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Old 03-07-2017, 08:27 PM   #1
Mike3387
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Two Way Fridge vs. Residential Fridge

A friend who owns a Montana suggested I get the model with the residential fridge. He claims his fridge has a bit of trouble keeping up when it's warmer out. Even when plugged in to shore power. I've never heard anyone stating a comment like that. Occasionally, we like to tailgate college football games with our class C and we've never had a problem such as what he described. I'm looking at the 3810, but the 3811 has the residential fridge. Is there any truth to the coldness of the two refrigerators?
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Old 03-07-2017, 08:53 PM   #2
Virginia Young
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Our RV fridge struggles when it is too warm out. It doesn't matter what weather, the freezer is no good for ice-cream. If given a choice, I would get the residential. If you are going to do a lot of boon docking, get the RV fridge if you don't want to run a generator.
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Old 03-08-2017, 04:37 AM   #3
Mike3387
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RV Fridge vs. Residential

That's interesting. I plan to purchase a generator, for those times when we are tailgating or traveling across the the country. Thank you for your input.
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Old 03-08-2017, 05:04 AM   #4
jfaberna
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I have a RV fridge and is is very cold regardless of outside temp.
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Old 03-08-2017, 05:31 AM   #5
hickory
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Our RV fridge has worked great for four years now

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Old 03-08-2017, 06:12 AM   #6
JandC
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We had two Montana's with RV frigs (Nevercold) and now a MH with residential. It is like comparing a BMW to a Yugo, they will both get the job done but you might suffer a little more with the Yugo.


Our experience with our Norcold RV frigs were very inconsistent temps, problems keeping up in extreme hot or extreme cold temps, and small. Our large residential works just like the one at home and I would never go back to using an RV frig. Just my .2
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Old 03-08-2017, 07:26 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JandC View Post
We had two Montana's with RV frigs (Nevercold) and now a MH with residential. It is like comparing a BMW to a Yugo, they will both get the job done but you might suffer a little more with the Yugo.


Our experience with our Norcold RV frigs were very inconsistent temps, problems keeping up in extreme hot or extreme cold temps, and small. Our large residential works just like the one at home and I would never go back to using an RV frig. Just my .2
We have to completely agree with J and C. Our 2015 though had the Dometic version of a large fridge (4 door) and after 2 1/2 years of ownership and MANY service appointments the cooling unit failed for the 3rd. time.
In our case with extended warranty our pocketbook was saved but with every repair the ability of the fridge to keep things cool was all over the map.

As our regular road tech stated as the size of these rv fridges increased our failure rates went up proportionally.

We are done with Rv fridges.
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Old 03-08-2017, 08:54 AM   #8
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We had the small 8 cuft in our Monty, never keep icecream hard. Had the 4 door 12 cuft in our next SOB, again no had icecream, but no problems other that that with either. No have a 20 cuft Residential in our current SOB and love, love it. Hard icecream and lots of room. We have a bank of four 12V batteries and can go several days without a power issue.
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Old 03-08-2017, 09:38 AM   #9
jcurtis934
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Comparing the two is kind of unfair. The rv fridge is very old technology, has much smaller volume inside, costs many times more, isn't meant to have the same control tolerances, isn't meant to be a home environment appliance...but it can deal with boondocking easier. If you lower your expectations about temperature control range (any temp between 20's to 6f for freezer and anything between 30 to 43f for fridge) then the rv fridge is a good thing. If you fulltime or longtime, better have no expectations of home like performance. As a short time rv user you really don't have the need for a residental fridge unless you are a control freak and expect the best in cooling performance.
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Old 03-08-2017, 10:22 AM   #10
DarMar
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We just want a fridge that is reliable for the long haul and can be depended on to work. Tired of fridges that don't come close to keeping the food at the proper safe temperature no matter the type of day weather wise.
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Old 03-08-2017, 12:08 PM   #11
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It's kind of what you want / need and what your RV'ing plans are. The DW wanted (insisted) on a residential frig for space and control. We take the grands a lot and we needed the space.
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Old 03-08-2017, 12:21 PM   #12
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Go with the residential
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Old 03-08-2017, 12:31 PM   #13
cw3jason
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love my Residential. travels well, gets cold quicker and stays cold, plus no fire hazard.
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Old 03-08-2017, 03:36 PM   #14
JABURKHOLDER
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My former sob 5er came with an RV fridge. Can't swear to it but at that time (2005) I don't believe residential fridges were offered in 5th wheels. Anyway, prior to any planned trip we had to fire up the fridge the night before so it had time to cool down. Loading it had to be with items that were already cold or frozen. Never put anything warm in an RV fridge as it will take an inordinate amount of time to cool it. While towing we obviously had the propane on but that had certain drawbacks. Turning off the propane when fueling the TV, before going thru a tunnel or across certain bridges, etc. An RV fridge is more efficient running on propane compared to shore power, but not as efficient as a residential fridge. For every couple of minutes you have the RV fridge door open, the fridge needs about an hour of recovery time.


