Battery & fridge box

Submitted: Sunday, Feb 26, 2012 at 17:19
ThreadID: 92122 Views:1733 Replies:4 FollowUps:3
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I'd like to add a box to the front of my cvan, to house both a fridge on a slide, and all power components. Can anyone tell me how I should work out how much the box can protrude down the drawbar towards the hitch? I'm thinking once I try turning too tight, the car might bounce off the toolbox.

Also, what do the experts think of the fridge/ power up front idea?

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Reply By: Member - Richard H - West NSW - Sunday, Feb 26, 2012 at 17:36

Sunday, Feb 26, 2012 at 17:36
Provided the towing vehicle is capable of handling the weight, but before you even consider the design etc. have a look at the threads regarding caravan weights & loading, and the disaster/s that can occur if the van starts to get a mind of it's own.

Personally, I wouldn't. I'd find some other place to locate the fridge, like in the rear of your towing vehicle.

My Engel fridge is on a slide in the back of my Hilux, works very well and doesn't effect the van.

I hope this helps, but no doubt others with a greater knowledge of vans will respond.
AnswerID: 478731

Follow Up By: Tim Y - Sunday, Feb 26, 2012 at 18:58

Sunday, Feb 26, 2012 at 18:58
G'day Richard,

Thanks for the advice re weights and loads etc. Have pulled out the manual of our vehicle, a 2012 Kia Sorento, and it says that the max trailer weight of a braked trailer is 2000kg for an automatic transaxle. Does that refer to an auto transmission? It also says that the max permissible vertical load on the coupling device is 80kg. Is that the ball weight? If so, is that a small ball weight?

Thanks for your advice.
FollowupID: 754271

Reply By: Ross M - Sunday, Feb 26, 2012 at 18:26

Sunday, Feb 26, 2012 at 18:26
When you are turning/backing, I doubt if the car will "bounce" off the box.
More likely it will just crunch up both until you stop.
However, if the box is big enough to hit in the first place it is not a good idea.
Nearly all that extra weight has to be taken as ball weight, is this a good idea?
An AGM battery can be placed anywhere suitable in the van for balance and trim reasons and doesn't have to go on the drawbar. Lots of vans have batteries under the bed for example.
Kimberley Kampers have big boxes on their draw bars and one man and all his mates can't lift the draw bar.

The performance of the fridge in a box will be worse and it will use more power each day.
In a vehicle the fridge can be vented and it can also be vented if used in the van.
You didn't say how big the fridge is so hard to go further not knowing type of vehicle etc.
AnswerID: 478736

Follow Up By: Tim Y - Sunday, Feb 26, 2012 at 18:51

Sunday, Feb 26, 2012 at 18:51
Thanks Ross

You've given me lots to think about. The van does have gas, but we are thinking of not using it. It also has a three way fridge, but it is an original elextrolux. So, our thoughts were to give the 3 way a miss, and use a big car fridge instead. So, I was thinking an 80 litre Engel or 78 litre ARB. I thought if it sat at the front of the van, we could set up a cooker beside the van and have the fridge slide out into the same area of the annexe.

But, looking at it now, it may not be the best idea due to weight. Do you say the performance of the fridge will be worse due to the sun/heat; and then having to work harder to keep cool?

Anyway, thanks again.
FollowupID: 754266

Reply By: Member - Oldbaz. NSW. - Monday, Feb 27, 2012 at 09:45

Monday, Feb 27, 2012 at 09:45
Tim, I'm not much of a maths guru,but it appears to me you would be adding more
than the legal weight limit on the ball with the fridge, box & battery set up...let
alone the van weight. Not a lot of upside anyway...much better to carry in car...
security, ventilation, dust, damage, temperature, onroad access, extra wiring etc. More convenient for day trips without van...........oldbaz.
AnswerID: 478809

Follow Up By: ozjohn0 - Monday, Feb 27, 2012 at 10:25

Monday, Feb 27, 2012 at 10:25
As well as ball weight, will the drawbar be stong enough and comply with VSB1 regualtions?
FollowupID: 754327

Reply By: Member - Richard H - West NSW - Monday, Feb 27, 2012 at 11:11

Monday, Feb 27, 2012 at 11:11

Go to this site:

It is a caravan forum, it's easy to join, no cost, all you need to do is register. Because the site is pretty well devoted to caravanning there's a whole lot of people on there who an techo/mechanical, and will be able to give you very good advice, plus probably do your sums for you in working things out.

Give it a try.


AnswerID: 478817

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