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Old 02-24-2021, 04:27 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by C&G in FL View Post
Truly, what do you think is going to happen that is so disastrous that couldn’t happen at any other time. I’m not being judgmental here, everyone has to decide for themselves.
The biggest danger from running RV propane appliances is at gasoline stations as the propane appliances do have an open flame. There is a small potential for gasoline vapors to contact that flame and ignite.

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Old 02-24-2021, 04:36 PM   #42
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Originally Posted by HABBERDABBER View Post
Isn't this a question of the output capacity of the tug alternator and more importantly the gauge of the wire supplying 12V to the 7 pin connector? DC is very significantly affected by wire length and gauge size.

I initially was going to get a 3-way fridge, but after discussing with Reace, I opted for AC/propane. I had 10 gauge wiring from a heavy duty alternator in the RAV4, but Reace pointed out that if I left a campsite with a depleted house battery, it would be in the same condition when I arrived at my next camp. The vehicle could not supply enough to power both the fridge on DC and recharge the house battery.
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Old 02-24-2021, 04:56 PM   #43
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It depends on the current that your tow vehicle can provide. My stock Jeep Grand Cherokee with towing package provides enough current that my refrigerator stays as cold as it started. As many have pointed out, some of us are comfortable traveling with propane on and others are not. It is a choice you make. I personally am much more comfortable with propane off. Those of us who travel with propane on, or off, are not going to convince the other side that we are right and they are wrong.
Bill, not trying to “convince anyone on the other side” but you quoted me and then did not answer my question. Why is it you feel more comfortable with the propane off? Do you ever run the refrigerator on propane, such as when you do not have shore power? If you do, why do you feel less comfortable when driving than when stopped. Again, I would ask, what would make propane use when moving more scary than when stopped to you or anyone else. I’m just trying to understand the comfort level, or maybe I should say the discomfort level of those who believe driving combined with propane use is dangerous. I grew up in a city where the gas company used a fleet of propane powered vehicles, yet never had any catastrophes doing so.
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Old 02-24-2021, 05:07 PM   #44
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I am a completely knowledge-free bystander in this - trying to absorb any useful nuggets of knowledge. I did notice the following DANGER warning in the Owner's manual -

WHEN REFUELING TOW VEHICLE, SHUT OFF ALL PROPANE GAS APPLIANCES. MOST PROPANE GAS APPLIANCES ARE VENTED TO THE OUTSIDE. GASOLINE FUMES COULD ENTER THE APPLIANCE AND IGNITE FROM THE BURNER FLAME, CAUSING AN EXPLOSION OR FIRE.

I do not know how many go through the trouble of shutting the fridge or other propane appliance when refueling at a gas station. I'd think that gets old quickly. But, ETI does warn about the situation shown in the video.
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Old 02-24-2021, 06:24 PM   #45
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No safety issue leaving propane on and ref/furnace operating while driving. As stated, some tunnels/ferries will not allow propane cylinder to be open and s few fire not allow any propane cylinders.

Fueling-fire code does not allow an open flame within 25’ of fueling operation. So, if your refrigerator or furnace is operating fueled by propane, and open flame, then it is supposed to be off. Propane cylinders don’t need to be closed. Just no flame.

That is a somewhat older code that is still in use and is law in most jurisdictions. That also means for any fueling in the service station, so a nearby pump, too.
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Old 02-24-2021, 07:33 PM   #46
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The biggest danger from running RV propane appliances is at gasoline stations as the propane appliances do have an open flame. There is a small potential for gasoline vapors to contact that flame and ignite.

I could be wrong but that looks to me like it started as an engine fire.
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Old 02-24-2021, 07:40 PM   #47
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I could be wrong but that looks to me like it started as an engine fire.
Perhaps, but, there are plenty more where that came from:

Videos of RV fires at Gas Stations

Images of RV fires at Gas Stations

And regardless of where any particular fire started the hazard of open flame at a gas station is real.
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Old 02-24-2021, 08:42 PM   #48
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I can understand why some are afraid of running the fridge on propane while driving. I towed a '97 Shrimp trailer all across Canada for 3.5 months about 8 years ago and left the fridge running on propane the whole time as the previous owner for some reason disconnected the DC and AC to it. After parking at a campground I had a feeling I should check the burner and when I opened the vent hatch the flame was no longer contained in the little metal burner box. It turned out the burner just needed to be cleaned but it happened again a few days later after another couple thousand kms. For the rest of the trip I was completely paranoid about burning the trailer down with or without us inside.

