Electrical Systems, Charging and Solar Electrical components and wiring, batteries, charging systems, generators and solar topics.
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Old 07-07-2019, 05:50 PM   #1
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Default Refrig running down battery.

When traveling I put the fridge on 12 V and several hours later when we arrive at rv park I find that the camper battery is practically dead. I have the power line from the truck battery to the 7 terminal connector and have tested with a voltage meter all the way to the battery on camper and am getting power. I can hook up truck and disconnect camper battery and fridge is working off of truck power. Also with camper positive cable disconnected and truck running I have power all the way to end of camper battery positive cable from the truck. Hooking camper battery back up and also connected to truck why is it not keeping my battery charged while I travel with fridge turned? Fridge works great on A/C or D/C power.
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Old 07-07-2019, 06:55 PM   #2
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Freddie, the truck wiring is not heavy enough to prevent too large a voltage drop. It will go below the camper battery voltage and then the fridge will draw from the camper battery. I ran a separate 6 gage line direct from the truck battery to a separate connector.
Works great
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Old 07-10-2019, 10:15 AM   #3
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^^^

What he said! In my truck the 10 gauge wiring to the trailer plug was not able to keep up with the refrigerator's demand either. However, my 300 Watt solar panel installation on the roof of my trailer works constantly when traveling and we arrive at a campsite now with a fully charged battery now.

So, those are two options for you.

- Jack
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Old 07-10-2019, 10:35 AM   #4
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Default Replacing wiring first

I currently have a # 12 wire running from battery. Am going for a #6 wire and see if that helps. If not I may attempt the solar panel if I think I can actually install and wire up one.

I appreciate the answers and will keep on it since my wife really likes to have cold things in the fridge when we set up and I like to have power to raise the camper immediately.
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Old 07-10-2019, 11:32 AM   #5
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Freddie - I think 6-gauge may be a bit of "overkill". 8-gauge should be enough to carry the needed Amperage. Of course, you can install anything, but 6-gauge is awfully thick and quite difficult to work with. And, I think I misspoke in my previous post. I think the wiring in my vehicle is 12-gauge, not 10. Higher numbers are thinner. My solar wiring is all 10-gauge.

The other consideration is your tow vehicle's alternator. It may not have the capacity to provide the needed additional current. If your vehicle is equipped with a "tow package", it probably does, but you MAY find that to be problematic too, but I suspect the wire size is the main culprit.

- Jack
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Old 07-11-2019, 07:15 AM   #6
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If you haven't already, you may want to add a second 12-volt battery, that will double your battery power.
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