Fridge temp vs. camper interior temp over 11 day trip


New member
We just got back from an 11 day trip through the Great Sand Dunes NP, Mesa Verde NP, Canyonlands NP, and Arches NP in Colorado and Utah. Temps varied from lows in the 40s to highs in the 90s.

While packing I threw in two battery powered temp/humidity loggers, one in the fridge on the left hand side of the second shelf, the other in the upper cabinet just to the left of the fridge. The fridge was run on propane the whole time. The thermostat, actually the valve that controls the amount of gas supplied to the fridge, was 1/2 rotation open to where it aligned with the double hash mark. I did not change this at all during the trip to minimize variables in the process. Also, I did not notice if the condenser cooling fan turned on at all. This is probably because I didn't turn up the flame very high.

With four people on the trip we opened and closed the fridge several times per day. We also restocked the fridge four or five times during the trip. I noticed a small amount of ice on the cooling fins in the morning by the third day on the road.

I've attached a JPG image of an Excel chart showing the car and fridge temps during the trip. I also graphed the difference in temperature. The image is attached.

I plan to repeat on future trips with different flame levels. I've also installed a small cross flow fan to help circulate air and minimize temperature gradients in the fridge. I'll post what I find.

One thing to note, we used 1.3 gallons of propane in six days. That's for the fridge and all our cooking and heating water for washing dishes.