Near the end of the trip a little aluminum 's' curved pipe snapped. I guess there is a safety valve that shuts off fuel to the burner when the flame goes out but if that little pipe could break (which it did again after we had it replaced) from the bumps in the road, I wouldn't be completely surprised if the propane line could break or wear through in another part of the trailer and fill the trailer gas.

Also, the comparison of gasoline in the fuel tank of your TV to propane used for the appliances isn't quite fair. If you have a gas leak on your car it's most likely just going to drip onto the ground. Not potentially fill a large box with a highly explosive gas. From what I have heard, propane is incredibly explosive and I've heard stories of bbq tanks leveling a building when they've exploded in a fire.

Having said all that, I've never heard a story of a trailer exploding from a leak while driving. I understand the concern though.
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Old 02-24-2021, 10:00 PM   #49
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And regardless of where any particular fire started the hazard of open flame at a gas station is real.
Agreed.
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Old 02-24-2021, 11:43 PM   #50
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The fridge on DC sucks power out of the battery faster than the tow vehicle can supply it.
Or, more accurately, the refrigerator uses more current than the high-resistance wiring of the typical tow vehicle to trailer battery connection allows to flow in replacement, given the difference in voltage between the trailer battery and the tow vehicle's charging system. The refrigerator current is no problem for the tow vehicle's charging system to supply, if only it could get past all that resistance.
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Old 02-24-2021, 11:45 PM   #51
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Originally Posted by HABBERDABBER View Post
Isn't this a question of the output capacity of the tug alternator and more importantly the gauge of the wire supplying 12V to the 7 pin connector? If either are marginal or inadequate, poor DC refrig performance. It seems not to be a matter of preference or opinion, but equipment capability.


DC is very significantly affected by wire length and gauge size.
Yes for everything said above about the wiring, but no for the capacity of the 100 amp or greater alternator which is likely in the tow vehicle being an issue.
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Old 02-25-2021, 12:00 AM   #52
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Also, the comparison of gasoline in the fuel tank of your TV to propane used for the appliances isn't quite fair. If you have a gas leak on your car it's most likely just going to drip onto the ground. Not potentially fill a large box with a highly explosive gas.
To fill a box, the propane would need to leak within the trailer interior. That's possible, but unlikely (in part because propane in the piping within the interior is at almost no pressure), and the propane connection to the refrigerator is in a space open to the outside and sealed from the interior.

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From what I have heard, propane is incredibly explosive and I've heard stories of bbq tanks leveling a building when they've exploded in a fire.
Ah, stories. Did you hear the one about the moon landings be faked?

A propane tank contains only propane; there is no air in it so the propane can't even burn - let alone explode - unless it gets out the tank first. In a fire the tank will vent or even burst, and certainly contribute to the fire, but you need a huge fire first. If your trailer has that kind of fire it's destroyed, regardless of whether or not the tank of propane (which is outside on the tongue unless it's a 5.0) is eventually compromised.
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Old 02-25-2021, 12:02 AM   #53
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The biggest danger from running RV propane appliances is at gasoline stations as the propane appliances do have an open flame. There is a small potential for gasoline vapors to contact that flame and ignite.

yeah, I'll be the first to admit that I rarely remember to shut off my propane and fridge when I'm fueling my truck... And I'm not sure I've ever pulled over before passing through a tunnel so marked, and shut off my systems. ooops.
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Old 02-25-2021, 12:10 AM   #54
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Or, more accurately

Actually, to be more precise.
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Old 02-25-2021, 07:52 AM   #55
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When refueling, I always try to use the closest pump and leave the trailer, away from the fuel source........
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Old 02-25-2021, 08:07 AM   #56
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It’s sad when this happens. Hope the owners were ok. Anyone know the make of the motor home
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Old 02-25-2021, 05:38 PM   #57
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I just leave it all off when traveling. Before I leave I plug the fridge into the shore line at my house and make ice cubes and freeze 500 ml bottles of water and put in the freezer and fridge part. Keeps everything frozen in the freezer and cool in the fridge.
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Old 02-25-2021, 06:06 PM   #58
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I just leave it all off when traveling. Before I leave I plug the fridge into the shore line at my house and make ice cubes and freeze 500 ml bottles of water and put in the freezer and fridge part. Keeps everything frozen in the freezer and cool in the fridge.

Yah, but you're only driving 25 minutes to Harmon.
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Old 02-25-2021, 06:41 PM   #59
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Yes but i do not go to Harmon much. I have traveled 600 K with no thawing trouble with just ice packs and frozen water bottles. It does work. I tried my DC and without a good alternator and heavy wire it does not work as good.
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Old 02-25-2021, 06:46 PM   #60
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Anyone know the make of the motor home
Not me, but it looks to me like a Class C from the 1970's.
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