My Montana came with a residential fridge. A whole different world of operation. For any given trip, I just load the fridge, turn on the inverter, and by the time I get to my first fuel stop (3-4 hours) the fridge and freezer are already at temp and everything inside is nice and cold.


As far as boondocking goes...we don't. An RV fridge is more readily accepting of boondocking operation without any special prep. With a little foresight and proper prep a residential fridge will work fine for boondocking.


Given the choice...go residential.
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Old 03-10-2017, 05:59 PM   #15
DQDick
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Our 2010 RV fridge has been reliable and plenty cold all these years.
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Old 03-10-2017, 06:24 PM   #16
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It all depends on the RV lifestyle (recreational vs semi living in it) as to many of the answers on the MOC. We don't need a stick house sized fridge, like the ability of having two sources to make it run, and have always been satisfied with the gas absorption fridge. Like Dick and others ... 4 fivers over 20 year span ... always had good cooling with the standard gas absorption fridges in them.
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Old 03-10-2017, 07:26 PM   #17
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I specifically got the RV fridge and other than dented doors that I assume happened during installation by Keystone our works great. Freezer quickly gets cold. Fridge quickly gets cold and it still works for weeks even with no AC power. It is the big four door model and we never had it completely full because of its size. Of course our fridges at home are never completely full either. We have had ours stay cold at over a 100 degrees outside without any air conditioning going in the unit. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages. I do know I have read about owners having problems with their residential style fridges but mainly because of converter and battery issues. Good luck whichever way you go.

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Old 03-10-2017, 09:01 PM   #18
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This will interesting for us after reading the comments. It seems as though there's been luck with both and issues with both. We have the RV full size fridge.... I will be paying close attention on our first trip (which can't come soon enough)....
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Old 03-11-2017, 04:39 AM   #19
jfaberna
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Since my rig came with an RV fridge, I didn't have to think about it, but if I had to replace I think it would be cheaper in the long run to get a Residential fridge and take the money you saved over the RV fridge and put it in more batteries and a better inverted for the Residential Fridge.

I think the Residential fridge would be fine for me because I only need it to work without power for overnight at best and while traveling. But boondocking would require a lot of solar.

I'm also not sure about how long a Residential fridge will last going thru a 6.5 magnitude earthquake every time you go down the road.
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Old 03-11-2017, 06:29 AM   #20
JandC
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Originally Posted by jcurtis934 View Post
Comparing the two is kind of unfair....cut....... If you fulltime or longtime, better have no expectations of home like performance. As a short time rv user you really don't have the need for a residental fridge unless you are a control freak and expect the best in cooling performance.
Now that we are only traveling 2 to 4 months a year our need for a residential frig actually fits our needs better. When we pull the RV out of storage I can plug in, put some frozen water bottles in the freezer, and have the frig close to temps within a couple of hours. You could never have done that when starting up your RV frig out of storage.

In addition, since the frig in the house and the frig in the RV are about the exact same size, now we can simply transfer just about everything over. No more buying doubles later because we didn't have room initially in the frig for stuff left at home.

So actually as a short time user I think having a large capacity electric frig is saving me time and money.
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