Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 05-16-2018, 03:12 AM   #1
New Member
 
Join Date: May 2018
Location: Maine
Posts: 8
Default Advice wanted

2 way vs 3 way fridge?
The 2 way in my van works but I'm thinking of putting a 3 way in it...
Also, what size generator should I be looking at to run the fridge, lights, and AC?
Solar generators?
Solar systems?
__________________

Sooperdrave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2018, 03:15 AM   #2
BBQ
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: East
Posts: 2,484
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sooperdrave View Post
2 way vs 3 way fridge?
The 2 way in my van works but I'm thinking of putting a 3 way in it...
Also, what size generator should I be looking at to run the fridge, lights, and AC?
Solar generators?
Solar systems?

3-way is passé.
__________________

__________________
BBQ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2018, 01:38 PM   #3
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: League City, TX
Posts: 762
Default

I've owned three van fridges thus far -- two 3-ways and one 2-way. My suggestion is that, before you make your decision, you skim the following:

(1) This blog post of mine (here), in which I discuss all three of our fridges.

(2) This thread (here) about the performance of the Dometic 2351. That model or its successor is one of the most commonly-installed 3-ways in vans due to its small size, and the application being discussed in the thread is not entirely the fault of the installation method being discussed - part of the problem is deriving from the fridge itself. I say "skim" because that one has 351 posts. Ask yourself: why would any fridge justify 351 posts?! Answer: a lot of frustrated users.

(3) This forum thread (here) where the pros and cons of both fridge types are debated. It includes some commentary on failure modes and come-backs (failed fridges still under warranty). This thread was initiated by a poster who had a 2-way and was considering swapping it for a 3-way, so you'll immediately see the proper-context issues raised in it.
InterBlog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2018, 03:08 PM   #4
Site Team
 
avanti's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 3,395
Default

This may be too late, but I would like to suggest that the term "2-way" is not the best choice as a label for a compressor fridge. There exist 2-way absorption fridges: my old rig had one that was propane/120VAC only. Also, there are lots of compressor fridges that are "1-way" (12VDC only). Moreover, as I have said, the 120VAC input to a compressor unit is largely irrelevant to B-vans.

"3-way" is probably OK as a synonym for "absorption", since all 3-ways are absorption and not everybody knows the latter term. However, IMO, we should use the term "compressor" when that is what is meant.

I hope I am not being pedantic, but I have been genuinely confused by this use of "2-way".
__________________
Formerly: 2005 Airstream Interstate (Sprinter 2500 T1N)
Now!: 2014 Great West Vans Legend SE (Sprinter 3500 NCV3 I4)
avanti is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2018, 07:54 PM   #5
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: CA
Posts: 1,610
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by avanti View Post
This may be too late, but I would like to suggest that the term "2-way" is not the best choice as a label for a compressor fridge. There exist 2-way absorption fridges: my old rig had one that was propane/120VAC only. Also, there are lots of compressor fridges that are "1-way" (12VDC only). Moreover, as I have said, the 120VAC input to a compressor unit is largely irrelevant to B-vans.

"3-way" is probably OK as a synonym for "absorption", since all 3-ways are absorption and not everybody knows the latter term. However, IMO, we should use the term "compressor" when that is what is meant.

I hope I am not being pedantic, but I have been genuinely confused by this use of "2-way".
I think the evolution to "2 way" from "3 way" occurred because the 12 volt mode caused more problems than it solved. Typical 12VDC drain on a Dometic is in the neighborhood of 15 -20 amps. The better designed "3 ways" required ignition on for 12V operation (which presumably would mean engine running and alternator support)) Also, the 12V boiler BTU is substantially lower than the AC boiler BTU so the practical consequence is that the 12V mode can do little more than hold an existing fridge temp.
cruising7388 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2018, 08:12 PM   #6
New Member
 
Join Date: May 2018
Location: Maine
Posts: 8
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by avanti View Post
This may be too late, but I would like to suggest that the term "2-way" is not the best choice as a label for a compressor fridge. There exist 2-way absorption fridges: my old rig had one that was propane/120VAC only. Also, there are lots of compressor fridges that are "1-way" (12VDC only). Moreover, as I have said, the 120VAC input to a compressor unit is largely irrelevant to B-vans.

"3-way" is probably OK as a synonym for "absorption", since all 3-ways are absorption and not everybody knows the latter term. However, IMO, we should use the term "compressor" when that is what is meant.

I hope I am not being pedantic, but I have been genuinely confused by this use of "2-way".
By 2 way, I mean that my fridge is shoreline or propane only. Neither can be used while I'm driving.
By 3 way, I'm talking about shoreline/propane/12vdc that can run while I'm driving/idling.

Sorry, I'm pretty new to all this.
I would like to be able to keep the fridge running as much as possible.
Is taking out the working "2 way" and replacing really going to be worth the trouble or expense?
Sooperdrave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2018, 08:21 PM   #7
Site Team
 
avanti's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 3,395
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sooperdrave View Post
By 2 way, I mean that my fridge is shoreline or propane only. Neither can be used while I'm driving.
By 3 way, I'm talking about shoreline/propane/12vdc that can run while I'm driving/idling.

Sorry, I'm pretty new to all this.
I would like to be able to keep the fridge running as much as possible.
Is taking out the working "2 way" and replacing really going to be worth the trouble or expense?
My apologies. I totally misinterpreted your question -- your terminology is correct. I was the confused one.

