Best place to buy a fridge?

#1
Looking for a fridge but not sure I want to pay $900-1000 for a fridge that will probably only get used maybe 10 nights per year. I’d love an ARB Fridge freezer combo but the price is high. Is there anything Fridge/freezer combo out there that is closer to the $500 range? Right now we are just using a Cabela’s insulated cooler kinda like a Yeti cooler but I’m tired of buying ice and having a 12v fridge would be so nice. Any ideas on what to buy or should I just bite the bullet and buy an ARB?


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#2
REI carries Dometic if you want to buy something local but they aren't any cheaper than ARB. Bite the bullet. I think of it this way: a top of the line ice chest will cost you 4-600 dollars itself for a 100qt cooler that you have to fill 30% with ice, keep up in ice, deal with everything getting wet, etc.

In my opinion, roughly double the price is worth it (for a 60-70qt that doesnt need any ice eating up volume). Plus, you'll spend the 500 dollar difference on ice in 40 fills or so, which will take a few years at your usage rate but still end up costing more in the long run versus a fridge life span.

I've personally tossed, each year, probably 100 dollars worth of waterlogged foods, condiments, etc from using an ice chest. A fridge is next on the list for me, as well.
 
#3
cheaper fridges consume more far more electricity and drain your batteries flatter quicker, which requires more batteries and more weight.. even the really nice fridges require decent battery and a reliable charge source to be happy with em.. this is one of those things that you get what you pay for, if your not ready to shell out that kinda money.. get a nice cooler and make it work.
 
#6
I recently noticed Truck Fridge is no longer displaying the larger two compartment fridge freezers on their website. Don't know if they still offer them. They have best prices of anyone.
Just looked those up. $500 for their best one. TB51 but backordered until 3/19. Wonder how the power consumption is and the quality compared to say an ARB?


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#7
I hate to say it but the cost of the fridge isn't what's going to hit your wallet, it's the electrical setup to keep it running that's going to catch you by surprise. Could cost as much as the fridge potentially. I spent more on supporting my fridge than I did on my fridge. Going to need a proper battery (or 2), and if your putting it in a trailer, a charging setup, wiring. If you don't plan to move every day and run the vehicle to charge stuff, you might need solar to help out, unless you find an AC hookup. Just depends on how much fridge and how long you want to run it off grid.

Not to discourage you, fridges are awesome and I love mine, never use a cooler if I can help it. I run a Indel B TB18, small but suits my needs and fits in the truck nicely.

Maybe reconsider needing dual zones and the amount of space? Remember, no ice, means the capacity is all food, not food + ice.

I'll also reccomend Truckfridge, good place to buy from, at least they done well by me.
 
#9
If you're looking for budget options with positive reviews, there's Whynter. https://amzn.to/2AL2xHo

If, like me, you're down to try a no-name generic, check out Costway. https://www.costway.com/54-quarts-portable-electric-car-cooler-refrigerator.html It's most affordable straight from the web site, but if you buy it through Amazon, you can purchase a third-party warranty, which may give you more confidence in buying off-brand. https://amzn.to/2VUSR69 I snagged mine a couple months ago.

With 50º ambient temps, the fridge maintained 34º for 55 hours on my FJ's Optima Yellow Top. This was on less than ideal wiring, so performance may have been hindered. I've since added an additional 12v port in the interior and given the refrigerator a dedicated (fused) homerun to the battery. Given the cold ambient tempts, it's hard to say just how well it really cools or how efficient it might be, but my drinks have stayed cold and my food has stayed fresh.

The way to really justify a refrigerator purchase is to put it in the vehicle permanently and use it all the time. Aside from drinks and snacks at the ready, it has been convenient for transporting medication and for being able to make stops between the grocery store and home after purchasing items that need to be kept cold. I'm glad they're appearing at reasonable prices now.

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#10
If you're looking for budget options with positive reviews, there's Whynter. https://amzn.to/2AL2xHo

If, like me, you're down to try a no-name generic, check out Costway. https://www.costway.com/54-quarts-portable-electric-car-cooler-refrigerator.html It's most affordable straight from the web site, but if you buy it through Amazon, you can purchase a third-party warranty, which may give you more confidence in buying off-brand. https://amzn.to/2VUSR69 I snagged mine a couple months ago.

With 50º ambient temps, the fridge maintained 34º for 55 hours on my FJ's Optima Yellow Top. This was on less than ideal wiring, so performance may have been hindered. I've since added an additional 12v port in the interior and given the refrigerator a dedicated (fused) homerun to the battery. Given the cold ambient tempts, it's hard to say just how well it really cools or how efficient it might be, but my drinks have stayed cold and my food has stayed fresh.

The way to really justify a refrigerator purchase is to put it in the vehicle permanently and use it all the time. Aside from drinks and snacks at the ready, it has been convenient for transporting medication and for being able to make stops between the grocery store and home after purchasing items that need to be kept cold. I'm glad they're appearing at reasonable prices now.

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I’ll look into the costway also. I don’t really have to have name brand as I know most of these are probably made in China in the same warehouse then just branded differently. But I could be wrong also. Thanks for the tips.


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#11
The Costway appears to be the same refrigerator as what Smittybilt is selling, just in different colored plastic. It is confirmed that the bag Smittybilt sells fits the Costway models perfectly, so I'm sure you're right about everything coming from the same Chinese manufacturer. The Smittybilt costs twice as much though.
 
#12
I have a $450 whytner I got from Home Depot. It lives in my truck.

I spent another 450 adding a second battery and wiring and stuff.
My Walmart marine battery will run it for 2 days in the summer without charging.

I am pretty cheap By most people’s standards but It is worth the cost.
 
#15
I’m waiting for the 20% off at REI sale in March to order a Dometic. Still not sure if I want the 50 or 75dz...


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Scratch that REI plan.

Just ordered a 50 Liter Dometic on Amazon for $725.00. With the insulated coved and slider, I was about $1,050.00 delivered.


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