Fridge with single battery

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Rubi-life2018

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Just looking to see how many people run a fridge freezer on a single battery set up. If you do have you had any problems?
 

El-Dracho

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Hi,

If you do not (yet) have an additional battery or even want to do without one, you can also operate a compressor fridge with its comparatively low power consumption on the starter battery for quite a while. The starting current of most compressor fridges is high, but the power requirement afterwards is relatively low.

To protect the battery and to be still able to start the next day or so I would use a battery monitor. In some cases, the fridges also have such low-voltage protection permanently installed.

If an aux battery is available, the fridge should of course be powered from there. This leads me to another aspect. It is important that this is a battery is designed as a consumer battery. Of course, you can also power it from a starter battery for a certain time. However, operation from a starter battery is not recommended. Starter batteries are designed to supply high currents for a short time and not for slow discharge through low currents.

To round this off briefly and give an idea that might be of interest to others. I work with an isolated solution in my rig. So, I have a secondary battery as a consumer battery, where among other things the fridge is fed from. This aux battery is not connected to the rig, but is only charged via solar (as backup I still have an automatic charger for "shore power connection", such as on the campsite). Keep it simple.

By the way, I think this topic is better in Electric and Electronics QA. What do you think, should it be moved there? @Rubi-life2018 ?


Bjoern
 

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I would make/run a DC to DC regulator, this allows the fridge to run when battery drops to say 11.5 v, the regulator still puts out 12.5 and you can set it to cut of when battery drops to a set level, say 11v.

Jim
 

Rubi-life2018

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Hi,

If you do not (yet) have an additional battery or even want to do without one, you can also operate a compressor fridge with its comparatively low power consumption on the starter battery for quite a while. The starting current of most compressor fridges is high, but the power requirement afterwards is relatively low.

To protect the battery and to be still able to start the next day or so I would use a battery monitor. In some cases, the fridges also have such low-voltage protection permanently installed.

If an aux battery is available, the fridge should of course be powered from there. This leads me to another aspect. It is important that this is a battery is designed as a consumer battery. Of course, you can also power it from a starter battery for a certain time. However, operation from a starter battery is not recommended. Starter batteries are designed to supply high currents for a short time and not for slow discharge through low currents.

To round this off briefly and give an idea that might be of interest to others. I work with an isolated solution in my rig. So, I have a secondary battery as a consumer battery, where among other things the fridge is fed from. This aux battery is not connected to the rig, but is only charged via solar (as backup I still have an automatic charger for "shore power connection", such as on the campsite). Keep it simple.

By the way, I think this topic is better in Electric and Electronics QA. What do you think, should it be moved there? @Rubi-life2018 ?


Bjoern
Thank you, and it looks like it was moved. If you did that thank you, I appreciate it!
 

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You can absolutely run a fridge off your starter battery. I know several folks that have done this for years without any issues.

At a bare minimum though, you need to be able to keep an eye on the voltage, and you need a way to jump the vehicle if the battery gets too low.

Get yourself a jump pack, and a voltage monitor, and that should take care of it. If you plan on being parked for a few days, you'll probably want to look into solar as well.

I've not run my fridge this way myself, as I use a lithium power station to run my fridge at the moment, and it works reasonably well, but am switching to a lifepo4 battery sometime next year.
 
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I have been running mine with a single battery for 11 years. Make sure you have a good battery, carry a jump pack. I have never needed to jump mine but it is always good to be prepared.
I do not sit in one place for long. Whether I am base camping or moving everyday, the longest my fridge has run on the battery is probably 14 hours. Also, keep in mind the weather, if it is hot your fridge will run a lot more. I don't camp when it is hot.
 

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I ran one of my fridges off a single deep cycle batter from Wal-Mart (like $80 I think) for several years. I kept it hooked up to a 100w solar panel and cheap amazon controller. This setup worked great for a 14 day backcountry trip through Death Valley. When I was not out exploring, the whole battery/solar setup was used to provide lights out in our barn.
 

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So I just need to add something, my fridge has a built-in low voltage cut off that is adjustable within 3 steps so it's protected anyway and the agm I choose is optimized to be able to deliver low current as a support battery while still being a good starter battery.
It's a Banner running bull but not sure if it's available in the US.

Since I heard a lot of positive reports about Odyssey batteries I looked at their range and it seems like the ODP series would just be ideal if you don't torture it with lots of winching, if winching is important for you I'll recommend the ODX. This is based on a look at the specs, I have no personal experience with them.
 
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El-Dracho

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So I just need to add something, my fridge has a built-in low voltage cut off that is adjustable within 3 steps so it's protected anyway and the agm I choose is optimized to be able to deliver low current as a support battery while still being a good starter battery.
It's a Banner running bull but not sure if it's available in the US.

Also had a Banner Running Bull AGM 95Ah as an auxiliary battery. It has worked great for 10 years, which is perfect for me. Now I have a Bosch AGM in it.
 
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I have been doing it for 5 years now, off a big X2 31M AGM battery. There are times when the fridge will shut down do to low voltage, but that is only when my truck sits around for a few days, never happens on the road or on the trail. I would like to hook up some solar panels.

I plan to add 2-6v batteries to my camp trailer after I install the RTT and fridge
 
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If you want a dual purpose battery (start/cycle), take a look at dual purpose rv batteries. Just pay attention to the cold cranking amps, and choose one that matches what your vehicle needs.
 

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Single battery for years and years. X2 Group 27, 100 watts of solar on the roof, jump box if I need it, never have. I also have a power box that I could use at night if need be. It was not purchased for that purpose though. As at least one other person has mentioned unless you run a winch often a single battery is fine. I don't agree with running off of a traditional starter battery but that's up to you.
 

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I’d say get a good truck battery, run it off that, incorporating solar will help for multi day use, but always have a small portable jump box, just good insurance everyday.. good luck, see you in the woods…
 

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Used all sorts of battery setups one thing I have found is no matter what you use: start battery/ aux battery get a good battery charger ctek, noco that sort of charger. Charge your batteries as soon as you get home as your battery life will he shortened over time drawing it down and just using your alternator to charge it. DC to DC charger is great too if you run a aux battery setup.
 

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I run a fridge on a single 100AH lithium battery. Camper rig also has two 105W Sunflaresolar panels wired in parallel. This battery/solar setup also recharges my ebike batteries, power tool batteries and powers my laptop, audio speakers and other appliances.