Best Fridge

TheRealPapaK

Active member
What is the best fridge optio? All the prices seem so obscene to the point where I am thinking of buying a 120v fridge and buying another 100Ah battery and solar panel with the savings to power it. It seems like in Canada you get even more hosed on mark ups. One of the cheapest options I found $700 USD for a TruckFridge in the states vs $1800+CDN to get the same fridge through their Canadian dealer. The US supplier won't sell direct.
 

verdesard0g

Search and Rescue first responder
I bought an Australian marketed one from Amazon. It was almost $1000, maybe I should have just bought a National Luna.
 

RVflyfish

What comes next?
Compressor, power draw and insulation seem to be the big differences between 120v and 12v fridges.

At the lower end of the 12v price range, people always have good things to say about Truck Fridge.

I’ve also never read anything bad about ARB, Isotherm or National Luna. Then again, at their prices, I would expect nothing less.

I have read a few less than glowing reviews of Dometic fridges on their own website. But they seem to have raised their game lately.

Before you decide on which brand, you might want to consider form factor: Size? Front opening or top opening? Fridge only or fridge/freezer combination?
 

Bikersmurf

Expedition Leader

Had the best price I could find on the fridge I bought. At the time I was shopping for one they also had 10% off for signing up... and offered a discount if you left something in your cart.

I bought mine in Canada even though it was slightly more than ordering it online. I didn’t want to get hit with surprise duty or extra taxes. I also wanted to have a brick and mortar business in case there were any problems. From the local P&R Dealer I usually go to it was about 1/2 the price you were quoted. It was a “stock” replacement fridge for a Kenworth truck.

These would be worth a look if you are ok with a cooler style...
 

TheRealPapaK

Active member
Thanks for the replies everyone! I do like the idea of supporting local brick and mortar. I actually found a pretty good deal last night after I made this post that I think I am going to go with on an Alpicool.
 

Gtdad

Adventurer
What is the best fridge optio? All the prices seem so obscene to the point where I am thinking of buying a 120v fridge and buying another 100Ah battery and solar panel with the savings to power it. It seems like in Canada you get even more hosed on mark ups. One of the cheapest options I found $700 USD for a TruckFridge in the states vs $1800+CDN to get the same fridge through their Canadian dealer. The US supplier won't sell direct.
here ya
go.
 

Bbasso

Expedition Leader
I bought a used engle mt45 5 years ago and still runs perfectly almost never unplugged in my van.
 

plh

Explorer
I bought a used Edgestar (Whynter) FP430 around 8 years ago. No idea how old it was when I bought it. Has been plugged in either my vehicle or basement nearly 100% of my ownership time and has worked flawlessly.
 

Scotty D

Active member
I have run an RCA 110v dormfridge with a pure sign wave inverter for 4 years. Its been all over the baja peninsula and never given me any trouble.
I would rather spend more money on robust solar and more battery storage than an expensive fridge that uses less energy.
Offroading is hard on refrigerator parts and I drive way to fast of washboard roads. Much happier to replace a cheap fridge if I have to.
 

broncobowsher

Adventurer
Define your needs. How much fridge, how much freeze, How much you will need it, what will package into the space you have for it.
I have a dorm fridge in the garage as my garage fridge. I have an ARB/Engle that is pushing 13 years old now. There is no way I could do with that dorm fridge as a transportation fridge. Many times I will have the ARB in full freeze hauling frozen food. Any 120V fridge with enough freezer space would be way to large for my vehicle.

So for ME, the ARB is best. Suits my needs, fits my vehicle, very good power draw and will run on the limited solar I have. But if price point is more important to you, and you have the power to run it, and the limited freezer capacity is acceptable, the dorm fridge and invertor is another option.

There are plenty of options out there. Engle and ARB will publish power consumption curves. Many of the others don't and what limited data exists often show they draw double the power. But if you have the power (and battery storage) to run it that isn't a factor. There is no way I could run a power hungry fridge, I don't have room for the extra battery capacity they would need nor room for the extra solar to top everything off. And if I did there is still the expense of adding more battery and more solar. Not to mention the added weight of always hauling that extra along with you. It could make the more expensive fridge more affordable by the time you add everything up.
 

luthj

Engineer In Residence
For many folks a 120V high efficiency fridge, and good quality pure sine inverter will work fine. Power consumption can even be on par with the 12V units if the fridge has good insulation. For those that do shorter trips, or have ample solar, the 120V works fine.

I have had 2 fridges with danfoss/secop 12v compressors. Both were reliable, though the insulation on the doors left some to be desired. My parents kitchen fridge finally died. It was 32 years old. There is nothing magical about the compressors, they are a well understood technology. On the 12V units, they typically use a built-in driver/inverter to run a 3 phase low voltage AC compressor.
 

Scotty D

Active member
If you are wondering how much power a 120v fridge with a pure sine needs, I can tell you that I do just fine with 340 watts of solar and two golf cart batteries
I did add an inch of foam board insulation all the way around so that is a big help.
I can camp on the beach in baja in winter indefinitely with this setup but my freezer space is pretty small.
This setup has held up to about 70k miles and a crazy percentage of that was dirt road between all the baja exploring I have done and the fact that my home in the states is two miles of washboard from the nearest pavement.
Every single time I leave the house thats 4 miles round trip of bad dirt road.
 
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