No Options Apply Has Use

Nov 24, 2017
13
37
13
44
Coffs Harbour
#1
Hey guys,
I have a 17.58-3 on order with the upgrade on the 3-way fridge.(160lt I think)
Never had a gas fridge before and curious as to how long a 9 kg lasts?
I know it’s a how long is a piece of string question!
 

Drover

Well-Known Member
Nov 7, 2013
7,151
13,334
113
Cooloola Coast, QLD
www.expandasdownunder.com
#2
Mine when free camping running the fridge all the time, HWS about 30 mins a day and kettle boiling mostly on stove gives me about 8 to 10 days, if I remember correctly a 9kg has about 440 mj, so have a look at the labels on your gas appliances see how many joules they use per hour and work out how long you will operate them over a given period and divide into 440mj and that should give a rough idea ........ Elgas have a very informative site about Gas stuff.

My fridge is about the same size so I work on 9 days per bottle to be safe a bit of extra HWS use or stove can shorten things .
 
Last edited:
Likes: Lensim
Nov 24, 2017
13
37
13
44
Coffs Harbour
#3
Mine when free camping running the fridge all the time, HWS about 30 mins a day and kettle boiling mostly on stove gives me about 8 to 10 days, if I remember correctly a 9kg has about 440 mj, so have a look at the labels on your gas appliances see how many joules they use per hour and work out how long you will operate them over a given period and divide into 440mj (4400 j ) and that should give a rough idea ........ Elgas have a very informative site about Gas stuff.

My fridge is about the same size so I work on 9 days per bottle to be safe a bit of extra HWS use or stove can shorten things .
Thanks for the reply. That’s the exact answer I was looking for!
Now.... what other questions do I have
 
Likes: Drover

mikerezny

Well-Known Member
Sep 11, 2016
773
1,394
93
65
Mount Waverley, VIC
#4
Hi,
we have a 90l fridge, no hot water and occasionally use the stove. Our 9kg bottles last between 20 and 28 days.
I have not read of anyone getting substantially more than 28 days.

So, based on my experience and that of @Drover, a gas bottle will last between 8 and 28 days. How long you get will be based on a number of factors.
The most important is personal usage. Most of your gas usage will most probably be due to the fridge.
Note that three-way fridges are quite often not installed correctly and this has a major impact on the gas usage AND the performance of the fridge in hot weather.
A gas fridge does not have anywhere near the recovery capacity of a compressor fridge. So one cannot open the door all day, put in a slab of hot beer at midday after it has been baking in the boot of the car all day and expect it to be cold by 5pm.

Other questions you might like to ask, all of which will most probably have been answered many times and in great detail in other posts on the forum are:
1: How to ensure your fridge has been installed correctly?
2: Does having a shade cloth on the off-side of the van to keep the sun off improve the fridge performance? (YES!)
3: If my fridge does not have fridge fans in the back, should I install them? (YES!)
4: Does ice buildup on the fins in the refrigerator compartment affect the fridge performance? (YES!)
5: Can I reduce the ice buildup and keep the inside of the fridge at a more even temperature and avoid having vegetables (especially lettuce) from freezing? (YES!)
6: What performance should I get from the fridge on 240V and 12V?
7: Can I run my fridge on 12V from the van battery? (NO!)
7A; Can I run my fridge from the tug battery? (Definitely, but only if you understand what is needed OR find an auto electrican that can be trusted to do the job correctly)
8: What practices do people employ to get acceptable performance with a gas fridge?
9: Do I need to have, read, and understand the fridge manual? (YES, especially if you want to decrease your chances of having to cut a camping trip short because all the food in the fridge has gone off)
10: Should I get a temperature gauge to monitor the fridge/freezer temperatures? (Definitely recommended)
11: When operating the fridge when stationary, do I need to have the van level to have the fridge work correctly and avoid damaging it? (YES!)

When you get to the end of this list your last question might be: Why the hell did I not order the van with a 240V/12V compressor fridge? That is a very good question, unfortunately there is, at the moment, no simple answer. There are many possibilities and people are often quite passionate about the particular solution they have adopted.

My solution, at the time of purchase of our Penguin, 15 months ago, was to give the three-way fridge a go. With a bit of effort, we are quite happy with the performance. My personal feeling (and others will have different opinions, yet we are all basically correct) is that whether I go 3-way or 2-way they each have pluses and minuses:
three-way fridges:
It is good to know that once I have a new gas bottle, I am good to go for 20 or more days.
It is bad that once the outside temperature climbs above 35C, we have to be very careful and observant, otherwise the fridge temperature will climb past 6C.

