Make no mistake, motorhome owners need appliances that operate on battery power. Food is a big priority on the road, especially in remote areas, so a battery-powered refrigerator makes sense. But wait, compressor-equipped refrigerators are notoriously power-hungry. A freezer section delivers subzero cooling, so that’s even more power sucked away. Are you beginning to think an RV battery won’t last long under this power-sucking assault?

Multiple Power Solutions

Fair enough, an electrically powered RV freezer can suck its battery dry within 6-8 hours. But that’s why a purely electrically powered appliance has become something of a rarity inside motorhome kitchens. The tiny mobile galley has access to generator energy and battery power. Should the RV genny be used while driving? No, not if the vehicle fuel tank is low. And what if a motorhome doesn’t include an inbuilt generator? That leaves the battery, which will drain quickly if the appliance freezer is working overtime. Happily, there’s a third option, the use of a gas-fueled flame.

Smart Motorhome Freezers

A smart sensor takes control of the switchover action. If the batteries and vehicle inverter are producing enough A.C voltage, the freezer performs its chilly functions. Should the power drop low, the equipment switches over to LP gas. The ammonia and hydrogen gasses flow through a closed network of tubes. They heat, they cool, and they produce a chemically generated cooling effect. However, while many motorhome owners do run their gas-powered units whilst driving, risks increase when this decision is made. This is not a decision that can be taken lightly, not when a severed gas line could ignite.

Shutoff the Power

Not all motorhomes come with compatible inverters, and not all vehicles have high-capacity batteries. For gas-fueled systems, we can’t recommend driving with the LP gas flowing, although many drivers do permit this practice. For a safer, more energy efficient approach to this issue, purchase a built-in freezer that incorporates superior insulation. Now, turn off the gas and cut the freezer’s battery power. Out on the road, the closed system will lose a few degrees of cooling energy every 8 hours. Unless the vehicle is crossing a remote area, though, that leaves the driver plenty of time to reach a shore power connection.

Refrigerators eat electrical power. Freezers, however, drink that power in a single long gulp. Exposed to this level of appliance hunger, even the best motorhome battery will run down after 8-hours. No worries, the freezer can flip over to its gas-fueled power source as soon as the equipment sensor indicates a battery drain. Still, by using gas while driving, we introduce risk factors. Sometimes it’s better to just switch off the freezer and let its insulation take charge. Alternatively, add a solar panel to the motorhome as battery support.