How much power will a 12VDC fridge require?
This is the most frequently asked question of all, and one of the most difficult to answer. There are many variables that determine the power consumption such as ambient temperature, internal temperature setting on thermostat, duration of operating time and frequency of entry to the refrigerator. All of these above factors affect the measure of power required.
In addition to the above factors, the performance of a 12VDC fridge is largely dependent on the 12VDC battery source used to power the fridge. The battery source in turn is recharge using an engines alternator, solar panel or auxiliary generator.
It is recommended that the 12VDC fridge is powered using a good quality deep cycle AGM auxiliary battery with 100 Amp/Hour capacity or better. This type of battery can typically be fully discharged without damage, has more recharge cycles and takes less time to recharge. Additionally, when installed in vehicles and using the engine alternator, the auxiliary battery should be isolated from the vehicle main starting battery using an intelligent battery isolator. The battery isolator will protect the main starting battery by only allowing the auxiliary battery to be charged from the engine alternator once the main starting battery is fully charged. This will also reduce the charging load of the alternator for extended life.
For best performance Northern Fridge recommends the following;
1. Avoid direct sunlight and other heat sources close to the fridge
2. Ensure adequate ventilation for the compressor/condenser unit mounted on the rear of the fridge. Ensure that cold air can enter at the bottom, pass behind the fridge and warm air can leave the top in the area where the fridge is installed.
3. Use of one or more good quality deep cycle AGM auxiliary battery with 100 Amp/Hour capacity or better.