2-way fridges:
It is good that they recover quickly and handle hot days MUCH better than a three-way fridge.
It is bad, that you will need to become an expert in keeping the 12V supplied to the fridge. This will most probably entail multiple batteries, a good working knowledge of solar panels and regulators, probably a combination of roof-mounted and portable panels, considering van position to ensure the panels get enough sun, a portable generator for when all else fails, and monitoring battery charging and usage currents, voltage and State of Charge.

So, in the end, you will be spending time and effort in one choice or the other.

A very common solution, is to have a bet both ways: Keep the three-way in the van, but also put a suitably sized Waeco/Engle portable in the back of the tug (usually to keep the beer, cider, and chardonnay cold).

cheers
Mike
 
Last edited:
Nov 24, 2017
13
37
13
44
Coffs Harbour
#6
Hi,
we have a 90l fridge, no hot water and occasionally use the stove. Our 9kg bottles last between 20 and 28 days.
I have not read of anyone getting substantially more than 28 days.

So, based on my experience and that of @Drover, a gas bottle will last between 8 and 28 days. How long you get will be based on a number of factors.
The most important is personal usage. Most of your gas usage will most probably be due to the fridge.
Note that three-way fridges are quite often not installed correctly and this has a major impact on the gas usage AND the performance of the fridge in hot weather.
A gas fridge does not have anywhere near the recovery capacity of a compressor fridge. So one cannot open the door all day, put in a slab of hot beer at midday after it has been baking in the boot of the car all day and expect it to be cold by 5pm.

Other questions you might like to ask, all of which will most probably have been answered many times and in great detail in other posts on the forum are:
1: How to ensure your fridge has been installed correctly?
2: Does having a shade cloth on the off-side of the van to keep the sun off improve the fridge performance? (YES!)
3: If my fridge does not have fridge fans in the back, should I install them? (YES!)
4: Does ice buildup on the fins in the refrigerator compartment affect the fridge performance? (YES!)
5: Can I reduce the ice buildup and keep the inside of the fridge at a more even temperature and avoid having vegetables (especially lettuce) from freezing? (YES!)
6: What performance should I get from the fridge on 240V and 12V?
7: Can I run my fridge on 12V from the van battery? (NO!)
7A; Can I run my fridge from the tug battery? (Definitely, but only if you understand what is needed OR find an auto electrican that can be trusted to do the job correctly)
8: What practices do people employ to get acceptable performance with a gas fridge?
9: Do I need to have, read, and understand the fridge manual? (YES, especially if you want to decrease your chances of having to cut a camping trip short because all the food in the fridge has gone off)
10: Should I get a temperature gauge to monitor the fridge/freezer temperatures? (Definitely recommended)
11: When operating the fridge when stationary, do I need to have the van level to have the fridge work correctly and avoid damaging it? (YES!)

When you get to the end of this list your last question might be: Why the hell did I not order the van with a 240V/12V compressor fridge? That is a very good question, unfortunately there is, at the moment, no simple answer. There are many possibilities and people are often quite passionate about the particular solution they have adopted.

My solution, at the time of purchase of our Penguin, 15 months ago, was to give the three-way fridge a go. With a bit of effort, we are quite happy with the performance. My personal feeling (and others will have different opinions, yet we are all basically correct) is that whether I go 3-way or 2-way they each have pluses and minuses:
three-way fridges:
It is good to know that once I have a new gas bottle, I am good to go for 20 or more days.
It is bad that once the outside temperature climbs above 35C, we have to be very careful and observant, otherwise the fridge temperature will climb past 6C.

2-way fridges:
It is good that they recover quickly and handle hot days MUCH better than a three-way fridge.
It is bad, that you will need to become an expert in keeping the 12V supplied to the fridge. This will most probably entail multiple batteries, a good working knowledge of solar panels and regulators, probably a combination of roof-mounted and portable panels, considering van position to ensure the panels get enough sun, a portable generator for when all else fails, and monitoring battery charging and usage currents, voltage and State of Charge.

So, in the end, you will be spending time and effort in one choice or the other.

A very common solution, is to have a bet both ways: Keep the three-way in the van, but also put a suitably sized Waeco/Engle portable in the back of the tug (usually to keep the beer, cider, and chardonnay cold).

cheers
Mike
Thanks for your detailed reply. Your points about the hot weather were interesting as i have been wondering how the fridge would perform. I have a 2-way Engel fridge in the ute and never had any issues, so your last point about running the Engel as well as the van fridge will be something i will be doing.
 
