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Old 28-06-2011, 12:53   #31
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Re: Propane Refrigeration

My Dometic, in my motorhome has AES, Automatic Energy System that is AC, 12VDDC, and propane. No switches to turn on.
Battery voltage over 12.5 VDC so it runs on 12V only when engine is running, turn the key off, propane turns on after 15 minutes so no fire danger if fueling. Plug in shore power cord, auto 110 AC.

No pilot light, electronic ignition that's wired into the sniffer, gas fumes no refrigerator.

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Alcohol doesn't burn hot enough to boil ammonia

This is a 1988 model fridge, so I'm sure they are better designed by now. They do work fantastic, will keep ice cream rock hard which is at least -10 F.
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Old 28-06-2011, 12:58   #32
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Re: Propane Refrigeration

Looks like Bill and I were on the san
me track.
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Old 28-06-2011, 14:05   #33
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Re: Propane Refrigeration

The other rap on absorption refrigerators is that they can't achieve more than about a 40 to 50 degree drop from ambient. Food safety requires 40 degrees or less (some chefs now say 38) so these units aren't suitable for hot climates. I have a Dometic propane/110V fridge that is 42 years old and it still works but it's always been kept level. Not suitable for sailing one tack for days on end. It's hard to beat compressor fridges.
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Old 28-06-2011, 14:20   #34
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Re: Propane Refrigeration

I dunno Janet. I've had mine parked in Las Vegas before (100+) and my thermometer said the freezer was +5 and the refrigerator stayed at 40. I think you may be referring to a Peltier type cooler. Some of those have a Delta "T" of about 40 degrees.
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Old 28-06-2011, 15:37   #35
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So many posts from people who don't have propane refrigeration on their boat.

Some have practical knowledge.


Yes, heeling is a problem. It is used successfully on catamarans (PDQ) but would not function properly on a monohull.

Yup, works fine underway. The longest I've been on one tack was about 16 hours.

Yes, you can run the unit on 12v, 120v, or propane. Alcohol would be more difficult to regulate, I think. But it isn't a heat problem; very high temperatures are not required.

Yes, the pilot (the flame is only about that size) has the normal safeties and lighting sequence. If it goes out for any reason, it stays out.

Yes, propane requires precautions. All installation must be rigorously to code. Propane detectors must be included. Since I also have a propane instant water heater, propane heat, and a propane stove, not a big deal. I switch to electric operation when unattended and turn the propane off.

I can make good ice in 100F temperatures. Ammonia systems can reach VERY cold temperatures.

Yes, cooling air is required. That is a common mistake when people stuff a "dorm room" fridge of any type in a motor home or boat. Easily solved.
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Old 28-06-2011, 20:36   #36
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Re: Propane Refrigeration

How about a kerosene refrigerator?
Appliances*|*Gas Refrigerators and Freezers*|*Dometic*|*Dometic Kerosene Refrigerator - Lehmans.com=#
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Old 24-05-2016, 05:40   #37
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Re: Propane Refrigeration

All good and accurate comments. I have an ac/dc/propane frig on my cruising power boat and love it. All safety's are in place. Little has been said about CO however. I have two alarms and still want to be shure about this risk so I recently purchased a co monitor from Amazon for $119.00 (Sensorcon). It gives a continuous reading in parts per million of co. This gives me added peace of mind for operation of the frig, generator, stove etc. You are never too safe.
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Old 24-05-2016, 06:57   #38
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Re: Propane Refrigeration

Some of you olde timers will remember when many islands in Carib had no electric . It was very common to see LPG or kero refigeration . I remember in the late seventies when there was a kinda shortage of propane on Jost and Foxie and several others used those candles from buffet warmers for several days . All absorption cooling needs is heat .
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Old 24-05-2016, 09:41   #39
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Re: Propane Refrigeration

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Originally Posted by Evan View Post
Gemini is the only sailboat manufacturer and PDQ (with their 32' cat) that used propane fridges. They work ok on cats, but the hassle of trying to refill propane every 3 weeks (and the extra weight of propane) dissuaded me from them.
Not much of a hassle at all. If we are in a slip it runs on shore power and when at anchor 2 tanks is good for a month and a half.
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Old 24-05-2016, 09:42   #40
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Re: Propane Refrigeration

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Originally Posted by JanetGroene View Post
The other rap on absorption refrigerators is that they can't achieve more than about a 40 to 50 degree drop from ambient. Food safety requires 40 degrees or less (some chefs now say 38) so these units aren't suitable for hot climates. I have a Dometic propane/110V fridge that is 42 years old and it still works but it's always been kept level. Not suitable for sailing one tack for days on end. It's hard to beat compressor fridges.
We spent a summer in the Carolinas with temps typically in the mid 90's. Not problem keeping ice cream nice and hard.

If we turned it all the way up, it would freeze the fridge compartment.
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Old 24-05-2016, 10:09   #41
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Re: Propane Refrigeration

Price the unit, then a decent isotherm or other 12/24/110V volt compressor fridge. Happy to see the last of my Dometic 12/110/propane unit.
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Old 24-05-2016, 10:43   #42
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Re: Propane Refrigeration

https://www.google.com/search?q=prop...YED34Q_AUICCgD

What ya get for propane fridge fires from google. It happens.

I had a standard typical 5cf Dometic propane fridge in my RV. It worked OK, but was going out. Finally it died. I hated it. Sometimes cold, sometimes not so cold.

Replaced it with a 10cf household 110v electric fridge, 400W of panels, MPPT controller, and a PSW inverter. The replacement was cheaper than a new propane unit. And it works waaaaay better. And I haven't plugged the RV in since.
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Old 25-05-2016, 00:04   #43
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Re: Propane Refrigeration

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Originally Posted by jeepbluetj View Post
https://www.google.com/search?q=prop...YED34Q_AUICCgD

What ya get for propane fridge fires from google. It happens.
Google sailboat boom hitting head...are you suggesting if we can find any accidents we should prohibit sailboats?
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Old 25-05-2016, 12:02   #44
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Re: Propane Refrigeration

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Originally Posted by valhalla360 View Post
Google sailboat boom hitting head...are you suggesting if we can find any accidents we should prohibit sailboats?
Nope, not at all. Just an illustration.

Propane fridge fires in RVs are common enough I'm a little surprised that Norcold and Dometic still exist. There's been recalls and lawsuits about it. And the same fire that causes an RV owner to just step out of the RV could be much worse on a boat. When I pulled my fridge out of my RV, the walls of the fridge compartment were all scorched - I could easily see that these are a fire hazard. Not like they're all gonna burn. Not like most or many are gonna burn. But enough to scare me.

And for what? Solar/electric is generally a better option. It works when heeled. Doesn't drink propane. Makes far less waste heat. Each component is separately replaceable. Is likely pretty price competitive for install, and will win over time (no propane to purchase). For my RV it was actually cheaper to go electric. And I doubled the fridge size.
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Old 25-05-2016, 12:13   #45
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Re: Propane Refrigeration

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Nope, not at all. Just an illustration.

.
So is sailboat booms hitting people in the head and other such accidents... an illustration. Without a statistical basis, it means nothing.
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