a lot. The last one was a winery. Nice place in Lexington. A little off the highway, but, the wines were, surprisingly good and reasonable. The horse farm was, horsey. Nice folks. We bought fresh eggs there. They do taste different. Lexington headed south.

My 4 gc2 batteries do not look so great at the moment. Using the furnace and cpap we cannot last two nights without the generator. More than 200 amps of power seems like a lot. But, it points out the weakness in all rv's. The batteries.

Thinking about Lithium. Almost 400 amps for $4000.

Noticed a lot of lithium batteries for sale on fleabay. $600 or so for 100 amps. They have 200 amp batteries that would fit your spot I think for a little over a grand.
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Old 05-11-2021, 01:17 PM   #11
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Old 05-11-2021, 01:34 PM   #12
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FYI: A LP refrigerator will run several weeks on a single 20# propane cylinder. These automatically switch to 120vAC power when it's available. I see absolutely no benefit in a 12vDC refrigerator. If you already mistakenly got one -- or had one forced on you -- you're stuck but lurkers should take note.

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Old 05-11-2021, 01:49 PM   #13
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Not sure this is the place...

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Originally Posted by Chuck_S View Post
FYI: A LP refrigerator will run several weeks on a single 20# propane cylinder. These automatically switch to 120vAC power when it's available. I see absolutely no benefit in a 12vDC refrigerator. If you already mistakenly got one -- or had one forced on you -- you're stuck but lurkers should take note.

-- Chuck
I'm not sure this is the place to preach about LP refrigerators. The initial premise was that the 12 VDC refrigerator exists and will be used.

But since you could not see the benefits, you might look at these, for folks who always have power:
--Cools down rapidly when ready to load up
--Recovers from open door in a few minutes
--Maintains refrigerator and freezer temperatures when ambient is over 100
--Doesn't matter whether it's on the sunny side
--No leak points around outside hatch or roof vent
--Available with larger capacity in a smaller footprint
--No worries about fuel when leaving the trailer stocked and unattended for an extended time.

The 2008 Cherokee is permanently sited with power. We have a residential compressor-style refrigerator, but a 12VDC compressor refrigerator would be the same. When we leave, certain commodities (e.g., ketchup, mustard) are left in the trailer. We know the refrigerator will keep the food cool, even though (COVID) we were only there at New Years, Independence Day, and after Xmas.

Not everyone wants to hide alone in the woods, away from society. We actually enjoy the social interactions with our long-time neighbors at the campground.
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Old 05-11-2021, 03:27 PM   #14
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FYI: A LP refrigerator will run several weeks on a single 20# propane cylinder. These automatically switch to 120vAC power when it's available. I see absolutely no benefit in a 12vDC refrigerator. If you already mistakenly got one -- or had one forced on you -- you're stuck but lurkers should take note.

-- Chuck
I certainly wasn't happy with mine at first when it drained the batteries quickly while out boondocking, despite what the salesman told me. However, I like having the extra space for the given size of the unit, as does my wife, who loves cooking while camping. I've since added 4 GC2 batteries and 800 watts of solar to keep everything fed with power, and am perfectly happy with the DC fridge now, and don't have to worry about monitoring propane to keep food cold... and it stays nice and cold no matter the weather. It's definitely not perfect and is a huge power hog, but there are some benefits to it, as Larry said above.
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Old 05-11-2021, 03:51 PM   #15
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I think the 12V Frig will fully replace the propane units it is far cheaper for the Mfg to install and less of a learning curve for the buyer. As time goes on they will get more efficient. Myself I have yet to warm up to the idea, but do see the positive side of them. To the OP I hope you get it figured out what will be best for your style of Camping.
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Old 05-11-2021, 04:14 PM   #16
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I certainly wasn't happy with mine at first when it drained the batteries quickly while out boondocking, despite what the salesman told me. However, I like having the extra space for the given size of the unit, as does my wife, who loves cooking while camping. I've since added 4 GC2 batteries and 800 watts of solar to keep everything fed with power, and am perfectly happy with the DC fridge now, and don't have to worry about monitoring propane to keep food cold... and it stays nice and cold no matter the weather. It's definitely not perfect and is a huge power hog, but there are some benefits to it, as Larry said above.
I see the reasoning behind it, also, I was skeptical about the fridge running on 12V only. Yes, is cheaper for the mfg to install and add flexibility to the design. In my opinion, once the power supply issue is sorted out is not a bad idea.

Our camper came with 1 solar panel, I think that does not do much to sustain any power demand, is more like a battery tender.

For what I see, I might go the two 6V layout. That should be plenty juice for a rest stop without worring about the food going bad. Next day I can recharge the batteries while driving.
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Old 05-11-2021, 05:03 PM   #17
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For what I see, I might go the two 6V layout. That should be plenty juice for a rest stop without worring about the food going bad. Next day I can recharge the batteries while driving.
There are so many variables with fridge and food and solar power and batteries...only your experiences will teach you what you want to know.

Do you camp in the sun or shade?
What is the ambient temp?
How often do you open the fridge door?
What size battery do you have?

Yur battery right now is probably a minimal 12V Group 24 battery. If it is still pretty new, then your best bet would be to purchase another 12V Group 24 battery and parallel the two to double whatever you got with the original purchase.

You might want to look into a Solar Generator. Those are nothing more than a Lithium battery that can be charged from your cigar lighter in the tow vehicle, or 120VAC, or a portable solar panel that can be directed at the sun in a shaded campsite. They provide any type of power you could want from 120 VAC to 12 VDC to 5 VDC. They provide portable power wherever you need it.

I have a Jackery 1000 watt unit and two portable solar panels. All of the electronics to allow this work are in the Jackery. NO WIRING necessary.

There are many brands out there these days. Check out youtube HOBOTECH for explanations and reviews of the various brands/models of solar generators.
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Old 05-11-2021, 05:17 PM   #18
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There are so many variables with fridge and food and solar power and batteries...only your experiences will teach you what you want to know.

Do you camp in the sun or shade?
What is the ambient temp?
How often do you open the fridge door?
What size battery do you have?

Yur battery right now is probably a minimal 12V Group 24 battery. If it is still pretty new, then your best bet would be to purchase another 12V Group 24 battery and parallel the two to double whatever you got with the original purchase.

You might want to look into a Solar Generator. Those are nothing more than a Lithium battery that can be charged from your cigar lighter in the tow vehicle, or 120VAC, or a portable solar panel that can be directed at the sun in a shaded campsite. They provide any type of power you could want from 120 VAC to 12 VDC to 5 VDC. They provide portable power wherever you need it.

I have a Jackery 1000 watt unit and two portable solar panels. All of the electronics to allow this work are in the Jackery. NO WIRING necessary.

There are many brands out there these days. Check out youtube HOBOTECH for explanations and reviews of the various brands/models of solar generators.
Good info, thanks
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Old 05-11-2021, 06:59 PM   #19
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...

Thinking about Lithium. Almost 400 amps for $4000.
I have two 100 Ah Battleborn batteries. Cost was about $1700. When I bought there were not many alternatives, and they all seem to cost about the same. Now there are cheaper alternatives such as these. 400 amps would be "only" $2000...

https://www.amazon.com/LiFePO4-Batte...NsaWNrPXRydWU=

EDIT : If you do want the Battleborn, and if you're going to buy more than 1, join Escapees RV. BB gives members $100 off the going price for each battery and 15% off accessories. Meaning everything else you buy in the order. That's worth the $45 join fee.
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Old 05-11-2021, 07:11 PM   #20
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On this game, you spend some good coin and in few months some better shows up at a better price.

Gotta luv tech
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