Likes: mikerezny

Drover

Well-Known Member
Nov 7, 2013
7,151
13,334
113
Cooloola Coast, QLD
www.expandasdownunder.com
#7
When I had a small fridge in the old rig , the Engel in the Ute was always in use, mostly as a freezer so beer got quickly rotated thru it but now with the BIG fridge I have found the Engel gets little use, the van fridge having a separate freezer makes a big difference as the frozen stuff stays that way though in hot weather I tend to use the Engel for my beer to save opening the fridge door all the time and letting the cold fall on the floor......( winter in ACT/VIC area, beer sits in Engel turned off and does a marvelous job stopping the beer from freezing ).........................I use a full size shade screen on the off side wall to shade the fridge vents and kitchen area, it makes a hell of an improvement to the heat on the wall and with 2 fans running to move the air does help a lot, they all work hard when above 39 deg but I find with a near full fridge it keeps the temp better than near empty and loading the fridge with cold stuff is better than warm which is better to time it to load of an evening....................................... I have been toying with the idea to pull the fridge out and improve the insulation and air flow at the fridge rear but a job that can go pear shaped easily so just waiting for the right time, it's been there for 6 yrs now, it may not like being moved they are easily upset and chuck a wobbly....................

I would advise when you get your van make sure the buggers give you a good run down on how to work everything, it should take a couple of hours and run everything fridge, HWS, TV, water pumps off both tanks etc don't forget to check that the jack works and most important "Check Your Wheel Nuts " before you leave the yard and after each service, many a wheel has fell off a van just out of the driveway..........................When you get home run the fridge for 24 hrs, after an hour you should feel inside chilling down after a few hours feel the wall panels surrounding the fridge including the top and inside cupboard f need be, other than a few inches from the outer wall if the area is very warm then it hasn't been insulated properly and warm air instead of flowing outside is circulating in the cavities around the fridge which can really effect the fridge operation greatly.......the air needs to flow quickly and unhindered from the lower vent thru the condensor fins and out the upper vent thus the need for fans in back to expedite the air flow but it doesn't always happen..........oh and unless it's in writing and signed it's a fairytale........look forward to your new van pics..........
 
Nov 24, 2017
13
37
13
44
Coffs Harbour
#8
When I had a small fridge in the old rig , the Engel in the Ute was always in use, mostly as a freezer so beer got quickly rotated thru it but now with the BIG fridge I have found the Engel gets little use, the van fridge having a separate freezer makes a big difference as the frozen stuff stays that way though in hot weather I tend to use the Engel for my beer to save opening the fridge door all the time and letting the cold fall on the floor......( winter in ACT/VIC area, beer sits in Engel turned off and does a marvelous job stopping the beer from freezing ).........................I use a full size shade screen on the off side wall to shade the fridge vents and kitchen area, it makes a hell of an improvement to the heat on the wall and with 2 fans running to move the air does help a lot, they all work hard when above 39 deg but I find with a near full fridge it keeps the temp better than near empty and loading the fridge with cold stuff is better than warm which is better to time it to load of an evening....................................... I have been toying with the idea to pull the fridge out and improve the insulation and air flow at the fridge rear but a job that can go pear shaped easily so just waiting for the right time, it's been there for 6 yrs now, it may not like being moved they are easily upset and chuck a wobbly....................

I would advise when you get your van make sure the buggers give you a good run down on how to work everything, it should take a couple of hours and run everything fridge, HWS, TV, water pumps off both tanks etc don't forget to check that the jack works and most important "Check Your Wheel Nuts " before you leave the yard and after each service, many a wheel has fell off a van just out of the driveway..........................When you get home run the fridge for 24 hrs, after an hour you should feel inside chilling down after a few hours feel the wall panels surrounding the fridge including the top and inside cupboard f need be, other than a few inches from the outer wall if the area is very warm then it hasn't been insulated properly and warm air instead of flowing outside is circulating in the cavities around the fridge which can really effect the fridge operation greatly.......the air needs to flow quickly and unhindered from the lower vent thru the condensor fins and out the upper vent thus the need for fans in back to expedite the air flow but it doesn't always happen..........oh and unless it's in writing and signed it's a fairytale........look forward to your new van pics..........
Thanks for the info! I'm looking forward to my "new van pics" too!:p
 
Likes: Drover

Boots in Action

Well-Known Member
Mar 13, 2017
610
613
93
Ferny Grove, Queensland
#11
Hi,
we have a 90l fridge, no hot water and occasionally use the stove. Our 9kg bottles last between 20 and 28 days.
I have not read of anyone getting substantially more than 28 days.