Now that I understand:
Do you have an inverter (converts 12VDC to 120VAC)? If so, turning it on should allow you to power the fridge in 120VAC mode. If not, adding one would probably be cheaper and easier than replacing the fridge.
__________________
Formerly: 2005 Airstream Interstate (Sprinter 2500 T1N)
Now!: 2014 Great West Vans Legend SE (Sprinter 3500 NCV3 I4)
avanti is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2018, 08:57 PM   #8
New Member
 
Join Date: May 2018
Location: Maine
Posts: 8
Default

No it does not have an inverter. I didn't even think of doing that. I'm sure I could wire one up easily enough. What size inverter would you suggest?
Sooperdrave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2018, 09:29 PM   #9
Site Team
 
avanti's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 3,395
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sooperdrave View Post
What size inverter would you suggest?
Depends on what you might do with it. If it is just for the fridge, just look at the power spec for the refrigerator and round up. If you have other uses for the inverter (and have the battery to support it), then the sky's the limit.
__________________
Formerly: 2005 Airstream Interstate (Sprinter 2500 T1N)
Now!: 2014 Great West Vans Legend SE (Sprinter 3500 NCV3 I4)
avanti is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2018, 01:52 AM   #10
New Member
 
Join Date: May 2018
Location: Maine
Posts: 8
Default

I'm adding 3 batteries and a 300 watt solar system. I'm thinking an inverter that is big enough to run the fridge and AC...
Sooperdrave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2018, 05:23 AM   #11
Gold Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: Ohio
Posts: 75
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sooperdrave View Post
2 way vs 3 way fridge?
The 2 way in my van works but I'm thinking of putting a 3 way in it...
Also, what size generator should I be looking at to run the fridge, lights, and AC?
Solar generators?
Solar systems?
The absorption fridge (propane) in the RV we had when I was a kid was a nightmare. It seemed to never work right and was extremely finicky about being level. I know they've improved over the years, but I will never own one because of those memories from 20 years ago, as well as countless accounts of fridge woes on YouTube. Personally, I'd only have a 2-way compressor based fridge, 110v and 12v.
dhectorg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2018, 12:43 PM   #12
Platinum Member
 
eric1514's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: ID AZ
Posts: 622
Default

At the risk of starting an argument let me ask, "Why don't you run your refrigerator on propane when you drive?" It was designed for that.
__________________
"Il Travato Rosso"
2015 Travato 59g
eric1514 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2018, 09:47 PM   #13
Platinum Member
 
wincrasher's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2014
Location: Greer, South Carolina
Posts: 2,609
Default

If you have 200 watts of solar and 2 house batteries, then a 2 way fridge is virtually worry free. It's more than enough to keep ahead of the fridge's power consumption, plus you have the battery capacity to carry you over 2-3 days of no sun.
__________________
2019 Winnebago Travato GL
Follow my blog: https://www.wincrasher.blogspot.com
Our Facebook group is: https://www.facebook.com/groups/ClassBCamperVans/
wincrasher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2018, 09:51 PM   #14
Platinum Member
 
eric1514's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: ID AZ
Posts: 622
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by wincrasher View Post
If you have 200 watts of solar and 2 house batteries, then a 2 way fridge is virtually worry free. It's more than enough to keep ahead of the fridge's power consumption, plus you have the battery capacity to carry you over 2-3 days of no sun.
Except that by “2 way”, the OP means an absorption refrigerator that runs on 110v or propane.
eric1514 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2018, 10:31 PM   #15
Platinum Member
 
hepcat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: eastern Iowa
Posts: 216
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by eric1514 View Post
At the risk of starting an argument let me ask, "Why don't you run your refrigerator on propane when you drive?" It was designed for that.
There are LOTS of reasons not to run a fridge on propane while you drive. Most of them involve the threat of fire/explosion hazard/risk if something goes wrong.

That said i've always run my fridges on propane going down the road, and never had an issue in nearly forty years of RV'ing. I've had a variety of 2-way and 3-way fridges over that time. Frankly, the 12v setting is pretty much useless, which is why I run on propane when driving.
hepcat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-23-2018, 03:44 PM   #16
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Herndon, Virginia
Posts: 248
Default

I use Propane while driving all the time, it works fine.
JohnnyFry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-23-2018, 04:33 PM   #17
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Oklahoma
Posts: 252
Default

I run our RT on 12 volts going down the road if the refrig is already at its usual high 30s temperature. On a very hot day, the temp will go up five or so degrees. Nothing is going to rot that I know of in a few hours at a temp in the low 40s.

The reason I do that instead of propane is because you have to remember to turn off the refrig on propane before pulling in to buy gasoline. However, running down the road on propane is perfectly acceptable in my mind. On our Class Cs over the years I have had two way (110v/propane) refrigs and I just run them on propane virtually all the time. They are very efficient on propane.

You can increase the efficiency on 12 volts by adding a little 12 volt fan (directed towards the roof) at the bottom of the refrigerator. You have 12 v back there and it is a $20 deal to put in a little electronic equipment fan and a simple on off switch. This little assistance to the upper flow of heated air seems to help my RT on 12 v quite a bit.

I don't personally understand the fear of propane. Around here (Oklahoma City) several major companies run most of their fleets on compressed natural gas (CNG) and fill up stations are readily available. In all those years this has been going on, I don't think I ever heard of an accident caused by CNG. UPS runs their delivery trucks on CNG. CNG psi is generally 3000 at 70F ambient as I recall.

Maintenance of the propane system in a RV of any description is essential. I check every connection and line on my rigs with soapy water at least once a year (generally every spring).

I guess I have just used propane so many decades I never give it a thought except to follow the normal safety standards rigorously.

Paul
__________________

Doneworking is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

All times are GMT. The time now is 09:50 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×