Which Fridge? Compressor or 3Way

Submitted: Tuesday, Jul 30, 2002 at 00:00
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We (a family of 6) have been using a 70l compressor fridge on our trailer for the past few years and have come to like our cordial nice and cold. The kids will go thru about 6-8 litres a day, plus all the other stuff that goes in, so the fridge works pretty hard. On a recent trip to the Kimberly where we only travelled a few hundred k's between 1 & 3 day stops we found we were running out of batteries (we have two 110Amp Hour batteries on the trailer and turn the unit off at night). A family of 5 travelling with us had a 50l Chestcold 3Way fridge and they always seemed to have cold drinks and milk. I have always believed the heat sink fridges to be less efficient than compressor fridges, but was impressed with the Chestcold's performance. To keep our batteries charged we needed to run the car for several hours each day, not always practical. Does anyone have good or bad experiences with the 3 Way fridges
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Reply By: Goran - Tuesday, Jul 30, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Jul 30, 2002 at 00:00
Compressor fridges are more efficient than 3-ways,but not always better depending on what you are doing.I had my 50LChescold for 4 years and it never let me down regardless of how hot it gets in the Pilbara.Having said that, i would always pick the Engel for the trips where you travel every day,it is just more user friendly.No need to drag the fridge out and muck around the gas bottle.If you are more likely to stay at places for longer period 3-way is the go.Very economical...3 weeks of running non-stop on 9kg bottle and still going.Also no moving parts.nothing to go wrong.Hope this helps.
AnswerID: 5288

Reply By: Bob - Thursday, Aug 01, 2002 at 00:00

Thursday, Aug 01, 2002 at 00:00
Cameron, I'd agree with all that Goran has said. Horses for courses and if the course involves stays of more than a day 3 ways are the go. They are very reliable and cheap. I have a 20or so year old Finch bought from a friend about 10 years ago for $100 and it has worked fine all over Australia in the back of my vehicle and on gas at camp sites. This includes Far North Queensland. Have a larger one in my van too - 24years old and still works beautifully - again in all parts of Australia. By the way, I'd check those batteries out! A total of 220amps should easily last more than 3 days especially if you were doing some travelling and turning the fridge off at night ...
AnswerID: 5348

Reply By: Michael - Friday, Aug 02, 2002 at 00:00

Friday, Aug 02, 2002 at 00:00
Cameron, another option may be to keep your compressor fridge and invest in a solar panel. If you are travelling, or using the vehicle for day trips, you charge the batteries anyway. If propped for a few days, deploy the panel and it should put enough in during the day to keep lights and fridge etc. running when you need them. I have a 50 litre Waeco fridge, which I run all the time, and a 42 watt panel, and I can stop for several days, keep my "cordial" cold, and not run out of batteries. There are several different types of solar panel, with different characteristics, so if interested you will need to do some research.
AnswerID: 5359

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