So, based on my experience and that of @Drover, a gas bottle will last between 8 and 28 days. How long you get will be based on a number of factors.
The most important is personal usage. Most of your gas usage will most probably be due to the fridge.
Note that three-way fridges are quite often not installed correctly and this has a major impact on the gas usage AND the performance of the fridge in hot weather.
A gas fridge does not have anywhere near the recovery capacity of a compressor fridge. So one cannot open the door all day, put in a slab of hot beer at midday after it has been baking in the boot of the car all day and expect it to be cold by 5pm.

Other questions you might like to ask, all of which will most probably have been answered many times and in great detail in other posts on the forum are:
1: How to ensure your fridge has been installed correctly?
2: Does having a shade cloth on the off-side of the van to keep the sun off improve the fridge performance? (YES!)
3: If my fridge does not have fridge fans in the back, should I install them? (YES!)
4: Does ice buildup on the fins in the refrigerator compartment affect the fridge performance? (YES!)
5: Can I reduce the ice buildup and keep the inside of the fridge at a more even temperature and avoid having vegetables (especially lettuce) from freezing? (YES!)
6: What performance should I get from the fridge on 240V and 12V?
7: Can I run my fridge on 12V from the van battery? (NO!)
7A; Can I run my fridge from the tug battery? (Definitely, but only if you understand what is needed OR find an auto electrican that can be trusted to do the job correctly)
8: What practices do people employ to get acceptable performance with a gas fridge?
9: Do I need to have, read, and understand the fridge manual? (YES, especially if you want to decrease your chances of having to cut a camping trip short because all the food in the fridge has gone off)
10: Should I get a temperature gauge to monitor the fridge/freezer temperatures? (Definitely recommended)
11: When operating the fridge when stationary, do I need to have the van level to have the fridge work correctly and avoid damaging it? (YES!)

When you get to the end of this list your last question might be: Why the hell did I not order the van with a 240V/12V compressor fridge? That is a very good question, unfortunately there is, at the moment, no simple answer. There are many possibilities and people are often quite passionate about the particular solution they have adopted.

My solution, at the time of purchase of our Penguin, 15 months ago, was to give the three-way fridge a go. With a bit of effort, we are quite happy with the performance. My personal feeling (and others will have different opinions, yet we are all basically correct) is that whether I go 3-way or 2-way they each have pluses and minuses:
three-way fridges:
It is good to know that once I have a new gas bottle, I am good to go for 20 or more days.
It is bad that once the outside temperature climbs above 35C, we have to be very careful and observant, otherwise the fridge temperature will climb past 6C.

2-way fridges:
It is good that they recover quickly and handle hot days MUCH better than a three-way fridge.
It is bad, that you will need to become an expert in keeping the 12V supplied to the fridge. This will most probably entail multiple batteries, a good working knowledge of solar panels and regulators, probably a combination of roof-mounted and portable panels, considering van position to ensure the panels get enough sun, a portable generator for when all else fails, and monitoring battery charging and usage currents, voltage and State of Charge.

So, in the end, you will be spending time and effort in one choice or the other.

A very common solution, is to have a bet both ways: Keep the three-way in the van, but also put a suitably sized Waeco/Engle portable in the back of the tug (usually to keep the beer, cider, and chardonnay cold).

cheers
Mike
Hi @Lensim , @mikerezny has covered nearly every point you need to know Except your own experiences which you will get to know quickly. And fairly unbiased too!! My 91 litre 3 way fridge and gas cooker which I use for all cooking when off grid usually lasts 2 X 6 or 7 days excursions. No HWS! And that is even at high temps here in sunny (bloody hot sometimes ) Queensland which makes the fridge work hard. You can definitely improve the efficiency of your 3 way gas fridge with the modifications listed by @mikerezny . Lots of posts on how to do this on this forum. And not just by we enthusiasts!!! Some manufacturers of 3 way gas fridges now offer optional cooling (exhaust) fans at the back of fridge to assist operation in hot climates.
 

MadMapMan

New Member
Dec 28, 2015
3
4
3
Adelaide
#13